It was snowing here in Central Oregon when I left for vacation a couple of weeks ago. And I really enjoyed our vacation in sunny Portugal and Spain. The weather was delightful, in the mid 60s to low 70s. We walked all over and I enjoyed healthy food. My friend Linda and I joined a tour group. Our guide was excellent, and the other members of the tour group were very congenial and friendly.
We began our vacation in Lisbon. Linda and I walked downtown into the Tagus river.
Aren’t of the sidewalk designs beautiful? Here is a close-up.
Linda at the River
The tall structure is an elevator for city views
Our hotel room had a view of the castle on the hill.
In the morning, we joined our tour group for a city tour. We walked through the cobblestoned streets of the Alfama (oldest district in Lisbon) to the 11th century cathedral. I didn’t realize that Lisbon is one of the oldest cities in Europe. It is older than Rome, Paris or London. It has been occupied since the eighth century.
We continued on the bus to Belém Tower on the River. The tower was built in the early 16th century.
Also along the River was a more recent monument to Portuguese explorers and scientists, built by the dictator Antonio Salazar (Monument to the Discoveries).
In Lisbon, many of the buildings are covered by beautiful tiles.
Afternoon, we toured to the coast cities of Estoril and Cascais. And then on to Sintra where we visited the 15th century royal palace. We also had time to explore the historic center of town.
View of Sintra from the palace windows
The walls and ceiling in one of the castle rooms were painted with scenes of exploration.
I will continue blogging about my travels later. But I thought I would close by following up on a topic suggested by Sparks coach, intuitive eating. I am very pleased that I did not gain weight while traveling. I actually lost a couple pounds. I was not able to track because most of the food items were very different and I did not have internet. So I chose lots of vegetables, fish and chicken. I also ate the wonderful fresh breads, and sampled good wines. Servings were not huge; restaurant portions were smaller. And the food was great. Intuitive eating involves eating when hungry, and not eating too much. I think I did this pretty well during my travels. My friend had a harder time, because she craved traditional US style foods such as burgers with lots of sauces. These simply weren’t available. I think a part of traveling is enjoying the local cuisine; it is an important part of experiencing a different culture.