Hindustan Times - Brunch : 2019-02-10

Travel : 29 : 29

Travel

REGIONAL RELISH 29 From Lagos, one can set off on a fishing excursion to Ponta da Piedade ACROSS THE RIVER We then headed to Faro, the historical capital of the Algarve, to visit the old-walled town. The marzipan, available in different shapes from carrots to bunnies, and everything in between, is not to be missed. Meandering north, we travelled across the Serra do Caldeirão to the ancient Alentejo city of Évora. We visited the elaborate cathedral, Roman temple and the Chapel of Bones and spent the rest of our day delving into the medieval history of this enchanting city. We journeyed across the Tagus one morning and drove south towards the Serra da Arrábida Mountains and to the golden pastures of the Alentejo. The hearty aroma of Portuguese chicken filled the air as we shared a traditional lunch with the owners of a stud ranch. Meandering further south, we arrived on the sun-kissed shores of the Algarve. We had an authentic local dinner, with dishes cooked in a traditional Cataplana. The dramatic cliffs and beautiful beaches of the Sagres Peninsula, at the very edge of Portugal, provided the most stunning backdrop for our morning coastal drive. We admired views across Baleeira Beach before continuing along the coast to Cape St. Vincent, the site of many sea battles centuries ago. We ended our excursion with a visit to the resort town of Lagos – once the home of Prince Henry the Navigator, today a picturesque seaside retreat of winding cobblestone roads and quaint squares encircled by 16th century walls. PORT AND POTTER Next was a visit to the village of Monsaraz set against the backdrop of golden olive groves. The drive was picturesque, passing through the vineyards and groves of cork oaks to Monsaraz, one of the most famous and beautiful ‘white villages’ of the Alentejo. We admired the castle, which overlooks neighbouring Spain and saw views of the largest artificial lake in Europe. ROYAL APPEAL The 18th century Palace of Queluz sits pretty in the city of Queluz y s THE PORTUGUESE LOVE THEIR SWEETS SO IF YOU HAVE A SWEET TOOTH, YOU’RE IN FOR THE TIME OF YOUR LIFE Our first stop was the quaint hilltop town of Castelo de Vide with its charming white façades, narrow alleys and fascinating Jewish Quarter. Travelling north towards the Serra da Estrela mountains, we arrived later in Viseu, set high on a plateau near the famous Dão vineyards, where we explore the city’s rich art and architectural history and visited the 12th century Sé (cathedral) standing overlooking the city. We went to a spectacular 18th century manor house and estate, and enjoyed a gourmet experience matching local food with local wines. Vineyard-clad hills provided an enchanting backdrop for our journey through the Douro Valley where port wine is produced. We explored the magnificent gardens at the baroque Palácio de Mateus, depicted on the label of the Mateus wine bottles. We then continued via Guimarães for views of its 10th century castle before arriving in the seaside town of Vila do Conde. Our day trip to Porto took us past Baroque churches and along the winding cobblestone lanes. We saw the Gothic Church of St. Francis. You cannot miss a visit to the Palácio da Bolsa or the Stock Exchange Palace. Porto is home to Livraria Lello, one of the most beautiful book stores in the world. J K Rowling lived in the city and taught English while writing The arches and panes take you back to Hogwarts. Convent of Christ, originally built as a Templar stronghold in the 12th century. Arriving in the pilgrimage centre, Fátima, we rubbed shoulders with pilgrims who journeyed to the shrine where three young shepherds saw the apparition of the Virgin Mary. Enroute Lisbon, we stopped at the monastery of Batalha – the best example of late Gothic architecture in Portugal. Our last night in Portugal saw us toast to an incredible journey, one which came to an end much too soon. MISS ME NOT In Porto, you cannot miss a visit to the Palácio da Bolsa or the Stock Exchange Palace Harry Pot- ter. BACK IN TIME Enjoying a relaxing and leisurely cruise along the Douro River, we saw two medieval world heritage cities and bridges, one of them the famous Unesco-listed Eiffel bridge. We soaked up the atmosphere of one of Europe’s oldest universities and meandered the ancient streets of Coimbra the next morning. Then, we explored the Knights Templar city of Tomar to visit the [email protected] Follow @HTBrunch on Twitter Alison and Sumanto Ray are intrepid travellers and professional bloggers, who were also on the Best Food Bloggers List in 2018. Follow them across social media IN LOVE WITH THE SHAPE OF YOU... In Faro, the historical capital of The Algarve, the marzipan available in different shapes from carrots to bunnies is not to be missed HTBrunch @twomouthsfull FEBRUARY 10, 2019 PRINTED AND DISTRIBUTED BY PRESSREADER PressReader.com +1 604 278 4604 ORIGINAL COPY . ORIGINAL COPY . ORIGINAL COPY . ORIGINAL COPY . ORIGINAL COPY . ORIGINAL COPY COPYRIGHT AND PROTECTED BY APPLICABLE LAW

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