Feb 15

Spain + Portugal Recommendations

I’ve been busy today because we leave on a two week trip tomorrow to Spain, Portugal, and Morocco. It is about 20 degrees warmer than Paris so I’m excited to shed the heavy coats for some lightweight sweaters. This will likely be the last trip we take before we move back to the US. After researching some here is our itinerary. Spain: Barcelona, Madrid, Seville, Arcos de la Frontera, Tarifa, Granada. Portugal: Salema, Lisbon. In addition we’ll take a day trip to Morocco. I’m fluent in Portuguese so I’ll be able to use my language skills at least on part of the trip! I’d love recommendations if you have them.

photo by Christian Chaize available here.

141 Comments

  • Amanda B. says:

    Sounds like an amazing trip! Can’t wait to see pictures. Fluent in Portuguese? That seems like an unusual language to be fluent in. How did that happen? Have you visited Portugal? Brazil?

  • jen says:

    jealous! where did you learn fluent portugese?!?!

  • Emily Rae says:

    In Barcelona, I really loved La Pedrera, and the house beer at Quimet y Quimet was great.

  • Rebecca says:

    Sevilla- La Carbonera for free intimate flameco. Wander Parque de Maria Luisa in the afternoon while shops are closed.

  • http://www.lapallaresa.com/La_Pallaresa/Home.html
    For churros and hot chocolate the sapnish way not far from place del pi in barcelona

  • theresa says:

    Recommend Los Diamantes in Granada – lively atmosphere and good spanish fried foods!

  • Shelly says:

    I spent a year in Barcelona, it’s a really enjoyable and kid-friendly city (lots of awesome parks!). Some great places to visit are:

    Parc Güell: Gaudí architecture that is free to experience and great for kids: a lot of time there are street bands and huge bubble blowers, and plenty of room to run around

    Montjuïch: Old military fortress built on a cliff overlooking the sea. The trip up gives amazing views of the city and the sea is beautiful from so high up. On your way down, try to go through the Parc dels gats: lots of free-roaming cats in an apparently abandoned elaborate jungle-park; hard to describe, but strangely wonderful.

    Ciudadella: A huge gated park, one of the oldest; adjacent to a small but fun zoo and the little lake in the middle of the complex has boat rentals!

    Gràcia: Cool neighborhood historically inhabited by gypsies, a bit off the beaten path but very ‘authentic’ and hardly touristy. Best gelato in the city is found at the very bottom of Calle Verdi (also on Verdi is a cheap, indie cinema playing movies in English and other subtitled).

    Restaurants that are great: Carmelitas, the Prince (great pizza), La Rosa Negra (awesome Mexican) and La Cervesería Catalana (best tapas in BCN!) Also, any restaurant off the Ramblas will be terrible and overpriced.

    Other cool things to not miss: the Market Boquería off the Ramblas: oldest market, so cool to see even if you don’t buy anything, the Sagrada Familia, and la Catedral (in the gothic neighborhood).

    Sorry for the long post, but one last tip- pickpockets are rampant. It’s unbelievable, and they’re always listening for English in the metro. Just something to watch out for!

  • Giulia says:

    I know it’s hard with the kids schedules, but if at all possible I recommend that you enjoy both the Spanish and Portuguese late night dinners – kids and all. Maybe sneak in a long siesta?
    We loved the tapas all over Spain, especially when you start wandering and end up eating in little places off the beaten track.
    Have fun! Oh and try Tibidado in Barcelona – mountain with amusement park on top!

  • Molly says:

    Lucky! I lived in Granada and Sevilla, but that was like 10 years ago, so I’m sure it has changed a bit. A couple years ago I made this map for a friend who was visiting Sevilla during Christmas: http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UTF8&hl=en&msa=0&ll=37.382468,-5.987849&spn=0.022779,0.038624&t=h&z=15&msid=110361094302653402333.00045d417e88df204228e. Arcos is beautiful. Go visit Ronda if you have a chance. Check out the small towns. Definitely see the Alhambra in Granada. Buy a big shwarma (gyro) and eat the whole thing. I didn’t do as much touristy stuff in Granada, so I don’t remember as much of that. And go to the tiny Picasso museum in Barcelona. Loved that. Listen to Fado music in preparation for Portugal and go hear live Fado in Lisbon. So beautiful. Have fun! Wish I were going back!

