Subject: Re: Portugal in September/October
Bom Dia Lucille!

I'm responding to your recent posting and the message you sent privately to Linda and me before you joined TheTravelzine. We are delighted our Portugal travelogues were helpful to you in planning your trip. Thank you for taking the time to let us know.

Let me assure you that driving in Portugal is no greater problem than anywhere else. Our last long trip throughout the country was by car, problem free. That being said, I think your original itinerary is quite excellent as is:

> Our tentative plan calls for landing in Lisbon, picking up a car and
> spending 3-4 nights in Estoril to see Cascais/Guincho/Sintra...then
> heading up to Nazare-Fatima-Curia or another spa for 2-3 nights on the
> road and heading east a bit to Lamego/Regua/Pinchao (2-3 nights)
> before heading into Porto and dropping the car...staying 4 nights or
> a train? down to Lisbon for 4 nights...and continuing on to
> the Algarve, probably train or car...for 7 nights in a timeshare for
> R& R if we can schedule it...and either driving back or training up to
> Lisbon airport for departure.

After a long flight it is always best not to get on the road if you can help it. The stay by the shore to start off is ideal. The ride north, as outlined, works very well geographically and gives you a well rounded appreciation of the diversity of the country. You really have to have a car in the Douro to discover all the beauty and treasures you will encounter in every turn of the road. You don't need nor want a car in Porto. There is excellent train and bus service for any day trips you may want to take. The train service from Porto to Lisbon is very good and since you don't need a car in Lisbon, enjoy a driving break. I guess the car or train decision Lisbon/Algarve/Lisbon depends on your desires. If you want a leisurely sightseeing experience you would drive. If you just want to get there and back go by train and rent a car in Faro on arrival for your time there.

Hope this helps.

Regards, Don