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Thursday, March 24, 2016

Leaving for Lisbon

Earlier this week, I was leaving Las Vegas. Now, we’re leaving for Lisbon. We’re looking forward to immersing ourselves in Portuguese culture, art, sun, and port during our stay.

Our apartment, complete with water view, is in the Sao Vicente neighborhood, 50 meters from Alfama — the oldest area of Lisbon, being one of the few areas not destroyed by the earthquake in 1755. The owner of the apartment grew up in the neighborhood and owns a shop just down the street, so we’ll have a great local guide ready to show us the best places to eat, drink, shop, and mingle with the locals.

Castelo de Sao Jorge and Se Cathedral are in our neighborhood, and many other sights are just a short walk or tram ride away: Torre de Belem, National Art Museum, Portuguese Tile Museum, Tower of Belem, Gulbenkian Museum, the Elevator, and the Mosteiro dos Jeronimos. A bit further off, but easily accessible by train or bus, are the wonderland of Sintra, and the National Palace.

But I suspect the most fun will be sitting at cafes, sampling local foods and wine, getting to know the people and the culture. That’s what makes travel fun.

When the time comes, I suspect we won’t want to be leaving Lisbon.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Western Wonders Waiting

What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. But I likely won’t stay in Vegas for most of my upcoming week.

Last year when I went to visit my brother in Flagstaff, items on our list included the Grand Canyon, Sycamore Canyon, Sedona, Sunset Crater Canyon, Walnut Canyon, Red Rock Canyon, and a bit of neon in Las Vegas.

The main event this time around will be my brother’s bachelor party, so that will mean some time on the strip. Assuming we survive, other possibilities include a visit to Flagstaff, tour of Joshua Tree National Park, Zion National Forrest, Antelope Canyon, and Monument Valley.

And, if we win big in Vegas, maybe we’ll charter that helicopter into the basin of the Grand Canyon.

Where would you explore if you had a week in Vegas and vicinity?