  • Janet says:

    If you have time, Sintra is wonderful and just a bit out of Lisbon. Also, it is a bit touristy maybe, but I loved Confeitaria Nacional in Lisbon. Have a lovely time!

  • Molly says:

    Ditto on the pickpocketing. Be very aware.

  • Anna says:

    My favorite thing I did in Lisbon was actually take a train to Sintra for the day. The whole place is packed with castles, like the Loire. It’s straight out of Lord of the Rings or something, but very laid back and kids can run around and explore.

    The other thing for Lisbon: Pasteis de Belem. Delicious.

  • Mfree says:

    I adore spain! definitely try cal pep in barcelona. food is astounding. also organic which is an excellent vegetarian restaurant. have fun!

  • Evron says:

    Madrid is one of my favorite cities in the whole entire world! For the best tapas y cañas/atmosphere, go to El Tigre in Chueca (this is a must). Check out el Rastro in La Latina for some good local shopping if you’re there over a weekend, and for churros y chocolate go down a little alley to Chocolatería San Ginés in Sol. Please take tons of pictures of Madrid specifically so I can live vicariously through them. Love your photos; love your blog; happy traveling!

  • Elena says:

    In Portugal, is a pity not to visit Porto, it´s a gem. And in Spain, I would also recommend Valencia, for its gastronomy, cultural heritage, Mediterranean feeling, and Santiago de Compostela in Galicia, because it´s another gem. Tarifa perhaps is a bit sad in winter, but I suppose is your door to Morocco.
    In Barcelona and Madrid, in brief, I recommend you the restaurants of Grupo Tragaluz (www.grupotragaluz.com) And also in Barcelona, don´t miss the Born neighbourhood. I think you´ll love the city.
    Anyway, is a bit heavy to visit 3 countries in just 2 weeks, don´t you think?
    Have a good journey, and update us!

  • Rebecca says:

    Barcelona- Since the beloved cafe Inopia is closed. Albert and Ferran Adrià have opened Tickets Bar http://www.ticketsbar.es/

    Be conscious of pickpockets especially on the underground and along crowded Las Ramblas.

  • irene says:

    i live in seville and i can tell that it’s warmer than in paris, but be careful because that’s only during some hours of the day (around noon), the rest of the day (morning and once the sun goes down) it gets really, really cold!
    someone in another comment recommended la carboneria for free flamenco, it’s true and most of my foreing friends like it. try the tiny restaurants because they’re typical, you’ll live the city atmosphere and otherwise you’ll find yourself in touristy bars that charge too much.

  • Blandine says:

    Hi Jordan !

    Well i can give you some recommandations for Lisbon. I think your kids would love the aquarium from the universal exposition of 1998. There is animals from the 5 continents, the one i prefer is a big awful fish in the main aquarium. Other places ? The Belem Tower. If you’re renting a car, you should drive on the vasco de gama bridge because in the central lane you can see the water underneath the car ! Near Lisbon, Casceis is very beautiful and Estoril is know because it used ti be the place of the portugese F1 champioship.
    I do not really like Lisbon because its is messy and dirty, poor (but not in the luxury hotels place and near the expo….). But people are very helpful and nice.
    In Portugal you have to be careful at the restaurant because bread, olives and things on the table is not free. When you got the choice between 1/2 doza and a doza you can have 1/2 doza for just a person and if you’re not someone who eats a lot it could be too much… And almost everything is served with rice, potatoes and salad. Be careful portugese cuisine is very fat !

    So bad you’re not going to Porto and visit the caves (?) of Porto it’s very intersting and beautiful !

    My parents were born in Portugal… Hope you would enjoy your trip. You can ask more if you need !

  • Erika says:

    I’m jealous! Spain and Portugal are two of my favourite countries. In Barcelona there is a very cool champagne /tapas bar called Xampaneria. It is located on calle reina near the old port. It’s really busy – perhaps not the most kid friendly unless you go in the early evening. For about 5 euros you get a bottle of cava and 2 plates of tapas, generally meats and cheeses. It’s a fun place and very lively, and on second thought perhaps fine for kids because you could pop in for a quick visit of about 20 minutes!

