Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Trekcapri's 2014 Portugal Travel Adventures

After exploring South America (specifically, Argentina & Peru) for the past two years (which I loved), I'm heading back to Europe and I can't wait. I hope you like my traditional 2014 Portugal Travel Adventures trip announcement video. :)

Originally before setting my sights on South America, I had thought about going to somewhere new in Europe. I once read a fellow Slow Traveler (Deborah) describe her experiences in Lisbon, Portugal and I never forgot that sense of "gosh I want to go there too".  I knew then, that I wanted to see and experience Portugal too!

I've decided to stay in one base city (Lisbon) and then take day trips (maybe one possible overnight day trip to nearby towns). I've rented a nice 1 bedroom apartment (through located in the Chiado Neighborhood. My apartment is on the 3rd Floor. It has an elevator, washer/dryer, WiFi, air-conditioning, TV/DVD and a well equipped kitchen.  It is a corner apartment and on one side it faces a quiet side street. The location looks convenient with nearby cafes, restaurants and public transit.

Lisbon is the second oldest capitol city in Europe (next to Athens) and it is nestled along the Tagus River with the Atlantic Ocean only 3km away. The Cidade das Sete Colinas (City of the seven hills) exudes old world charm. There are lots to see here and to help whisk us around this compact city there are these clamoring trams much like the cable cars in San Francisco. But these tram rides are more than just a way of transportation, it is a unique Lisbon experience that should not be missed. I read that one particular line (Tram 28) is an ideal way to get an overall view of the city.

Lisbon has a wonderful cafe culture, with a maze of narrow and winding streets filled with hanging laundry, colorful homes and inviting locals. There are famous landmarks like the Mosteiro dos Jeronimos, St. George Castle and the Torre de Belem, a UNESCO world heritage site.  There are old but charming neighborhoods like the Alfama District (the oldest neighborhood in Lisbon) and Barrio Alto where the food and music scene (like Fado) will keep me entertained as well as provide me with great photo opportunities.

Other notable off the beaten path attractions:
- National Coach Museum
- Tile Museum
- Lisbon Cathedral (Camino de Santiago Portugese Route Start)
- Santa Justa Lift 

There are a number of towns to visit from Lisbon for quick day trips:
- Sintra
- Cascias
- Estoril
- Cabo da Boca
- Obidos
- Evora
- Porto (Requires an Overnight Stay)

I may have to reduce the number of day trips if I run out of time but I think for now this seems to be quite manageable.  I can do Cascias and Cabo da Boca (maybe Estoril) together on one trip, but Sintra, Obidos, Evora and Porto will require a dedicated day and maybe an overnight stay (Evora and/or Porto). I have created a Google Map for my trip to keep track of my itinerary thoughts and ideas.

I like the idea of staying in one place for 3 weeks and Lisbon is the perfect place to do it. Last year I spent 12 days based in a small town (Ollantaytambo) in Peru and Lisbon will be a complete change from that experience. While I enjoyed my time in Peru, travel for me is all about the adventure.  And the more varied, unpredictable and new these adventures are, the more excited I get.

I just started my research a couple of weeks ago so I feel a bit rushed even though I don't leave until November. I have downloaded a couple of e-books and will research any good apps to help me prepare.  A nice Portuguese Language book/app will be a must purchase. :) I've also posted on my favorite Travel Forum, Slow Europe. I feel pretty good about my choices so far, but it would be nice to hear what other Slow Travelers think.

I've created a Pinterest Board for my trip where I have started to pin interesting articles, blog posts, websites and youtube videos. I got the idea from a fellow Slow Traveler who created a board for her London trip.  I've had Pinterest for a while now, but this is the first time I'm using it for planning a trip. While browsing the Internet if I find something interesting that I might want to see and/or do on my trip I can Pin it directly to my trip planning board. You just simply hover over the item you want to Pin and click on the red Pin It icon, select the board you want to pin it to and voila.

It's very cool, easy and so helpful.  If you have not discovered Pinterest Boards for trip planning yet, I would highly recommend it. Here's a screen shot of my Portugal Trip Planning Board.

The apartment I have rented does have Wi-Fi, so I hope to blog & tweet about my experiences as much as possible.  I'm looking forward to my return to Europe and to this new and soon to be explored country.

Thanks so much for reading. And the Dream lives on .  .  .


  1. Wow, I'm so excited for you! Three weeks in Portugal sounds fantastic. I hope the trip planning is a lot of fun (I'm going to go over and check out your Pinterest board). I've been tempted to join Pinterest but haven't taken the plunge yet.

    Looking forward to visiting Portugal vicariously with you!

  2. Hi Annie, thanks so much for your comments. I'm very excited and I'm looking forward to seeing someplace new again this year. Lisbon sounds like a wonderful country. I think you would really like Pinterest. I got hooked because my sister got me into it. It's great not just for travel but for everything. Cooking recipes, Do it Yourself (DIY) projects, etc. It's fun. Right now my favorite social media is Blogging, Twitter and Pinterest.

    I hope to post as much as I can. If the WiFi is descent I will try to post Daily if I can.

    Have a wonderful week.

  3. I am so glad to hear that you are going to Portugal. I can't wait to travel along.

  4. Hi Marta, thanks so much for your comments. I'm glad I'm going too and I am looking forward to new experiences & new discoveries. :)


It's me Trekcapri (aka Kathy). Thanks so much for visiting and leaving a comment.