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Lisbon – glorious, romantic, beautiful Lisbon. City of golden light and ancient streets. Ancient seaport destroyed by a huge earthquake and rebuilt. Lisbon – city of warmth and kindness, city of longing, city of saudade.
If you are planning a trip to Lisbon then below you will find the top 8 recommendations of things to do and see. The following will capture the essence of Portugal’s capital and give you a chance to experience the city for yourself.
As soon as you arrive in Lisbon you will hear the trundle of the iconic trams that run throughout the city. The Number 28 is the most famous of all the routes and one of the best ways of seeing the city as a whole. Passing through many of the major parts of Lisbon, the circular journey will take you past many tourist attractions – Alfama, the Sé, Graca quarter, Baixa and Bairro Alto, Chiado and Estrela.
Buy a 3 day travel ticket at the Carris kiosk on Figueira Square and you can hop on and off all the trams which will save your feet and is much cheaper than paying each time. Watch your bags as pickpockets are rife but do enjoy the ride.
Just around 40 minutes train ride from Lisbon is the magical village of Sintra. Take a ride out into the Portuguese countryside and up into the mountains for breath-taking scenery. Sintra is the place of palaces – once the area loved by nobility. Whilst there are many attractions here, my favourite is Quinta da Regaleira, a fairytale folly of castle just outside the main village. Mysterious and romantic, it is a wonderful place to rest and recharge.
Traditional Portuguese music is known as Fado. Currently, the most famous singer of fado is Mariza whose amazing voice has delighted across the world. Fado is traditionally sung by a woman dressed in long skirts and wrapped in a shawl accompanied by the Portuguese guitar and evokes what the Portuguese call ‘saudade’.
This word is difficult to translate accurately into English. It means something akin to missing, longing and hope. Listen to the music and you will experience the feeling. These days there are bars set up for tourists so you need to seek out the smaller places where the locals still attend. Lapa and Alfama are good options.
Alfama is the ancient heart of Lisbon that survived the great 1755 earthquake. The maze-like streets are where you will find many of the typical scenes you see on postcards from Lisbon. Houses decorated with traditional azulejos (Portuguese tile), washing hanging outside the windows, iron balconies profusely decked with flowers, sites such as Lisbon Castle, the birthplace of St. Anthony, museums and secret stairways. Step into the past and take in the atmosphere.
Miradouro’s are viewpoints across Lisbon and everyone has a favourite. Mine is the Miradouro das Portos do Sol, which will be yours? These wonderful places offer you a feast of the best views across the city. Often you will find a bar or café situated close by so you can watch the sunset whilst sipping a galão or cerveja (a milky coffee or a beer).
Belém is a district in Lisbon reached by the number 15 tram from Commercial Square. Here are 3 of the most famous Lisbon sites: The Discoveries Monument, Belém Tower and the Jeronimous Monestary and gardens. In summer the place is heaving with tourists so try going in the early morning or on a weekday. Visit the Pasteis de Belém and sample the famous custard tarts then make your way to the magnificent sites nearby.
Build by a student of Eifel, this giant iron lift in the city centre takes you up the steep hill from Baixa to Chiado/Bairro Alto. Upon exiting the gleaming wooden car you are treated to a spectacular view across the city. From here you can visit the Gothic ruins of the Carmo Monestary.
Salt cod is the national dish of Portugal and the Portuguese say they have 365 ways of cooking it – one for everyday. Almost every restaurant will have one ‘bacalhau’ dish. Also try feijoada (bean stew), caldo verde (green soup) or and one of the many doces (sweets) that the Portuguese love. Arroz doce (rice pudding) is nearly always on the menu. Just about every café has a wonderful display of sweet pastries so indulge over your morning coffee in the sun. Of course, come evening, you must also sample a glass of port and try ginjinha (cherry liqueur).
From funky night clubs to fado bars; from ancient streets to modern architecture: Lisbon has something for everyone. It is a place where young and old can mingle and and all are given a warm welcome.
Lisbon the capital of Portugal and also its largest city is known to be one of the populated European city ranking at the 9th position. Lisbon is an important city with regards to finance, commerce, media, arts, entertainment, tourism and education.
Lisbon is also a happening tourist spot as it offers a vibrant and thriving culture, which attracts visitors all round the year. Lisbon enjoys a Subtropical – Mediterranean Climate, which implies warm winters and warm summers making the overall conditions suitable for touring at any time of the year. On the other hand, it is advisable for tourists to carry an umbrella and a jacket at all times.
Lisbon is known for its architectural marvels, the Museu Nacional de Arte Antiga (National Museum of Ancient Art), the Museu do Azulejo (Museum of Portuguese-style Tile Mosaics), the Museu Calouste Gulbenkian (Calouste Gulbenkian Museum) are some of the must see places.
Rossio, Lisbon’s main town square or city centre is a place where one can witness an amalgamation of cultures and lifestyles. Belém is a place to visit if one likes to see monuments, art and culture. Belem encompasses the amazing Belem Tower and Jerónimos Monastery; CCB, which hosts the art works of Picasso, Dalí, Duchamp on a permanent basis and Coach Museum, which houses the world’s largest collection of royal vehicles and coaches.
Lisbon offers an exciting nightlife. Tourists can try out ginjinhais made out of ginja berry and served as a shot. Ginjinhais is offered across many local bars in Lisbon while the most famous bar serving the same is the ‘A Ginjinha Bar’, which serves ginjinhais shots all throughout the day.
For those who wish to check out Lisbon’s youth life and scene should head for Bairro Alto popularly called as the Bairro. Bairro Alto is known to offer various music cultures ranging from reggae, hip hop, heavy metal music, goth, punk and even gay at specially dedicated clubs and bars. At the same time, Bairro Alto during the day acts as a normal neighborhood hub where people venture out to shop for daily needs, visit popular art galleries, book stores, etc.
Cascais and Estoril are two beach towns located near Lisbon. These two towns can be visited to relax and spend a day at the beach. Tourists can enjoy half an hour train ride along the coast, offering marvelous views of the Portuguese Riviera as it departs from the Cais do Sodré station.
Lastly, the Vasco Da Gama Bridge is yet another important landmark in Lisbon. Vasco Da Gama Bridge stretches 10.7 miles and is the longest in entire Europe. This bridge built over the Tagus River is indeed a marvelous piece in both its architecture and engineering.
Article Source: https://EzineArticles.com/expert/Leah_Whitehorse/148941, https://EzineArticles.com/expert/John_Wills_Smith/1296067