January 09, 2018
Planning to visit Portugal? This is definitely a fabulous country to visit, explore, live, eat and love, and amazing destinations are waiting for you, but we were able to find problems you should avoid when coming to the land of all things good. Nothing you can’t solve, though.
On the one hand, Portugal is full of incredible destinations, and we have chosen five for you:
Ericeira: gorgeous beaches, incredible fish dishes, and a whole picture of white little houses with red roof tiles will steal your heart. Perfect for a getaway, Ericeira is a village near Lisbon that is already the home for adventurous surfers that have been looking for the best of the best: good restaurants, nice waves and beaches, and the centre of the city is just completely adorable. How can one resist it?
Lisbon: the great capital and now the World’s Leading City Break Destination, Lisbon is the city of lights which has been receiving tourists from all parts of the world. And why is that? Because the most important city of Portugal has the power to impress everyone due to its history, culture, and tradition. Walking in Lisbon is like walking a little bit back on time, it’s seeing the places that exist since centuries ago - since forever! - and get amazed and enchanted by what you see.
And to explore the most of the capital of Portugal, we suggest a City Tour or a Lisbon by Night Trip. Do not forget: Lisbon is always a good idea!
Porto: Porto is in, fashionable, cool, and probably the place where the word saudade (no translation for this, but it is a feeling the Portuguese have when they miss someone or something) is most used. The streets of Porto will tell you a thousand stories that are hidden behind, the people will welcome you with open arms, the cafés will always have that smell of hot coffee and freshly baked bread – typically Portuguese -and Ribeira will be the setting of your dreams. Visit Porto, the land of the invincible, with a private guide.
Algarve: how could we create a list of destinations without referring to the pearl of our country? Ok, here’s something you don’t know. Algarve is not only beaches and bolas de berlim (berliners). Take your time to explore the inner side of Algarve and the things you can find will astound you. Algarve is excellent for many different activities like fishing, bird watching, caves and dolphin watching, tours in quadbikes to see the rural area, kayaking and snorkelling, and so many others that we can promise will melt your heart.
Sintra: ever heard about it? It’s magical. Sintra is this incredible town that looks like a watercolour painting. Built in the middle of pines, Sintra has picturesque houses and façades that once belonged to nobility so you can imagine what you might find in here. Palaces, ornamented gardens, and rich sceneries make of Sintra one of the most incredible tourist destinations. Sintra is the romantic background ideal for a story of queens and kings.
But, on the other hand, Portugal has its own traps:
Taxi fares: it’s always an easy and comfortable choice, but taxi fares may be quite expensive, especially if you take one from the airport. Never forget to ask the taxi driver the fare, the length of the trip and, if possible, something about the location you’re going to.
International Gastronomy: pizza, kebab and paella are NOT typical Portuguese dishes. If you come to Portugal and want to try our food, be careful with the boards that have these meals written on them. Portugal, especially Lisbon, is a multicultural country so a lot of restaurants sell this food to please a diverse group of people. When you come to Portugal, make sure you choose the typical dishes like bacalhau à bras, any dish fish with potatoes and vegetables or polvo à lagareiro. A rich variety of food will make your stay even more delicious.
Tram 28 or metros: the so-famous tram of Lisbon is a surely a nice option for those who want to see a little bit more of the city from a different perspective, but it might be very expensive for some people and, be careful, the ideal spot for pickpockets. When you take the tram, make sure you protect your belongings but don’t take too much, and enjoy the city. This way, nothing will disturb you.
Need a new gadget?: when walking in the Portuguese streets, mostly in the big ones, you may find people in well chosen spots selling cell phones, cameras, sunglasses and perfumes at low prices, but in Portugal we know these products are not of good quality and many tourists end up buying them. If someone approaches you trying to sell you any of these things, politely say ‘no, thank you’.
What’s good?: normal question when a tourist comes to a restaurant, but make sure you read the menu first and choose your own meal because the waiter may try to sell you some expensive dishes. If you don’t understand what comes in the list, you can always ask the waiter for something good but not too pricey, if you don’t want to spend a lot of money on that. Another thing you can do is to ask someone for a good restaurant that meets your needs. Honestly, it’s very easy to find a good restaurant in Portugal for a reasonable price.
Try to follow all these steps and a relaxing and comforting stay is promised. Overall, Portugal is a peaceful place and everyone feels welcomed, but there are always some tricks one needs to know beforehand. Travelling through Portugal has never been so in vogue, thus reread the article if needed and enjoy.
Joana is Portuguese and she loves to share her passion about travelling.@Joana Cabo Read more posts written by Joana Cabo