Well, we finally came to the end of our long stay vacation of three weeks to Spain and Portugal. We were in Lisbon for the final days of our holiday. It is a beautiful city as most of the others cities in Spain and Portugal have been. We were happy to be in the same place for a few nights. Continually moving and sightseeing, as you all know can be very tiring.

We left Barcelona and went on a bit of a whirlwind tour.  I had booked some hotels before we left, but the rest of the hotels for our vacation, we booked while in Spain and Portugal.  We had rented a car through Europeacar for our holiday which gave us the freedom to move around and visit where we wanted to go and when we wanted to go.  We saw visited the city of Valencia (staying at the Hotel Venecia), Mijas, and Malaga for a day each and spent two nights in Granada and then drove on to Seville.  In Seville we stayed at the Hotel Murillo. All that in one week of traveling around.  It is both delightful and tiring at the same time.

In Lisbon, we stayed at a hotel called the Hotel Aviz for five nights. It was a nice, very comfortable, and elegant 4 star hotel in Lisbon.  Check out the last-minute hotel deals at

We then planned to relax in the Algarve region for five nights. I had booked our stay at a guest house named the Casa Amarela Guest House in Lagos, but it was not suitable because we found the washroom too small and not located in a nice part of the town. So we were forced to look for a new hotel to stay. We ended up at the Hotel Carvi in the same town of Lagos in the Algarve.

Of course we visited the popular beaches in the very well-known tourist area of the Algarve.  The beaches are very beautiful but crowded at this time of year (late summer).  It’s August when I write this and it’s the time of year when all the Europeans take their holidays – so it’s peak season.

We are going to the beach at Estoril for the day for some more swimming, sun and relaxation. I think they one filmed a James Bond film at the casino in Estoril (Casino Royale?), but I could be wrong. Then we’ll went sightseeing in Lisbon enjoying more city activities, ate a last meal of steak dinners in a cute little restaurant called The High Boot, the day before our flight back on early Wednesday.

Spain and Portugal have been wonderful to visit on a long stay vacation. Traveling in a couple of places long term allows one to make observations about the people, the culture and the life.  Both counties have been a wonderful experience for us as tourists.  But the people are suffering economically because of the recession.  Another thing we find about the people is that they smoke like its an Olympic sport.

We arrived back all safe and sound.  We had a great long stay vacation to Spain and Portugal for three full weeks, but three weeks is a long time, so we are glad to be back home again.  Sometimes going away for a long term holiday allows you to appreciate things back home a little bit more. And one of those things that never changes when you travel and go back home again – the laundry is calling my name.

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