Our Amazing Portugal Road Trip Itinerary

I was surprised to find so many places I wanted to go in Portugal when I started researching my trip.  Everything looked so amazing I had a hard time deciding where I wanted to go.  In the end, I decided to do a Portugal road trip so that I would be able to see as much of the country as possible.  It wasn’t easy to fit it all in the time that we had.  I thought it would be helpful if I shared some tips I learned along with our Portugal road trip itinerary.

Hanging out along the Douro River in Porto- "Our Amazing Portugal Road Trip Itinerary" - Two Traveling Texans
Hanging out along the Douro River in Porto

Driving in Portugal

I was slightly apprehensive about doing a road trip in a foreign country.  In preparation for our Portugal road trip, I got my international drivers license.  I just wasn’t sure what the roads would be like and if I would have issues understanding any Portuguese road signs, but driving in Portugal was much easier than I expected.  

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In Portugal, you drive on the right side of the road.  Since I am used to that and being from England, Russell is not, I would be the driver and Russell would navigate. That arrangement worked out well.  We found plenty of places to stop along the way, so our Portugal travel itinerary would not include many long stretches of driving. (more…)

The Best Things to Do in Belem (Lisbon)

I didn’t really know much about Belem until I started researching my trip to Lisbon.  I knew that both Belem Tower and Jeronimos Monastery were UNESCO Heritage Sites, so I knew they were worth visiting.  For some reason, I didn’t even think of buying tickets in advance.  Big mistake!  These sites are popular and for good reason, so you may want to consider buying a skip the line tour to avoid the long wait!

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Belem is such a pretty area of Lisbon! - "The Best Things to Do in Belem (Lisbon)" - Two Traveling Texans
Belem is such a pretty area of Lisbon!

How to Get to Belem from Lisbon

Belem is located just 6.5 miles west of Lisbon.  Since we were tight on time, we just took an Uber from Lisbon to Belem.  I found Ubers to be very cheap in Portugal and was impressed that most of the Uber drivers we had spoke good English. If you prefer to take public transportation to Belem from Lisbon, you can either take tram 15 or 127 from the Figueira Square (“Praça da Figueira” in Portuguese) or Comercio Square (“Praça do Comércio” in Portuguese) and get off it as soon as you pass Jeronimos Monastery. (more…)

Best Gifts for Travel Enthusiasts Like Me!

Yes, it is that time of year already, Christmas, Hanukkah, and Kwanzaa are right around the corner! Time to start to think about what to get all those special people in your life. If those people happen to be travelers like me, you are in luck. As an experienced traveler, I have a few ideas for the best gifts for travel enthusiasts. Many of these I use all the time (even when I am not traveling) and the rest are items on my own Christmas list – hint, hint!

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All of these recommended gifts for travel lovers are available online. If you are like me, you will do most of your shopping online. It is just so much easier and you avoid all the crowds. Plus, you can easily ship the items to your loved ones if you aren’t able to visit them over the holidays.

Happy shopping!

Best Useful Travel Gifts

These days I am trying to be a minimalist, so I really appreciate gifts that are useful! I will go as far as saying some of these are life changing! When you give a practical travel gift, the recipient will think of you each time they use it! (more…)

Free Shoreditch Street Art Tour

I have been a big street art fan for a while, but recently I have really started to appreciate the value of taking a street art tour.  I learned so much during my Brooklyn Graffiti and Street Art Tour and the tour I took of Philadelphia’s Mural Mile.  Thanks to my cousin, Hassan, I had seen some of the street art in Shoreditch before and knew that it was one of the best areas in London for street art.  When I learned that you could take a free Shoreditch Street Art Tour with Strawberry Tours, I couldn’t wait to go!

This Alice in Wonderland Mural by Zabou was Russell's favorite. "Free Shoreditch Street Art Tour" - Two Traveling Texans
This Alice in Wonderland Mural by Zabou was Russell’s favorite.

Shoreditch Street Art Tour Logistics

Strawberry Tours offer various tours in London for free!  They just ask that you tip your tour guide the amount you feel the tour was worth.  If you don’t enjoy the tour (which won’t be the case!), you don’t have to pay anything.  Part of this money does go to cover marketing and operational expenses.  The guides also donate 10% of the tips to charity.  

My friends, Kristin and Pete, who now live in Denver were in London, so we decided to bring them along on the Free Street Art and Graffiti Tour.  While the tour is free, you do need to make a reservation online.  You will get an email confirmation, but you don’t need to print it.  They offer the tour Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at 3:30 pm and recently added an additional tour at 11 am on Saturdays due to popular demand.   (more…)

The Search for Sanibel Island Shells

I actually can’t remember when I first heard of Sanibel Island in Florida, I think it might have been on a Travel Channel show years ago.  It’s been a place I have wanted to go for a while because as you may remember, I love going to the beach.  And one of my favorite things to do at the beach is to look for shells.  I planned a day trip to Sanibel Island to visit the best seashell beaches in Florida and search for those famous Sanibel Island shells!

Sanibel Island has some of the best shelling beaches in Florida if not the world! - - "The Search for Sanibel Island Shells" - Two Traveling Texans
Sanibel Island has some of the best shelling beaches in Florida if not the world!

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I visited southwest Florida in July for my friend Melissa’s wedding in Naples.  July is actually the offseason in Florida because many people think it is too hot.  When I was there it was in the low 90s which for me was perfect for spending time on the beach.  I couldn’t get over how nice the water was!  It was 88 degrees – I could have spent the whole day in it! (more…)