Portugal with my bestie

Portugal with my bestie

Curious to know what I’ve been up to the past two weeks or so? Well here you go! After being at home for only 10 days it was already time for another adventure. This time to Portugal with one of my best friends; Daniek. We’ve been planning to go on vacation together for I think about 5 years, but somehow our timing never worked out. But now it’s happening! We are currently on a 2 week trip through Portugal, from Lisbon to Porto with some stops in between and it’s been amazing so far.

We started in Lisbon last week Tuesday. Unfortunately, the weather wasn’t really on our side so we had quite a lot of rain. Luckily as soon as the sun came out it immediately felt like a super nice summer day, so in the end it wasn’t even really that bad. Our few days in Lisbon mostly consisted of walking around exploring the different neighbourhoods, enjoying the nice viewpoints, hopping on and off the tourist bus (cause why not be an ultimate tourist), catching the old trams across town and getting drinks, food and A LOT OF ice-cream (it’s never too cold for ice-cream, right?).

After a few days in Lisbon we took the train to Sintra. Most people go to Sintra for a day trip, but we decided to stay there for 2 nights, which was really nice. Sintra is super touristy, but I think it is really worth a visit. It honestly feels like you’re walking between different castles and palaces from all different fairytales. On our first day we visited the Quinta da Regaleira, which had a super cool garden, with a lot of hidden paths and some really cool caves. On our second day we took the bus to the Castelo dos Mouros. This castle is build on top of a hill, with some parts lower and some higher, which makes the structure look really cool. Also, the view you have from some of the towers makes it even more amazing. After our visit we walked back down, which was kind of nice for a change as we’ve been walking uphill so much during this trip. At some point my calves literally felt like they were gonna burst, that’s how tight all my muscles were. Anyways, all the castles and palaces we saw and visited around Sintra looked really cool, we kept saying that they looked exactly like how a kid would draw a castle or palace.

Our next stop was Peniche. A beach side town about halfway between Lisbon and Porto. The village itself isn’t really that special, but we had such an amazing time there. We were staying at ‘The Surf Embassy Hostel’ together with some amazing people. Everybody goes to Peniche to surf and that’s also what we did. We took three surf lessons with the guys from the hostel. I think we’ve made such good progress and by the end of the third lesson we both felt pretty confident in getting up on the boards. Originally we were only gonna stay there from Monday till Thursday morning, but we enjoyed ourselves so much we ended up staying until Friday evening. I can’t explain what it was that made it so fun, the surfing was definitely a major part of it, but I think it’s mostly the people that made it special. Daniek and I were both a little sad and almost emotional when we had to say goodbye on Friday.

Luckily we weren’t going home yet and there was (and is) still part of our trip left. On friday evening, after leaving Peniche we traveled to Aveiro by bus. Aveiro is often referred to as the Venice of Portugal and I get why that reference is made. There are a lot of canals, with little boats that were originally used to dig up seaweed, but are now mostly used to show around tourists. We only had a couple of hours in Aveiro before catching the train to Porto, so after walking around for a little bit we also decided to hop on one of these boats. It was a great way to explore the city, especially since our legs were still super tired from all the surfing the days before.

Right now we’re in Porto where we’ll be spending the last few days of our trip. On Tuesday we fly back to the Netherlands, where I’ll probably be staying for a little longer this time around. Up until this point this trip has been amazing and I’m sure the last few days are gonna be just as enjoyable. We’ve seen some great things, done fun activities and met lovely people, but this trip most of all has been amazing because I get to share it all with my oldest and best friend. I mean, who would have thought when we had our first play date as toddlers that we’d still be besties 18 years later and exploring Portugal together. Pretty special right?

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