I haven’t posted in a while for two reasons. First, after finishing my trip to Italy, I am still compiling the content for that video release. And, then I had family visit me here in Portugal for 10 days.
My brother Tommy and his two boys, my nephews Tommy and Matteo came to visit starting on June 30. He and I have been talking about and planning this trip over the past six months. We both traveled the world extensively together and know what it is like to sleep on floors and wander aimlessly. So, we decided not to book any rooms in advance and just wing it day by day. It worked out perfectly.
This was such a perfect gift for him to give to his sons, Tommy and Matteo, who are 17 and 13 respectively. To experience world travel at that young age is such a huge opportunity most people never get in a lifetime. We knew this trip would shape them or begin to shape them as they will have experienced the world on a broader scale.
We decided to spend the first three days in Lisbon and seeing the sights, meeting my friends and checking out nearby landmarks and cities.
The boys were definitely excited for the second day which consisted of their first time surfing at a beach across the Tagus called Costa da Caparica. We hired an instructor for them and off they went. The water was frigid so needless to say they wore heavy wet suits, lol. Both of them got up on waves and can say they surfed in Portugal!
Having a car here is such a game changer. From Lisbon, we were able to travel to Porto, and work our way down south through Nazare, Obidos, Ericeira, sintra and the Algarve.
In Porto, they enjoyed eating Francesinha on the Riviera, the area along the Douro river. Our Airbnb was built in the rock formations in the mountain, like a house man cave! We took a city tour on a tuk-tuk and got a ton of pictures and memories.
The next morning, we set off to spend a few hours in Obidos and then let the boys boogie board in Ericiera.
The car ride from Porto to Obidos was 90 minutes and then another 60 minutes from there to Ericiera. No car trip we took lasted more than 2 1/2 hours.
When we got to Obidos, we checked out the chocolate available and Ginja stores. We had quite a few samples, LOL and bought quite a few souvenirs. I think the boys really got a sense of history as they climbed the castle walls there.
Next, it was time for some fun on the beach again. In Ericiera, we went to Praia do Pescadores. I took them to a store where we could rent boogie boards for the boys and the sign literally said closed, gone surfing!
There were no shops with boogie boards available so I decided to just buy one and let them share!
Turns out Matteo loved the water and the boogie boarding, while his brother opted for oiling up his body to sunbathe on the beach! We had a great dinner at PRIM, which consisted of assorted Portuguese beef.
In the morning, we set off again in the car for a 2 1/2 hour drive to the Algarve. But, we made a pitstop at my apartment in Lisbon to unload and drop off souvenirs and dirty clothes to lighten the load.
We sit out for the Algarve with newly purchased pillows for those who wanted to sleep along the car ride! Let’s just say there was some snoring going on!
We got to the Algarve and arrived at our villa in Carvoeire. We quickly unpacked and hopped in the car and went straight to Praia da Marainha. We climbed along the cliffs until the world famous M-shaped rock came into view. they all stood in awe of what mother nature introduced them to that day.
Make sure you have reservations for dinner, because if they are full, which most of them are you have nowhere to eat. Luckily, we got seated at an Italian place that night.
The next morning was the boat tour of the Benegil caves. Pepash was our captain of the small 20 foot boat that The expertly maneuvered inside the low hanging caves. I had been on a similar boat tour, but this guy really did a phenomenal job! He knew exactly where the beautiful spots were and what they meant and paused for pictures and moments of breathtaking beauty.
None of us wanted it to end.
The next morning, my nephew Tommy and I set out for his first skydive and it would be here in Portugal! He was not nervous at all but seemingly really excited! He went through the training for the job at 15,000 feet. He would freefall 90 seconds to 7000 feet and then open the parachute and float 6 1/2 minutes to the ground. He was stoked! I watched him get on the plane and watch the plane takeoff. I knew what color is parachute was, orange, so I looked for that one when they started opening up.
He was doing some great spinning and controlling of the chute. After he landed and I saw him, that beaming smile told me everything I needed to know about his jump!
When we got back, we all went together to the Algarve water park where the boys spent the afternoon in 100° heat! Tommy and I had some beers under the umbrella!!
So I chose to release my nephews skydive video with this instead of documenting their whole trip. Those are memories that we will cherish forever!
Keep traveling boys!!