Our financial planner dreamed about traveling more. So, she put a plan in action.
When my daughter offered to travel with me during spring break from her PA program, I jumped at the chance. I’m a planner by nature, so we evaluated a diverse list of destinations before choosing Portugal. This tiny country offers a unique culture of fado music and tile-decorated buildings, beautiful scenery, and most importantly, great food and drink. I admit my frugal nature loved that Portugal is so budget-friendly, too!
We traveled independently with our dog-eared Rick Steves guidebook and a lot of advice from Anthony Bourdain, online forums and friends – it seems like everyone is going or just got back. We flew into Porto and out of Lisbon, with quaint towns in between. It was easy to travel by train, bus, and historic trams that rattle up and down the hills. Portugal has lots of steep hills, and the sidewalks are cobblestone mosaics (beautiful but slippery), so sturdy walking shoes are essential. Uber was a lifesaver (footsaver?) when we hit our limit after walking seven to ten miles a day.
Sintra is a resort town in the hills above Lisbon with commanding oceans views from the many historic palaces and villas. It’s a popular day trip since it’s a quick train ride from Lisbon, but we spent two nights so we could enjoy more time exploring the enchanting palace gardens and charming town.
Best Day Trip
The Douro Valley in the north features steeply terraced vineyards high above the Douro River. Portugal is famous for port, a fortified wine that has been produced here for centuries. The wineries in this region make the port, which is then sent down river to Porto to age in the cellars along the river.
It’s a tie between the pastel de nata, a delicious custard tart that’s best eaten fresh out of the oven sprinkled with cinnamon and powdered sugar, and the francesinha, an enormous sandwich with linguiça, mortadella, steak, topped with cheese and a fried egg, then covered with spicy sauce.
The 20-year old tawny port, although the cold beer that washed down the francesinha was pretty good too!
The friendly people – they are incredibly proud of their country and its history. Everyone will tell you stories about their lives, the local legends, the soccer rivalries, and where to get the best meals away from the tourists.
Dream. Plan. Do.
Platt Wealth Management offers financial plans to answer your important financial questions. Where are you? Where do you want to be? How can you get there? Our four-step financial planning process is designed to be a road map to get you where you want to go while providing flexibility to adapt to changes along the route. We offer stand alone plans or full wealth management plans that include our investment management services.