3 Reasons Why You Should Explore Portugal

Anyone who reads or hears about Portugal probably immediately thinks of beautiful beaches underneath breathtaking cliffs, spectacular surfing and delicious Pastéis de Nata.

Portugal is becoming an increasingly popular holiday destination. The country is experiencing a tourism boom, in fact – and there are good reasons, as this land on the western edge of Europe has so much to offer. Here we look at three of the reasons why a holiday in Portugal is definitely worthwhile.

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Summer, Sun & Beaches

Despite its relatively small area (92,212 square kilometres), Portugal has one of the longest coastlines in the world. Overall, the Portuguese can dig their feet in the sand over 3,000 kilometres. The popular holiday islands of Madeira and the Azores are part of this, of course – but even on the mainland, coastline is everywhere. A drive from Faro in the south to Viana do Castelo in the north is particularly recommended, and it provides a comprehensive insight into the culture and beauty of Portugal. You can experience this adventure even during a short break – by car, for example, you can complete this trip in less than seven hours.

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Last summer I went on a two week holiday to the famous Algarve Coast in Portugal. We went to new beaches on the Algarve daily and explored the beautiful Algarve area that has so much to offer. (Read more in my travel guide articles about that trip!)

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Many Possibilities to Explore & Adventure

Holidays are very important, giving us the opportunity to relax and escape from everyday life. At the same time, however, we also want to develop ourselves. We don’t want to spend all of our time just lying on the beach and drinking cocktails – we also want to experience the country that we visit. Portugal offers many opportunities for this, catering for a range of interests. After all, the country combines beautiful landscapes and beautiful beaches with a rich and distinctive culture. Whether it’s the big cities like Porto or small places on the edge of the streets – visitors will always find new corners and new opportunities to develop themselves.

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That’s why Portugal is also the country of road trips. To appreciate it fully, the western side of the Iberian peninsula should really be explored by road. The good news is that the roads of Europe are now safer than they have ever been before – in 2013, the EU even set itself the target of reducing road deaths by 50%. True freedom and opportunities do not appear at the hotel pool, but out there on the road.

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If you want to experience the real Portugal, you have to do this in contact with the Portuguese themselves. It’s highly recommended to visit one of the many local wineries, for example. You can buy fine wines for little money directly from the producer, and they often have special offers too.

As well as testing the local foods, that are not as known as Italy’s pizza and pasta but just as mouthwatering. The sweet little pastry cakes ‚Pastéis de Nata‚ can be found at every corner and taste like heaven to me.

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Lisbon

No list of Portugal’s highlights is complete without a mention of its capital. This beautiful city is spread over several hills overlooking the Rio Tejo, rewarding the explorer with breathtaking panoramic views at every turn. Whatever you’re looking for – whether it’s history, culture, or an exciting range of bars and cafes – you’ll find it in Lisbon. If you want to escape the tourist crowds, the cobblestoned streets of Alfama is the area of Lisbon for you. Chat with the locals here and relax, watching the world go by. This is the real Portugal.

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I visited Lisbon for two days myself last summer and got a general overview of the beauty it has to offer, but I am already keen to go back and explore more! The city is also very famous for great vegan cafés and restaurants, that I want to try myself as well as wandering through the beautiful and colourful streets.

Besides Lisbon, I am also super keen to visit Porto! Another beautiful city in the northern part of the country that I’ve heard many great things from.

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Have you been to Portugal yourself? Where have you been & what do you recommend? Is it on your bucket list? 

 

Portugal 2018 Travel Video

This summer when I was on vacation in Portugal with my family my brother and I started filming a few snaps and clips.

Especially my brother is really inspired by Jay Alvarrez and other amazing videographers and he wanted to start making travel videos himself.

As I also planned to start making videos in Australia as a great memory to all my travels, we made our FIRST TRAVEL VIDEO together and I finally managed to share if with you on here as well!

 

I am super proud of it and how my brother edited it so great, especially because it was our first try!

I love watching videos myself and I think that many people enjoy it more than reading blog posts and videos are an even better memory than only pictures as they capture a lot more of a moment than only one shot.

That’s why I want to really get into making my own videos of my travel from now on! I already started filming in Melbourne and filmed a bit here and there, but I never really felt comfortable to talk and film a lot when I was with other people… It is hard to get used to the camera and also remembering to film, but I want to start again and hopefully manage to upload my own first video soon!

