Cascais – Mouth of Hell

Cascais – Mouth of Hell

Cascais, Portugal – February 18, 2012


Leslie, Tyler, and I had breakfast in the hotel this morning. When we left the hotel, we walked to the same Metro stop we had used the previous night, Terreiro do Paco. Even though it was about 10:00, the stop was closed. I do not know why.

So, we crossed the street and hailed a taxi. We needed to get to the station at Cais do Sodre. That is where we caught the train to Cascais. Once again, with our LisboaCard, we were able to hop right on the next train. For anyone planning to go to Lisbon, I would highly recommend this card. One can buy it for a 24, 28, or 72-hour period. The card has discounts for many of the local attractions.

Our train departed promptly at 10:20. We arrived in Cascais at about 11:00. It was a beautiful ride because the train hugs the coastline for much of the route. At first, the shore is that of the Tagus River. Roughly halfway through the trip, the coast becomes that of the Atlantic Ocean.

Westbound trains at the station in Lisbon. The one on the left is going to Cascais.
The very nice interior of the train.

We got off the train and began walking in the general direction of the tourist information office.  We ended up walking down Rua Frederico looking for the office.  Along the way, we stopped in several of the tourist stores.  When we finally arrived at the tourist information office, we found it was just as closed as the metro stop had been.  We thought that was quite unusual for a beautiful Saturday morning.

The tiled corner of a building in Cascais.
This street leads toward the train station in Cascais.
A typical street sign in Cascais. This one reads something like, the Wide Queens Beach.
A portion of Queens Beach at Cascais Bay.
A wine shop on Rua Frederico Arouca.
A photographer walking past the wine shop.
An art gallery on Rua Frederico Arouca.

Next, we walked to the fish market, which is, as one might imagine, right next to the dock. The fish market was also closed. We found out later that the market opens around 17:00 on Saturdays and the sale is an auction. Near the fish market was a huge stone building. I was not able to determine the use of that building. Jutting into the bay from that building was a cement pier. That pier is where the catch of the day comes ashore. I walked to the end of the dock and took several photos. The sunshine and the brilliant blue sky added to the scene.

Some less than seaworthy boats on the beach in front of the Hotel Baía.
At the end of the beach and the beginning of the pier sits the Palácio Seixas.
Birds on the beach.
Some boats apparently cast aside at the base of Palácio Seixas.
The Palácio Seixa as seen from the end of the pier.
Seafood traps and a boat at the end of the pier.
A lone boat moored in the bay in front of Hotel Baía.

We had been hunting for a restroom since we arrived. Finally, we stopped at the patio cafe of the Hotel Baia. We stayed there for a vino tinto and a Coke. Luckily, they had some immaculate restrooms. We lounged there for a while in the beautiful weather and watched the activity surrounding the bay.

Reflecting on my Merlot.
Mr. GQ at the restaurant at Hotel Baía.

After our drinks, we strolled down a different street. In a shop there, I was able to find a sticker of Portugal that I put in my journal. At that same store, Leslie got another magnet (if she continues her collection, we will soon be able to get an MRI standing beside the refrigerator). At a separate store, just off Rua Regimento 19 da lnfantaria, I found a guidebook on Portugal published by the same company that publishes the guides I have bought throughout Spain.

We stopped for lunch at a sidewalk cafe called O Poeta at the corner of Rua Regimento 19 da lnfantaria and Largo Luiz de Camoes. The three of us split two Italian pepperoni pizzas. We thought they were the superb…probably due mainly to the ambiance. Also, there was a wandering accordion player; delightful and very relaxing!

A statue of King Peter I. He reigned from 1357 to 1367.

A man and small girl walk past the front doors of the municipal building. From left to right, the flags are the European Union, Portugal, and the City of Cascais.
A small plaza in Cascais at lunch time.
The west side of the plaza as seen from our table at O Poeta.
The very pink O Poeta.
A statue of Luis de Camões (1524 – 1580) in the plaza. He is Portugal’s most famous poet.

After lunch we walked about 20 or 30 minutes out of town to Boca do Inferno (Mouth of Hell). Along the way, we decided to stroll down toward the water’s edge. It is incredibly rocky. We could only get to within about 20 yards of the ocean. To get directly to the water’s edge would have required much more agility and energy than any of us had at the time. Boca do Inferno is an area where cliffs are facing the Atlantic Ocean. At one of the cliffs is a hole. As the waves reach the cliffs, they go through the hole and “blow” straight up. I can only imagine what this area looks like when there is a severe storm. There were two plaques we saw that were commemorating people that had been drug to their death through Boca do Inferno. That was quite gruesome, but the views were striking.

Just before the cliffs, there was a restaurant, a coffee shop, and an open-air market selling tourist items. Of course, we had to go through the market. Leslie found a beautiful crocheted sweater for only 20€ (US$24.41). The older woman from whom she bought the sweater also threw in a hand-embroidered dishtowel. The towel says the following in Portuguese; “Passei por aqui lembrei me de ti.” Roughly translated, I believe it means “I passed through here and thought of you.”

A very narrow building overlooking the bay.
The center of Cascais.
A set of stairs leading to the upper street.
A panorama of the Bay of Cascais.
Two boys rowing ashore.
A seagull watching the bay.
Detail of the seagull.
Cascais and the Bay of Cascais.
The east wall of the Palácio da Cidadela de Cascais (Palace of Cascais Citadel).
The Cascais Marina sits at the base of the palace wall.
A sailing monument at the marina.
The Portuguese flag at one of the entries to the marina.
The Saint Martha Lighthouse.
The Count of Castro Guimarães Palace.
A small restaurant across the inlet from the lighthouse.
Photographers at another inlet.
The Farol Hotel with the Saint Martha Lighthouse in the distance.
A seagull flying near the lighthouse.
The housing overlooking the Atlantic Ocean is not too shabby…
The market at Boca do Inferno (Mouth of Hell).
Boca do Inferno with the Atlantic Ocean in the distance.
A man watching the waves at Boca do Inferno.
Detail of Boca do Inferno.
The cliff face at Boca do Inferno.
The cliffs west and north of Boca do Inferno.
A group fishing at Boca do Inferno.
This memorial plaque at Boca do Inferno reads, António da Silva who lives self-sacrificingly in the day May 13, 1963, to try to save other lives that the sea has snatched.
Written about the suicide of A Mulher Escarlate, the top portion of this plaque reads, I can not live without you. The other mouth of hell will catch me will not be as hot as yours.
Boca do Inferno.
A couple of Carnival revelers??

After we finished at the Boca do Inferno, we stood at a bus stop, waiting for the next bus. It arrived some fifteen minutes later. We got on only to find out our LisboaCards did not work. We got off and decided to wait for a taxi. About five minutes later, a cab came by, and we flagged it down. As we were about halfway back to the train station, the driver asked if we had called the taxi. We said no, we had just flagged him down. That made him upset; not at us, he was fretting about it all the way to the train station.

We caught the next train out of Cascais and made our way back to our hotel. Tyler was not feeling well, so we lounged in the room. Because he was feeling bad, we decided to eat that evening in the hotel.

At dinner, Tyler and I began with cream of vegetable soup that was wonderful. Leslie had a Cesar salad. For the main course, I had grilled sea bass. I thought I had died and gone to heaven! It was delicious. Leslie and Tyler had a chicken and vegetable dish. They both liked it, but it certainly did not look as good as mine.

After dinner, it was back to the room.

A very unique mural on an abandoned building in Lisbon, Portugal.

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