Blogs from Lisboa, Portugal, Europe - page 4

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Europe » Portugal » Lisboa April 19th 2018

Thursday: Bright and early, on this gorgeous sunny day, Glen, Karen, Mike, and I hopped on the Metro then smoothly transitioned to our train. Destination...the beach town of Cascais. Shorts and capris, sunscreen and hats, and most importantly, NO COATS!! Yippee! Thanks to Mike and a chatty Lisbon Uber driver, we had a walking tour and a lunch destination. A stop at the Info booth gave us a map and directions to some cool "not to miss" places to see. Looked like a fun day to me. First stop after the train was an outdoor cafe for cappuccino at the tiny Rainha Beach, where we decided when and where to meet for lunch. Four people are generally too many to keep together on these jaunts and deciding to split always seems to work better for us. ... read more
Beach map
Rue Frederico, Cascais
Municipal Building

Europe » Portugal » Lisboa April 18th 2018

Wednesday: Another beautiful, warm day. Mike wore shorts and I left my coat at home. Yow-zah! It was a perfect day to explore the Alfama neighborhood, located just below the Sao Jorge Castle. This is the oldest area of the city, dating back to the Visigoths, and was largely spared by the 1755 earthquake/tsunami/fire. The streets are too narrow for most car traffic, making it a really fun place to get ourselves lost. To get to our destination, we needed to walk to the Metro line that goes to the river edge on the border of Alfama. The nice, uncrowded train ride let us out at the port where the fishermen used to bring their load. Today, it is now the docking place for cruise ships to bring their load. Still pretty, despite the change in ... read more
Three Marias
Sangria at lunch
Public Bath

Europe » Portugal » Lisboa » Almada April 16th 2018

Monday: SUN, YIPPEE!!! Today, Mike and I decided to take an Uber across the April 25 Bridge and visit the 300 ft Cristo Rei statue. This is kind of a San Francisco meets Rio de Janeiro scene. Red suspension bridge and Jesus over-looking Lisbon. The artwork at this pilgrimage site is surprisingly modern in its style and is present in all of the chapels. We took the elevator to the top of the base where we could get a different view of the city that we have had on the opposite side of the river. The park around the monument had a religious vibe with the Stations of the Cross and chanting but also an open, nature trail feeling along the river. Glen, Karen, Mike & I had decided this morning to meet for lunch at ... read more
Selfie w Jesus
The steps to lunch?

Europe » Portugal » Lisboa April 15th 2018

Sunday: Another downpour! Oy! Raincoats are getting a workout. Today, the four of us rose a little later than usual and spent the morning reading the Washington Post and doing the crossword puzzle. Ever loyal, Mike read the Press Democrat, too. There is a bagel place down the street and I volunteered to go out to get breakfast. Now, we have tried to go to Raffi's Bagels at least three times since being here but, each time, the place has been in the process of shutting down for the day. Today, on a rainy Sunday morning, I thought, "yum, bagels". Sorry, closed today. WTF, Felicia? No problem, local pastry shop had outstanding croissants. Rain eased up and Karen and Glen went in search of a mall and Mike and I went to the Gulbenkian Museum, one ... read more
The Museum welcoming committee
Irises on the pond
The Spring, Homage to Jean Goujon

Europe » Portugal » Lisboa April 10th 2018

Le 10 avril 2018, Pas très original, mais ce matin, il pleut. Pas trop grave, on a un train à prendre pour Lisbonne. Au moins, on apprend de nos erreurs et on saute dans un taxi jusqu'à la gare pour attraper notre train. Le trajet jusqu'à la capitale dure un peu moins de 3 heures, puis, après un bref tour de métro, on arrive dans le quartier où se situe notre hébergement. On devient des pros du repérage et en 5 minutes top-chrono (mais tout en montée), on parvient à notre appartement pour les 3 prochaines journées. Vite-vite, on fait le check-in (en mangeant encore quelques pâtisseries offertes par nos hôtes) puis on part à la recherche d'un petit resto rapide pour le dîner. On tombera sur le resto au meilleur rapport qualité-prix de tout le ... read more
Château de Saint-George
Alfama, que je t'aime
L'Alfama, après la pluie

