Portugal is becoming the home of huge city break destinations and after finally finding photos from my Lisbon trip I thought it was time to do a post and what better than to compare Lisbon vs Porto!  Both cities are big hitters in the city break holiday market at the moment but which one is best and my favourite?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Tourist Attractions

Both cities are very different in what they offer and cost!

In Porto I found a great array of different tourist attractions including a river cruise, snooping inside a palace, shopping for antique tiles, sipping port and just admiring the beautiful city in the sunshine which was of course free.  Price wise I didn’t find entrance fees to be that expensive and thankfully my hotel in Porto provided free entry for a Port tasting at Graham’s.

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

In Lisbon I was bored; travel is what you make it however I had visited Porto first and maybe that spoiled Lisbon for me as I loved Porto so much. I did visit a number tourist sites in the city and I thought they were rather overpriced for what was on offer…case in point was Lisbon Castle Castelo de Sao Jorge at 8.50 euros pp entrance…the view is gorgeous (great at sunset with a glass of wine) but if you don’t fancy a view or a glass of wine (additional cost of course!) then don’t waste your euros on the castle as it’s pretty pitiful.  If you want to visit a number of tourist sites then I would suggest buying The Lisboa Card to save a few of your hard earned buckeroos as it offers free access and discounts!

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Lisbon vs Porto: Winner Porto

Tiles

Portugal and Tiles…they go hand in hand with each other but which city offers the best tile viewing?

Porto has the iconic blue and white tiles that you see on instagram and tourist websites…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

…blue and white tiles in train stations…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

…blue and white tiled churches.

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

In Lisbon, a number of the buildings have tiles however while photogenic, they weren’t as photogenic as the beautiful tiles in Porto.

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Lisbon vs Porto: Winner Porto

Safe for Women / Solo Travel

I travelled to both cities by myself and wandered round visiting tourist sites.

In Porto I felt safe from the moment I arrived until the moment I left the city.  I ate at a restaurant on the outskirts of town late at night and the restaurant staff made sure they took my taxi number in case that I had any issues when I was dropped off at my hotel.  I was warned not stray to far away from the main city centre as it could get a little seedy.  Overall I felt safe walking around as a solo female traveller.

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

In Lisbon…well I was ripped off by a rouge taxi driver on arrival into the city and he made sure I was blocked in the taxi so I was forced to pay the additional cost.  It was the first time I have ever being in this kind of position and it was disappointing to learn that almost everyone at my work who had visited the city was either ripped off by a taxi driver or pickpocketed while visiting the city.  If you do visit Lisbon, be aware of your surroundings and organise a taxi with your hotel so that you don’t find yourself hating the city on arrival.   As a solo female traveller, nothing much fazes me especially after travelling through the Middle East however I disliked the men hissing and the lewd comments that I encountered while in Lisbon.

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Lisbon vs Porto: Winner is Porto…Lisbon needs to clean up it’s act!

Hotels

On both my city break weekends I stayed at the IHG branded Intercontinental Hotels and I can say that both were wonderful and I would happily return to both properties in the future…and just so you know, I pay for all my hotels!

In Porto, I stayed at the Intercontinental Porto – Palacio das Cardosas which was a former palace but has since converted into a luxury hotel.  The rooms are very modern and I was lucky to have a lovely upgrade to a duplex suite on my visit.  The location was really good as I was right next to the famous train station and could easily navigate myself around the city.  Speak to the concierge and he may be able to offer you a free Port tasting tour at Graham’s.

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

In Lisbon, The InterContinental is located a 20 minute walk away from the main tourist area of Lisbon or you could use public transport.  The hotel is very modern inside and out and I will be honest and say that it’s a tad boring in comparison to the Intercontinental in Porto however the staff are fabulous and friendly in Lisbon and went out of their way due to my IHG status. The views over the city are amazing.  Next door to the InterContinental is the Four Seasons Hotel so this area of the city is teaming with luxury hotels.  The folks at the hotel organised my return taxi so I didn’t get overcharged again which was a blessing and took the stress out of the journey…request the hotel to organise your taxis in both directions.

