holidays in lisbon — part 4

Feira da Ladra flea market in Alfama, Lisbon, Portugal

Where: Lisbon, Portugal

Eat: Portuguese pastries, plenty of red meat, and home-cooked meals during holidays

Drink: Portuguese wine from Douro Valley (and maybe do a port tasting, although the servers here really seem to hate tourists)

Do: Visit the Feira da Ladra flea market and Principe Real neighborhood for shopping, Sintra for a day-getaway, wander extensively in Alfama, and suss out a good place for Fado (we went to A Tasca do Chico and loved it–but make a reservation!)

(this is the 4th & final post in a series, make sure to check out post 1, post 2, & post 3)

It probably won’t come as a surprise to most of you that my favorite way to explore a city is often through… shopping. That can sound bad, I know. I don’t mean heading to the outlets or the mall, or even the 5th avenue equivalent, and spending away an afternoon. I like going to the weekend flea markets and strolling through quaint neighborhoods to check out the local shops. It’s a way to check out the locals, understand some of the city’s history and, oftentimes, get a better idea of the youth culture. I never truly feel like I’ve discovered a city until I find the neighborhood that speaks to me–which just happens to generally mean the one with the cutest front doors, vintage shops, local boutiques filled with jewelry and clothing made by local designers, etc… (I guess it shouldn’t come as a surprise why I’m so obsessed with Etsy, then.)

Continue reading “holidays in lisbon — part 4”


holidays in lisbon — part 3

Jeronimos Monastery, Belem, Lisbon, Portugal

Where: Lisbon, Portugal

(this is the 3rd post in a series, check out post 1post 2, & post 4!)

By the third day in Lisbon, we’d just about recovered from jetlag and decided to do some of the more quintessential touring activities (to the delight of my dad)! First, we took one of the trams to Belém, which is the most historical neighborhood of Lisbon, a bit removed from the city center.

The first stop was the Jeronimos Monastery. This is a World Heritage monument and the resting place for Portugal’s explorer, Vasco da Gama. The cloisters, following the trend, were unfortunately closed, but apparently worth the visit.

We broke for lunch after that, at a nearby cafe. In the sun, it was warm enough to take off our coats and enjoy rosé at a table outside. We were so, so lucky with that weather!

Continue reading “holidays in lisbon — part 3”

holidays in lisbon — part 2

Funicular on bica street in lisbon, portugal

Where: Lisbon, Portugal

(this is the 2nd post in a series–check out post 1post 3, & post 4!)

The days following Christmas in Lisbon were warm and sunny, relative to New York, anyway. The highs called for around mid-50s, but on some days, in the sunshine, you could take off your jacket and sit at an outside cafe table for lunch. We couldn’t ask for better tourist weather!

alleyway in lisbon, portugal

texas bar in lisbon portugal

Continue reading “holidays in lisbon — part 2”

holidays in lisbon

christmas themed azulejos in lisbon portugal

Where: Lisbon, Portugal

(this is the 1st post in a series–check out post 2post 3, & post 4!)

I think I get my travel genes from my mom. One of the many days that I was either fantasizing about traveling and/or about writing on this blog, my mom told me that she feels most free when she has a full tank of gas. “Like I can pick up and go anywhere!” Since I live in New York, I can’t really share that sentiment, but I totally got where she was coming from. The idea of being able to explore this big world we live in is exciting and totally overwhelming. Whenever I’m exploring a new location, I can’t help but feel like I’m missing something on each street I don’t choose to turn down (not to mention, the outskirts of town, and the things I hear about when I’ve just returned!). But anyway, that’s a tangent.

What I was trying to get to was, much like the way I randomly choose a city I absolutely need to visit, my mom does the same. Luckily, she often invites the rest of us to tag along. This year, she decided she wanted to spend Christmas in Portugal. Lisbon, to be exact.

Continue reading “holidays in lisbon”

tuscany in the fall

     archway in tuscany, montepulciano, italy

every little alleyway led to amazing views

Where: Tuscany, Italy (mostly Montepulciano)

Autumn has always been my favorite season (as long as I’ve lived somewhere where there is an autumn). I love when the leaves change color and the temperature starts to drop. I like cozy sweaters and cute flats and not being too cold, while not being hot, either. There always feels like a lot of promise at the start of fall–I’m wondering what the next months will bring, thinking about the holidays and then the start of a new year.

foliage in tuscany, montepulciano, italy

city center in tuscany, montepulciano, italy

gnocchi pasta dinner in tuscany, montepulciano, italy

to. die. for. gnocchi

September is also the month Miles and I began dating oh-so-many years ago, and the month we got married. We usually take an end-of-summer/beginning-of-fall trip to celebrate our anniversary, while taking advantage of off-peak pricing. For our honeymoon last year, we started in Tuscany… and when the weather started changing this year, that was all I could think about.

Continue reading “tuscany in the fall”