Portugal Gallery

In early December, Saul and I made a decision to include a short visit to Portugal in our itinerary. After drifting lazily westwards through Spanish wine country, we finally tackled the drive to Porto on Christmas Day, hoping for quiet roads. This turned out to be an excellent decision and late afternoon saw us comfortably ensconced in a slightly weird industrial chic hotel on the banks of the Douro. The contrast between neighbours was quickly apparent with Spain’s rather understated sophistication suddenly rendered obvious by Portugal’s rougher edges. Even the language sounded decidedly rof en onbeskof to our by now Spanish-tuned ears. None of which means that Portugal was a disappointment. Fantastic seafood (and port, of course), a rather mind-boggling tourist attraction in Evora, interesting company for a New Year’s Eve party in an Algarve luxury hotel (that used to be a convent) and a New Year’s Day spent on my favourite type of beach (empty, atmospheric and windy) made for a memorable eight days.

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