While in Lisbon, we decided to take a day trip to Cascais. Cascais is a small beach town that used to be the former residence of the royal family. It took about 40 minutes by train, from Cais do Sodre station and costs under €10 round-trip. Well worth it! The train ride reminded us of the train from Orange County, CA to San Diego, CA because you are traveling along the coast the entire journey. Continue reading “Day Trip to Cascais, Portugal”
Every Thursday night, Provo is rocking from 5:30pm-9:30pm with food, music and entertainment in Bright (Children’s) Park. Local restaurants set up booths serving lobster, conch salad, crab ‘n rice, mac ‘n cheese and local island corn. Many locals attend this event every Thursday as well as tourists. Each week a new band takes the stage to get the party started. The week T.W.O. attended there was a DJ that played, mixing up some dance tunes for us to dance to…. “Slide to the Left, Slide to the Right, Criss Cross” We got down and boogied! (Our mom even got pulled on staged since she was celebrating a birthday!) Later in the night “Henry the Conch” made his appearance with the Island Band. It was one heck of a parade! T.W.O. highly recommends going to the Fish Fry – – It is well worth it! Don’t forget to grab your coconut water and rum drink! It’s delicious!!!
As you know, T.W.O. loves to cook and enjoy food. Needless to say we ate very well this trip…whether if it was homemade and on the beach or out to dinner. Check out all the fun we had with planning our meals! It wasn’t a complete day without going to the gourmet grocery store!!
When you hear the word Pamplona, what do you think? First guess- “Running of the Bulls.” Correct? Okay, T.W.O. thought so! While in Spain, T.W.O. had the chance to experience the weeklong festival celebrating San Fermin, patron Saint of Navarra for one day. Actually, lets clarify….a couple hours!
Getting to Pamplona from San Sebastian isn’t hard, but making a day trip of it can be a little bit challenging if you wanted to see the run at 8am. (The first train that arrives is at 8:30am, which is already too late to see the run.) The solution….car service! T.W.O. travelled to Pamplona in style with a private driver. Arriving in Pamplona around 7am, T.W.O.’s first mission was to get the gear…the white capri pants and the red scarf. CHECK! Next, T.W.O. luckily had some family friends that were saving a spot on the last turn before going into the bull ring so they were able to see the run from the first row. Well, behind the barricades that housed the police and medics…so second row. CHECK!
The town was lively, full of “hydrated” people roaming/ stumbling the streets of Pamplona. Ambulances lined the city streets… re-assuring, right? Balconies were filled with spectators, anticipating the run as we watched them hoping the balcony didn’t collapse. Needless to say, it was quite the scene!
8am…..GO TIME! It was the fastest 30 seconds of T.W.O.’s life, watching people run for their lives….Some making it, others eating it on the cobblestone and the rest jumping over the barricades to escape the large beasts. The bulls wore bells around their neck, so the runners heard them coming. Torro! Torro! Torro!
It was a trip well-made and T.W.O. was glad that they can say they “ran with the bulls”.
After a plane flight, metro ride, and adventure walking with our suitcases over cobblestone, T.W.O. made it to our first stop in Spain- MADRID!! Ole! Madrid is an amazing city full of history, architecture, exquisite restaurants, friendly people and not to mention, ZARAs on every corner! T.W.O. was in heaven!
T.W.O. was in Madrid for 4 days at stayed at the Vincchi Soho hotel in the heart of the historical area of Madrid. T.W.O. would definitely recommend Vincchi Soho- it is clean, modern, the staff is very friendly and it is in a great location of the city- walking distance to everything!
While in Madrid, T.W.O. explored everything- from plazas to palaces, ZARAs to bull fights, restaurants to mercados, and Rosés to papas fritas. T.W.O loved it all! Here are just some of the highlights of T.W.O.’s adventure in Madrid!
Plaza Mayor was one of the biggest plazas in Madrid. T.W.O enjoyed stopping by this plaza one, two, even three times a day to see this beautiful site.
Mercado de San Miguel is a must-see if you travel to Madrid. This mercado is a great spot to head for lunch if you don’t want to deal with a restaurant. Inside the mercado, there are over 30 merchants selling their respective tapas specialties. T.W.O would highly recommend the burrata cheese crostini with pesto and the croquette with cheese and jalapeno.
Palacio Real de Madrid is another site to see in Madrid. Pay the 12 euros and enjoy the breathtaking art and architecture inside the palace. You won’t be disappointed.
Plaza de Santa Ana was T.W.O.’s favorite plaza in Madrid. They spent everyday in this plaza whether is was for breakfast, lunch, dinner or their siesta!
When in Madrid, go to a bull fight! T.W.O. enjoyed this amazing experience and would suggest everyone see one if they are in Madrid. The art of this sport is spectacular and the local people are so passionate about it. Bull fights typically take place on every Sunday during the summer months.
Lateral was T.W.O.’s favorite restaurant in Madrid. It is located in Plaza de Santa Ana (how ironic!). T.W.O. would suggest the stuffed piquillo peppers, goat cheese with caramelized onions, and the patatas bravas.
Strolling around Madrid and Parque del Buen Retiro
T.W.O. enjoyed strolling around Madrid, especially when it involved shopping at Zara! During the stroll, T.W.O. walked through Parque del Buen Retiro. It was absolutely gorgeous and reminded T.W.O. of Central Park in New York City. This park is a nice place to take a picnic, go for a run, or just enjoy an evening walk!
T.W.O. truly enjoyed Madrid and would definitely go back- well actually; they did, for one day! In terms of the future, Madrid will be revisited. It is a great city for everyone- young adults, couples, families and elders! T.W.O. me encantό Madrid! #gemelasenespana