    Parc Guell is probably my favourite Gaudi place, however all of his houses are amazing. All very kid-friendly as well.

    I actually lived in front of the Parc Cituadella, which is home to the Barcelona Zoo. The parc is cool, as mentioned in the above post, but the zoo itself is kind of over-rated. You can go to the park without visiting the zoo, however. Close to the Cituadella there is a cool chocolate museum as well as a Picasso museum. It’s right on the outskirts of the Gothic area which has awesome shopping, tapas, and amazingly tiny streets.

    Have fun!!

  • Britt says:

    Well, it’s been several years since I’ve been to Spain, so I don’t have any small, nook kinds of recommendations for you. Most of my suggestions will be for bigger things.

    Of course there is the Prado Museum in Madrid. It’s HUGE, but I don’t remember it being very crowded. There’s also a tall tower (I seem to recall it’s somewhat like a small Space Needle?) in Madrid that might be fun to go up for a view of the city.

    It wasn’t on your list, but try to make a stop by Segovia, Spain (NE of Madrid). I remember it being a charming city, with a Cinderella-type castle with towers and peaked blue roofs (and a gorgeous view from the top). The cathedral in Segovia is beautiful, too, and there are tall, Roman aqueducts running through town. It was one of my favorite cities!

    Also not on your list, but worth a stop if you’re driving through, is the little town of Consuegra, ~30 mi. SW of Toledo. On a ridge above town, there is an old, (1200s?) castle you can tour and a set of 9 windmills — the Don Quixote kind! I seem to remember the town having a cute little square, too.

    In Seville, the Plaza de Espana is impressive (a little moat running around a curved, columned plaza, with beautiful tilework. And it’s where a scene from Star Wars Episode II was filmed, if you’re a geek like me. And there’s a big garden/park right across the street (Parque de Maria Luisa). Seville also has La Giralda and the Torre de Oro.

    I would consider the Alhambra and Generalife gardens in Granada a MUST. The architecture and decorative carvings and plasterwork are incredible. Ferdinand and Isabella are buried in the Royal Chapel (Capilla Real) in Granada, too, but don’t be fooled by the large, marble-carved tombs. The real ones are down some steps and are just lead caskets, but it’s probably not worth it that’s not your kind of thing!

    I hope this helps (even if just a little bit), and ENJOY the trip!

  • Jamey says:

    If you will only be in Morocco then you must go to the market in Marrakesh. I highly recommend finding a local guide to take you through all the back streets where you will be able to see more than what is in the square (craftsmen, people making scarves on their roofs, making lamps, weaving rugs, tanning leather). Our guide was recommended by the owners of our B&B. Also, the best time to be in the square is at sundown when it is full of life.
    Also ask for a recommendation on a restaurant with belly dancers. They are spectacular.

  • Perri says:

    I lived in Seville 10 years ago and am SO glad people are still recommending Carboneria. It is a must for flamenco, hanging with locals, and drinking pitchers of agua de sevilla. Sit by the river during siesta time and make sure to grab some churros and chocolate on the streets after dinner. Ronda is also a beautiful city to visit near Seville. In BCN, try Pla or Semprononia for incredible dinner. Parc Guell is stunning and the Gothic quarter is great to wander through and stop in the shops and tapas bars. I would try to eat at Tickets as others recommended. And if you can swing it in Portugal, I’d try to get down to Lagos or Faro, or any town on the gorgeous cliff linen southern coast. It is just stunning. I look forward to hearing about your trip!

