Varsity Sisters visiting Portugal

Old Apr 12th, 2024, 06:54 AM
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Great photos - and my favorite kind of sky - beautiful blue!
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Old Apr 12th, 2024, 09:22 PM
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Last day in Lisbon

Today I tried to take it easy on my sister, I gave her a choice of just going to lunch across the river or visiting Belem. Well she choose Belem. We took the tram out to the Jeronimos Monastery. She about fainted when she saw the line so we went around the corner to the Maritime Museum - which was quite interesting, I had already been to the Monastery on my visit last June and was not about to stand in that line again. After a quick stroll over to the Monument of the Discoveries my sister was fading. We took a taxi back to the Cais do Sodre ferry landing and grabbed a ferry over to Cacilhas.
Maribel- , thank you so much for the lunch restaurant suggestions. The Ponte Final restaurant was packed so we ended up at Atira-te-aoRio. The view was spectacular and the food was quite good. I thought I was going to have to carry my sister back to the ferry, she could hardly walk the short way back.
she immediately grabbed a taxi back to our apartment, while I wandered around town.
we had reservations at the Altis Avenida bar - Rossio. And dinner at Taberna Moderna. yummy - but quite expensive. They have an interesting Gin bar if you like Gin and tonics.

Line at Jeronimos Monastery

Armillary Sphere- this symbol is used quite often on buildings

Maritime museum

Monument to the Discoveries

Ferry boat to lunch

Great View

Cocktails at Rossio - it was about 80 degrees today

Rossio

My drink - Querdia- was sort a take on a Palermo

Taberna Moderna - reservations required

The Gin Bar
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Old Apr 13th, 2024, 07:31 AM
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Thanks
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Old Apr 13th, 2024, 05:01 PM
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Hope you keep posting while there! Great photos and great luck with your weather!
we go in about a week , and taking notes 😊
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Old Apr 13th, 2024, 10:34 PM
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Our Lisbon apartment

https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/3207808...e-dc80df311c25
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Old Apr 14th, 2024, 06:46 AM
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Thank you for sending the link to your apartment. It is very nice, too bad the days i want in end of Oct are not available.
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Old Apr 14th, 2024, 10:45 AM
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Lovely photos!!

Varsity sounds better than "senior!"

Do you have photos of the chicken???
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Old Apr 15th, 2024, 07:18 AM
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Hi uppsala,
Yes, the Jerónimos Monastery line is ridiculously long if one doesntt purchase advance tickets and be there a half hour to fifteen minutes before opening. And even with advanced timed tickets as aulop has said, "it's more of a suggestion...". Very poorly organized, and once one sees the cloister, one has to stand yet in another line to enter the church!

So....I'm glad you chose plan B and visited the Maritime Museum. My husband and I find it fascinating and a great history lesson into the Age of Discoveries.

Also happy you enjoyed your lunch across the river at Atira-te-ao-rio, the one with the turquoise chairs! It's a nice respite from the noise and crowds in Lisbon and nice to view this pastel city from the other side.

And the Rossio rooftop bar does have splendid views itself!

It's hot here on the Iberian peninsula. It reached 83F at our house today. Seems like summer has already arrived, but I hope you continue to have a great time!

I'm really enjoying reading about your adventures.
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Old Apr 15th, 2024, 11:32 PM
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Duoro Valley Wine tour

Yesterday we took an all day wine tour to the Duoro Valley. I had scoured around the internet trying to find a good small group tour. I ended up choosing EFUN tours because they went to three wineries, and we skipped the 1 hr. boat trip. I think it was a good because we saw pretty much everything they might have shown us on the boat. That being said- it was NOT A SMALL GOUP. We had a full sized bus, with Rita as our guide.
Let me give some tips - which I forgot to do because I thought the first stop would include coffee annd some sort of breakfast - BRING YOUR OWN WATER AND SNACKS. Our first stop did NOT include any breakfast but we went straight to the wine. we had missed getting anything for breakfast.
the first stop was at a small family owner winery Quinta do Peto - where we tasted 4 wines and 1 port. Then a long drive along the beautiful river valley.
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Old Apr 15th, 2024, 11:32 PM
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Duoro Valley Wine tour

Yesterday we took an all day wine tour to the Duoro Valley. I had scoured around the internet trying to find a good small group tour. I ended up choosing EFUN tours because they went to three wineries, and we skipped the 1 hr. boat trip. I think it was a good plan because we saw pretty much everything they might have shown us on the boat. That being said- it was NOT A SMALL GOUP. We had a full sized bus, with Rita as our guide.
Let me give some tips - which I forgot to do because I thought the first stop would include coffee annd some sort of breakfast - BRING YOUR OWN WATER AND SNACKS. Our first stop did NOT include any breakfast but we went straight to the wine. we had missed getting anything for breakfast.
the first stop was at a small family owner winery Quinta do Peto - where we tasted 4 wines and 1 port. Then a long drive along the beautiful river valley.
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Old Apr 16th, 2024, 12:04 AM
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Wine tour - part 2

