Portugal & Spain with Travel Mom Amanda
Amanda, Scott and their two kids, Emmeline (9 years old) and Beckett (12 years old) spent two weeks in Portugal and Spain. This was their second trip out of the U.S. with the kids. Two years ago, they went to Italy, France and Switzerland.
We sat down with Amanda to hear all about it and get her tips and tricks for you!
How long was your trip?
2 weeks…one in Portugal (Lisbon, Sintra, Lagos) then one in Spain (Seville, Barcelona)
- Lisbon: Capital city of Portugal and Europe’s second-oldest capital (after Athens).
- Sintra: Resort town in the foothills of Portugal’s Sintra Mountains, 40 minutes by train from Lisbon.
- Lagos: In southern Portugal’s Algarve region, known for its walled old town and Atlantic beaches.
- Seville: Capital city of southern Spain’s Andalusia region famous for flamenco dancing.
- Barcelona: Capital city of Spain’s Catalonia region known for its art and architecture including Gaudí’s Sagrada Família.
What made you pick these places?
Friends were going to Portugal and asked if we wanted to come along.
What was the BEST part of the trip for you?
In Sintra, we stayed at the lovely Penha Longha Ritz Carlton Resort in Sintra-Cascais Natural Park. (It’s the only hotel in the park and a former monastery dating back to 1355.)
We had a lovely dinner there as well and a wine tasting with the sommelier learning about Portuguese wine including their white wine, Vinho Verde.
Seville was my favorite in Spain…loved the vibe and the charm.
What was the BEST part of the trip for the kids?
Emmeline and Beckett agreed…kayaking in the caves!
What was the BEST part of the trip for the family?
Guided kayak tour in the Algarve sea caves with Kayak Adventure Lagos.
Tapas in Seville, the seafood and steak. The Portuguese sea bass was delicious everywhere.
Top Tips and Advice
- Pack light.
- Immerse yourself in the neighborhoods.
- Hire a driver to go from Portugal to Spain. We used Daytrip. (It has tons of options…I’m definitely going to use this service.)
- TAP Air Portugal offers stopover flights when flying to/from Europe.
*Beckett’s Pro Tip…never rent a house without reviews.
Anything you missed, wished you did?
I wish we had visited more small towns in the Algarve region. We were only in Lagos which was a busy beach town.
Where would you go back to?
I would definitely go back to Lisbon as well as exploring more of the Algarve and Seville.
Why do you travel with the kids?
- It helps them realize this is a much bigger world than just the bubble they live in.
- I love them seeing the laidback approach to life and that family is a big deal.
- It helps them learn and grow and become understanding of other cultures and more patient.
Next trip your planning or dreaming about?
Greece in two summers!!