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

^^My room view from the Hotel Intercontinental Lisbon.

While I love IHG properties I know they don’t float everyones boat so why not check out booking.com for more hotel options in both cities.

Lisbon vs Porto: Winner – Lisbon and Porto…both are wonderful but are very different properties!

Shopping

I like to shop while on holiday…sue me!  This includes visiting foreign supermarkets which I just find interesting especially when looking for gluten free options…you would be surprise the gluten free cake mixes I have picked up on my travels compared to the lack of choice in England.

In Porto, I was really taken with the shopping in city; I loved the independent colourful shops, sipping ports trying to find the perfect one to suit my taste buds and moving what felt like heaven and earth to find the perfect antique tile from Porto…I just loved it and it was all a bit fun!

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

In Lisbon, it felt like I could have being shopping in any big European city and while I found a great shop selling a gorgeous Portuguese made wool cape (which I then lost about two weeks later in Seville…I think it’s safe to say Lisbon and I aren’t really friends!), I wasn’t really fussed with Lisbon for shopping.  The shop fronts in Lisbon were stunning and very photogenic though.

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Lisbon vs Porto:  Porto is the winner…I think my bank balance would agree!

Sore Feet

I love just waddling around exploring a city and my time in both cities I did amble…a lot!  You haven’t explored Lisbon or Porto if your body doesn’t ache…expect stairs, hills and what feels like mountains at times in both cities.  Wear sensible shoes and you’ll be okay but don’t expect flat cities as both aren’t flat.  If you do catch the trams in Lisbon make sure you watch out for pickpockets; hold onto your bags tightly!

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Lisbon vs Porto: Winner…both!!

Gluten Free Food

In Porto I had a numerous gluten free hits and misses in restaurants and ended up rather bloated on my trip…the simple but extremely tasty meal at O Gaveto is still one of my favourite resturants in Europe…simple dishes cooked well taste the best.

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

And let’s not forget that Port is gluten free…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

…okay a drink may be cheating but it’s still gluten free and very very yummy.

In Lisbon, the city is famous for it’s custard tarts and guess what, they’re not gluten free!

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

I ended up eating at the hotel as it was just easier to explain my gluten free requirement than struggle and having to catch a taxi…which I wasn’t keen to after my first ride in the city.  But and this is a big BUT…Gluten free options at McDonalds…I went in for a cold drink and found this…a happy Gluten free Surprise!

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Lisbon vs Porto: Both…let’s call this one a tie!

Flights to Portugal

Thankfully there are now regular flights to Porto and Lisbon from all over the UK however there are more flights daily to Lisbon.  I flew to Lisbon with Easyjet and to Porto with British Airways however both airlines fly to Lisbon and Porto now.

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

Overall, everyone falls in love with different travel destinations for different reasons.  While I fell head over heels in love with Porto as it felt so authentic, rustic and had a lot of soul; that was missing for me in Lisbon and I thought Lisbon was rather overrated as a city break destination in my personal opinion…I’m sure people will disagree with that statement and that’s fine…opinions are like arseholes, everyone has one.

I’ve heard it being said that folks who didn’t enjoy Barcelona, weren’t fans of Lisbon and I’m not a fan of Barcelona either!

If you do head to Porto then why not check out my Porto Travel Guide here.

Either way…enjoy your city break and let me know which city you prefer – Lisbon or Porto?

xx

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto! These two beautiful destinations are big city break hitters currently but which one is the best for things to do, food, tiles and safety for solo women travellers?

If you liked this post on Portugal City Break Destinations: Lisbon vs Porto then why not come and join me on TwitterGoogle+InstagramFacebook and Pinterest – I won’t bite!

Fact: I love doors!  While doing some Pinterest research on Madeira, I quite literally stumbled upon the beautiful painted doors of Funchal so of course I added them to my list of things to do in Madeira for our weekend break and waited patiently for our trip to photograph them all.

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

The doors are situated in the old town of Funchal along the little cobbled street, Rua de Santa Maria where you will have kittens as you’re in door heaven…honestly the doors are so wicked and so artistic.

