Sintra, Frankly and Lisbon Part 1

Cascais 04/12/2014

Just back in Cascais while we wait for the bike to have a new rim. It is rideable but a tad wobbly with only one brake. This has not stopped us getting out and about while we wait. As you can see from the map below we have been to Sintra and Lisbon.

Sintra 29/11 – 30/11/2014

Sintra is really an Alice in Wonderland on every level. From the surreal fairy tale buildings to the locals rushing around in the cars beeping their horns as they all are late for work. It even has a well to go down with LED lit passageways to explore. It has unfortunately given over its entire town centre to Tat shops. Now Tracy loves a Tat shop but even she got a little Monsieur Hulot holiday about the whole experience. We managed on Saturday to have a bike ride around the town before settling on coffee and cake on a pavement café in the sun.

We stayed in a car park in the town centre, a bit slopey but handy for the sights and close to a rather good place to eat called Caldo something.

Homie Help: One of the great joys of motorhoming is peeping on other people. We have spent many an hour peeping at both other homies and the public at large. We have found to be really successful at peeping requires a degree of protection from the peeped. To us and our advice for you is to invest in the full net curtain. None of those frilly half-window German things or the naked British window will do for us, it has to be the full net to be peeper detection free.

Here are some Pictures of Sintra for you.

After a rather splendid day spent in the ‘adult’ version of Port Merion we returned to the van for a pleasant nights’ sleep. Unbeknown to us the youth of Sintra had other ideas. We were in the underage drinking spot of choice for the post puberty (just) boys, and a few old foreigners in some motorhomes were not going to stop them. It was good to see the future men of Portugal learn from an early age to stand around and chat about nothing for hours on end. The most surprising thing about this whole episode was the chundering cocktail of choice. Sangria, yep in a two litre plastic bottle, but at least they had the class to drink out of plastic cups and not slug straight from the bottle. If I were a strongbow salesman I would be out there like a shot to show them a real beverage to start their drinking career.

Quinta da Regaleira

On Sunday morning we rode up to this truly wonderful place. This is the wonderland that Alice would recognise, especially the gardens. It has every fantasy folly known to man, towers, waterfalls, grottos, wells you can go down, priest holes, if you can think of it then this place has it. Oh to be a kid and be taken here. The house is not too scruffy either although it is only the ground floor that is truly stunning. The other floors have been given over to the life and works of the architect, an Italian whose name you can find on the internet. Some pictures to ram home the point of its’ truly gorgeness.

Lisbon 30/11 – 2/12/2014

Got to Lisbon and parked at the Aire at Bellem. This Aire is close to the sights of Bellem and right on the river. For the second time in a day we got the bikes out and rode along the bike path to the centre of Lisbon. This newly opened ride is worth doing through the Lisbon version of docklands. It is bitty in places and you can see where the recession has hit but if you have a bike it worth doing. Below is a picture from the path. That is Jesus on the left.

The next day we started off at the Aquarium, reputed to be, and on viewing probably is the best in Europe. A brilliant section of ocean based fauna to be seen, highly recommended. After failing to find any water for the van we headed in to Lisbon on the train and had a good walk around this beautiful city. It is a bit like one of those Escher drawings with never ending staircases intertwined with narrow cobblestoned streets. It is great place to walk around and get lost, as we did. We finished off by seeing the xmas decorations in the commercial square. And to cap off a lovely day we learned of the birth of our niece.

Tourist Tip: If you stay where we did be careful, because if they named it after the people that stayed here it would be called Bellend and not Belem.

Cascais 02/12 – 04/12/2014

As we couldn’t get any replenishment for the van in Lisbon we headed back to the campsite where the bike is being repaired. While there we saw our first Hoopee and here it is.

We have decided to go back to Lisbon for a couple of days and then head in a more direct route to the Algarve. So Evora you will not be getting any of our Euros. We hope to be in the Lagos in about a week to settle down and prepare for Chrimbo.

Take care E&T

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