Obidos is a beautiful medieval town in central Portugal that you simply have to visit if you’re in the country. It’s located about an hour north of Lisbon, and two hours south of Porto. At the center of this fortified, hilltop town is a castle dating back to the 13th century, although the Moors built a castle there in the 8th century, and Romans had a fort before that. In other words, the town is very rich in history.

I first time I saw Obidos was on my surfing trip to Portugal back in 2017, and I’m so glad I was able to return recently with Vanesa at the invitation of Center of Portugal to show her how beautiful it is. Obidos was our first stop on our week-long tour through Portugal, and it definitely set the stage for how beautiful the country is. We got some night shots, stayed

Read More

Learning local cuisines around the world is one of my favorite activities, and a Portuguese cooking class while traveling through the Center of Portugal was a must for our itinerary. Most cooking classes are in Lisbon or Porto, but there’s a unique one halfway between those two cities at the Cooking and Nature Emotional Hotel. The hotel itself is wonderful to stay at with different sensory rooms and plenty of landmarks in the surrounding landscape.

Staying at Cooking and Nature

Cooking and Nature Emotional Hotel

The Cooking and Nature Emotional Hotel is located in the Aire and Candeeiros Mountains Natural Park near the town of Porto de Mós. The hotel is one of the best in Portugal with a very unique concept and layout. The rooms are beautifully designed, the hotel offers an exclusive Portuguese cooking class, and there are plenty of hiking trails into the surrounding mountains.

12 Sensory Rooms

There are 12

Read More

On the second day of our week-long trip through central Portugal, we spend the day at the Convento de Cristo, aka Convent of Christ, a beautiful UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the most important Templar cities on the Iberian peninsula.

Leaving the Aire and Candeeiros Mountains Natural Park

After leaving the Cooking and Nature Emotional Hotel where we had our Portuguese cooking class and spa treatment, it was time to make our way to Tomar, roughly 40 miles away. As we spent longer at the hotel enjoying the three pools, we were running late and didn’t have time to stop along the route.

Just a few miles northwest of the hotel is the town of Porto de Mos, and Batalha just beyond that. It was only after I left Portugal and started researching more about the trip that I realized we missed the Monastery of Bahalta, one of

Read More

The schist villages of Portugal are one of the three unique types of villages throughout the country, located specifically in Central Portugal. As part of our journey through Portugal, Vanesa and I spent an evening in Gondramaz with Mountain Whisper and then did a jeep tour with them through two more villages. I only wish we’d had the time to visit every one of the schist villages, even though they are fairly similar to each other.

Schist Villages of Portugal Map

There are 27 schist villages in Portugal, The furthest south is Agua Formosa, almost due east from Nazare. The northern-most villages are Vila Cova de Alva and Aldeia das Dez, not far away from Serra da Estrela Natural Park. There’s no direct route to all the villages, and you could easily spend a full week if you wanted to see each of them.

To make things easier for your

Read More

If you’re visiting Scotland, you definitely need to include a 5-day Highlands tour as part of your itinerary…if you have the time. While you could rent a car and make your own tour, traveling with a tour company such as Haggis Adventures is a great choice for several reasons.

I’ve always been quite vocal about how Scotland is my favorite country in the world, and that’s primarily because of how gorgeous the landscape is. There are many parts of the country that honestly feel like you’ve left planet Earth. I’m not biased at all, but the Isle of Skye is one of those. I mean, there’s a reason why so many fantasy movies like Stardust and The BFG were filmed on Skye.

If you don’t have a full week in Scotland, you could consider just a one-day Highlands tour, such as up to Loch Ness, or a Harry Potter tour

Read More