Portugal

Follow in My Footsteps: The Santa Cruz That Isn’t on Google Maps

Santa Cruz Beaches

Most people think of California or Tenerife when they think of Santa Cruz. If you Google the Santa Cruz in Portugal, you’ll get the town on Madeira Island. Yet there’s another one. Just an hour north of Lisbon is Santa Cruz, an idyllic stretch of sandy beaches, oceanside cafes and boutique hotels. Santa Cruz is also home to the annual …

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Follow in my Footsteps: Visit the European Surfing Capital of Peniche

Selfie in Peniche

Day two of my tour through central Portugal brought me to Peniche. If you’re a surfer or enjoy other water sports, this small town is your best choice in Europe. The city of Peniche is built on a small peninsula about an hour and a half north of Lisbon. With barely 15,000 people, it doesn’t even make the top 50 …

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Follow in my Footsteps: Fish, Funiculars and 100-Foot Waves in Nazaré

Selfie in Sitio, Nazare

My week in Portugal was primarily about best surfing locations. It’s been years since I was on a board, and I wasn’t quite ready to surf the waves in Nazaré, which can get over 100-feet high in the winter! Everything else I found the town was simply wonderful. Nazaré was the first stop on my tour of central Portugal. Taking a …

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Follow in my Footsteps: Spending a Week in Central Portugal

Press Tour in Central Portugal (2)

For my 45th country, I teamed up with Visit Portugal and Centro de Portugal to explore the best surf spots and historic towns in central Portugal. Guided by the energetic Jose of Madomis Tours and Joao of Naturexperience, I learned how to surf (again), saw the location of the highest-ever surfed wave (78 feet!), strolled through beautiful villages, slept in amazing …

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Travel Advice: Finding the Best Accommodations in Santa Cruz, Portugal

Selfie with Accommodations in Santa Cruz

In my recent visit to Portugal, I got to see two hotels which, in my humble opinion, were truly spectacular. If you’re looking for accommodations in Santa Cruz, I can’t recommend these enough. Just to clarify, this is the Santa Cruz an hour north of Lisbon where you’ll find some amazing surfing spots, not the Santa Cruz on Madeira Island …

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