In December, my family is also going to visit me for three weeks here in Australia so I will be able to film some cool stuff with my brother again!


Do you like videos more than reading blogs? How do you like our first travel video? What videos would you like me to make?

Girls trip to Vienna – What We Saw, Did & Ate in 3 Days

Some weeks ago one of my best friends and I spontaneously booked a trip to Vienna that we have thought about for a while already.

We spend three very hot but wonderful days in Austria’s capital city and had lots of fun together.

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I have already been to the city three years ago for New Years and really liked the vibe of the city and always wanted to explore it for some days with good weather.

On my Instagram @mind.wanderer you can find a highlight called ‚Vienna‘ and see some of our favorite memories from this trip. In this post, I am going to share everything that we have done that I can recommend you to do on your own city trip and some amazing veggie food that we have discovered!

 

Transportation

Flixbus has amazing routes that cover many cities in Germany and lead to Vienna overnight which was super nice. We started around 10 pm in the afternoon and got to Vienna at around 7:30 am so we had the whole day to explore.

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We spend two nights in the A&O Hostel/Hotel that we have already been to in Leipzig last summer and really like. It’s pretty cheap but has all we need: clean and comfy beds and bathroom and their breakfast is pretty amazing as well (for that price).

In Vienna itself, we bought two-day passes for metro, tram and bus which I can highly recommend to see as much as possible. They are only 8€ a day and totally worth it.

One day we booked a Big Bus Hop-on-Hop-off Ticket which is very pricey but also super interesting because you get some information while driving and practical to see all the sights.

On our third day, we caught the Flixbus at 10.30 pm back home so we really had three full days in the city but only payed for two nights for the hotel.

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Day One

After we arrived at the bus terminal we went to our hotel which was located at the main train station (but there is another A&O Hostel which is one of Vienna’s hip districts so I recommend you to go there instead) and left our luggage there to explore the city center.

Because it was Sunday morning the streets and public places where super empty which was weird but nice and calm. We came  back on our third day in the afternoon and it was so busy and packed, so we could really enjoy the pretty buildings alone on our first day.

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For brunch we walked to the café & bistro BlueOrange to enjoy an amazing vegan breakfast with a bagel, hummus, avocado, salad and a small fruit salad and a yummy juice.

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Afterwards we drove to the well known „Prater“ a public place with rollercoasters and other ride facilities as well as food and the famous Prater ferries wheel. We rode a carousel that moved up super high so we had an amazing view over the city.

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It was super hot all three days in Vienna so we needed a cool down. At the Danube there is a „bathing ship“ that has a pool and a bar on deck and we spend a great evening there.

The day ended with cocktails and games at our hotel.

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Day Two

The next day we drove through Vienna with the Hop-on-Hop-off Bus which was super interesting because we saw many buildings that we wouldn’t have time to visit all ourselves and we learned a lot from the audio guide.

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We walked through the garden of the Schönbrunn Palace which was beautiful and ended at the old Danube to refresh and spend some time relaxing with the locals.

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For Dinner, we went to an amazing all vegan restaurant called „Veggiezzz“ which is part of a chain in Vienna and ate super delicious burger with fries. They also had sandwiches, wraps and healthy bowls as well as yummy dessert and I would love to try more from there menu the next time I visit Vienna!

That night we went to the rooftop terrace of the Ritz Calton Hotel and had a beautiful view over the city at night and some amazing (but super pricey :D ) drinks.

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Day Three

On our last day, we visited the Belverde Palace which is super beautiful (we liked it even more that Schönbrunn, even tho it’s not as popular).

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As well as the Museum of Modern Art „mumok“ that we really liked as well. And enjoyed the cold water basin in the museum’s district.

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We also went to the café and vintage shop „Burggasse 24“ that is pretty popular and had some amazing vegan cake there.

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After all the culture we did some shopping at Brandy Melville and had a had time finding something good (and veggie) to eat for our last day.

We ended up at Vegetasia a completely vegetarian Asian restaurant that had an all-you-can-eat buffet which was amazing! It’s so great when you don’t need to check if you can eat this and just grab whatever looks good :D

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We had an awesome time together in Vienna and I am already looking forward to explore Bali with my two best friends next summer!

Have you already been to Vienna before? How did you like it?