A Month in Almoçageme, Portugal Part 5 – The Final Chapter; Óbidos, More Hikes, and My Portugal Family!

Well, as it goes, all good things must come to an end. As I wrapped up my time in Almoçageme, I visited the walled city of Óbidos, did some final hikes along the coast and through the nearby villages, and enjoyed some time with my Portugal family.

I wanted to take one final day trip, so I presented Luci with a couple of ideas and she said Óbidos was the winner. I’m happy I took her advice as it was a really fun day even though the wind was a bit wild! She was so kind to drive me to the Sintra train station so I didn’t have to fight the busses, and I arrived just in time to hop on a train before it pulled away. I rode to Caldas da Rainha, where I had to walk a few minutes to catch the local train to the Mediaeval town of Óbidos. It was funny when I got off the train as it was just me and one couple at this tired little station. We laughed as we found our way up the steep hill to the castle walls.

There is evidence Óbidos was settled prior to the Roman occupation of the Iberian Peninsula, but the original castle was built by the Moors in 713. Since then, it was added on to and modified several times by different Portuguese kings after King Dinis offered it to his wife, Queen Isabel, in the 13th century, and it became part of Casa das Rainhas (Queens’ Estate).

It’s crazy it is still in great condition! When I arrived, I immediately climbed the stairs to the top of the walls (13m-high battlements), which encircle the whole town in about 1.5 km, and have amazing views! It was interesting walking the walls with no railings in the strong wind. It made me giggle as I walked on the right, being the normal side to walk, every single person I passed hugged the wall and made me walk around them on the left. Here are some pics from the wall.

After the wall walk, I climbed down into town to explore the narrow streets and see the three famous churches within the walls. Although only 1,300ish people live in the town, it is a lively area with many little shops and restaurants. Finally, after an amazing meal of one of the local cod dishes, I made my way back to the station to find my way home. There were no trains to Sintra for some time, but I was able to buy a bus ticket, and it all worked out. What a wonderful day wandering through history!

Of course, I couldn’t leave Almoçageme without a couple last hikes, especially along the amazing coastline. This time, I went north from Praia de Adraga to Praia Grande, the only stretch I had not done along this part of the coast. Once again, nature delivered and I had some amazing views!!

And then a few more steps through the hills of Penedo to the Refugio de Ciclista where you get a massive plate of meat and hang with cyclists and the local construction guys, to the cute weekend flea market in Colares and the great restaurant where you get a full glass of wine for 1.10 Euros, and to Roulote da Gigi, an amazing pizza joint in Almocageme where Gigi opens her cans of tomatos with a ball peen hammer and a knife! What else? Oh, and the local grocery store and my last haul from the weekend farmer’s market! So fresh!

And to wrap everything up, my wonderful family in Portugal who I stayed with for a month! Charles, Luci, Theo and Florence along with Luna and Monti, made me feel so welcome in the little guest cottage behind their home. I was able to hangout with these wonderful folks who showed me around, had me for dinner, took me shopping, invited me to bake, and included me in Theo’s 8th birthday party! I even got a tattoo from one of Theo’s friends. It was so nice to have a real home away from home after being on the road for so long. I will miss them all and can’t wait to meet Luci again in Lisbon for a concert in July!

So from here, we’ll move north to Porto for a visit to wine country! I’ll see you all again soon!

Hugs, Michelle

I already miss my morning wake up call!

2 Replies to “A Month in Almoçageme, Portugal Part 5 – The Final Chapter; Óbidos, More Hikes, and My Portugal Family!”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: