For Easter I have a guest posting from Ana Silva, a blogger in Portugal who was gracious enough to host one of my blogs recently. When I realized how little I know about Portugal it seemed the right thing to ask to be taught more – as a post on my blog so readers could benefit as well. Enjoy your holiday and seeing a country through first-hand eyes.
Hello, I’m Ana from 1001 Scribbles and today I’m guest blogging here so let me start for thanking the invite and opportunity to reach the audience of such an interesting and captivating blog. For those of you who don’t know my blog, it’s about sharing amateur pictures of the places I’ve been to and, of course, also the ones from my own country – Portugal.
Even though Portugal has had such an important role during the Age of Discovery for pioneering it in the 15th and 16th centuries, the truth is that nowadays lots of people don’t even recognize it as a country – a unique beautiful country with its own culture and traditions. I know, we’re at the South-western part of Europe, that we share the Iberian Peninsula with Spain which is so much bigger than Portugal and that economically and politically speaking we’re not probably the best example. However I’m also aware of the absolute exclusive traditions, the charming towns, the breathtaking beaches and the distinctive hospitality with which our visitors are welcomed.
Lisbon, the capital, is by far the most famous Portuguese city and it is considered one of the safest cities is Europe. The Europe’s second-oldest capital (after Athens) was built on a series of hills which allows its visitors to take a look at several scenic vistas while tasting the delicious “Pastel de Nata”. Porto – located in the North of Portugal – is Lisbon’s main rival and in my honest opinion one of the most beautiful places to visit in Portugal.The amazing vibe the Douro River brings to the Ribeira area and of course some local dishes like “Francesinha” or “Tripas à Moda do Porto” accompanied by great wine.
Having the University as its main attraction, Coimbra – my hometown – is a town of tradition and culture. Being one of the oldest Universities in Europe still operating is a great responsibility and its 20 000 students know it! During the year there are lots of activities in which students busily participate. “Praxe” during which the older students help freshman to socialize and get to know the town is one of them but “Queima das Fitas” when the end of graduation courses is celebrated is definitely the most important festivity.
Apart from all that, there are countless places worth visiting in Portugal such as the picturesque town of Óbidos, the mesmerizing beaches in the Algarve, the amazing Douro cruises, Guimarães, the birth place of our nation or even Madeira and Azores islands. But most important, there’s a culture with many and pretty interesting traditions to discover, unique and delicious local food and kind and warm people ready to introduce you to the new and one of a kind experience which is exploring this country.