Lisbon – 10 Things!

This post is long overdue and as my friend Heather said, “It’s cruel to say you’re back and then not actually be back!” So without much further ado, let me tell you that this post is going to be largely pictorial coz my brain is still too scrambled for coherent thought πŸ˜› and because if I don’t get this down now, I fear I never will! So here they are – 10 things that made me fall in love with Lisbon πŸ™‚

The Architecture – so familiar from seeing it back home in Goa and yet uniquely special in the way an original is from its copy. Robert Langdon would love it here πŸ˜‰

The Tiles – vintage, hand-painted, exquisite! I stopped several times just to touch them and feel their history speak. Also the iron-work and masonry wastonishing to say the least!

The Tagus Riverfront – a wonderful promenade by the banks of the river Tagus where local fisherman try their luck, while locals and tourists alike stroll around breathing in the crisp air, taking in the many sights in the area – an old brick lighthouse, the Pont de Vasco de Gama, the Tower of Belem, the grand, imposing beauty that is the Monastery of San Jeronimo, a war memorial that serves as an observation tower offering spectacular views – there’s a veritable feast of stimuli for the senses here!

The quaint charm of Lisbon’s hip and happening neighbourhoods – The Chiado, Rossio, Bairro Alto – yes I know they’re everywhere in Europe and no that doesn’t make them any less miraculous here! Their impossibly tiny cobblestoned streets, quaint boutiques, and profusion of cafes and restaurants made them well nigh irresistible to the romantic in me πŸ˜‰ Although I confess with a 5-yr-old in tow, we didn’t really do them justice! Still there’s always next year πŸ˜‰

The Gardens &the Roses – Lisbon has gardens galore! Little ones and grand ones, places where families can picnic and children can play and us visitors can prowl with our cameras on the look out for whatever might catch our fancy πŸ˜› I remember my delight on spying the gigantic roses! I can’t remember ever seeing such large ones! Blood red, dainty pink, pretty salmon…luscious blooms!

The Tram – Yes I know they are pretty much ubiquitous in Europe, but that for me just adds to their allure! I don’t quite know how to explain it – but the sight of the little box on wheels climbing its way up a steep incline is just exhilarating! Or perhaps I’m just grateful for the ride and the photo-op πŸ˜‰

The Burnt Custard Tart – A Lisbon staple and rightly so! A perfect balance of bitter-sweet deliciousness! Had too many to count and I don’t even like dessert πŸ˜‰

Vinho Verde – I was skeptical about trying this ‘Green Wine‘, until I finally did with predictable results – LOVED it and drank nothing else for the rest of the trip except for the Caiprinhas at Cabana Fresca in Albufeira that were just out of this World!! If you get your hands on a bottle of Muralhas, you’ll know what I mean! The light, fresh & fruity flavour is right up my street πŸ™‚

IMG_3010
My favorite tipple on the trip πŸ™‚

The Zoo & Oceanarium – Both excellent places to visit even if you don’t have kids along! I love animals and I go dangerously crazy with my lens in Zoos much to the horror and embarrassment of the Hubby! Not that that bothers me πŸ˜‰ Loved the Zoo – especially the aerial views from a rope way that travels its length, the abundance of peacocks, the Tigers and the Chimps! Refreshingly non-commercial too πŸ™‚

The Gulls – I fell in love with these gutsy birds! Their squawking calls, yellow beaks and piercing gaze made for some fun bird-watching πŸ™‚ Another bird to add to my collection!

Johnathan Livingstone Seagull!
Johnathan Livingstone Seagull!

Lisbon charmed me with its relaxed vibe, quaint neighbourhoods and warm people πŸ™‚ There is an enchanting blend of ancient history and modernity here and a refreshing lack of the overt commercialism that runs rampant elsewhere in the world. Many of the sights are free for children and Junior had a blast playing cricket in every park we visited! That’s a LOT of cricket πŸ˜‰ There’s a sense of underlying whimsy and a languidness that permeates; aΒ ‘je ne sais quois’ that is endearing. Visiting Lisbon allowed me to understand the idiosyncrasies of my own tiny state of Goa better! About time too πŸ˜‰ I will certainly be visiting again – that’s a given!

P. S. This one’s for you Heather! Hope you liked it and THANK YOU for the much needed nudge πŸ˜‰ πŸ™‚

6 thoughts on “Lisbon – 10 Things!

  1. Totally loved it! Thanks for allowing the push to send you on your way πŸ™‚
    I don’t know if it’s on the to-visit list, but you certainly made Lisbon seem like my kinda place! Too many great photos to pick a favorite, but the intricate work around the arched windows and the row upon row of handpainted tiles are absolutely amazing. I’m simply not sure if I have the kind of patience (and I KNOW I don’t have the skill!) to pull of such incredible artisan-ship.
    Interesting capture on the Siamese twins. And I LOVE the peacock and his tail.
    Going to need more details on that burnt custard tart. I *am* a dessert person – and just this kind of dessert person too πŸ™‚

    1. I’m so glad you liked the pictures Heather πŸ˜€ and I’m truly thankful for the push – don’t know when I would have got it done otherwise πŸ˜‰

      Lisbon is a city to visit when you want to relax and don’t have an agenda. Its laid-back charm and warmth are dangerously infectious πŸ˜‰ I like it much more than I thought I would and given that my favourite place on the planet is London – you can see how that caught even me by surprise! The two cities are like chalk and cheese : P

      So happy you like the Peacock! It’s one of my favourite shots from the trip! