It’s been three days since I came back to Croatia. I’m sitting at home and trying to write something while I’m waiting for impressions to settle down. This trip was the best thing that happened to me. Twenty days and more than 4 thousand pictures later, I’m back to Zagreb. Happy, because I had a fantastic opportunity to visit two countries which had blown me away, but sad I couldn’t stay longer. This time. 🙂 Here is why you should spend vacations in Portugal and Spain!
Everything started in Lisbon, the city which captured us with fado, colored tiles (azulejos), enormous contrasts between old and modern part of the city and with nightlife at the streets of Bairro Alto. Despite the fact we were riding the yellow trams, pain in the legs made us think about Lisbon’s hills days later.
After Lisbon, the road took us to Seville, the fairytale town. I’ve never been to the city more beautiful and cleaner, where you can eat such a fantastic food and everything is fabulous and monumental. Marija and I, two princesses :P, first visited the castle and then decided to take a ride in a carriage. In Seville, we discovered tinto de verano (summer wine) and saw our first flamenco show.
From Seville, we went on a day trip to Cordoba. Facade with flowers, Mezquita, Alcazar’s wonderful gardens and trying out different types of paella made our day in Cordoba. Wandering around the town we found a delightful little shop with handmade jewelry inspired by Moorish heritage and spent at least an hour deciding what we will buy there.
Just when we arrived in Malaga, Feria de Málaga began and it turned out our neighbors were Italians. Long story short, that night we danced until the dawn and the party in the city continued next two days. Thousands of people were in the streets singing, dancing and drinking Cartojal. Everybody walked around the city with charming pink bottles and we were curious what is that. Since we supposed it’s some juice or Radler, we sat in the café and ordered the same. It turned out everybody in Málaga drink sweet wine with 13% of alcohol from the noon until the dawn.
Granada has brought long expected visit to the magnificent Alhambra and wandering around the narrow streets of the medieval Arab village Albayzín. We visited Arab tetería for the first time and went to a club where all the locals dance. Granada is known as the city where you still get free tapas with every drink you order, which we completely loved, and flamenco which impressed us little less this time.
Madrid was the last city we visited before Marija left home. Phenomenal four-star hotel and the city completely different from all we visited before. We walked through Royal Palace, sat on Santiago Bernabeu’s benches and danced the nights away in Latin clubs. We have not visited any of Madrid’s famous museums because we were too occupied by visiting the restaurants and that we will remember much longer.
I thought I would be depressed after Marija was gone. I missed her and it would be wonderful if she stayed, but I spend almost no time alone so I was not fully aware that she was gone. Except when I woke up from some weird dream at five in the morning in the hostel and started shouting her name. 🙂 The roommates were definitely delighted. Next few days in Madrid I continued with sightseeing, eating good and dancing till the dawn in a great company. Let’s say I visited Segovia, but I overslept the bus for Toledo because of all that dancing. Also, in the most unexpected moment, somewhere in Madrid, I met a love of my life.
I had a hard time leaving Madrid, but I was back to Portugal in no time. Porto is a smaller city but equally hilly as Lisbon where I especially liked the people I met. I enjoyed boat cruises, cable car rides, wine tasting and learning about the Portuguese way of life. I had fun in the nights… and it was already time to go back to Lisbon.
Comi ng back to Lisbon meant going home. I came back unbelievable happy with four bottles of Port wine in the luggage and hoping the wine would convince my friends that we have to repeat this next year. 🙂 I’m thrilled that I had an opportunity to experience the lifestyle, try the food, meet the people and get to know those amazing cities! Everybody told us we are crazy for going to that part od Europe in August and that we will not be able to withstand the temperatures… Actually, it was not so hot and unbearable, if you asked me – it could be warmer. Especially in Porto where they looked at me strangely when I wore leggings and a cardigan because I was cold at their 25°C since I arrived from Madrid.
There wasn’t a day I regretted where I went and more – with whom I went. Dad said he never saw me talking about anything with so much enthusiasm. I was talking all the time where I was, who I met and what I ate… This was definitely the best vacation I could have! I liked Portugal, but Spain absolutely blew me away and I think I know where I will return soon… 🙂
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