There was a time many moons ago when I used to wonder how much pleasure one would derive from taking a day trip on a coach. I’ve always loved the freedom that a car can provide. This said, I’ve started to discover that as a car passenger, you’re able to concentrate fully on what you’re passing and not having to give the winding roads undivided attention. All those moons ago, I used to see the elderly lined up alone side their coach waiting to board, not realising I’d become one of them old folk doing the same. Well, I’m not their age yet, but I joined the club and it’s quite something to undertake and can be thoroughly enjoyable. This coach journey was to Obidos, Leiria.
Obidos itself has a population of around 3100. Obidos is a classic fortified town, and is an extremely picturesque place and possibly, one of the most beautiful in Portugal. It’s a place that radiates traditional Portuguese charm, and consists of narrow cobbled streets, quaint houses and atop, an imposing medieval castle, which once guarded the region. It’s a tourist magnet without doubt and I’d say, a must visit place if you appreciate the charm of old Portugal, but I would also caution that during the peak of the tourist season, it becomes very busy by all accounts and that leads to congestion in those little streets.
One of the very interesting aspects of Obidos true town, is that the streets are filled with tiny shops selling delightful objects and to really appreciate the wares, moving space is required in these one time domestic houses.
My coach trip started at 8am for this day trip and we also took in Bacalhôa Buddha Eden. I shall post on that beautiful place later. The round trip was little over 300km but being Portugal, and without road congestion for the most, the distance becomes less material, but a little relevant and here’s why. Obidos, it is said only requires a couple of hours to fully see by some tour guides. I would disagree simply because if you are really interested in a place, you do need more time and even though brilliant, having a tour guide, you become restricted in the time you can spend in various shops unless you wish to become lost as is the case with me on occasions. Also, there is the imposing medieval castle which must be seen and walked around. This I failed to do on this occasion so a car trip is planned for another visit. Day out cost, euros 23 to include a five course lunch. Not bad.