  • For Portugal- SINTRA! It’s a must see. So gorgeous and the restaurant/artist studio Cafe Saudade near the train station has the best chocolate cake in the whole world. I dream about it. My pictures from Sintra are here: http://www.lovelyjubblylondon.com/2011/08/sintra-portugal.html

  • reem says:

    exactly one year ago, i was on a trip to morocco and spain. i still wake up wishing i were on that trip! morocco definitely deserves more than a day trip, but maybe next time : ) take the ferry to tangiers and stay at la tangerina if you can spare a night – it’s the most perfect boutique hotel, lovingly renovated by a wonderful couple. it has the most incredible, entirely homemade breakfast, served on the rooftop terrace overlooking the atlantic ocean. there are art galleries, restaurants, and other things to do in tangiers. la tangerina’s staff is incredible and can arrange drive to a quiet beach or recommend places to go. enjoy your trip! spain is magical too! make sure to catch the view of the granada from the mirador de san nicolas, from the top of the city’s historic arab district, al bayazin. and spend the better part of a day at the alhambra – it’s lovely! so are all the squares, churches, etc…sigh. everything. : )

  • Adrianne says:

    Ooh Spain! I spent a few months in Sevilla and am so in love with it still. I recommend walking along the river on both sides (esp around Calle Betis in the Triana neighborhood across the river from the bullfighting ring), Parque Maria Luisa (good for kids – horse carriage rides and lots of space to run), the cathedral (although hiking up the tower with kids might be slow and heavy), and the Alcazar palace. I also like Calle Sierpes (off Plaza Nueva) for great shops and Calle Feria, which has a super old open-air market with antiques and old books. Enjoy!!! We’re hoping to come to Paris in April so I’ll be hitting up your blog for places to visit soon!

  • Tarifa is so wonderful! It was quite a culture shock to cross the strait from Morocco, where everyone’s legs and shoulders were covered up, to a beach paradise of short shorts and barely-there tops! You… probably won’t experience this in February ;)
    In Morocco make sure to eat an authentic lamb or chicken Tagine!! The clay they are cooked in gives it a one-of-a-kind flavor!

  • Stephanie says:

    So jealous! This is my favorite trip! I did a similar one about 6 years ago and I’m dying to return!! These recommendations are a few years old, but will at least give you some ideas to check out before you go. :)

    Barcelona: Wander La Rambla, see La Sagrada Familia, El Parque Guell and other Gaudi masterpieces.

    My top 5 suggestions in Madrid: 1) Churros con chocolate at La Chocolateria San Gines, just off of Calle Mayor a few blocks from the Puerta del Sol; 2) there’s a tiny, old shop just off of Plaza Mayor called Casa Hernanz with every kind of espadrille you could ever imagine…to die for; 3) an afternoon spent wandering in El Retiro is delightful; 4) the Prado; and 5) check out Ventas, the bull ring, and if it’s your cup of tea, a bull fight…it is quite an authentic Spanish experience.

    In Seville, the Cathedral and La Giralda bell tower are a must. I also love wandering Barrio Santa Cruz, Seville’s old Jewish Quarter. In Santa Cruz, on Calle Meson del Moro, you can get delicious Italian food at Restaurante San Marco, which used to be an Arab bath in the Middle Ages. The food is great and the ambiance is beautiful. The Alcazar is also pretty incredible.

    In Granada, DO NOT MISS the Alhambra. It is incredible. At sunset, you can get a beautiful view of the Alhambra and the Albayzin at the San Nicolas viewpoint. Restaurante El Ladrillo on Plaza Fatima just off Calle Pages has delicious paella and barcos of fried fish. Yum!

    Tarifa is a pretty quiet little town, but has some beautiful neighborhoods to wander, especially those nearest the coast.

    In Tangier, wander the Medina and the Kasbah. If you want a traditional Moroccan meal, Mamounia Palace on the Petit Socco is pretty good. For the best swordfish, and perhaps the best, most simple meal I’ve ever had in my life, check out the tiny hole in the wall Restaurant Andaluz. It’s on Rue de Commerce, the first alley to the left off Rue de la Marine (the street running from the Petit Socco to the Grand Mosque). Don’t be alarmed, there are only about three tiny tables in a space the size of a walk-in closet, but it is delicious.

    Have a marvelous trip! Buen viaje!

  • Raquel says:

    Hello!
    Are you coming to Portugal? That´s very nice! I’m portuguese and I live in Lisbon. I read your blog for a while now and I’ll be please to show you Lisbon :))) E-mail me if you like or if you need any tip or an “inside” information!!
    Raquel

  • Sílvia says:

    onde é que aprendeste a falar português fluente? =)
    I’m portuguese and currently living in Lisbon. There’s plenty to see but I would say that you can’t miss this little shop “A vida portuguesa”
    http://www.avidaportuguesa.com/?lng=en&sec=&sub=&hid=
    and Pastéis de Belém of course.
    Sintra as some have said is a fantastic place to visit.

