The Amateur Traveler talks to Catherine from Cycling through the Centuries who grew up in Portugal about the country she calls home.
Catherine lays out a tour for us with the best of Portugal. She includes Lisbon, Porto, The Blue Coast, the Alentejo but you may be surprised what she does not include.
Catherine says, “Portugal is fantastic because it’s quite small, very small. You can actually see almost everything in 2 weeks if you plan well, but there is so much to see.”
“I would recommend you start in Lisbon which is a fantastic city, the capital. It’s kind of like an old man, a bit tattered around the edges but still quite elegant and noble. It is a very safe city. It’s a very comfortable cozy city. There’s fado, the Portuguese music. It’s singing sorrow and unrequited love. I would definitely go to a fado club and listen to some fado.” She recommends 3 days in Lisbon.
She also recommends the beautiful area of Simbra which has a green microclimate. It was the summer residence of the Portuguese royalty. There are two palaces and a Moorish fortress. She recommends 2 full days in Simbra. The coast is also nearby. One of the beaches has dinosaur footprints.
She does not recommend people go to Fatima unless they are on a specific religious pilgrimage.
She recommends the region near Porto. The whole region is a UNESCO world heritage site, the vineyards which are terraced along the Douro River. Porto is the second-largest city in Portugal.
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