We won’t bore you with the details, but after 2 missed connections and 5 airports, we finally made it from NY to Lisbon! We stayed in a cozy little Airbnb in the Chiado neighborhood located in the middle of the historic area of town.
We had no idea how quickly a city could grow on us but Lisbon stole our hearts in a BIG way. Lisbon sits right on the water (the massive Tagus River) and has so many things to do and see outside. With it’s many hills and street cars, it kind of reminds us of an old world San Francisco. Between the perfect weather, delicious food, and great local people, we fell in love. We arrived during one of the biggest weeks of the year. There was a military expo (Forcas Armadas Potuguesas) going on, and the Festival of Santo Antonio where the streets of Lisbon turn into a huge celebration where people sing, dance, drink and grill sardines throughout the streets. We experienced it firsthand and had a blast!
Some of our favorite places to eat & drink include:
- Carmo – affordable and romantic with great wine and tasty, authentic Portuguese food with a twist (bread dipped in the sauce left over from the shrimp dish was addicting).
- Time Out Market – we came here twice and A Cozinha da Felicidade was a winner both times. We got to watch the chefs cook while sitting in the small bar area (pork cheek & tuna were great).
- Manteigaria – serves the best Pastéis de Nata (mouth watering egg tarts) and we enjoyed good coffee and tarts while watching them being made with precision!
- The Old Pharmacy – wine bar converted from a 20th century pharmacy with much of it preserved. Thanks for the recommendation, Mary!
- Cruzes Credo – cute little restaurant nestled down the hill from Castle S. George where we enjoyed a cold Sagres (one of two local beers and our favorite – sorry, Super Bock!) and a great shrimp lunch.
- A Cevicheria – this place serves top-notch seafood while playing old school Hip-hop in a modern atmosphere.
Some of our favorite places we visited include:
- Castle S. Jorge – a beautiful castle on the hilltop overlooking historic Lisbon and the Tagus River. It was interesting to learn why the castle was built and the views of the city were spectacular.
- Oceanarium – the Oceanarium was a perfect place to visit to get out of the sun and learn about marine life. It’s one of the largest indoor aquariums in Europe and was very well done.
This city has started our trip off on a VERY high note! Lisbon, we will definitely be back!
Tomorrow we leave for our friends Sergio & Robin’s farm house (thanks, Serge & Robin!) in the town of Milfontes in the Beja region, which is about a two hour drive south. We plan to stop in Sintra on the way to see the Castle of the Moors. Stay tuned for more!