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

This was how my wander along Rua de Santa Maria went…ohhh look at that door…pause to take a photo…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

…takes two steps…ohhhh look at that door…I wonder if I could get G to do something like this with our front door…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

…this door will definitely stop those annoying politicians from knocking on my door again…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

…takes two more steps…pauses…takes another photo while trying not to have kittens…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

…fails desperately at looking calm and collected around said doors….

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

…wanders into art gallery for a second to compose myself…only to see a painted door on my way out…eeek…uses pelvic floor muscles to hold in kittens…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

…takes two steps and photographs another sort of door…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

…while thinking to myself, I could seriously move into this road and live happily ever after…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

…screw finding Prince Charming…I’ve got doors…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

…and I don’t really like horses and they might chip the paint work on my doors…seriously Prince Charming can go and screw himself…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

…secretly plotting how I could take over Madeira and kick everyone off the island…not Love Island style either…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

…repeats following mantra in head…they are only doors…they are only doors…step away from the doors…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

…oooohhhh look at that cool door with flames on it…remember they are just doors Kel…just doors…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

…awww look at her there…let’s call you Flo…I feel like taking a trip to Florence…why has that popped into my head…bugger I don’t have 3G…puts a note in phone to check out flights to Florence….continues walking…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

…I feel like someone is watching me…hmmm….are people staring as I’m skipping and taking photos…am possibly talking to myself at this point…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

…stops in a dodgy looking bar to buy a drink and use their free wifi…need to send G a message to bring down my other camera and memory card…starts to panic that I have no battery or space left on memory card…can’t delete my other door photos…not my babies…starts to hyperventilate over the thought of deleting photos from memory card…possibly talking to myself loudly with tears streaming down my face over the thought of deleting photos…this is completely normal right??…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

…and yes G was still in the hotel…apparently this is his idea of torture….reminds me to accidentally tell G a little white lie on next holiday and send him on a Pinterest worthy walking torture session…have already made him sit through a Pinterest holiday idea board…he was never normal after that…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

…remind myself that I should listen to G occasionally and carry my leatherman in my handbag…I could take the doors off the hinges and ship them back to England…no one would ever know…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

…honestly they wouldn’t…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

…quietly thinking to myself that there are some fantastic artists in this world…

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

…and look who I spotted…an artist at work!

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

If you do visit Madeira, make sure you check out the fun and quirky painted doors of Funchal as they are simply the best!

Portugal Travel Inspiration - Exploring Madeira Island then you must check out the painted doors of Funchal, Madeira which are so fun, colourful and quirky; definitely add it to your list of things to do in Funchal. Click the link to read my Madeira Travel Tips!

xx

If you liked this post on The Painted Doors of Funchal, Madeira then why not come and join me on TwitterGoogle+InstagramFacebook and Pinterest – I won’t bite!

Weight: Unknown as on holiday…yay!

“Angry people are not always wise.” – Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

Kelly-Michelle's-Diary-Week-4-2016

My Life Goal, ze Weight

Next!! I shouldn’t be too hasty really…I did eat a bit of refined sugar this week but I did try to stay as healthy as possible.

Shake Your Booty

So get this I did 6 days straight of walking on the old treadmill…I’m still waiting to have that, “I feel bloody amazing” moment that all those weirdos that love exercise get and shove in your fat face…apparently it’s coming…apparently…so the accountant in me has just added all the calories together to work out if I could eat a whole cake rather than a slice and not feel guilty!  Am I ever going to have that amazing feeling after exercising where I feel the need to show how great I feel and look in my sports bra on instagram (accessorised with a thigh gap, this isn’t optional)…with my red lippy still in place…WILL THIS EVER HAPPEN TO ME?!?  I joke about the instagram photo as I won’t show my giant bosoms in a sport bra for you all to see…honestly I sweat and I go pink like Miss Piggy when I exercise and then add heaving breasts, well it wouldn’t be a good look…but I do want to know when that “I feel bloody amazing feeling” is meant to start happening…week 2 or 3?

