LISBON LOVE LETTER
Hello and welcome to my digitally written outburst of heart thoughts addressed to lovely Lisbon. In this post I'll try to put into words what we've experienced in beautiful Portugal. I'm trying to keep things short (that's what she said) but I'll take no responsibility for it! Happy reading.
FIRST OF ALL...
First of all I have to admit that it's been the best idea of all times to travel to Southern Europe in November. The weather was treating us really nicely and the sunshine has been so incredibly soul soothing. The temperatures varied between 20 degrees at daytime and approximately 15 degrees at night. I would've been dying to walk all those gradient streets in 40 degrees summer sun!
In December we're exploring Málaga and I really hope temperatures will be as steady as in Lisbon. Fingers crossed, people.
We've been travelling both ways with RyanAir for a really good rate. It's been not the most comfortable flight as it's 3h 30 min to get through, but it's totally fine for the price! Reaching the city from the airport is seriously the easiest thing, so don't stress in advance. Taking the tram is only 1,45€ one way - at first I wouldn't believe it, but welcome to Lisbon!
This view makes up
for every delay!
Our flat was by far one of the most beautiful flats I've ever stayed over in for holiday. So, I'm linking it here for you - just to be safe (never did this before so feeling a bit blogger right now). The hosts are very solicitous people and cautious at the same time. They were giving us a warm welcome, but they're not all over the place and that's the best mix, I think. The flat is located in the district of Chiado, the very center of Lisbon, which is the most amazing aspect: Everything's in walking distance. Good and bad thing at once haha.
WHAT TO SEE
Huh, there's a load of pictures waiting to be shown right now, because Lisbon just has to be seen. But also smelled, tasted and especially felt! I'm a really lucky girl having my own very ambitious tourist guide by my side, so I can say that we've seen a looot over the view days that we've been to this beauty of a city. But let's start right away.
There are a lot of things in Lisbon that you don't have to tell people to especially go see. For example the old cable cars. You see them on every corner. Or the awesome tiled houses. They're just there. All in all Lisbon is a very picturesque city and there's so much to explore on every oh so tiny corner.
My personal advice for you is to be all in, with all your senses. Be as attentive as you can be while exploring Lisbon. Everyone pays attention to something else. May it be the smallest detail someone else does not see. But I think that's what it is to explore Lisbon. To experience the liveliness and beauty of the city in your very own way and let go of yourself. Oh and eat many pastries, of course. Very best advice of the day (and all time).
Most impressive to me were the views from all the viewpoints we've climbed. The color spectrum is just so awesome and I love how the bridge Ponte 25 de Abril is gracing the background of every scene.
We dedicated one whole day to the exploration of Bélem, one of Lisbon districts far west. As my other half has been very interested in the seeing the Torre de Bélem my secret craving has been tasting the legendary Pastéis de Bélem. Okay well, of course the Torre was beautiful too and the district of Bélem with it's view at the Tejo, it's parks and Mosteiro dos Jerónimos (a really impressive cloister) is really charming. But let me tell you the Pastéis were sooooo good! We also made a quick stop at the Padrão dos Descobrimentos, a sailor's monument, from where you have a really nice sight at the Ponte 25 de Abril.
On our way back to the city center we also stopped at the Time Out Market. It's a huge market hall where you get everything foody - from local food to pizza to macarons. Do I have to say more? It's a foodies paradise placed in Lisbons h(e)aven. Such wordplay, much wow.
On a sunny Sunday we took the train to Sintra. It's a village located 25 km westerly from Lisbon offering plenty of beautiful sights to explore. And by plenty I mean two palaces, a fortress, great mansions and a historic center. Oh and not to forget about the fair and beautiful nature! Seems legit, doesn't it? The short trip to Sintra is worth every penny, I swear.
First we went up to the Castelo dos Mouros, a really impressive fortress reminding me of The Great Wall of China (just not as great). God bless that one human being arranging a bus route that goes from the city center of Sintra up to the hill where the fortress and palace are located. This hill is probably the steepest hill with the curviest roads I've ever seen. The view would've been worth the walk but my feet are so thankful, really.
Afterwards we went on to the Palácio Nacional da Pena which is such a colourful, vivid architectural artwork. It's been said that some parts of Europapark, a German theme park and resort, are inspired by the Pálacio. Mind-blowing, right?
Not only the colours are surreal, also the construct of the palace is so different and interesting. Take time to explore and read about it! And enjoy the view from the highest point of the Pálacio. If you're lucky and the day is clear you're able to see the ocean.
Unfortunately we didn't have enough time left to visit the second palace Sintra has to offer, the Quinta da Regaleira. One of many reasons to come back!
Mesa Com Pao
Lemme tell you in advance: The food's been delisssshh! On our first day we've discovered a really charmy bakery called "Mesa Com Pao" right around the corner of our flat. And yes, every following day we've been enjoying their delicious pastries over and over again. They offer a really wide and various range of baked goods and pastries that's changing from day to day. If you're staying in the area of Chiado - go there!
The other night I've been taken out (what a lovely boyfriend, huh?) to a restaurant called "Sacramento", which offers local food in a higher manner. It's also located in the district of Chiado and impresses with it's really good service and such good quality food. It's been a real feast with fresh, local fish and chocolate strawberries in the end - happy wife, happy life! The prices aren't too little but all in all it's totally fine, because the Lisbon prices aren't high at all and what you're getting for what you give is really worth it. Definitely a recommendation!
The most beautiful sunset we've watched from a car park. No joking. Maybe I'm withholding that we both had a drink in our hands sitting between palm trees and listening to sick beats on a rooftop terrace. But that doesn't matter right now. Okay, joking. But yep, you've heard right: there's a rooftop bar on the highest level of a car park. How sick, isn't it? As we approached the car park searching for the "PARK" there were no signs to follow. But don't get confused. Just get up to the highest level and there you are - enjoying a good sundowner with an excellent view.
Right next to the Time Out Market mentioned before lies an Italian restaurant called "Otto". Not very portuguese, I know. But please don't mind me - good food is good food. The "Otto" is the right place to get dinner after a long day full of impressions and long walks. Both the pizza and the pasta are recommendable. Choose what you like the most and you won't be disappointed. Also the interior is kinda fancy.
So that's it folks. If you've read this whole lot of words you must be crazy but a good kind of crazy. Because it's all about Lisbon and oh dear Lisbon is a beaut. Did I mention this already? Don't think so. This love letter is coming to an end now. I really hope you enjoyed it or it helped you planning your next trip. If you have any questions don't hesitate to ask!
And in cause of your patience whilst reading my numerous thoughts, here it is - the best picture of this whole post:
On our last evening we literally stumbled into Francois Hollande. What a fate.
And now thank you for reading & stay safe!