As promised here is my itinerary for our weekend in Portugal. I will be the first to tell you that we did not have enough time in this beautiful country. We will be back and honestly, if I were planing a trip to Portugal; I would give myself at least 5 days. 7 would be ideal. Also, I really loved everything that we did, I just wanted to do and see more.
Day 1… Arrive in Portugal
We left Barcelona in the early evening and took a flight on TAP; a local Portuguese airlines into Lisbon. The airport in Lisbon was easy to navigate and because both countries are part of the Schengen; we didn’t have to go through customs.
Next we rented a car from AVIS; note…this was an extremely slow process. Then we drove the 30 min to Cascais. It is also important to note that y0u can purchase a toll pass from the rental car company which allows you to drive on the toll road and not pay the tolls until you turn the car in. You just drive through with the other prepaid cars. It was fantastic.
Hotel; The Farol
This was a 5 Star Boutique Hotel in Cascais, right on the water. It was quaint and quirky. They have a strong design influence and it shows. The rooms were clean and comfortable and the ocean views were unbelievable. I wish we could have stayed longer and swam in the pool.
What We Ate; The Farol
Since we arrived late from Barcelona we ate dinner at the hotel. They have two restaurants that are open for dinner. We went with their Sushi restaurant. We had the Poke Gaspacho, Gyoza, a spicy tuna roll and a specialty roll. The Poke was fantastic and I really like both the gyoza and spicy tuna roll. The specialty roll- not so much. It was a good restaurant with fresh fish; they just missed the mark on that roll.
Day 2… Sintra & Peniche
We had breakfast in the hotel. Their breakfast buffet was huge and delicious. They had both European and American items. Their crepes and orange juice were SO good. We walked around the grounds once more in the daylight and then packed up and left.
What We Did;
Explore Sintra. Sintra is a small hilltop town about 30 minutes from Cascais. We toured the Quinta da Regaleria. Its an old mansion and grounds and it is unbelievable. The architecture, vegetation and scale of this place were unbelievable.
After leaving Sintra we took the coast highway up the coast to Peniche. We made a bunch of stops along the way at different stores and beaches. It was SO beautiful.
What We Ate;
We got the most amazing pastries from Casa Piriquita in Sintra. It was established in 1862 and there is a reason why it has been in business that long.
For dinner that evening we ate at the cutest little restaurant; Os Americano’s in Peniche. It served authentic Portuguese food. We had amazing Portuguese bread, potatoes and the best fresh fish, as well as rice pudding for dessert.
There aren’t a ton of hotels in Peniche, so we used our Marriott points and stayed at the Priaia D’El Rey Marriott Golf and Beach Resort. It was beautiful. Perfect for couples or families and had great beach access. The beach was clear, warm and had the best sand with smooth stones sprinkled along the beach. The water was beautiful and there was a great little beach break right in front of the hotel for surfers. We loved our room, it was comfortable and clean. I want to go back and bring my kids.
Day 3…Nazare & Lisbon
After eating another awesome breakfast, we checked out and headed about 45 min up the coast to Nazare. Nazare is famous for its monster waves. The surf wasn’t up, but I still wanted to see it. Later we spent a few hours in Lisbon before heading to the airport.
What We Did;
Nazare is the cutest little fishing village situated on a bluff, looking at the ocean. It is beautiful. People come from all over the world for the waves. We walked out to the lighthouse and down the stairs to the sea. We also toured the big wave museum.
After leaving Nazare we drove the 2 hours back to Lisbon. This time we took the toll road and made better time. We stopped at a mall on the outskirts of Lisbon to get a few things and then headed in to town.
We headed to the Alfama district in Lisbon, which is the oldest part of town. We walked around, ate, saw the cable cars and just took it all in. It was early evening when we were there and the street musicians had just come out. It was stunningly beautiful and something I will never forget.
Where We Ate;
I really wanted a hamburger. So we ate at A Cultura do Hamburger. It was AMAZING. Possibly the best hamburger that I’ve ever eaten. We got two different burgers and fries. Everything was amazing. When we were done, we headed down the street for one more Pastel de Nata. We saved the best for last because the little custard tarts from Manteigaria were life changing. Seriously. You have to go.
This was it for our trip to Portugal. I plan to go back, and when I do I want to see so much more of what this beautiful country has to offer. To read more about my experience in Portugal click here.