Last year I got to explore some pretty gorgeous places around the United States with my wonderful friend, April, and while sitting in a coffee shop this past winter we started to dream of more places to explore and visit! Since we did so much traveling within the country, we figured it was about time to grab our passports and explore somewhere new. After an overwhelming amount of ideas, we finally decided to spend our time exploring Portugal!!
With only a week, we had to try and narrow down our list of places we wanted to see so we decided to focus on southern and central Portugal. After flying in to Lisbon, we got our adorable and tiny rental car (Chip, because what else would you name a tiny mint green Fiat) and headed south to the coast! Our first couple days were spent leisurely wandering around Lagos and Luz! These charming coastal towns were so laid back and easy to explore.
Then after a quick trip out to Sagres to see the Fortaleza de Sagres and Cabo de Sao Vicente, we loaded up Chip and headed back up north to central Portugal and my favorite of our trip, Sintra!!
I thought driving around on the super narrow roads was fun in southern Portugal, but in Sintra and neighboring towns like Cascais took that to a whole new level! You'll see below how the houses open up right to the one lane cobblestone streets and having them built on giant hills just added a little extra challenge to driving and parking :)
After exploring the coast, palaces, and oodles of character and charm of Sintra we headed to our last city, Lisbon!! Being in the bigger city was a fun change of pace for our last couple of days and the hills of Lisbon gave us plenty of a workout as we walked around the different neighborhoods.
If you get the chance I would highly recommend taking a trip to Portugal!! As you can see, the bright colorful buildings with the never ending variety of tiles, patterns, colors, character, and charm are so fun to wander around. And having beautiful beaches and relaxing breezes through the palm trees doesn't hurt either ;) I really thought that Portugal was the perfect combination of a tropical vacation and old European charm and character. While there are SO many places I want to see yet, I hope to get back to Portugal again someday!