To be clear, my goal for this trip was to see as much as possible during Memorial Day Weekend. This was my cousin and I's Christmas present to our moms. This trip took me a total of 4 months to plan so I hope you can take what you like from the itinerary I put together. If I were to plan it again, I would fly into Porto and out of Lisbon with a stopover in the Azores (another trip)!
Duration: 3 days (took red eye Friday night/arrived Saturday morning and flew back out on Tuesday morning early)
Miles drove: 891.67
Trip essentials: LOTS OF WATER (bring a re-usable bottle with a purifier), eye-v patches when landed from red eye, 2 EHT daily, 2 energy chews daily, 1 coffee around 5 PM daily (yes, you read that correctly), 1 sleep chew before if needed
Other things to know:
1. When renting car outside the airport, get there an hour before your reservation in case they are back up.
2. We never had a problem finding parking anywhere we went (parallel parking) and parking is free overnight in Lisbon.
3. If you are going to get the Lisboa Card, make sure to get the paper copy from the welcome booth in the airport!
1. Rented automatic car once landed from the airport (Avis)
2. Grutas de Moeda (7 euros/person) (1 hr 9 min drive)
3. Agueda (cute town that has the umbrella project some months in the year) (1 hr 25 min) My mom bought a whole box of fresh cherries for 5 euros on the side of the road!
4. Aveiro for lunch (32 min)
5. Costa Nova to see the cute houses (20 min)
6. Porto (stayed in an airbnb in Gaia) (1 hr)
Here we were too late for most tastings besides the best place to get port: the tastings were free too at Vasconcellos and ask for Jorgito, we then stopped into the Yeatman Hotel to see the amazing sunset then had dinner reservations across the street at Barao Fladgate which is a part of Taylor Port. (If we had more time there, I would have liked us to check out more port places like Graham, Sandeman, and Croft as well as ride the cable car which closed at 7 PM when we went.)
1. Breakfast in Porto at Oporto Bakery
2. Batalha Monastery to explore monastery and go to mass since we went on Sunday and do some shopping outside of the monastery (1 hr 56 min)
3. Obidos to explore and have lunch at Taberna Pasto da Vila (I found street parking outside of the main road entrance to the restaurant-it said 30 minute parking but we were there for 2 hours and we were fine), make sure to try the ginja in a chocolate cup and explore the town including the castle which you can walk around the top of the walls.
4. Sintra (to truly see this town you need way more time....so much to see and do and SOOO many hills) with that being said, we made it to Quinta da Regaleira (8 euros plus 20% discount if you have Lisboa Card). What we missed that was on my list: Castelo dos Mouros ( 8 euros), Pena Palace, Palacio de Monserrat
5. Dinner at Bar do Fundo in Sintra (31 mins)
6. MISSED: Cascais, Tower of Belem, and Jeronomos Monastery
7. Lisbon to check into our airbnb
1. Explore Lisbon: Sao Jorge, Carmo Convent/Santa Justa Lift (5.30 euros per person); Manteigaria for the best pasteis de nata (opened 8 am-12 am), Time Out Market for options of food, and Topo Chiado for rooftop drinks near Carmo Convent
2. Marina de Lagos (2 hrs 40 min....2 hrs 8 mins if you go very fast =P) for our boat rental from Algarve Boat Rental (it is expensive and if you don't have a boater's license you will need a skipper which is 60 euros, you also need to pay gas and tip) we had the boat for 3 hours and we saw Ponte da Piedade from the water which was incredible, then went up the coast to anchor in Praia do Alemão for an hour or so (we jumped in but the water was FREEZING...55.4 degrees Fahrenheit to be exact)