Portugal & Spain Ideas

Old Apr 9th, 2002, 08:09 PM
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Portugal & Spain Ideas

My Girlfriend & I are thinking about going to Portugal & Spain in Sept for 2 weeks. We would like some beach time, theater and the local culture.

We would to ideas from people who have experienced these countries.

Is car rental better than rail? Good hotels..etc..
Old Apr 9th, 2002, 10:12 PM
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You might want to rent cars in each country if you can get a decent deal, but it is very expensive to rent in one country and drop it off in another.
There is an overnight train from Lisbon to Madrid if you are going there. When we went 2 years ago, we took the train from Lisbon to Madrid and the bullit train from Madrid to Seville and picked up our car in Seville for the rest of our trip.
Old Apr 9th, 2002, 10:14 PM
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Mark, we are heading to the Algarve in two weeks. Five years ago, we spent three weeks in Central Portugal and Madeira. Some of my favorites were Marvao, on the border with Spain, Obido, Evora and the Lisbon area. Sept. is a great time to go as there will be fewer tourists and the Algarve (esp.) can get overrun. We are renting a villa between Lagos and Sagres and then, spending two nights in Tavira. These are in the far west and the far east corners of the Algarve and not so touristy (I hope!). When you go to Portugal, check out the Pousadas, wonderful, reasonable priced historic hotels. They are similar to the concept of Paradores in Spain.

I can't help you too much with Spain. But, for two weeks, to do both countries...that is a lot of ground to cover. Good luck with the planning.
Old Apr 10th, 2002, 01:11 AM
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Hi there Mark.
If you're planning to stay 2 weeks (maybe one here in Portugal, and the other in Spain), and if you plan to go to the beach, I reccomend you to start in the south (either in Portugal or Spain). You will find in the southern Iberia, some good beaches, and nice villages.
The previous post, mentioned Soutwest Algarve, and I also reccomend that region. From there it's easy to get to southern Spain.
In terms of transportation, car rental is better, simply because you will have more mobility, and you can stop where you feel like.

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Old Apr 10th, 2002, 03:04 AM
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I strongly recommend the bullfight in Lisbon on Thursday nights (only), especially if you enjoy fine horsemanship. Unlike the bullfights of Spain, the bull is not killed, nor are there any picadors or anything that results in any bleeding. There is still an element of "wearing the bull down". The bullfight concludes when a troupe of seven toreadors (not MATAdors) "storm" the bull, and subdue him with their bare hands, with the lead toreador charging his head, face on and grabbing him one horn in each hand while the others flank the bull's head and neck on either side.

It's all about spectacle and pageantry, and nothing about injury or death.

Best wishes,

Old Apr 10th, 2002, 06:26 AM
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up, on top of the horse

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