Your courtesy compendium of links to the “Portugal Trip 2018” and “Focus on Portugal 2018” series.


Indeed, knowing that we’d be visiting Porto and Madeira, the winter of 2017-2018 became a veritable adult education course on all things Portuguese.

And that’s just the way I love it.

Pleasure travel absent context simply isn’t pleasant for me, and so I learned what I could; then we went, and I learned even more.

After 38 repetitions of this cycle, you’d think I’d qualify for a “life experience” Master of Arts degree. Maybe some day.

The travelogue, day by day:

Portugal Trip 2018 (1): A Tuesday arrival and introduction to Porto.

Portugal Trip 2018 (2): São Bento Railway Station, Mercado do Bolhão, Jardim da Cordoaria and a big Liverpool win.

Portugal Trip 2018 (3): A rainy day’s Port lodge crawl in Vila Nova de Gaia, and an inaugural Francesinha sandwich.

Portugal Trip 2018 (4): Madeira – island of eternal spring (and fortified wine, Coral beer and black scabbard fish).

Portugal Trip 2018 (5): FC Porto versus SC Lusitania in Portuguese professional basketball.

Portugal Trip 2018 (6): Sunday at the beach, then some fine eating (Taberna Stº. António) and a solid craft beer bar (As 7 Maravilhas).

Portugal Trip 2018 (7): An epic stroll along the Douro to lunch at São Pedro da Afurada.

Portugal Trip 2018 (8): Beach, park and cemetery, with a few Spanish beers and tapas.

Portugal Trip 2018 (9): History, sandwiches, sunsets and craft beer on the final day in Porto.

Three epilogues:

Public art: Is it Funchal (Madeira) or New Albany (Indiana)?

Thanks for asking, Delta Air Lines. I’m happy to tell you how likely I am to recommend you to others.

ON THE AVENUES: The books I’ve been reading during the winter months (including the two consumed while in Porto).

“Focus on Portugal,” a series that I prepared in advance and published while we were away.

Focus on Portugal: A history lesson upon arrival for a second visit to the country.

Focus on Portugal: Vila Nova de Gaia, the Douro and other tasty aspects of Port wine.

Focus on Portugal: Porto’s quintessential Francesinha sandwich.

Focus on Portugal: Madeira, both islands and wine.

Focus on Portugal: Learn about the music called Fado.

Focus on Portugal: Was António de Oliveira Salazar an autocrat or a dictator? Tyrant or protector? It’s complicated.

Focus on Portugal: The Carnation Revolution in 1974, and Portugal in the current age.

Focus on Portugal, which remains a central player in the world’s production of natural cork.

Focus on Portugal: The characterful and historic azulejo tiles of Portugal.