    In Spain you should try to go to Ronda, if you’ve never been there, it’s an awesome magical place. loved it.

    xo

  • Fun! Have a great time! I’ll be stalking the comments for Seville tips – my husband and I are headed there next weekend!!

    Safe travels.

  • Kiti says:

    be careful with the thieves in spain! spain is very, very beautiful country, but you have to be very careful!;) bon voyage!

  • amy says:

    my husband and i were in andalucia this past fall, it does not disappoint! since you’re staying tarifa i guess you’re going to tangier from there? we had a wonderful tour from Mr. Abdullatif, a twenty-something (handsome, too) father who is a certified tour guide, very friendly and knowledgable. we found him when we got off the boat, and got a private tour around the old town as well as in. email – visittangier@gmail.com -phone -00212661072014. we stayed outside tarifa in a terrible little hotel, i don’t know what it’s like in the town. there are some great roman ruins on the beach north of tarifa – it’s a nice drive, too. we went there in the evening after we got back from tangier.
    there is so much to do in granada, but i’d recommend the olive oil tour if you have time – they drive you to an old olive oil factory that’s now a museum, take you to the groves etc and have a tasting of the local oils after. the gastronomic experience you CAN’T miss is at La Oliva, which it seems is still rated #1 on trip advisor. La Oliva is a small shop that sells local, organic oils, honey, wines etc, but the owner Francisco has one table and will cook small tapas-style regional dishes with all local and fresh ingredients, all while he tells you about who grew them, how many kids they have, how many generations they’ve lived there… it’s an amazing experience. even if you don’t do a meal there, it’s a perfect spot to pick up some locally grown items – i think he’ll do olive oil tastings too if you don’t get a chance to do a tour. sorry for the excessive post – i start to reminisce and can’t stop!

  • Laurel says:

    Be aware we’re having the same cold snap as you right now, at least in the north of Spain temperatures are well below freezing at night and the wind is very cold.

  • Melinda says:

    My husband served his mission in Portugal and we went back to visit in 2010 along with a short 1 day trip to Spain. Our destinations were Lisbon, Evora, then a drive to Sevilla, and finally a few days in the Algarve (Salema specifically). I would highly suggest visiting the mountain village of Sintra! It is gorgeous and quaint. I especially liked the monastery, Monserrate, and Quinta da Regaleira. Also get some delicious pastel de nata at the famous cafe in Belem.

    Here’s some of our travel log with some more specifics and pictures:
    http://melandjohn.blogspot.com/search/label/Portugal

  • For lisbon, definitely make some time for pasteis de nata at the pasticceria de belem, dinner at cafe alcatara (compare their winged victory to the one in the louvre) over a bottle of nice portuguese red, and take the city bus out to the beaches, and check out cascais and estoril. also in lisbon, take the chairlift at the Parque de Nacoes – from the world expo – the kids will love it.

  • Filipe says:

    Hey there, while in Lisbon you can use the tram 28 for a overall tour over the most typical neighborhoods http://youtu.be/_YiHO5jZYY4 (watch out for you belongings).

    Some of my favorite spots: Castelo S. Jorge, MUDE (Museu do Design e da Moda), CCB, Mosteiro dos Jerónimos, Pastéis de Belém, Chiado, Príncipe Real – see some of them here http://flic.kr/s/aHsiYXTECt.

    Have fun :)!

  • Samantha says:

    I really loved visiting Sintra and the fairytale castle there – it’s right outside of Lisbon – an easy day trip. Especially as an American, and with kids, the castle will remind you of Disney World (it inspired Walt Disney’s Cinderella’s castle). Sintra is cool for lots of other reasons, too. Lisbon is just awesome. Make sure to try pasteis de nata, my favorite desert, can be found everywhere. Have fun!

