Day 158: Here We Are in Portugal


One of the perks of living in the Netherlands is exploring new countries, like we would visit another State in the USA. And since we don’t know how long we will have this opportunity, we try to make the most of every moment we have. It sounds cliche, but in a sense we’re enjoying the gift of time, and living it up like we might not have another chance to do what we’re doing if we don’t do it right now. Know what I mean?? I think everyone should live like this, meaning not doing the same things as me, but doing whatever you’re capable and able to do and experience right now in your part of the world. Maybe you’ve been wanting to visit a friend who lives 2 hours away but you think you’re too busy. You should schedule it right now! You’ll be so happy you did.

We are in Portugal for a couple of days. We wanted to go someplace warmer than Holland and not a 11 hour flight away. We picked Portugal, someplace we would never have thought of visiting had we not lived in Europe and heard so many good things about it.

We arrived late this afternoon and immediately went exploring as soon as we checked into our hotel. We actually took a bus from the airport to our hotel, based on the recommendation of the tourist office. A bus ticket costs 3.50 euros for adults and 2€ for kids. It was also a nice way to see a bit of the city. We then bought Metro cards and rode the subway to catch Tram 28, an old fashioned electric tram car, that felt like we were riding a cable car in San Francisco.


It goes up and down several hills in Lisbon, along narrow streets and through popular neighborhoods. This was a great way to get acquainted with the city with just a half day to spend this evening.

We used TripAdvisor’s Cityguide App to help us find a highly rated, local restaurant nearby where we got off the tram. We were so lucky to have chosen Alpendre, in the Alfama neighborhood. We met Victor who became our friend and who helped us to pick some great entrees. We had shrimp with garlic, grilled assorted whole fish with boiled potatoes and steamed broccoli, steak kebabs, and seafood rice, with fresh bread and butter and cheese.

He brought us ice cold Portuguese beer in freezer chilled metal mugs that made them taste so delicious. Our dinner was filling and the ambiance and service was warm and homey. The kids asked if we could go back again tomorrow. I’d say that’s a good sign.

We enjoyed our late afternoon and evening in Lisbon and are looking forward to more adventures tomorrow.

How are you spending your last day of 2012? Hopefully living it up, your style!