Soñando Sunday: Lisbon
We are enjoying summer vacation and have decided to head to Lisbon for a few days and soak up the sun. Claudia did a year abroad in Lisbon, so she is particularly partial to this city. If you have any questions or comments, we would be happy to answer!
Transport options to arrive: Bus, Car, Train, or Plane
- Lisbon is the capital of Portugal and is easy to access by public transport or car. If you don’t have your own car, I would suggest Blablacar as a viable way to get there (when I lived in Lisbon for a year I found that Blablacar was the cheapest and fastest way for me to get from Granada to Lisbon).
Recommended time of year to visit and length of visit: I would recommend going to Lisbon in the spring or fall. Not that summer and winter are bad times to visit, but summer can be very touristy and winter can be a bit unpredictable and rainy. Depending on how much of the city you want to discover you probably want to hang out for at least three days (although I feel like two weeks would be more adequate to get a good idea of Lisbon and its surrounding areas such as Belem and Sintra).
Fun Fact: The urban planning of this old city was completely changed after the earthquake in 1755 when a good chunk of the infrastructure was destroyed. However, you can now enjoy the flat option of walking down tree-lined sidewalks on the Avenida de Liberdade and the neighborhood Baixa (perhaps the only flat areas in the city).
Top Three Must-sees:
1.) Arco de Rua Augusta: This Arco might be one of my favorite places to check out the rest of the city, with a beautiful view in multiple directions. It is 2.50€ to go up to the top, but the views (and the quick history lesson available) are worth it.
2.) A sunset along the tejo: This is one of my favorite things to do in Lisbon! They have such great sunsets, just grab a beer (or whatever you fancy) and some friends (or a book) and head down to the tejo, or riverside, to see the sunset.
3.) Linha d’água Cafe: Found at the top of the Parque Eduardo VII this cafe feels like it is hidden away from the city. The food is decent (and fairly inexpensive), but I go for the calmness and the peace that you can find in this fairytale-like place.
One thing to eat: If you ask me straight out where to eat one meal, I wouldn’t know if I should send you off to eat great seafood (at somewhere like the Cervejaria Ramiro, a place that is worth the wait for your seafood delight) or the classic Pastels de Nata/Belem or the Mercados that you can find in Lisbon (such as: Mercado de Ribeira, Mercado de Ourique, etc.). However, for one thing to eat you cannot go wrong with my favorite chocolate cake ever*. The first time my family and I went to Landeau we split a piece of cake. For whatever reason, we were talking to the owner and she gave it to us as a gift because she “knew I would be coming back.” True to her prediction, I proceed to take every new person I met and guest who came visiting to eat cake. Take my advice and stop by―make my first piece of cake the piece that keeps on giving ;)
*I don’t actually like chocolate cake very much, so this is an accomplishment!