As my Instagram followers have known now, last week was really exciting because … I went on a mini vacation! Yes, finally!!
While the overall pandemic situation is certainly still serious here in Europe, things are also clearly improving so there have been some relaxations of restrictions that have been put in place since around Fall last year. And, thankfully, this has partly covered travel as well. Still only a little bit, though, as it appears that in general the governments are taking a much careful approach than last year. This results in the list of “possible” destinations to still be rather limited this time around (I put “possible” there because it is relative depending on your willingness to deal with the restrictions and requirements 😀 ). To me personally, I follow the official recommendations of both the Dutch government and the destination country; this means both countries need to permit non-essential travel (with caution, of course).
And right now, Portugal satisfies this condition! The Dutch government has been classifying Portugal as “yellow” since mid-May, and Portugal also welcomes travelers from the Netherlands without the need of a quarantine (only a negative PCR-test result required) since about the end of May.
It also happened that I had three days of holiday allowance that would expire by the end of June. These three days were part of the “basic” allowances which couldn’t be “sold”, meaning these must be used. So the timing of this travel relaxation to Portugal did come at the very right time (because I don’t “like” using my holiday allowance just to stay home), and about three weeks ago I started to look for a ticket. Thankfully I still found a reasonable deal and booked a return ticket to … Lisbon 😀
I have only visited Lisbon once before … about ten and a half years ago! Lol 😆 . So this was a nice time to come back anyway as it has been a really while, haha 😀 . I will share the story of the trip itself in a separate post. Anyway, this also means that … I finally flew my first flight in 2021, which only took off in June! Lol 😆 . Oh geez, remember how I took flying for granted? In 2017 I even wrote a post about being on a flight-free streak that lasted for … six weeks. LOL.
Anyway, I am really happy to be able to have this vacation this time around. It has really been quite busy at work recently, actually, but still … I haven’t taken much holiday since the pandemic began so a break is definitely overdue. This time I only went for about five days in total though so while it is normal for any vacation to feel “short”, this one in particular was indeed a short one, haha. But still, it was better than nothing! 🙂