About

Olá and welcome to Portugalist. 

I love Portugal, but it’s often hard to find good-quality information about Portugal. That’s why I started Portugalist. I wanted to create an online guidebook about Portugal, a website that was informative and helpful, and that allowed me to share my love of this great country. I wanted a place where people could ask questions about Portugal, and where they could learn about Portuguese food and wine, as well as Portugal’s history, culture, and language.  

Since launching Portugalist, the articles on here have been viewed millions of times and I’ve been very lucky to be featured in publications like the Culture Trip and on the BBC. 

I hope that you find Portugalist useful, and it really enriches your time here in Portugal. If you want to keep up-to-date with the latest articles, be sure to subscribe to the newsletter.

I’m also on social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest) as well. If you want to ask a question about Portugal, just get in touch with me. 

James

About Me (James)

James in Lisbon
Posing in Lisbon’s Praça do Comércio

I’ve spent a lot of time in Portugal. As a child, I spent several years living in the North of Portugal and I’ve since spent time living in Lisbon and in the Algarve. I’ve also travelled extensively throughout the country, and visited Portuguese communities around the world. 

james graduation
Graduating kindergarten in Penafiel in the North of Portugal

I travel a lot myself as well. I’ve been very lucky in that I’ve been able to travel throughout Europe, North America, and Asia, and also to live in parts of the world like Germany, Spain, Ireland, the UK, France, and South Africa. Yet, despite having been to so many places, Portugal always manages to draw me back. 

 

34 thoughts on “About”

Leave a comment or ask a question below. I try and answer all of them.
  1. You two are so young and I really love it. We,too, found Portugal in our 20’s, riding a Yamaha 650ES twin from the UK down to the coast, via France, Spain, etc.

    We prefer Portugal to Spain for many reasons. The warmth of these people is palpable.

    The food is terrific. The beauty is surprising. And the food and wine are affordable, and the Veg is clearly superior to anything we find in America, even California, where we spend part of our lives, as Full-time travelers/RV-ers.

    RV-ing here is not as good as America, but do-able. We have considered it.

  2. Hi, would like to ask your advice on a 10-day trip to Portugal in July starting with 3 days in Porto, driving north to Braga and Guiamares, then back to Aveiro for the 4th night. But trying to logically fit in Tomar, Coimbra, Alcobaca, Evora and Obidos has us stumped in 2 days as the last 3 days will be in Lisbon. Can you advise on logistics of time to see stuff and what is best to include if impractical? Would be grateful for your thought, thanks

    • Hi Cynthia,

      That’s a lot to try and cram in, and I don’t know that you have time to see it all unfortunately.

      I would probably cut out Évora. It’s a beautiful city, but it’s so far out of your way in comparison to the other cities that I think it’s the one that has to go. Normally I would recommend a day in each place, but this would only allow you half a day in each. With travel included, it’s going to be very tight and you’re only going to get a glimpse of each place.

      If it was me, I would either cut my list down further (1 place = 1 day) or I’d take a day off of Lisbon and try and do 4 places in 3 days. There’s a lot to see and do in Lisbon, but you will be able to cover the vast majority in 2 days.

      This doesn’t leave any time to relax, so I guess you’ll have to book another holiday to recover 🙂

  3. Hi James, we are going to visit the Azores in late June-early July.
    Any advice on accommodations and restaurants? Any must see places?
    Thanks,

  4. Hi!
    My husband and I are sincerely thinking about living part time in Portugal and part time in the USA after we retire. We have visited your beautiful country and traveled from the south to the north venturing inland to explore and know this is where we would like to live 3 months out of the year (or more depending on the difficulty of obtaining proper visas for a stay longer than the 3 months).
    But, we are concerned about healthcare and would greatly appreciate solid and specific advice on how USA citizens can acquire medical coverage and anything else you feel is helpful.
    Thank you for your help!

    D

    • Hi Tony,

      I don’t know that there is. There are definitely a few Canadians here, but they must just use the more general expat Facebook groups.

      James

  5. Hi James, I will have to be in Lisbon tomorrow May 21 to catch a flight to Toronto but I am staying in Praia das macas. The problem is the trains are on strike that day. How do I get to Lisbon? Uber is out because my phone was stolen and I really don’t want to pay 60€ for a taxi. Sorry to ask again but the wifi’s not very good here.

    • Hi Christine,

      I had a look for you and I’m not sure what bus (if any) goes to Lisbon. Sorry I couldn’t be of more help, but I couldn’t see anything. I would recommend asking in the tourist information for more info.

      Otherwise, Welcome Pickups will organise a taxi to pick you up from your hotel for around €32.

  6. James I just wanna say that I am so happy to stumble upon your site/blog! I am a flight attendant and so lucky to have the privilege of traveling the world. Lisbon is on my top ten cities in the world . I’ve been in Portugal few times and had made some friends , who I treasure so much. I still have so much places to visit in Portugal so although I have already been there few times and visited different towns and cities, I will be back to see more, as a matter of fact I will be there in July and August. I really appreciate your knowledge of the country and looking forward to learn more about Portugal from it. Just wanna say ” Obrigada!”

  7. Hi James.
    I’m Polish nationality, living in UK since 2004. Within 7 years will retired and just start thinking to move for last episode of my life to more sunny and pleasant contry (Portugal). Required a lot of informations about legal side of purchasing house, National Health System, Estate Agencies. I will apretiate any tips, English lanquage websites and would like meet you personally next year at my visit in Portugal.
    Kind Regards Kaz

    • Hi Kazimierz,

      I haven’t covered a lot of those topics yet, but hopefully by the time you get to thinking seriously about moving to Portugal they’ll be on Portugalist 🙂

  8. Hi,
    Do you have any suggestions for fun apps/websites to teach a toddler the european Portuguese language. There are a ton that teach Brazilian, but i prefer my son to learn the mainland Portuguese, as did I.

  9. Hi James, I am interested in visiting Vilamoura in March or April, is there lots to do at that time of the year?

    • Hi Dianne,

      It depends on what you’re looking for.

      Both will be fairly quiet months, but March will be quieter than April as businesses that close for the winter normally re-open in April. Not everywhere closes. You’ll find plenty of restaurants and cafés open in March as well, but a few will be shut. Museums and attractions don’t really close for the winter.

      It can be difficult to predict which will have the better weather, though. It is known to rain in April here in Portugal, but that could happen in March either.

  10. Hi James,

    After a week in Spain we’ll be flying from Malaga to Porto on October 12 and spending about 3 or 4 days. Then we’ll go to Lisbon for 4 days. Your newsletter sounds intriguing.

    Looking forward to it!
    Susan

    • Hi Susan,

      Hope you have a great time in Porto and Lisbon. They are both great cities.

      Newsletter is on its way. I am currently travelling around Portugal myself, so everything is a little behind schedule at the moment!

    • I honestly have no idea, Chrystal, as it’s not my industry. I would recommend trying to speak to someone who works in the same industry or something similar as they would be able to give you a better idea.

  11. Hello, looking to spend January and February in Portugal. Would prefer a place that is not tourist during the summer Can you advise please

    • Hi Heather,

      It depends on what you like.

      The Algarve will have the best chance of good weather in mainland Portugal for that time of year, but it’s somewhere that does get touristy in the summer. Of course, that’s mainly along the coast. Inland regions of the Algarve, for example, don’t get as inundated with tourists.

      Of course, there are plenty of places that you can go that rarely get tourists. Avoid Lisbon, Porto, the Algarve, Évora etc (basically the list of top places to visit in Portugal) and you’ll avoid the vast majority of tourists.

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