The beautiful, sun-drenched Iberian country has been popping up on several ‘Best in Travel’ lists for years now – it’s cheaper than most of its European carbon copies, like Italy or France, and it’s less clogged. And now, it’s challenging them.
Portugal is “still waking up to its own worldly importance, and as a result, still vivid and sparklingly fresh,” wrote Eli Gottlieb last year, in a feature for the New York Times.
“Whether you join a tour or create your own itinerary, there’s no shortage of activities or beauty in this European country,” writes Michelle Jerson, for Mashable. “If you’re looking for a trip with the perfect mix of city, castles, small towns, gorgeous coastlines, friendly people and great food, then consider Portugal – not as a stopover, but as a true destination all its own.”
It’s a perfect destination for expats in search of a new home, or for wanderlusters searching for a new place to fall in love with, or just for anyone craving their next great vacation. Conde Nast ranked seaside resort town Cascais – a gorgeous, tiny city, only about 40 minutes from Lisbon by train – on its ‘Best Places to Retire’ list for 2016 but, really, there are so many more places you might find suit you perfectly – somewhere in the Algarve like Lagos, cosmopolitan and vibrant Lisbon, cultural Porto, or any other of the country’s wonderful, livable, affordable towns up and down the Atlantic coast.
No doubt, you’ll get to Portugal and see many of its terrific sights – the riverfront in Porto, the windy orange and tiled homes and streets in Lisbon, the sand and cliffs that seem to wrap around the world in the Algarve – and wonder to yourself, ‘Wait, why haven’t I heard more about this place?’
Portugal has always been overshadowed by the heavyweights like Spain, France, Italy, or maybe even Croatia nowadays. But fewer tourists in the past just means you have a chance to leave your own footprints now.
You have to go now. Because Portugal won’t always be a secret…
Photos by Kolby Solinsky
Photos above by Kolby Solinsky
Photo: Wikimedia Commons, user Wafry
Photo: Wikimedia Commons, user Georges Jansoone
Photo: Wikimedia Commons, user Wurminster