Safety Tips in Portugal

  • Street crime
    by SebastianJ3
  • Lisbon
    Lisbon
    by solopes
  • Warnings and Dangers
    by Roadquill

Most Viewed Warnings and Dangers in Portugal

  • jfpessoa's Profile Photo

    Asking directions? ...

    by jfpessoa Updated Jun 5, 2006

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    Asking directions?

    Directions are usually given by description rather than by addresses and street names. The green building below on the west side of the Praça Luis de Camões is one of the landmarks frequently used as a reference point.

    Neverthless, buy a map. If the directions sound hopelessy tortured to you, then to get your informant to point out where you are at the moment and when the place is that you want to go. This requires some patience, but it may be easier than remembering a description based on local landmarks.

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    Driving

    by Entropic Written Dec 29, 2005

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    Though I highly recommend renting a car as the most efficient and fun way to travel through the country it is only with the condtion that the driver ireally knows what he's doing. It's also preferable to know how to drive a stick (for the steep narrow and winding roads of Douro region). The biggest highways (like A1, A2) are pretty decent. Anything smaller and more local has only 2 (both ways) narrow lanes on which cars pass each other by (on the opposite lane) at 180km/hour. At night a lot of smaller roads are very poorly illuminated. And the highways are surprisingly expensive.

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    Pickpockets in Lisbon trams.

    by metteks Written May 15, 2005

    Watch out for pick pocketing in the trams in Lisbon. We didn’t get anything stolen, but friendly locals pointed out to us that some of the pocket in our backpacks had been opened. Fortunately we didn’t have anything in the outside pockets, except paper handkerchiefs, which they apparently didn’t want to steal.

    Related to:
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    • Backpacking

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  • Bwana_Brown's Profile Photo

    Monsanto Rocks

    by Bwana_Brown Updated Mar 27, 2005

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    On our drive from Castelo Branco to Covilha, we took the scenic route near the Spanish border so we could take in one of the most interesting places that we visited on the entire trip.

    The mountaintop village of Monsanto was once voted the 'most Portugese village in Portugal', and it really was something else!!

    As we passed through the tiny hamlet of Relva, only minutes away from Monsanto itself, we came upon these two huge boulders that had obviously fallen over. I did not like the look of it, so close to the road, so stopped the car to see what I could do to help. As you can see, I have managed to get one of them partially upright but had to quit at that - it was just too heavy to reach the full upright position. Whatever you do, don't try this without proper training!!

    Just Straightening These Boulders
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    Castle walls in Obidos!

    by nursesweet Written Mar 3, 2005

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    This is coming from a girl who is not afraid of heights! The walls that surround the town of Obidos are well worth a jaunt, however be REALLY careful. The walls in some sections are very high...I'd approximate 20-30 ft up, and there is no sort of railing to keep you from tripping off. The cobblestones on the wall tend to be very uneven, so take it slow, watch your footing and don't get too close to the edge....oh and enjoy the beuatiful views!

    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Historical Travel

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  • dr.firas's Profile Photo

    Porto Wine

    by dr.firas Updated Dec 21, 2004

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    MMMMMMMMM Porto, the best wine and my favorite one!
    OK it is not a standard wine, even the taste is different, Porto is calssificated as a strong alcohol drink, and as a backed wine, it has some sort of mixed taste with a good wine and something *I don't know how to say really* like whisky!
    it is very easy to fall in love with this great alcoholic drink, and once you try you will sure consider it as one of the favorites drinks!
    so it is indeed very Dangerous, it could lead you to alcholism without your feeling!
    so if you are sure that you could be modirated, Porto is the best wine a person can have ;-D

    Portugal
    Related to:
    • Wine Tasting

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    Minho Guardrails

    by Bwana_Brown Updated Dec 1, 2004

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    After finishing our most northerly Portugal drive in the 'Geraz do Minho' region, we decided to take a mountainous shortcut back toward Lamego. As we wound our way up and down the switchback roads to make our way through the Parque Natural do Alvao, just north and west of Vila Real, we could not help but notice how far down it was if you happened to go over the edge! These red and white stone blocks embedded in the ground were there to do 'guardrail' duties - and we saw quite a few of them that had been knocked out of the ground and were lying on their side!

    At one high point, we came around a turn to find the traffic stopped while a shepherd rounded up one of his wayward goats. I meant to get a photo of this fine beast as he walked down the road toward me, but he suddenly bolted as he got closer. I guess that I should have had the shutter button partially depressed to prime the focus. It was too late when the camera finally decided to obey my command to SHOOT.

    Slow Shutter Release
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    Bells of Lamego

    by Bwana_Brown Updated Dec 1, 2004

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    When we first checked into our northern Portugal hotel in Lamego, located on the opposite side of the square from the city's famous Shrine and at the top of its twin 686-step staircase, we were amazed at our good luck! It was only later that afternoon, after we had climbed back to our accommodations and were resting in our room, that we noticed a pattern developing!

