A budget week in Portugal !

Tripoto
25th Jul 2017
Photo of A budget week in Portugal ! by Nishad Kulkarni
Photo of A budget week in Portugal ! 1/1 by Nishad Kulkarni

After I got a cheap flight from Dublin to Faro, in the south of Portugal, in the picturesque Algarve region, I was bound to go. Portugal was to be my 31st country and the last on this leg of travel. Portugal remains one of my favorite places, with crystal clear waters and amazing food, it surely is a top travel destination.

Day 1

Faro

As I reached my hostel, The Casa d' alagoa in the middle of the town, I was awestruck by the quaintness and beauty of the place. Faro is a small, medieval looking town on the coast. As I was having breakfast in the hostel, I was joined by a girl who looked very familiar. Suddenly I realized it was Michelle, a Chinese traveler whom Id met a year ago in June 2016 in Budapest. Marveling at our reunion and chatting about how small the world is, we figured out stuff to do in Faro. She was leaving and I was just there, so she had a few tips for me.

I walked around the town on this day. Faro seems very Mediterranean and Moorish at the same time, but it is stunning. Its one of the best coasts I've seen in the world.

weird looking sculpture

Photo of A budget week in Portugal ! by Nishad Kulkarni
Day 2

I went to the famous Benagil Sea cave. It is located an hour and a half from Faro and had to take two public buses, to reach. Saved up on a lot if money though. I hadn't seen a sea cave before, and was very excited to see one.

Photo of A budget week in Portugal ! by Nishad Kulkarni
Photo of A budget week in Portugal ! by Nishad Kulkarni

The boat to the cave wasn't working as the water was choppy, so I hiked instead. However I could see only the top of cave.

Day 3

Lisbon

I set off to Lisbon or Lisboa as the Portuguese say it, by train. The train was really good, and though it went through beautiful countryside, I wish it had lasted longer. I was in lisboa in a few hours and on my way to the hostel. Lisboa is placed on top and around hills so getting around by walking is tiresome, although very beautiful. I traversed the whole city on foot and by tram. In the culinary section, it is an absolute delight to your palate. From seafood, to chicken to samosas, Lisboa had quite the food.

Photo of A budget week in Portugal ! by Nishad Kulkarni

The evening and most of the night was spent in a pub crawl throughout the Bairro Alto neighborhood. This is a neighborhood located on a hill, but it has the best nightlife in the city. Not a good combination though, walking up and down the hill, drinking.

Day 4

This day was spent exploring Belem and the area around it. Belem is the most southern area of Lisbon and a tram can take you there easily. It is famous for the Pasteis de Belem, the famous Portuguese tart. There is a huge line outside the original bakery, but the line is worth it. The tart is super fresh and delicious.

Belem Tower

Photo of A budget week in Portugal ! by Nishad Kulkarni

Belem Tower is one of the highlights of Belem and Lisbon in general.

Day 5

A Brazilian, a swede and I set off from the hostel to go to Sintra. Sintra is located to the west of Lisbon, and is a hill station in plain terms. Luckily the train goes there directly, so you dont have to figure a lot to travel there. Sintra is located high up in the mountains and is dotted with palaces and forts. Sintra served as a royal retreat in the days of the Monarchy and as such its palaces are a sight to see.

Sintra Town

Photo of A budget week in Portugal ! by Nishad Kulkarni

Having only one day, we did a small hike up one of its forts. The weather was cloudy and it was actually cold on top of the mountains, with fog engulfing all sides. Meanwhile below in Lisbon, it was clear skies and hot weather.

Victory

Photo of A budget week in Portugal ! by Nishad Kulkarni

My time in Lisbon had come to an end and I was to leave to the northern town of Porto the next day.

Porto

Day 6

On the 30th of July I set off from Lisbon to Porto by bus. Porto is the home city of Port wine and as such takes immense pride in it. The town is filled with wineries and wine tasting bars.

It is one of the most stunning towns I have stepped foot in. Located on a big hill and going down to the river, Porto is spread out across the river as well. The other side, a town in itself is known as Gaia.

Photo of A budget week in Portugal ! by Nishad Kulkarni

Most of the day was spent up and down the city and finding interesting places to eat.

Day 7

I took a walking tour in the morning with some people from the hostel. The tour was really good, with the guide giving information on history, food and of course Port wine.

Photo of A budget week in Portugal ! by Nishad Kulkarni

I've met some of the most inspiring people from my travels on this trip. In the walking tour I met Dan from Madagascar, a Romanian traveler named Robert, Teresa from the Czech republic and Justyna from Poland. The five of us immediately became best friends and set off to explore Port and Porto on our own. After eating an enormous sandwich known as the Francesinha, we proceeded to drink Port throughout the evening. Conversing about life, aspirations and inspirations, my last day in Portugal ended on the banks of the river, watching the sun go down, all of it with amazing people.

Justyna and Teresa trying the Francesinha

Photo of A budget week in Portugal ! by Nishad Kulkarni

A perfect evening

Photo of A budget week in Portugal ! by Nishad Kulkarni

Best time to visit : Anytime! Although May to October is good

Budget: INR 2000 per day

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