Live, Surf, Wine and Dine in Style at Center of Portugal
Portugal is a southern European country on the Iberian Peninsula, bordering Spain. Its location on the Atlantic Ocean has influenced many aspects of its culture: salt cod and grilled sardines are national dishes, the Algarve’s beaches are a major destination and much of the nation’s architecture dates to the 1500s–1800s, when Portugal had a powerful maritime empire. From Aveiro, to Coimbra, Batalha and many more, you’ll be guided through this wide range of cities that they offer, allowing you to effortlessly chose the best things to do there without having to worry about missing anything.
I personally chose to visit the Noah Surf House hotel, located at Praia da Fisica, in Santa Cruz, 1 hour away from Lisbon Airport. With its windows facing the sea waves and the entrance door right on top of the sand, people from all the four corners of the world, united by their passion for the sea and sports, plenty of time for long talks and endless laughter, it was truly a place of peace, sun and joy. This charming hotel has a surf house comprising 8 bedrooms and 13 bungalows.
There were so many things to do during the trip, but here is a list of the best places and activities near Noah Surf House.
- The Noah Restaurant & Beach House
This place is born from a dream and a will to celebrate the sea, bathed in the aromas of local fresh products.
- The Santa Cruz Beach
I’ve had one my first stops at the Santa Cruz Beach, a heavenly place celebrating the waves, and the ocean. The beach is only an hour away from Lisbon, Santa Cruz greets the Atlantic with its white sands and wild cliffs. Kilometres of waves carve Santa Cruz coast and connect it with two Portuguese surf meccas – Ericeira and Peniche.
In Santa Cruz area there are over five world tour surf contests giving professionals from the world’s best surfers in all ages a chance to compete in world class waves.
- Óbidos – Literary Town and The Literary Man Obidos Hotel
This romantic village is a book lover’s dream. It was once a medieval fortress surrounded by a XII century wall and it invites you to wander and explore the cheerful medieval ambience of winding streets and old whitewashed houses where the sunset takes a golden colouring.
Housed in the former guesthouse Estalagem do Convento, The Literary Man Hotel, whose building dates back to 1830, is a hotel of literary debates and culture, where books are the common denominator. It has gained a whole new life with its 40 thousand books that can be found from the restaurants to the rooms.
- Caldas da Rainha
Caldas da Rainha is the traditional fruit and vegetable market taking place every day in the city centre, showing the charm of a city marked by the genius of Bordallo Pinheiro, with ceramic factories shaping its landscape.
- Hotel Areias do Seixo
Areias do Seixo was born from the dream of its owners Marta and Gonçalo. They felt this great need to create a unique place to welcome guests from all over the world in a magical familiar-like ambience. The result was a place where all the ingredients were thought in terms of originality and comfort, a place that felt good to be at, surrounded by the sea, dunes and pine forest.
The different sleeping arrangements of this hotel, let them be gold/land/love/tree rooms, villas or townhouse, were all outstanding, bringing out a beauty enveloped by nature. There are flowers, bulbs, vegetables and aromatic herbs that grow freely in the garden of the hotel, and a wonderful beach as well. Nothing else feels like the vastness of the Atlantic Ocean.
Take a look at these dreamy rooms below.
- Foz de Arelho and Óbidos Lagoon
Foz do Arelho has its roots in a small fishing community that lived from the wealth provided by Óbidos Lagoon. I visited The Palace Conde de Almeida Araújo, built in 1904, with its eclectic style combining mannerism and art déco features. This building is a testimony of the evolution of Foz do Arelho. Nowadays Foz do Arelho wooden paths have a length of approximately 800m, designed by Nadia Schilling and provide the most outstanding panoramic view over the cliffs and the Atlantic Ocean.
The Óbidos Lagoon is the longest lagoon system in Portugal, with high differentiation of fauna and flora. Across 6.9 km², explore the many migratory birds and aquatic biodiversity, 10km away from Caldas da Rainha.
- Sanguinhal Wine Estate
Last but not least, one of the greatest memories I had of this journey was the visit of Quinta do Sanguinhal, a wine estate established by Abel Pereira da Fonseca in 1926 and passed through many generations. I could clearly see the art of wine making with passion.
Overall, this journey had been an amazing one, thanks to Antonio Belo – our amazing tour guide and the best chauffeur in Portugal, Jose for making it a most memorable trip.
For further info, please check our website www.centerofportugal.com or on social media: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest. and a special mention to TAP Air Portugal for their assistance throughout this amazing trip.