    Over the next two days, we were able to listen to the bells just outside our room every 15 minutes between 7 AM and 9 PM. At the top of the hour, a major display of music was put on, followed by a gong or two at 15 minutes past and before the hour, while the half-hour brought a short melody!

    Fortunately, we are early risers anyway, so the 7 AM wake-up session served as good motivation to get the day underway!

    Night View - One Tower of the Shrine
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    Mountain Peaks

    by Bwana_Brown Updated Dec 1, 2004

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    If you venture into the Serra da Estrela, Portugal's highest mountain range, near Covilha, you had better be prepared for changeable weather! The highest peak in this range is 1993 m (6539 ft) but, by Royal decree, a small tower was built in this area (at Torre) to raise the peak's height to 2000-m so Portugal could claim at least one mountain top with that height!

    My 'Covilha' page details our wonderful experiences up in these mountains, with their bleak windswept and rocky appearance. The remnants of the morning's rain clouds were still scudding low and occassional clouds would sweep past us as we stood there admiring the scene. During the winter months, snow is common here and you can even do some skiing in these mountains if you wish!

    Near the Top of the Serra da Estrela
    Related to:
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    • Mountain Climbing

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  • Bwana_Brown's Profile Photo

    Stone Sidewalks

    by Bwana_Brown Updated Dec 1, 2004

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    As soon as we arrived in Lisbon, the very first thing that impressed me about Portugal were the sidewalks. Not only here, but everywhere in the country, the custom is to use millions of hand-cut stone blocks to lay 'cobblestone' sidewalks. I found that this practise really provided a nice complement to the old buildings lining the streets.

    However, one problem with this custom is that the sidewalks tend to undulate with little hills and valleys as you proceed along. Of course, in some cases the stones have been dislodged (but not very often) or the footing can be slippery because they have been so polished by the countless footsteps! Bring good walking shoes, these sidewalks are not friendly to high-heels!

    Incidently, the same practise is used on the streets (with bigger blocks) in the centre of most towns and villages. I read somewhere that making all these stone blocks was a job given to convicts!

    Displaced Sidewalk Stones in Lisbon
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  • dr.firas's Profile Photo

    Take note

    by dr.firas Updated Nov 30, 2004

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    Well I shall admit the only possible way to visit Belem is either by bus, *which is the easiest and cheapest*, or by Taxi, there are trains also that passes, but I guess the best thing to do is taking the Bus, it is fast and you will get out just in front of Monastery of Jeronimos, to start you visit!

    Lisbon

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  • dr.firas's Profile Photo

    Porto positive warning!

    by dr.firas Updated Nov 9, 2004

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    MMMMMMMMM Porto, the best wine and my favorite one!
    OK it is not a standard wine, even the taste is different, Porto is calssificated as a strong alcohol drink, and as a backed wine, it has some sort of mixed taste with a good wine and something *I don't know how to say really* like whisky!
    it is very easy to fall in love with this great alcoholic drink, and once you try you will sure consider it as one of the favorites drinks!
    so it is indeed very Dangerous, it could lead you to alcholism without your feeling!
    so if you are sure that you could be modirated, Porto is the best wine a person can have ;-D

    Lisbon

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  • cachaseiro's Profile Photo

    take care when drinking

    by cachaseiro Updated Jul 24, 2004

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    lagos is a popular place for young backpackers as a drinking hole, but be a little careful.
    some barowners are spekulating a bit too much in getting tourists very drunk cheap and then make them spend all their money when they are too drunk to know what they are doing.

    the happy hours can be used well though.
    the competiton is so strong that many bars almost give the drinks away for an hour each evening in order to attract costumers.

    drink intelligent and save lot's of money.
    Related to:
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    Car Park "Attendents"

    by freya_heaven Written Jun 12, 2004

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    In nearly all the car parks we used in Portugal, there were traveller/Gypsy men directing you to & in to parking spaces. Then expecting payment. One car park this happened there were only 2 other cars in it!!

    But we did as we saw the locals do & paid up anyway. No idea what the consequences would have been had we refused to give any money, but why risk it.

    Bit irrititating though!

    Batahala Gargoyles
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  • freya_heaven's Profile Photo

    Driving!

    by freya_heaven Updated Jun 12, 2004

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    The drivers here can be manic! Driving on your bumper, overtaking at a dangerous point, speeding etc. Fortunately we were not involved in any accidents.

    The Lisbon to Cascias and the N125 which runs along the Algarve are notoriously bad for accidents.

    Portugal has the highest per capita death rate from road accidents in Europe.

    North Portugal Countryside
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Portugal Warnings and Dangers

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