Portugal – Lisbon, Sintra, Óbidos, Nazaré, Cascais, Estoril, Tomar, Coimbra & Ericeira

Flights from Boston to Lisbon were cheap at $550 round trip with Iberia, so we decided to make Portugal the first country of our European vacation. Even though Portugal was open for tourism, it still required us to take a PCR test to enter from the US in addition to proof of our covid vaccination. Once we made it to Lisbon, we spent a few days exploring this hilly city. It was our second time visiting the capital of Portugal and we enjoyed it despite the heavy spring time rain that poured down in late March. After Lisbon, we linked up Becky’s brother Tom and his family in beautiful Mafra and used their home as our base for 5 days. Day trips from Mafra included: Sintra (Pena Palace, Moorish Castle, Quinta da Regaleira, & Monseratte Palace), Cascais, Estoril, Óbidos and Nazaré. We were so lucky to have Tom as our tour guide and it was lovely spending time with Richelle and Abby! Our last 2 days in Portugal saw us renting a car and exploring Alcobaça, Batalha, Tomar and Coimbra before zipping back down to Lisbon to fly to Seville, Spain for the next country on our trip. At the end of our European adventure, we flew back to Portugal for 2 nights on the way back to the US and visited the lovely seaside village of Ericeira. Even though we didn’t have as much time to spend in Portugal as we wanted, this was a fantastic experience and we will definitely be back to check out the Azores, Madeira Islands, Porto and the Algarve.

