Portugal & Spain Recap!
I feel like the last week was a dream. My last trip/ graduation trip was to Portugal and Spain! It still feels so unreal just because I've always wanted to see Spain since I was a little girl (Hello Cheetah Girls 2). These countries are so stunning and unbelievably beautiful. This trip was great because of the fact that nothing was planned or booked. We booked the car rental when we got on the flight and the hotels/Airbnb's were all booked the day we would check in. It gave us the flexibility of choosing where we wanted to stay longer or shorter. We fell in love with Algarve so we decided to stay a few extras days there. It's that Non-Rev life ya know?
We didnt land in Portugal (we landed in Malaga, Spain) but we decided to drive to Portugal and make our way down the coast to Spain. This city is beautiful and incredibly busy with tourist! We were lucky to spend one night here and get to see a few of the main sights. I think I was most excited about was to finally try a Pasteis De Nata or Pasteis De Belem as they called it. I've had them before in the states (I live about 15 min away from a million Portuguese bakeries in Newark, NJ). NOTHING COMPARES TO PASTEIS DE BELEM. We ended up buying a pack of six and splitting one each day so that we could make them last haha. Aside from the amazing pastry, we saw the incredible bridge called Ponte 25 De Abril (reminds me so much of San Fran!). We also got to the the really cool monuments along the water near the bridge. We walked the busy streets at night to the Praca do Comercio which was a gorgeous open plaza. Lisbon also has their own Christ Statue which we were able to visit and go to the top! The views were so amazing. We didnt know this but Portugal is so famous for their piri piri chicken. We had the most incredible chicken ever at La Valencia (if youre ever in Lisbon, I recommend youtry this place!)
Algarve, Portugal (Lagos)
I guess you can say that I am in love with Algarve. I think all my life (I grew up in a town with lots of Portuguese people) I have heard people talk about this part of portugal. The cliffs, the weather, the food, and clear water are what attract thousands of people to this area. Now I truly understand why this place is so loved. It has been our favorite part of our trip. We stayed at a hotel called Vila Graciosa Guesthouse (just a 15 minute walk into Lagos). It was a gorgeous and colorful guesthouse. A pool, cabanas, breakfast, and the most helpful front desk people. If your in the Lagos area of Portugal, I recommend staying here. It's super affordable and within a 15 minute walk to some of the most beautiful beaches and center city. The city of lagos is incredible. Every night the streets were filled tons of people eating, drinking, smoking and enjoying the beautiful we were in. The restaurants were incredible. We ate a ton of piripiri chicken and fish! We did a kayak tour of the incredible caves in Lagos. If you love kayaking and being active, DO THIS! Skip the typical boat tours (they can only go so far in to the caves). WIth the kayaks, we were able to go all the way into the caves, take pictures and really take in the beauty of them. We went into multiple caves and then relaxed at a local beach before heading back. This was our absolute favorite part of the trip.
Lagos To Sevilla
We were extremely sad to leave Lagos but excited to explore another country. The best thing about exploring both Portugal and Spain is the short travel distance we had. We stayed at a great Airbnb in Sevilla close to everything. Just a warning for those who ever go to sevilla, parking is the WORSE. Street parking is non existing there. Aside from the parking, Sevilla is everything I picture Spain to be. Small and narrow streets with colorful homes. Looks like everyone in Sevilla goes out every night. The streets were filled with so many people drinking and smoking after work. It was incredible seeing how relaxed life is there. We explored the major tourist attractions in Sevilla such as the Real Alcazar, Plaza de Espana, and Seville Cathedral. We only had one day here so we made sure we most of the main sites.
Sevilla to Malaga
We were so excited to be back at the beach. We truly enjoyed laying out and just really relaxing this whole trip. So Malaga to us was an unknown city. When you hear people talk about Spain, You hear cities such as Barcelona, Madrid, Grenada, Sevilla and so many more. Rarely have I heard anyone mention the city of Malaga. Well let me tell you, this place is WOW. It's considered the Costa De Sol which now I understand why haha (talk about that heat!). We spent our days at the beach getting some much needed color and spent the afternoons in the city center. We ate paella, torta espanola, sangria, and so much DESSERT. If your ever in the Costa De Sol region, make sure you try the Malaga sweet wine (amazing and completely different than any other sweet wine I've ever had!)
Im currently sitting at work wishing I was still at the Costa De Sol. This week has been one of the most amazing weeks ever and it is due to my amazing boyfriend. We had such an awesome week hanging out, laughing, lounging, and just spending amazing quality time together before we head back to our crazy schedules. But were so close from our next trip together with our bestfriends. I'm home for three weeks before I'm gone again on another exciting trip! That will be my final trip of the summer but im so excited for some fall and winter trips that I'm planning! Stay tuned to see where I am headed next.