Saturday 19 April 2014

Portugal Trip (Day 1 - 12 April 2014)


I decided that I'd blog about my Portugal trip with my family that was just exactly a week ago.  We flew from Dublin to Lisbon with Aer Lingus.

We stayed at this hotel called HF Fenix Urban.  I can't remember how much my parents paid for a night (we stayed there for four nights).

  • Pros
    • The hotel was 15-20 minutes away from the airport.  
    • Very accessible to restaurants and public transportation such as the Metro.  
    • The breakfast buffet was excellent.  They serve different food everyday but the fruits, baked beans and Vienna sausage was always there as well as the cereals and all sorts of juices and different types of breads.  
    • The staff was very accommodating.  I had a problem with the room I was staying in.  The toilet flush was not working so it was a huge problem for me and my baby room mate.  When I informed them that they sent the maintenance up and it was already fixed within 15 minutes! It was great!
    • The rooms were in excellent condition everyday.  They were clean in the first place but the fact that they make our beds is a plus.  They also change the towels everyday even though I didn't request any new towels.
    • FREE WIFI! I heard that in some hotels you have to pay for the WiFi! Even if there were times that it was slow it's such a plus that it was for free!
  • Cons
    • The only con I could think of was the fact that we booked 4 double standard rooms and they were not even on the same floor.  It would have been convenient that the rooms were in the same floor since we were a family on holidays.  The staff told us that Agoda should have been responsible for it and so on but we overlooked it.
After checking in the hotel, we decided to tour around the city.  Our hotel was only 5 minutes away from the Metro stop called Parque.  The fare was really cheap (€ 6 for a 24 hour ticket pass which includes bus, metro, ferry and tram access).  The transportation in Lisbon is also veyr efficient! They are always on time! Unlike Dublin!

The Monument to the Restorers in Restaudores Square

The Gloria Funicular

The Gloria Funicular at the top near that leads to Miradouro de São Pedro de Alcântara  

The only thing that I don't like about this tram and where it brings you is that it's full of graffiti!  I hope that the tourism board of Lisbon could fix this since it's not a good sight to see and a lot of tourists get on that tram. 

Miradouro de São Pedro de Alcântara

After the sight seeing, we decided to have dinner. We stumbled upon this restaurant called Andorra Restaurante.  We were just looking at the menu board they have on displayed and the staff pushed us to have dinner there and got us seats.

A puff pastry made of haddock 

Mussels in butter and spring onion. It was delicious!

My main course: Grilled salmon with rice and salad on the side. 

  • Pros
    • The food was delicious
    • The grilled salmon that I had was soft and very tasty and it tasted really fresh
    • The price was really cheap.   I have read other reviews saying this was an expensive restaurant but compared to the country I am living in, a main course dinner costs more than €10.  This was just below that
    • The toilet was clean! I have this peeve when it comes to dirty toilets of restaurants.
  • Cons
    • It took the staff to serve us our food so long and we were starving
    • The staff also put a basket of bread and some butter, cheese etc on our table.  We thought it was complementary but apparently you have to pay for it.  I guess we were just not used to it
So this is day 1 of our Portugal trip.  I'm sorry that this post is a very long one! Hope you enjoyed reading this! I hope to have the second day up soon!

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