Brussels. two weeks a year, the royal greenhouses of Laeken (which is where the Belgian king resides) open their doors for all visitors and although i wasn't too excited about going in line together with the other hundreds of visitors... it wasn't that bad. and if it would have been, it still was way too pretty to be annoyed. definitely a must go, if you ever can.
- have a fancy ice tea and cake at Moustache, the hippest coffee house in town
- eat pasteïs at O Nata Douro (so you get to try the "real Lisbon snack" without having to visit Lisbon! plus it's just too good)
- buy postcards (or soap or sardines in a very pretty package) at A Vida Portuguesa
- eat traditional Portuguese food at Casa de Santo António
- visit Livraria Lello, the prettiest bookstore i have been to
- look at the pretty train station, São Bento
- and go to Casal if you long for some "normal" food (burgers, pizza, extremely good desserts).
Porto. the weather got a bit more rough, but that was okay as i was so happy to be back in Porto. i think "small" cities (Porto still has more inhabitants than Brussels!) simply suit me better. on our last morning, we visited the sea. oh, the sea.
Lisbon. after falling in love with Porto so easily, the capital city didn't get me. i did like the architecture and the street art, but it simply didn't feel as good. there were things i enjoyed a lot and definitely recommend, though:
- Pois, café
- eating the real pasteïs de Belém
- walking from Torre de Belém back towards the city, all the way next to the sea
- LX Factory and especially La Cantina, which is where i ate the most delicious (vegetarian) meal ever
- and their bookstore, Ler Devagar.
Porto. i'm in Portugal now, i am in PORTUGAL! i've been dreaming about visiting this country for a long time and even though i've only been walking around here today i think i already fell in love. i fell in love with the people, the houses, the pasteïs.