Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Globe Trekker Portugal the Azores|
Actor: Megan McCormick
Director: Ian Cross
Genres: Special Interests, Educational
Located in southern Europe with its west face surrounded by the Atlantic ocean Portugal is known for its sunny climate and superb beach resorts. Visitors are also attracted to the vineyards, stunning inland landscapes and ... more »
So Much Was Missed
Bruno Castelhano | Stevens Point, WI | 08/17/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I was born and raised in Portugal, but now live in the U.S., but most of my family still lives in Portugal. I was so excited when I got this video, but was ultimately disappointed.
First, the guide, Megan McCormick: she was the biggest disappointment. I couldn't get past her quirky humor and flaky behavior and enjoy the sites she was trekking through. At times, I thought it was more about her and not the country she was visiting, which she seemed content to only show us wide angle shots of. Also, she seemed out of breath a lot. I wish Ian would have visited the country instead.
Second, the sites that were picked. So much was missed that are in my opinion more spectacular or interesting places in Portugal to visit: the Serra Da Estrela Mountain region, the rugged coastline in the north with dozens of picturesque fishing villages, Sintra with its phenomenal castles and palaces, the countryside of Alentejo as well as Lagos and Sagres in the Algarve to name a few, not to mention the spectacular islands of Madeira further South of the Azores. In addition, Megan didn't even scratch the surface of Lisbon's many spectacular sites. All the sites that were picked throughout the DVD painted a much more desperately "quainter" portrait of Portugal.
Overall, the DVD does give a nice intro to some out of the way places in Portugal. And the places that weren't so out of the way weren't well presented, painting a more sort of backwater picture of those sites instead.
In any case, Portugal is a country that will not disappoint and has something for everyone: Lisbon teems with night clubs, jazz clubs, art and dozens of interesting as well as bizarre sites from the 12th century castle of Sao Jorge to the sometimes strange BaixAnima festival during the summer months. While most people will head for the sunny beaches of the Algarve overrun by humongous hotel high rises, there are still many beaches all along the vast coastline of Portugal where one can have a much more relaxing experience."
Interesting But Not Informative
J. Donahue | Alexandria, VA USA | 07/30/2005
(2 out of 5 stars)
"In preparation for my trip, I found this DVD only interesting and not at all helpful in understanding or appreciating the Azores and Portugal. Don't buy it, try to find it at your local library."
A nice video introduction to a beautiful country!
George Browne | Houston, Texas USA | 06/06/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
Globe Trekker's "Portugal and the Azores" video tour is a very decent introduction to Portugal and some of the Azores islands.
While the DVD is sparse on great detail, the host, Megan McCormick, is pleasant and at times humourous. Portugal and the Azores have too much history and culture to be crammed into this somewhat short presentation, but, that said, this production performs well in what it does show of this wonderful country and these beautiful islands.
Megan stops in most of the important tourist spots in Portugal and while she by-passes some of the important Azorean islands (such as Terceira), her closing visit to view the whales as they migrate pass the Azores, is fascinating and touching.
This DVD is not meant to give you an in-depth examination of Portugal and the Azores but rather it serves to whet your desire to visit this lovely country and partake in it's rich history and culture. From that standpoint, this video more than accomplishes its mission. I can easily recommend this DVD for the armchair traveller and anyone preparing to visit Portugal and the Azores.
Safe travels to you!
Portugal Has A Rich History
Craig Connell | Lockport, NY USA | 09/06/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"One of the former great European empires, Portugal takes up a fairly large chuck of real estate on the western Peninsula of Spain. The country's territory includes the Azores islands, which is part of this travel DVD. Megan McCormick starts up north in "Peneda Geres," the country's only National Park. She and her guide "Pedro" show us some spectacular scenery up high where the clouds are touching the mountain tops.
From there, her first stop going south on her train trip is through the beautiful Douro Valley - with one vineyard after another - to the coastal city of Porto. Those vineyards, by the way, deal exclusively in "Port" wine. Porto is a wealthy city and the second-biggest in the country.
"Portugal is famous for having potholes the size of moon craters," Megan points out as she rides a bus to her next destination: Santarem, where they have their big bullfighting ring. The trip isn't easy. "They also have the highest rate of deaths on the road in all of Europe. It is incredibly terrifying. I suggest don't look at the road, just enjoy the views.".
It's on the to the capital, Lisbon, where you might think of San Francisco, as the main bridge was inspired by the Golden Gate bridge. Also, being a hilly city, like San Francisco, there are a bunch of cable to take you up and down the steep streets. After a quick look at a unique cathedral in Evora, our host heads to the southern tip of Portugal to the beaches of the Algarve, "the French Rivera of Portugal" and the most popular tourist spot in the country. It has year-round sun, decent beaches and some "sweet" villages, as Meghan puts it. The Moorish architecture is nice on the eyes: beautiful white buildings.
The final trek, a two-hour plane ride west, is to the Azores - nine islands and the westernmost point of Europe. Except for the short story about the 13-month volcanic eruption hundreds of years ago, nothing was that exciting portion of the trip. In fact, the last 20 minutes of this episode, I felt was the host emphasizing herself a little too much. I hate it when the host of travel documentaries tries to be the hit of the show instead of letting the scenery do the job."