I went to Lisbon, Portugal. I loved it and therefor I’d love to share my experience with you. Here I will recommend sightseeings, food and more. I will also spread my foundings on the Portuguese people.
We arrived the evening before at the airport and took the red line of the metro to Alameda where we switched to the green line to Baixa-Chaido. For almost a week we stayed at the Palácio das Especiarias Guesthouse. The man who welcomed us showed us around and told us bits about the old building. We eventually had to walk 83 stairs to get to our small apartment. Breakfast was on about 40 stair steps high and consisted of various, delicious sweets and drinks and bread with fruit and egg.
On the first day we went to the Elevador de Santa Justa and waited in line. The trip in the elevator wasn’t that interesting. We just sat and waited for a minute. It was a pretty elevator, but wouldn’t be worth a long wait. We came in early, so we had luck. And here comes my first recommendation. You can get to the top of the elevator by entering through the back. Just look at where the bridge of the elevator leads and follow it. You should be able to go up through the back of the building. It was a beautiful view, really!
Next up was Cemitério dos Prazeres. This is a cemetery created in 1833 after an outbreak of a cholera epidemic. It was truly stunning to walk through it! Some doors were ajar so that you could peek inside, a little creepy! I recommend that you walk to the sides of the cemetery (when you enter, walk straight ahead until you reach the end) because there you will have the best view of Lisbon!
Then we went to the Calouste Gulbenkian museum. This belonged to a rich man who traveled the world and collected beautiful things from among all sorts of countries! I’ve seen pots from Turkey, carpets from China and scupltures from Egypt. My favorite part were the paintings, there were so many defined ones!
As if that wasn’t enough of a busy day, we continued our journey by traveling to Avenida to escape from the Serial Killer! It was incredibly hard and it all seemed a little amateur (was great fun still). The woman who explained the rules had a little trouble with her English, pointing out several times in a row to not touch the portophone because it had electric wires sticking out. Me thinking she actually meant it was that dangerous was too afraid to come even near the thing, thus why we couldn’t get far in the game. Still, this room was a little too hard. I can’t believe some people actually figured it out.
Sintra it is! We went to see the Quinta and Pena palace. My sister wanted to see the well of Quinta and I wanted to go to Pena, so we mixed the two. It was a big walk and it was warm, but we made it out alive. I liked it, but I had expected more of the well to be honest. We didn’t enter the palace of Pena but stayed in the Gardens because our chauffeur said that the palace wouldn’t be worth the wait if it was busy inside. You’d have to wait 2 to 3 hours, he said.
After that we went to the Food Court which was a little busy. It was literally stacked! With trouble we managed to find a spot on high chairs and had to get our food in turns because we didn’t want to lose our spots. I liked the food court in the Vasco De Gama mall much better, it was so much more chill.
We started our day with the yellow tram to a massive market. It’s the most famous one I believe, but I don’t remember where it was. It was beautiful and I loved walking through it. Didn’t buy anything, but my mom did buy a cute bowl.
Then we went to the Vasco da Gama mall and strutted around, had lunch and went back to the hotel to relax! Our hotel had the smallest pool, a circle with a diameter of 3 meters which was maybe 1.5 meters deep.
Then we had a bike tour, Up The Hill from the company Boost. We had electric bikes which was so much fun! It was a little scary at first and I couldn’t get used to the jolt of speed that you got every now and then but it was fun. We had a group of maybe 12 people and there were 2 guides. They introduced themselves as the first one being serieus and the second one being funny. They were fun! Every now and then we would get off the bike and visit a place such as a small alley or a church.
Then we went to the Sexiest WC on Earth by Renova, because our tour guides had recommended it. Well, that was the one thing I will not recommend to anyone. It wasn’t that sexy, sure it was pretty. It would’ve been a nice surprise if you came across such a toilet in a hotel but it wasn’t worth the title. The walls were covered in wood and stone and on one wall was a gigantic mirror. That’s it. Literally.
And finally we went to the LX Factory, which was gorgeous but disappointing. Maybe it was because we rushed through it, we haven’t seen that much of it. The library was cool but so messy. I couldn’t find any good English books of movies, which was sad.
We went to the beach! Some dog visited us and laid down next to me on my beach towel. When our parasol flew away the dog left straight away, searcing for shadow again. Adorable! After that we went to Roccio because my mother thought she had seen a cinema there, but she was wrong so we went to the hotel and relaxed for the res tof the day.
On our last day in Lisbon we went to the Oceanario de Lisboa. There were large queues in order to get tickets, but my father was a genius by ordering tickets online on his phone as we were waiting in line. We were inside so much faster. But boy, it was busy! You literally had to wait a couple of minutes in front of windows to get sight of a fish. The staff shouldn’t let in so many people at once to be honest, it really ruins the experience.
And then we went home, as simple as that.
Lisbon, Lisboa, Lissabon. The capital of Portugal has pleasantly surprised me with its delicious Steak With Three Cheese Sauce and great heat. Watch out when searching a place for dinner, because the streets are filled with waiters who are trying to lure you into their chairs!
There was this Indian restaurant, close to our hotel, which had a large queue of people who were all waiting to be seated. We saw that on our first evening and decided to come back the following evening a little early. Once we were seated, it was a huge disappointed. I liked my curry steak, but it was salty (like most of the Portuguese food) and wouldn’t be worth a long wait.
We used Lisboa Travel Cards for our first three days to travel by metro and bus. Then we used our Viva Card for the followings days for the metro and boat to get to Cacilhas. Watch out! My sister left her own viva card in the hotel so we had to buy here a new one and chose for the 1 day deal. She couldn’t get on the boat with it? It didn’t say that it was only meant for the metro, so watch out with that. She couldn’t even trade it for a normal card for the boat!
And once in Cacilhas we tried taking the bus to our beach, but our Viva Cards didn’t work. Apparently those are only for Lisbon, and where we were wasn’t Lisbon any more. They should adress that more clearly!
So that was Lisbon. I’m not so glad to be back, but I am kind of excited for my senior year.