Portrait of Raoni, the Caiapo's tribal chief. Painted by Brazilian artist Kobra who wanted to draw attention to the protection of the Amazon rainforest and its indigenous people Detail on the Military Museum in Lisbon 2 artists, 1 face. Shepard Fairey painted half of the woman's face while Portuguese artist Vhils painted the other half Street art by Shepard Fairey (the artist known for the Obama "Hope" poster) of a woman holding a gun with a flower in the barrel Lisbon's most colorful street art - "Tropical Fado in RGB Tones" by Ozearv Viewpoint from the Miradouro da Graca lookout; Lisbon Assembly of the Republic; Lisbon Igreja de Santa Luzia Miradouro de Santa Luzia; Lisbon Exploring the back streets of Lisbon's Alfama district Selfie mural; Alfama Mosaic tribute to Fado singer Amália Rodrigues in Alfama Lisbon souvenir magnets Street art; Lisbon Architecture in downtown Lisbon Arcade hallway of Praça do Comércio; Lisbon Detail on the Rua Augusta Triumphal Arch; Lisbon Back side of the Triumphal Arch; Lisbon Força Portugal ("Go Portugal") football store Rua Augusta, the pedestrian street of downtown Lisbon Phenomenal view over the Baixa district up to the Castelo de São Jorge from the Elevador de Santa Justa Looking at the Rossio plaza from the Santa Justa elevator viewing platform King Pedro IV (Rossio) Square; Lisbon Rossio railway station Street art; Lisbon The Glória Funicular connects downtown Lisbon with the Bairro Alto Roast suckling pig Belém Tower Monument to the Discoveries; Lisbon Big Raccoon sculpture by Bordalo II, who uses recycled trash and metal to create street art Tomb of navigator Vasco da Gama; Jerónimos Monastery Giant bee made of recycled trash by Bordalo II, LX Factory Artwork at a cafe; LX Factory Fox made from trash, another of Bordalo II's artworks Pelicans by Bordalo II; Lisbon city center A selection of port wine for us to try Sintra National Palace The charming narrow streets of Sintra Pedestrian streets of pretty Sintra One of the many villas and mansions in Sintra Visiting the initiation well of Quinta da Regaleira View looking up from the bottom of the initiation well Portal of the Guardians at Quinta da Regaleira The main façade of the Quinta da Regaleira palace Regaleira Chapel Dragon door handle; Quinta da Regaleira Azulejos (tin glazed ceramic tilework) at Quinta da Regaleira Statue in the garden of Quinta da Regaleira Visiting Monserrate Palace, one of the prettiest buildings in Sintra Arched terrace of Monserrate Palace Detail of the interior dome of Monserrate Palace Interior hallway of Monserrate Palace Interior rotunda of Monserrate Palace Chapel ruins of Monserrate Palace Pathway through the gardens of Monserrate Palace Praia de São Julião Pretzel, our guard dog in Mafra Walking through picturesque Óbidos Livraria do Mercado ("Market Bookstore") in Óbidos Cobblestoned street leading to Igreja de Santa Maria; Óbidos Richelle, Abby and Becky strike a pose in Óbidos The narrow and cobbled streets of Óbidos Chocolate festival decorations outside the Livraria de Santiago; Óbidos A horse and carriage on stand by for the annual chocolate festival in Óbidos The medieval walled city of Óbidos Family photo in Óbidos The drinking section of the Chocolate Festival; Óbidos Street performers throwing out chocolate treats during the Chocolate Festival in Óbidos Nazaré viewpoint The surfing village of Nazaré The Fort of São Miguel Arcanjo is world famous due to its proximity to the "big waves" of Nazaré Sanctuary of our Lady of Nazaré A woman selling fish at the sun dried fish market in Nazaré Nazaré fishing boats Abby and Becky enjoying ice cream time in Nazaré Souvenir surfboard in Nazaré Nazaré street art View of the entire Sintra coastline from the Santuário da Peninha Cabo da Roca Lighthouse is continental Europe's most westerly extent Palácio dos Condes de Castro Guimarães Courtyard of Palácio dos Condes de Castro Guimarães Lion fountain at the Palácio dos Condes de Castro Guimarães Peacock park at Palácio dos Condes de Castro Guimarães Statue of King Carlos I of Portugal overlooking the harbour at Cascais Dom Pedro I statue in the central plaza of Cascais A volleyball tournament; Cascais Street art; Cascais Estoril Castle Staircase to the sea; Estoril The dramatic coastline of Estoril The Pillory of Lisbon Lion detail on a building in Lisbon Queluz National Palace Ballroom of Queluz Palace Gold detail; Queluz Ballroom The Tiled Corridor; Queluz Palace Hall of Ambassadors; Queluz Palace Interior of Queluz Palace Tiled canal; Queluz Palace Queluz Palace Fountain Statue in the upper garden; Queluz Palace Statues flanking the doorway from the Palace to the upper garden; Queluz Palace Becky in front of the Neptune Fountain; Queluz Palace Grand Cascade; Palace of Queluz Mafra National Palace UNESCO world heritage site Pena Palace Side view of Pena Palace View of the Arches Yard, Chapel and clock tower of Pena Palace Depiction of a mythological triton; Pena Palace Pena Palace is on a hill in the Sintra Mountains and can be seen from Lisbon on a clear day Giant red cedar tree; Pena Palace Garden Chalet of the Countess of Edla; Park of Pena Palace Interior of the Countess of Edla's chalet Fern gardens; Pena Palace Valley of the Lakes; Pena Palace Moorish Castle; Sintra Azenhas do Mar Alcobaça Monastery Early Renaissance water basin decorated with the coat-of-arms of the Alcobaça monastery Fountain in the Cloister of Silence; Alcobaça Monastery The inner courtyard garden of Alcobaça Monastery Tombstone; Alcobaça Monastery Dragon breathing fire; Alcobaça Monastery Azulejo tiles inside Alcobaça Monastery Tomb of Inês de Castro, the "corpse bride" of Portugal; Alcobaça Monastery Batalha Monastery Tomb of John I and Philippa; Monastery of Batalha The Royal Cloister; Batalha Monastery Royal Cloister water fountain; Monastery of Batalha Carved faces on the capitals of columns; Batalha Monastery Portal of the Unfinished Chapel; Monastery of Batalha Open ceiling view of the Unfinished Chapel at the Batalha Monastery View of our apartment at Tomar Archway street; Tomar View of Ponte Velha, a Renaissance bridge over the Nabão River; Tomar Waterfall on the Nabão River, Tomar Main square of Tomar Convent of Christ, originally a 12th-century Templar stronghold; Tomar Lion carving; Convent of Christ Water spouts from the mouths of carved faces; Convent of Christ Interior of the Round church, richly  decorated with Gothic paintings and sculptures; Convent of Christ Pictures don't do the Manueline-style Round Church any justice, this is the highlight of the Convent of Christ! Azulejo tiled wall; Convent of Christ Courtyard at the Convent of Christ; Tomar Fortified walls from the 12th Century Knights Templar Fortress; Tomar Bridge view of Coimbra Statue of Joaquim António de Aguiar, a Portuguese politician and three-time Prime Minister of Portugal; Coimbra Pedestrian shopping street of Coimbra A narrow building in Coimbra The Monastery of Santa Cruz in Coimbra 18th Century Baroque pipe organ of Santa Cruz Church; Coimbra Azulejos interior of Santa Cruz Church; Coimbra Igreja de São Tiago; Coimbra Statues outside Coimbra University Enjoying a delicious grilled octopus meal with Richelle and Tom at Golfinho Azul Restaurant in Encarnação Ericeira has become extremely popular with expats scooping in to buy property in this photogenic seaside town The tree-lined Praça da República (Republic Square) is the main square in Ericeira Retaining wall; Ericeira Tom and Becky strike a pose in Ericeira Praia dos Pescadores (Fishermen’s Beach); Ericeira video lightboxby VisualLightBox.com v6.1

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