2nd stop was at the train station in Pinahoe to see the tiles. We did wander down to the river- evidently this is where the boat tour starts. At this point I was dying for water or any type of food - and the small market was closed on Mondays.
Next stop was the large Croft vineyard- which is incredibly beautiful- I’ll attach photos. The Wisteria is in full bloom. Unfortunately their port wines are not worth drinking, but I was able to buy some water and a small piece of chocolate. Last stop was for lunch ( not note worthy but edible). I got seated at a large table - family of 9 - from Britain. This part was interesting because they were very interested in what was going on w politics and the economy in the US. As Monday 4/15 was the first day of Trump’s civil trial in NY- lots to talk about. I can report that all of the Brits are not fans of Meghan and Harry. Much discussion of Camilla’s new title of Queen, evidently Charles has changed it from Queen consort to just Queen.


Pinahoe train station

1st Vineyard- these wines were quite nice- but they don’t export to the US

Wisteria !

More lovely Wisteria

My sister in the vineyard

Last stop

Duoro river at Pinahoe

Last edited by uppsala30; Apr 16th, 2024 at 12:08 AM.
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Old Apr 16th, 2024, 12:06 AM
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Thank God I threw these shorts into my suitcase at the last minute, it was about 88 degrees in the Duoro valley yesterday- I know I I know - I look like a tourist.
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Old Apr 16th, 2024, 12:30 AM
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We also met an interesting young couple from the Dolomite region of Italy. They own a lodge in the mountains - Gfell Inn - gfell.it . It was interesting learning about their region of Italy - quite near to the border with Austria. Julian is the son of owners and is really knowledgeable about wines and food. If you want to visit that area take a look at their Inn - it looks stunning.
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Old Apr 16th, 2024, 01:46 AM
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A bit of historic perspective...

Portugal finished their reconquest of their territory long before the Spanish did (1249)
The Black Death was roughly 1350 which slowed everything down for 50 years or so
Henry the Navigator (half-English) (Portugal being England's oldest ally) did his stuff 1430 roughly
Discovering the Azores in 1452

Spain only got around to finishing the reconquest by 1492, and the battle hardened younger sons were all sent off to decimate America to protect Spain from them.

So Henry really was a major figure in European expansion

Zheng He was doing his stuff back around 1410
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Old Apr 16th, 2024, 03:47 AM
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I'm still amazed by the difference a month makes. We spent three nights in the Douro Valley near Pinhao. Our last full day was March 10 - just over a month ago. It snowed overnight in the higher elevations, and we could see it from our accommodation. It's lovely to visit again through your photos.

And thanks for the info on the lodge in the Dolomites. I looked at the website and bookmarked it for future reference. We love that area and have spent several weeks there, with another to come this September.
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Old Apr 16th, 2024, 05:54 AM
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I too looked at the website for the lodge in the Dolomites, as we're in the process of booking a three week stay there for Sept/Oct. Looks like a nice place, but not convenient for those using public transport, so will just make a note for next time.

We spent three nights in Pinhão in early April two years ago. I just checked my trip report, and I'd noted it was 6c one morning. We were quite comfortable until we headed to Evora and then Lisbon, where we were glad to have air con in our accommodation.
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Old Apr 16th, 2024, 02:27 PM
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Originally Posted by uppsala30
Great day today- we hired a private guide from Picta Travel to take us to Sintra. We were so lucky - got a fabulous young woman - Sara- for the day. It was such a treat. We did the Peña Palace in the morning, lunch in the coast - and Quinto da Regaleira.
eshsmdas I will try and link the apartment info for you. It does have 2 bedroom and two bath, it’s on the fifth floor. But - it has an elevator which is a luxury in Lisbon.
I am very interested in knowing where you stayed in Sintra. I am planning a trip with my adult daughter and really enjoying your trip report!
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Old Apr 19th, 2024, 09:59 PM
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Jjude - we did not stay in Sintra- it was a day trip from Lisbon
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Old Apr 19th, 2024, 10:11 PM
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Onward to Prague

On Wed. April 17 we took an early morning flight to Prague, I should include mention of our accommodations in Porto. We had a hard time finding an apartment with two bedrooms, elevator and a balcony. My sister insists on a balcony because she smokes and needs to go out side all the time. It’s a terrible habit. We ended up compromising on location and chose the D’Autor apartments Algeria The apartment was beautiful, and included breakfast which was nice. The staff was fantastic. The downside was the location. It was pretty much a 11 to 15 min walk to any sights. My poor sister was really suffering at the end of everyday. I’ll link photos. I think I found it on booking.com.

Living room of D’Autor apartment


Kitchen

Architectural details
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Old Apr 19th, 2024, 10:14 PM
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Duoro river in Porto

In Porto we had an enjoyable morning taking a boat ride up and down the Duoro river. I’ll link photos.

Duoro river cruise

5 bridges

Porto

It was really hot
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