Friday, September 6, 2013

Day 5 - Cascais and Cabo da Roco Portugal

Day 5 - Sept. 5, 2013

Today was our first day trip to the beach in Cascais, Portugal.  We left at around 9AM and walked to the train station at Cais do Sodre.  On the way, my favorite sandals broke while walking on the uneven tiled streets.  Thank goodness I had decided to bring my gym shoes with for the walk in Cabo da Roca because I ended up tossing my sandals in the garbage.

It was about a half hour ride to Cascais and we were able to use our "Viva Viagem" card that's good on certain trains, the metro, buses, and the cable cars going through Lisbon.  It's a rechargeable card so it makes it convenient to get around easily.  We met a mother and son while we were on the train.  The son was going to school here and the mother moved from Portugal to Florida, 27 years ago and was back here to visit her son for a month.  Nice people and fun.  She lives in Kissimmee, Florida and Terry was his usual comical self telling her that when someone interesting asks her where she's from, she should just say " Kissa me".  She liked that and said what a great line to use!

We got off the train and proceeded to look for a beach umbrella which was the first order of business for Terry's time at the beach.  It only took about 5 minutes to find one with a carrying case to boot.

We headed to the beach area and parked ourselves in the sand, with the umbrella and our good ol' standby picnic blanket that we always take with us.  It helped that we had the small backpacks from our main luggage that detach to take a change of clothes.  It made it easy to carry all of our belongings.  Here are some of the photos we took at the beach:

We spent about 2 1/2 hours at the beach and then it was time to find Bus 403 to take us to Cabo da Roca, the westernmost point of continental Europe.  After asking a few bus drivers where to catch the bus, we thought we were at the right stop.  Realizing we had been waiting there for at least a half hour, I decided to ask one of the bus drivers that stopped there where to get 403.  Well, it turned out that we had to go across the street and down stairs to a terminal to catch the bus.  That was a waste of time.  The trip to Cabo da Roca on the bus was a bit expensive for a 25 minute ride, 13 euros round trip for both of us.  But, it was a scenic ride.  Once we arrived after winding up the cliffs, it was somewhat hazy to get any fantastic pictures of the area.  We managed to get some good ones in the best we could.  The following photos depict the landscape from the top of the cliffs at Cabo da Roca looking out to sea.

Breathtaking scenery, too bad it was hazy out.  Next to the tourist office, there is a restaurant that has interesting tile work on the outside of the building:

 On the cliffs, there is a terrace area at the western point of Europe with a monument of the cross situated in the middle .

 We continued on the path to the lighthouse that sits atop a cliff adjacent to the tourist office in Cabo da Roca.

We spent about an hour in Cabo da Roca and then caught bus 403 (which runs on the hour at the 45 minute mark) back to Cascais to get the train back to Lisbon.  Here are some photos giving the perspective of the ride back to Cascais on the bus.

It was a very productive day and Terry even made it a couple hours at the beach.  That was the best feat of all!!

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