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Date: 27 Sep 2010 17:36:00
Title: Leaving mainland Portugal

We spent a couple of weeks in Cascais - it was great as we could anchor in the bay for free, we only went into the Marina for one night for a hectic clean the boat, do the washing, fill up the water tanks session.  Cascais was a pretty place with lots of bars and restaurants.  We actually ate out there a couple of nights, not traditional Portuguese food though - we found an Indian restaurant (good for veggies) and couldn't resist as we hadn't been for a curry in months! - it was a very nice place though with fantastic food (especially for those who have seen nothing but tapas for weeks).  On our last planned night in Cascais we went for a 'goodbye mainland' curry.
 
We had a good time in Portugal, exploring Porto is a great way to spend a couple of days and we easily filled a couple of weeks around the Lisbon area in Cascais, Sintra and Lisbon.   Sailing down the Portuguese coast there were few anchorages, apart from once we got to Cascais, so we only made a couple of stops on the way.  We really saw the Atlantic swell coming down this coast - there are always rolling hills of water - but the 'NE trades' that the books talk about appeared absent for our  trip and we did have to spend more time motoring than actually sailing.   However - writing this now in Porto Santo -  we are glad that we got away from the mainland before the Gales that have hit over the last week!   We did notice that it was getting decidedly cooler in the evenings in Portugal so end of September was a good time to chase the sun south.
 
 
A couple of shots around the harbour in Cascais
 
View to Santa Marta Lighthouse just around the corner from the Marina and Cascais beach where we anchored
 
 
Devil's Cauldron - apparently you have to see it in a storm when the sea comes roaring in through the sea arch
 
 
We also did another day out in Lisbon - this time to explore around the Belem area by the river front.  We saw the presidential residence which you can't get near really, and found the Monastery of Jeronimos (not Geronimo) which was really impressive, there were some beautiful buildings and loads of museums.
 
Monastery Doorway - big doors - must be tall monks
  
 
Inside the Monastery - probably the most impressive building we saw in Lisbon
 
 
 
Belem Tower - which was used to defend the Tagus river entrance to Lisbon - looks like it should have Rapunzel in the top of the tower.
 
Some strange exhibit in the maritime museum . . . .
 
Cork Sculpture at the art centre in Belem - they seem to like making things out of Cork in Portugal, in Cascais there was an internet point in the park that was a couple of little buildings built of cork that were grass roofed with big sliding glass doors - they would have made a good 'garden office'
 

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