Situated just 25km, a short train ride away from the centre of Lisbon, Sintra is a perfect day trip from the city. Popular with both tourists and locals, this little town boasts various sightseeing opportunities at beautiful ancient monuments. Follow the winding streets to the town and all the way through the narrow roads up the hill, through the beautiful natural woodland to up to the highest point in Sintra to discover some of the most historically rich monuments set in the most natural and beautiful surroundings.
SPEAK is a project with aims to connect migrants, refugees and locals through a language and culture exchange programme. Through our sessions and through our events, we encourage our members to integrate and become part of our community, helping those without friends or family in Portugal to feel a sense of belonging in their new city. We have thousands of kind and generous members in our community!
At SPEAK, we want to build a community of participants in each of our cities. Aside from our classes, we use events to gather people together and to share their languages and culture. These are great as people get to meet people from different courses and cultures and create an even bigger network of friends in their new city!
As some of you, especially those who follow SPEAK on Instagram and Facebook, may already know, SPEAK was lucky enough to be invited to present at Web Summit 2016! This was a great opportunity for SPEAK to get our message out to more people, and to spread the SPEAK joy!
Web Summit is an annual technology conference, which has been called ‘the best technology conference on the planet’. This year, there were over 50,000 attendees, around 15,000 companies and 7,000 CEOs from 166 different countries giving talks on all sorts of topics…
For many migrants in Portugal, it can be difficult to settle into a new country or city. However, making this move gives people a great excuse to go out and discover more about the new place they’re living in, a chance to dive into the culture and history of their city. But how can we do this on a budget?
I’ll start with a disclaimer:
It’s impossible write everything in one post. I’m trying, but you know how one thing leads to another… In the end I’m just removing stuff like that. This is personal experiences, no objective or general truths won’t be mentioned or revealed. Also thoughts and quality of text can sometimes lose the flow – English is not my native tongue after all ^^ And yeah, grammar nazis – WATCH OUT! End of excuses.
It is clear from the moment a person sets foot in Lisbon that it is a beautifully aged city, with it’s narrow, limestone paved streets, picturesque squares and impressive monuments. Just take a walk through the centre of the city, and you will feel just like a modern day Dorothy discovering the world of Oz, “I’ve a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore”.
The city of Belém, a short 15 minute train ride away from central Lisbon, is no exception. This district is famous for it’s remarkable monuments and rich history. It is popular with tourists from all over the globe who flock here to visit the abundance of museums and to try the famed Pastel de Belém, but also with Lisbon’s own, many of whom would name Belém as their favourite place to visit in the city.
As like many of the people who get involved with SPEAK, I am a foreigner to this country. I have now been living in Lisbon for just over a month, and as a English girl from a small town in the West Country, my experiences of living here have, of course, been quite different to back home.
Of course there are obvious differences; it is much hotter here than in Britain, which for Brits is amazing, but also a little heartbreaking when it is too hot for a comforting cup of tea when I get home. And then there’s the challenge of finding your way around a new city, a matter in which Google Maps has been my saviour. But one of the biggest things has to be the language barrier.
Just 30 kilometers on the west from the marvelous capital of Portugal – Lisbon there is a small town called Cascais. It used to be a fishermen village and also a place where Kings and Queens chose to spend their summers. Full of restaurants, bars, nice walks by the sea and of course – the best view of Atlantic ocean’s sunset. As almost all the other cities in Portugal, Cascais
It was less than a month left to finish my spring semester at University and I was about to give up on summer internship or to choose a place which I didn’t want to go. I applied to many places for Erasmus internship, but some of them I didn’t get a reply, for others I had a visa problem, and some of them I just didn’t like the tasks.
I remember that day, I opened erasmusintern website to check for the last time if there was any new vacancies, and I came across SPEAK. It looked like jackpot, everything I wanted was in one place: startup, web developing and Portugal.