Lisbon Love

Lisbon

It was already the third time that we’ve visited Lisbon – a city that we’ve both fell in love from the first time we arrived there. It’s unique beauty is just amazing: Hilly narrow streets with azulejo tiled houses, elevadores that climb up the hills and roll them down again, breathtaking views from the oh so many miradouros.

Bairro Alto Lisboa 1

Lisbon street art

Alfama Lisboa 1

Part of nostalgic, part of practical reasons we stayed, like on our visits before, in the small and simple hotel Anjo Azul in the Bairro Alto quarter, a quarter which awakens in the early evening, when the streets are filled with the smell of grilled fish, and where live really starts when the sun has set and the chilly breeze from the Tejo river blows through the narrow streets. The hotel itself is in a quiet side street, though.

Bairro Alto Azulejo

Perhaps it’s the fact, that Lisbon misses big sights like other capital cities that makes it so relaxing. It’s the city as a whole, its mood, that is the attraction. We absorbed it while strolling through the streets, the little shops and pastelarias. We sat on our favourite miradouros (Santa Catarina and Portas do Sol), enjoyed – depending on the time of the day – a small bica (the Portugues equivalent to espresso) and one (or two) of the famous custard tartlets pasteis de nata or some sort of salgados – small savoury pastries, mostly filled with chicken, pork or bacalhau – together with a chilled beer.

Miradouro das portas do sol

Besides the Bairro Alto, the nearby Bica quarter and the old mourish Alfama quarter on the other side of Baixa (the “low” city centre) are perfect places to get to know Lisbon this way. Of course these districts are good places for finding some delicious dinner options as well. We enjoyed f.ex. our evening at Estrela da Bica.

Estrela da Bica Lisbon

One of the spots that we only discovered this time was the neighbourhood of Príncipe Real (for more information turn to LisbonLux), just a few steps further north of the Bairro Alto. This former residential district is transforming into a trendy quarter that is popular with young people. Old mansions are being renovated and transformed f.ex. into the concept store Embaixada, which is situated in the amazing Ribeiro da Cunha Palace. Yes, gentrification…

Shopping Embaixada

Just a few steps further down the road, you’ll find REAL and Entre Tanto, both with a similar shopping concept. Here I bought my much loved Perky alpargatas, that I wore basically during our whole stay in Portugal. [btw: What we never really decoded was the scheme behind opening hours of Portugues shops. A lot of them actually tend to open only at 12 pm.]

In the middle of the neighboorhood you’ll find the Jardim do Botânico and the Jardim do Príncipe Real, where you can sit under huge cedar trees and enjoy one more café, one more pastel

Príncipe Real

Another new place that we visited was the LX Factory complex, a former threads and fabrics factory, situated directly underneat the 25 de Abril Bridge (Alcântara), that now hosts various shops cafés, restaurants, little companies …

LX Factory Lisbon 1

… probably best subsumed under the term “young creatives”, a place where an urban, post-industrial, retro, creative, hipster lifestyle is celebrated, where Kinfolk magazine can be purchased … don’t get me wrong, I like those kind of places, it was me that wanted to go there, but then this lifestyle is so globally streamlined, that it gets somehow boring, cause, to be honest, this place could have been as well in Berlin, Amsterdam, Portland,…

LX Factory Lisbon 2

This was only the beginning of our stay in Portugal. After two nights we picked up our rental car at the airport, crossed the Ponte 25 de Abril and headed towards the south, to the – take a deep breath – Parque Natural do Sudoeste Alentejano e Costa Vicentina

Alfama Lisboa 2

6 comments

  1. Ohja, Lissabon ist so eine tolle Stadt mit einem tollen Flair, einer tollen Atmosphäre, in der ich schon viel zu lange nicht mehr war. Kennst Du das Chapitô? Das ist ein sehr schönes Restaurant, das tagsüber eine Zirkusschule ist und von der Terasse einen wunderbaren Blick über die Stadt bietet… ich sollte dringend einen Flug nach Portugal buchen!

    • Neeeein, bis jetzt kannte ich das Chapitô noch nicht … Ein Grund für einen weiteren Besuch in Lissabon! Porto ist zwar derzeit die angesagtere Stadt, aber mein Herz schlägt eben für Lissabon.

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