What I’m Up Too…

I’m in Lisbon, Portugal this weekend for a city break…I booked this trip many months ago and I’m just relaxing by myself…there are times that I like to just head off to a foreign country by myself and wander.  In reality…I’ve exiled myself to Lisbon as my PMS lasted a long time and G needed a rest…my period was 6 days late so you can imagine my state of mind…I became a vagina whisperer…when you start talking to your vagina you know you need help!

Kelly-Michelle's-Diary-Week-4-2016-Lisbon-Portugal

Lisbon and I didn’t get off to the best start as I got ripped off by a rouge taxi driver…which I picked up from the official taxi stand…my pride is hurting more than my wallet…he ripped me off by 20 euros which isn’t huge in the whole scheme of things but highly annoying and not a great first impression of Lisbon…looking online this is a common occurrence so it’s time the tourist board sorts it out otherwise the city will get a bad reputation which it already has got for pickpocketing.

Kelly-Michelle's-Diary-Week-4-2016-Lisbon-Portugal

I’m still undecided about Lisbon…it’s pretty but it’s lacking something for me…maybe Porto just ruined me as I fell hard for that city with all it’s soul and charm…I’m not sure I actually get Lisbon…that makes no sense to me so I imagine it will make even less sense to you as you read my babble but I think Lisbon has confused me!

Kelly-Michelle's-Diary-Week-4-2016-Lisbon-Portugal

If you’ve visited Lisbon, let me know what you think of the city?  Am intrigued to hear your thoughts…I’ve read that it’s like Paris for a lot of tourists…it’s a marmite city…you either love it or hate it!

So what’s all your gossip?!

xx

If you liked this post on Kelly Michelle’s Diary Week 4, 2016 then why not come and join me on TwitterGoogle+InstagramFacebook and Pinterest – I won’t bite!

I’ve done this post for the past two years (2014 and 2015) and I thought I would do one for 2016 and share my upcoming travel plans.  So where will the wind blow me in 2016…with me most likely wearing jandals in every destination regardless of season!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Auckland, New Zealand

I’m in New Zealand for the first four days of the new year before heading back to England so I will be making the most of my time at home with my family.

Edit: I’m staying for 5 additional days as I’m medically unfit to fly now thanks to either a bug or food poisoning and a high temperature.  

Follow Kelly Michelle’s board New Zealand Travel Inspiration on Pinterest.

Lisbon, Portugal

At the end of January I’m off Lisbon for a city break and I’m sure it will be much needed after the first few crazy weeks of 2016 as it’s my busiest time of the year work wise with the year end close of accounts, audit and then budget / forecast all due.  I’ve started pinning a number of pins to my Portugal Pinterest Board for inspiration on where to visit.  I’m going to be most likely staying at the Intercontinental Lisbon so I can get a number of points in their Spring Accelerator promotion…hence we can use the points at a later date for free hotel rooms.

Follow Kelly Michelle’s board Portugal Travel Inspiration on Pinterest.

Seville, Spain

G and I are February birthday babies…he’s a Valentine’s Baby and I’m two days later so we always try to head away even though it’s normally school holidays.  This year we are going to Seville, we picked up some super cheap cheap Business Class airfares with British Airways for £150 return…yeah eye watering cheap and it means I can shop with no fear of luggage allowances!  Lisa is giving me loads of tips…her first tip was to stay at the Starwood property, Hotel Alfonso XIII which is ace as we need to earn a few points to use for our Peru accommodation with SPG.

Follow Kelly Michelle’s board Spain Travel Inspiration on Pinterest.

Peru and Bolivia

So in May, G and I are heading to Peru and Bolivia for just over two weeks.  We are using our BA Companion voucher so we managed to get super cheap Business Class flights and just need to confirm a few more hotel bookings.  So far our itinerary is Lima for 2 nights (A few folks have said it’s not worth staying but I’ve heard others say it’s a brilliant city so we are taking a risk twice!), Cusco for three nights and a lovely train trip with Belmond to Machu Picchu, exploring the Sacred Valley, Lake Titicaca and then onto La Paz for a few nights and then back to Lima.  I’m trying to pay for as many of our hotels using points so we can have a few special experiences while we are away…I’m on a huge saving drive in 2016!

Follow Kelly Michelle’s board Peru Travel Inspiration on Pinterest.

