Cheap Seats: Bargain airfares to Portugal and Sweden
January 10, 2007
Next weekend — Jan. 19-21Faro, Portugal: 77.31 pounds round tripFly Monarch from London Gatwick to Faro.
Start your visit to Faro with a walk along the waterfront and the yacht-filled harbor. Visit the maritime museum to explore the history of this waterside town or stop for a coffee at one of the many cafes along the way. The sandy beaches are superb for water activities if it’s warm enough, and the surrounding estuary is visited by hundreds of migrating birds and home to many species of animals.
Heading back into town, stop at the orange-tree-lined square containing Bishop’s Palace and the Se (cathedral). The cathedral, built on the site of an ancient mosque and before that a Roman forum, contains a beautifully tiled chapel along with sculptures of two Nubians. Another beautifully decorated church is the Church of Sao Francisco, with panels of earthenware tiles in white and blue depicting the life of the patron saint, St. Francis.
From there, you can visit the Church of Nossa Senhora do Carmo, with an extensive array of gold and guilded decor. It is here you will find the unique Chapel of Bones. The chapel is lined with the human skulls and bones of more than 1,000 monks.
If the weather forces you indoors, visit the municipal museum, found within the church grounds, with artifacts dating from the Roman settlement of the area.
In the evening, head to Rua do Prior in the heart of the town to find dozens of cafes, pubs and dance clubs.
Next month — Feb. 15-18Gothenburg, Sweden: 85.60 pounds round tripFly FlyME from London Stansted to Gothenburg Landuetter.Start your winter visit of Sweden’s second largest city at Gotaplatsen, where a trio of buildings including the concert hall, municipal theater and Goteborg Art Museum can be found. The Goteborg Art Museum houses a large collection of Nordic, Renaissance and modern art alongside sculptures by Carl Milles and Auguste Rodin.
From there, venture to the Rohasska Knostsloydmusset, a museum containing a large collection of European furnishings, china, glass, pottery and Asian artifacts. The museum also holds permanent and temporary exhibits of books, silver and Chinese and Japanese art. Next, visit the East India House museum, focusing on the archeological, cultural and medicinal history of Gothenburg, with exhibits including displays from the Viking era and local area artifacts.
Children will enjoy a visit to the Naturhistoriska Museet I Gotheborg, which displays stuffed and mounted animals from all over the world, including Sweden’s only stuffed blue whale.
Visit the informative sea-themed museums at the port, including the Maritime Museum, the Maritime Center partially aboard the destroyer Samland and the East Indiaman, which contains an exact replica of the 18th-century tea clipper Gotheborg.
Airfare prices include estimated taxes and are courtesy of the Web site www.skyscanner.net. Prices were verified as of Monday afternoon when Stars and Stripes UK went to press. Deals are not guaranteed to be available; restrictions may apply.