  • Aviva says:

    Hi!
    Not to be discouraging – but I REALLY think you should reconsider a day trip to Tangier with little kids! This time of year the ferry crossing can be VERY rough, and although Tangier is ultimately an amazing city – it is also a tough one – and with so little time and your energy diverted by toddlers, I just don’t think it’s worth it. It’s wonderful to be a brave and adventurous traveler – but Portugal and Spain will give you tons of reward, and save Morocco for another time! ( if your tickets are nonrefundable – you can sell them on the pier!)
    But of course if you DO go there is always an upside to all travel and tales to tell, and ways to feel proud of yourself after the fact – fuerza!

  • McKelle says:

    I served my mission in Madrid, but that was over 10 years ago. I miss it! I would LOVE to go back some day. You have to go see the temple. It is beautiful. Plaza Mayor in Madrid is cool (pretty touristy though) and Retiro Park is fun to walk around in. Puerta del Sol is a cool little area in the middle of Madrid. Some good shopping around there (at least while I was there). Ronda, Segovia, Toledo, and Salamanca are some beautiful cities in Spain. Ronda was one of my favorite places I visited while there. Can’t wait to see pictures of Madrid! Have fun!

  • Sarah says:

    What happened with your French visas? Just curious since I’m currently four months into my long stay visa here in France…It would be amazing if I could renew.

  • Sonia says:

    Hi Jordan,

    Take care because Madrid it’s quite cold these days – definitely not as much as Paris, but it’s cold anyway. It’s difficult to recommend places when you’re a local but I think you definitely shouldn’t miss the Retiro park. Museums are a very good option too. My favorite is Thyssen Bornemisza (more or less the equivalent of Orsay in Paris), even if the most famous is the Prado.
    I also recommend you Madrid Río ( http://goo.gl/A1zUD ). There used to be a route near Madrid’s river and a couple of years ago they put the route underground and make a nice alley close to the river, with some areas with parks for kids. It’s quite close to the Rastro (which only runs on Sundays) that someone recommended you before, so they could make a good Sunday morning plan.

    I hope you have a great time. Enjoy Madrid and its gorgeous sun.
    Love your blog!

  • Marissa says:

    don’t miss nerja! it’s a magical, magical city.

  • Di says:

    Sounds lovely! For Madrid – the Mercado de San Miguel just near the Opera metro – beautiful traditional market that’s been restored and is now someplace to go and eat tapas/pinchos and try the white rioja! Great for kids as you can eat there at any time of the day so often earlier than normal Spanish eateries. You can try the cheese, the mini burgers, the ice cream, the wine, the fish, the olives – was great. Chocolate and churros at San Gines – near Puerto del Sol (up a side street but it is signed) and to the Plaza Mayor.

    In Seville don’t miss the cathedral and the Real Alcazar – it is stunning and has some lovely outdoor space the kids could run about in. Also see Plaza de la Encarnación with the amazing wooden sculpted roof Metropol Parasol!

    Enjoy!

  • Adrienne says:

    I love that photo series…I have that exact one in my office. I studied abroad in Granada and you must go and have tea in the Albaicin!!

  • Paula says:

    I live in Barcelona, so anything you need to know or any problem you may have… I am here for you!

    I think everyone covered most of what is to see here, but I would also recommend the Casa Batllo, near Plaça Catalunya, in Paseo de Gracia. Beautiful, beautiful house by Gaudí. The roof is supposed to be the dragon and the chimney is Saint George’s sword. My favourite building without a doubt.

    I would also recommend a walk through the Barceloneta to end up eating at El Suquet de l’Almirall (http://suquetdelalmirall.com/) one of our favourite fish restaurants in Barcelona.

    If you have time, check the CCCB (Centre de Cultura Contemporànea de Barcelona), a beautiful building with a big patio and a really good bookstore. It is just by the MACBA (Museu d’art contemporani de Barcelona), which is definitely a must-see building too.

    Hope you have a wonderful time, and please feel free to contact me for any other information you may need!

  • joana says:

    Hi Jordan, what a road trip, I am jealous!

    Here are my tips for Portugal –

    Sintra, you must go, just 30min from Lisbon, it’s castles and palaces are magical, lots to see, laid back and beautiful country side. I like the Pena National Palace (Palacio da Pena) and Regaleira Palace and Gardens (Quinta da Regaleira) are my favourite. You must try a queijada de Sintra at Piriquita.