England

I’ve given myself a new years resolution to visit every county in England in 2016…let’s see if I can do it.

Follow Kelly Michelle’s board England Travel Inspiration on Pinterest.

I’m sure there will be a few other trips during the year so who knows where the wind will blow me in 2016.

I’m a bit lazy and just using my Pinterest boards for the pics…SO much easier!

I’m joining up with Emma, Angie and Jessi in the January travel link up.  I decided it was time to relinquish my role as a co-host of the link up due to work, life and eating commitments – it’s been a pleasure and I will still join in when I’ve got time available to comment etc but I also just wanted to say thank you so much to everyone that has linked up over the past two years and for all the lovely comments and fabulous new blogs that I’ve found through the travel link up.

So what are your travel plans for 2016?

xx

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Forgive me for I have sinned; I’ve slept around lately and ignored my beloved IHG but I’m going to change, really I am!  On my recent city break to Porto I decided that I needed to spend some quality time with my beloved and booked myself in to stay at the Intercontinental Porto – Palacio das Cardosas (try saying that fast three times after a few glasses of Port!).

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Check in was a breeze and I was told there was no Club Lounge at the hotel however I was offered a discounted breakfast in the restaurant (who doesn’t love a discounted brekkie!) and provided with a little box of chocolates as my Ambassador welcome gift (that was dinner along with the grapes – I started reading the new Shopaholic book, enough said!)

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So are you ready for a snoop inside the Duplex Suite – now I wasn’t expecting this fabulous upgrade that I received as I had used my IHG points for my weekend away so thank you so much for the lovely upgrade!

The lounge was super spacious, extremely comfortable and I decided I could actually live in this suite quite happily…

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…and the downstairs even had it’s own toilet and shower facilities!

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Now let’s take the stairs up to my little bit of Portuguese heaven

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My bed that I could star fish in all weekend long including a cute little desk for blogging; the only disappointing feature of the whole suite – there were no plugs by the desk (or none that I noticed)…

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…and a view of Porto that I couldn’t get enough of!  My obsession started on the first morning when I managed to wake up at sunrise (I’m not sure why!) and then I just had to keep taking photos – I took over 2000 photos in 4 days in Porto; not of this view but for the whole trip.

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Moving right on through to my bathroom which rocked and included the wardrobe / shoe room; it was huge and had everything a girl could ever need including a hurricane force hair dryer!

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As I’m not the most observant person in the world, I didn’t notice that there were a small outdoor area connected to my suite until the last day, oops!

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It’s been a long time since I have done a solo trip and I loved it especially when I spammed G on what’s app with photos of the suite to make him jealous.  But thank goodness he didn’t come along as there was a Mont Blanc and a Rolex shop in the lobby area and he has a slight obsession with these two brands.

How cute is the bar area by the way!

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I loved my suite but the real reason why I love this hotel so much – the chef made me gluten free scones for breakfast and they were light, fluffy and out of this world amazing!  I really needed to have a gluten free scone making lesson with the chef; seriously they were that good.

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So would I stay at the Intercontinental Porto – Palacio das Cardosas again – I’m seriously wondering why I ever checked out!  This has to be one of my favourite Intercontinental Hotels in Europe and yes gluten free scones for breakfast will make me love you forever; I’m that easy!

The concierge team were fantastic especially Rui as he provided me with a great walking tour around Porto and booked me in for my Port tour at Graham’s.

As an Intercontinental Platinum Ambassador I receive complimentary upgrades, a welcome gift and a free movie to watch along with speedy free wifi which are provided without any issues as the IHG brand understands the loyalty products that it sells.  Let’s just say that not all hotel brands understand or offer what they say they are going too to their platinum members hence why in future I will be sticking to only two hotel brands going forward and one of them is IHG.

If you are heading to Porto then I highly recommend you book into the Intercontinental Porto – Palacio das Cardosas which you can do so by clicking right here.

xx

If you liked this post on my Review of Intercontinental Porto – Palacio das Cardosas then why not come and join me on TwitterGoogle+InstagramPinterest and Bloglovin’ – I won’t bite!