Europe » Portugal » Lisboa April 9th 2018

Monday, 2 April – Lisbon, Portugal We picked up a car at the Seville train station and drove to Lisbon, through what was a scenic drive. There landscape leaving Seville was hills and trees, and about 1.5hrs north the trees stopped on an invisible line and paved the way for endless km’s of farming fields. We turned off the main highway at that point and headed west to Portugal. The scenery only got more charming with super green hills, lots of small dams and farming animals dotted amongst huge tree groves. We think they were olives but unlike Spain where the olives are in neat rows and the ground is dirt, in Portugal they are left to grow naturally so they cover the landscape in an ad hoc fashion and have the loveliest green carpet of ... read more
Portuguese countryside after crossing the border
Cromeleque dos Almendres (their version of Stonehenge)
25 April bridge, crossing over into Lisbon. It was the Golden Gate we never got to see!

Europe » Portugal » Lisboa April 9th 2018

Monday is sun day!! Taking advantage of this window of beautiful weather, the four of us headed out early. First thing, try the subway, which turned out to be a wonderful experience. Although, above ground, the stairwells are a bit seedy with heavy graffiti and litter, downstairs is immaculate. Clean, well marked platforms and quiet cars, made us want to use the metro system more. Next public transport...the trolley. Easier said than done since everyone in Lisbon had the same idea. After waiting in a line for 30ish minutes, we finally boarded the 12E tram up the hill to the Castle of St George (Castelo do Sao Jorge). Crowded and bumpy, the ancient car wound its way through the narrow streets, barely missing walls and parked cars. Yikes! The castle is amazing! Located in the Alfama ... read more
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Europe » Portugal » Lisboa April 8th 2018

Sunday morning, it is beautiful and bright, and we are anticipating today's activities. Mike, and I figured that we would do a quick load of laundry, eat a good breakfast, and then head out. By 11am, the four of us were Ubering to an area called Rossio, Lisbon's historic center. This peaceful square, with its beautiful wave-like mosaics and flowing fountains, belied its infamous past, tho. Both the headquarters of the Inquisition and the 16th-century slave markets were located here. Every culture has its sad, dark side, no? The Portuguese people tore down the old buildings, and, in their place, built a beautiful theater. North of the plaza, starts a long, tree-lined boulevard called Avenda da Liberdade, that works its way up to the newer, more modern part of town. It is Lisbon's answer to the ... read more
Pasteis delivery service
Mama teaching her tiny ducklings to swim
Street mosaic

Europe » Portugal » Lisboa April 7th 2018

Friday, pouring rain, what's a household to do? Let's get an Uber and go to lunch. Our first stop was a place called Time Out Market, a huge food court in the Baixa area, filled with lots of fancy restaurants' satellite food stalls. Rows and rows of tall wooden tables with people wandering around looking for somewhere to lite. Ceramic dishes, wine glasses, and real cutlery...ooo la la! Braving the rain, Glen, Karen, Mike, and I, in another Uber, headed out for coffee at A Brasileira in Chiado. This old fashioned coffee house was loud and crowded. Fun place to sip our cappuccinos and people watch. When the rain died down, the four of us left to explore the neighborhood. Beautiful churches, a delicious pastry shop, cool stores, then a stroll thru an indoor mall kept ... read more
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Squid ink Risotto with Scallops
Grilled Pork belly with Pea Puree

Europe » Portugal » Lisboa April 6th 2018

Another busy day for the jani! Today, we decided to do a walking tour of Lisbon, thanks to our best buddy, Rick Steves, and a set of headphones. It was cool because, not only did we see a lot, but we learned about the history of the area. I can tell you, that the 1755 earthquake-tsunami-fire that devastated the city was a reboot for Lisbon. It is as if the entire city changed their whole life philosophy. Housing, churches, and government were altered to most efficiently get back on its feet. The city center was laid out in grids, with a design including universal five story live work units. Very walkable! Thanks to the Marquis of Pombal for getting us back to our new urbanist roots. Our walk took us through various neighborhoods, each with their ... read more
Sidewalk mosaics
Sipping at the Ginjinha Bar
Chapel of St John the Baptist




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