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PortugalPortugal

Puente in Portugal

 For one of the many long weekends my teaching job in Spain has afforded me, my fellow American friend Tamia and I decided to try our luck and drive to Portugal. Of course when I say we, I mean I because I was the one who had to drive all the ... read more

Carolyn Nelson

PortugalPortugal

Nazaré: traditional and inexpensive seaside town

Nazaré is a fishermen town one hour north from Lisbon. You don´t need to book in advance, just show up and you will have the nazarenas around offering cheap rooms for rent. If you go there between April and early June you may be lucky and get a house on ... read more

Cristina Zabalaga

PortugalPortugal

Joana Vasconcelos beyond boundaries

Listen: a lamp made out tampons, high heels made out pans, a room full of mirrors and blow dryers, a chair full of aspirins, a heart full of plastic spoons, a labyrinth full of lanterns, crazy hu? That is Joana Vasconcelos, who manages to convert ordinary stuff into masterpieces. Is ... read more

Cristina Zabalaga

PortugalPortugal

How to write about meat if you are vegetarian

Today I want to write about Torres Novas because I am writing an article about the 24? edition of the Goatling Festival (Festival do Cabrito) that runs from 27 March until 12 April in Torres Novas, in parallel there is also the 12? Festival of Deserts and Sweets from the region (Doçaria ... read more

Cristina Zabalaga

PortugalPortugal

a pea town with grandpas and dogs

I am staying for a couple of months in a small town, in the house that used to belong to my great grandmother. Her name was María, avó María, and she was born here. She was my grandfather´s mom, avô Fernando, and he was born here too, and also his brothers and aunts and uncles. The name of ... read more

Cristina Zabalaga

PortugalPortugal

one rainy afternoon in Tomar

Visiting any city in the rain is not pleasant, but if someone has come to visit you for the weekend, you will have to endure the rain together and visit Tomar one rainy afternoon. What can you find in Tomar? bacalhau com natas, arroz de tamboril, figs, olives, mouse de chocolate, ... read more

Cristina Zabalaga

PortugalPortugal

Fado night in Alfama, Lisbon

A couple of friends visited Lisbon last weekend. Among other demands, they wanted to go to a fado place. After calling all the fado places listed in a Lisbon guide, I was discouraged because you had to go to a restaurant for tourists and pay an expensive and bad quality ... read more

Cristina Zabalaga

PortugalPortugal

The Edge of the World

As the shinning salmon sun set in to the shimmering sea, I realized I stood where Cristobal Colon once stood—Sagres, Portugal: what he thought to be the edge of the world.  The wind whistled as it whipped my face.  The colors in the sky swirled and changed before my eyes ... read more

Natalie Hunt

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Getting Around

One day in Lisbon

Cristina Zabalaga

25 Feb 2010

Portugal

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Cristina Zabalaga

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One day in Lisbon? Don´t miss the superb Pasteis de Belém at rua de Belém 84-92. Try them with icing sugar and lots of cinnamon, and if you feel like it, order a galão -italian latte- to drink. Avoid long lines showing up early in the morning or late in the evening, it opens until midnight in summer. Once in Belém take a walk around the Mosteiro dos Jerónimos and torre de Belém along the Tejo river. For awesome views of the 25 de Abril bridge, Lisbon’s Golden Gate, go up to the Centro Cultural de Belém. And if you have time, visit the Berardo collection of contemporary art for free. Belém is just 20 minutes from the city center -Baixa- by bus or tram nothing compared to the XIX century when it could only by reached by steamboats.

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Festivals & Events

Visiting Óbidos, a medieval village

Cristina Zabalaga

25 Feb 2010

Portugal

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Cristina Zabalaga

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An hour north from Lisbon is Óbidos, also known as Queen´s village because it used to be the wedding present for the Queens of Portugal, instead of china or cutlery -or in addition to all that- they got a village. Óbidos is also famous for its sweet cherry liquor, ginjinha, the medieval market that takes place every August and the chocolate festival in March, for a week even the castle smells like chocolate. One afternoon is ideal to walk around, enjoy a glass of wine on the cobbled streets, shop fancy medieval souvenirs and climb to the top of the castle on time for the sunset. You can also find good quality and cheap apples-maçãs, cashews-caju and almonds-amêndoa in the farmer´s market at the entrance gates of Óbidos.

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Culture Shock

A more relaxed attitude toward life in Alentejo, Portugal

Margherita Bandini

28 Aug 2009

Portugal

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Margherita Bandini

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When I moved to Evora, Portugal, to start working on a project with otters, I was full of energy and new ideas regarding not only the project but just about everything. I soon found out that this scorchingly hot, dry region (called Alentejo, which means "across the Tejo," the largest river here) is amazingly similar to sub-Saharan africa: slow, relaxed, and in no hurry whatsoever. Their favorite phrase is "a mana," which technically means "tomorrow." I've been here for three months, and it's become my favorite sentence, too! That might be why it took so long to write this tip...

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Etiquette

Perfect the cheek kiss

Margherita Bandini

28 Aug 2009

Portugal

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Margherita Bandini

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Used to living in a very formal environment, my way of greeting new people was offering my right hand to shake. I continued doing this when I first arrived in Portugal. After a few weeks, my new boss introduced me to a landowner and when I shook hands he whispered that it was very bad-mannered for a girl to shake hands. It was custom to kiss both cheeks. I blushed, leaned in... and soon found out that here the first cheek that you kiss is the left one. If I forget this and lean right, I risk kissing total strangers full in the lips. Thank goodness they understand, and laugh every time!

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