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I think it’s safe to say Portugal is unlike anywhere we have traveled in Europe. It is lush and exotic like a jungle in parts… Arid and dry in others… The people are tan and happy, clearly proud of their country, and quick with a smile. Saturated with glimpses of its Moorish past, Portugal should definitely be on your European “must-visit” list! I tend to think it gets a bit overlooked by Americans, but is popular with the Brits and Germans… We loved it so much, we are already planning our next trip to see the North!

For this visit we booked a hotel on the ocean in the charming town of Cascais… We were right on the water and got to spend each evening having dinner watching the sunset. It was dreamy and the perfect beachside getaway…

Our first venture out was to the gorgeous village of Sintra, where the gentry used to build elaborate homes. These quasi-castles are beyond stunning. Walking through each of the palaces is like getting to tour a jewel box… There are 6 nestled in this lush area, but we only made it to two before things shut down… Be sure when you go to plan a WHOLE day!

We also popped into Lisbon to visit the harbor and popped by to see the fortress which is said to be the last trace of Portugal explorers would see as they headed to worlds unknown…

Though each little adventure was fabulous, the best part were the pastries! Be sure to stuff your face with as many of the mini-custard pies as you possibly can! This country is a gem and I am so excited to go back!

Tell me–Have you been to Portugal? If yes–Where? If no–Where would you like to visit?

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Portugal just moved to the top of my travel list! Thank you for the inspiration – just beautiful!!

You have to come to Madrid first, Susan! 😉

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