    In Lisbon there are three different areas I would recommend-

    1) Belem, Jeronimos monastery, they have a small flea market in the gardens every 1st and 3rd sunday of the month. Here you must try the best pasteis de nata at Antiga Confeitaria de Belem, since 1837 – you’ll find it hard to eat just one!

    2) Downtown Lisboa, St George’s Moorish Castle for the view. Baixa, downtown, you’ll find lots of little shops, and Chiado, great for people watching. In Chiado you must visit the shop A Vida Portuguesa and Luvaria Ulisses. For a nice and relaxed lunch in Chiado I recommend either Kaffeehaus or Royale Cafe. Go for the best ice cream to Santini, in Chiado. For the kids you might want to take the tram 28 (it starts in Campo d’Ourique and goes all the way to Chiado, Baixa and the Cathedral). If you are lazy to go all the way to the castle, in Chiado look for the regency hotel, go up to the bar and you’ll find an amazing view of the city.

    3) Oceanario, in parque das nacoes area, a bit away from the center of the city but amazing oceanarium, adults love it too! On the way there you can stop at Casanova, a great pizza place next to the train station with a nice outside seating area facing the river.

    As portuguese eat rather late, you will find it easy to get a table with kids for early dinners. Try the Petiscaria Ideal in santos area, for casual appetizers type of dinner. If you like seafood, go to Ramiro, no fish just shrimp, lobster, crab, the best ever. Go by taxi as its not the safest area to get lost at night,

    I hope it helps! Have fun!

  • Alba says:

    Your trip sounds wonderful! I’m from Spain but from Gijón, in the north. I think you will enjoy Raima, it’s an incredible paper shop in Barcelona (the main and biggest is in C/Comtal, here is the link with the address: http://www.raima.cat/?page_id=236).

  • Hi Jordan, what a road trip, I am jealous!

    Here are my tips for Portugal –

    Sintra, you must go, just 30min from Lisbon, it’s castles and palaces are magical, lots to see, laid back and beautiful country side. I like the Pena National Palace (Palacio da Pena) and Regaleira Palace and Gardens (Quinta da Regaleira) are my favourite. You must try a queijada de Sintra at Piriquita.

    In Lisbon there are three different areas I would recommend-

    1) Belem, Jeronimos monastery, they have a small flea market in the gardens every 1st and 3rd sunday of the month. Here you must try the best pasteis de nata at Antiga Confeitaria de Belem, since 1837 – you’ll find it hard to eat just one!

    2) Downtown Lisboa, St George’s Moorish Castle for the view. Baixa, downtown, you’ll find lots of little shops, and Chiado, great for people watching. In Chiado you must visit the shop A Vida Portuguesa and Luvaria Ulisses. For a nice and relaxed lunch in Chiado I recommend either Kaffeehaus or Royale Cafe. Go for the best ice cream to Santini, in Chiado. For the kids you might want to take the tram 28 (it starts in Campo d’Ourique and goes all the way to Chiado, Baixa and the Cathedral). If you are lazy to go all the way to the castle, in Chiado look for the regency hotel, go up to the bar and you’ll find an amazing view of the city.

    3) Oceanario, in parque das nacoes area, a bit away from the center of the city but amazing oceanarium, adults love it too! On the way there you can stop at Casanova, a great pizza place next to the train station with a nice outside seating area facing the river.

    As portuguese eat rather late, you will find it easy to get a table with kids for early dinners. Try the Petiscaria Ideal in santos area, for casual appetizers type of dinner. If you like seafood, go to Ramiro, no fish just shrimp, lobster, crab, the best ever. Go by taxi as its not the safest area to get lost at night,

    I hope it helps! Have fun!
    ps – see a few of my pics from lisboa here – http://myseastory.wordpress.com/2012/01/04/a-few-things-lisboa/

  • Ines says:

    Hi Jordan,

    I am portuguese, born and bred in Lisbon.
    Here is my guide to Lisbon: http://www.gogobot.com/user/ines_maldonado/passport/lisbon
    Hope you enjoy your time here.

    Also, if you don’t have where to stay I have some friends who rent an awesome apartment:
    http://www.airbnb.com/rooms/187017

    Have fun
    xo xo

  • oh my dear. could i be more jealous? no!

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