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grnrab

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About grnrab

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    Cool Cruiser

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  • Location
    Northern Calif, USA
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    Azamara

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  1. Excellent We took their Sintra and vicinty tour (dont recall its actual name) September 2018. Small van, about 8 of us plus Guide ( female) and driver. Guide was great - she was in her 30's. We really enjoyed their slightly off beaten track tour. For example while we stopped in Sintra and had time to roam around, we were not taken to Pena and Santa Maria which we could see from van but rather to the Palacio Monserrat - much less crowed with lovely parkland around it you can stroll - appreciated not being with the busloads in Sintra. Instead of going to the traditional coastal spot, Cabo
  2. Cleobella the only limited FADO experience I'm aware of is at Adega Machado ( Near/off the Cais de Sodre waterfront) - the downstairs part (they run I think two small shows with a two drink minimum - its about a 1 hour experience). Upstairs is a full restaurant with show experience. There may be other limited experiences as you wander around the Alfama district where you can maybe just have a drink and listen - the Fado museum there might be another bet for a limited experience.
  3. When in Barcelona I always recommend any of the hotels that are part of the Catalonia Hotel and Resort chain. They have 7-8 to choose from in the city and all have been recently updated and are quite attractive with interior atriums and other features. Good price/value imho - most also have a rooftop dipping pools, small bar area as well up there. Downstairs many of them offer a free and delicious late afternoon snack setup (again with a small bar setup) especially if you are tired from touring all day or a business day and just want to relax at your hotel before going out for a later dinner.
  4. Yes very do it yourself - however be aware that Lisbon is very hilly which will make some walking excursions to elevated vista points or places like Castelo Sao Jorge a bit challenging . BTW there are at least two "free" walking tour companies in Lisbon. There is an excellent metro system, that and a mix of the buses, tram cars and elevadors (1-2 block long funiculars) will get you most places and help minimize some of the more challenging walks. Definitely consider doing the Alfama district by foot - lots of nooks and crannies best seen by foot including the Tile museum and FADO clubs if inte
  5. Also - anything offered by "We Hate Tourists" - don't be put off by the name they have wonderful staff and tours. Try reserving in advance any of tuk-tuk firms for any of their 1-3 hr city tours. Do not take the Hop On Hop buses in our opinion it was not worth the money - bored drivers not tour guides really.
  6. Hotel Bessa right on Liberdade - right near Restauradores metro stop. Was excellent for us- recently updated. Get room in the back. Has wonderful breakfast room if inclined - steam spa, exercise room and semi-outdoor pool hidden in the back. Plus there is a full restaurant in front as well. Very close to everything and plenty of restaurants uphill in Bairo Alto and Principe Real. Principe Real has some nice places to stay as well.
  7. All the hotels in the Catalonia Resort & Hotel chain are excellent. I have stayed in Catalonia Catedral ( Barrio Gothic), Catalonia Magdalenes ( Barrio Gothic) and Catalonia Placa D'Angel (Barrio/Pl Catalunya - right next to shopping) . All of the hotels have been recently updated and have a nice modern feel. Many have roof top dipping pools and many offer a free hosted bar/happy hour with snacks in late afternoon - very nice if you aren't quite ready for a late dinner. I prefer hotels there that are a little away from congested streets like Las Rambla, Via Laeitana, Diagonal, and Gran Via
  8. Hi Have not stayed there but at a place about one block away. I did walk in the lobby and peruse the restaurant and it looked lovely. I'd say its considered a hi end hotel and that restaurant appeared more expensive with a lovely setting at the ground floor. Its right on Via Laetana so close to two metro stations ( one literally across the street) and it's about a block or two closer to Placa Catalunya than to the Catedral Barcelona and Placa Nova, but you are still close to all Barrio Gothic restaurants/sites as well as the shopping, food and hustle bustle around P.C. which gives you e
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