Things to do
Life in Portugal

 

Portugal is a poor country when compared to the rest of Western Europe, where many people live in apartments, but it is a safe environment with less crime than many other countries and has an inexpensive and easy going lifestyle.

graffiti
Highway Graffiti
Graffiti will always be found, particularly around railways and roads, some of which is very artistic, but it can seem unsightly if you aren’t used to seeing it in your own country. Most properties have dogs in their gardens which can take you by surprise when walking around, but they never seem to get out so don’t be alarmed. Inheritance laws also mean that there are always properties in need of tender loving care and investment. So you just have to accept some things as a natural part of how the Country is.

The Portuguese are a very gentle race and will generally go out of their way to help, but do be aware that when behind a wheel, their driving skills take a long while to get used to. It is often said that ‘The Portuguese rarely signal when changing direction and if they do, don’t believe them’. Expect fast driving and ignorance of regulations from many drivers which can often be surprising and sometimes dangerous.

graffiti
Train Station Graffiti

The café and restaurant culture is inexpensive and plentiful with excellent and traditional quality fare. For instance, locally an espresso can cost 60 cents with lovely pastries and savouries for around a euro. At lunch time, local Economic Meals, comprising a starter, main course, dessert, wine or beer and coffee are around €7-8 per person, unless you are in a tourist area where things cost a lot more. Evening meals are a little more expensive but still incredibly good value. We always choose the house wines which are excellent and often less than €6 a litre - try a jug, often pulled from the barrel. At a local bar, you can take away 5 litres of homemade wine for the same price!

Hill Wall
Hill walk - Watch Tower

You will find that unused land is cultivated by locals to grow vegetables and fruit or to graze sheep and goats, so expect to see animals on the roads.

In this area, there are excellent transport links with good roads and inexpensive and generally efficient trains. A 30 minute journey by train from the village station to Lisbon costs €1.85.

The Lisbon and Sintra region is a very cultural area with many places of interest including numerous Palaces, Castles, Convents, Wine Adegas, Theatres, Art Galleries and Museums. Beaches stretch around the Lisbon Peninsular, many of which are less than a 30 minute drive away, many with water sports and sailing activities. Many places can easily be accessed by public transport meaning that you don’t have to hire a car, leading to a substantial saving to your holiday budget.

There are excellent walks in the local hills and park around the village, and coastal walks and the World Heritage park in the Sintra Hills are around 1/2hr’s drive or you can catch public transport.

 

Quinta do Scoto | Rua Dr. Teixeira Bastos 18, Meleças | Rio de Mouro 2635-314, Portugal | tonyandpenny@quintadoscoto.com
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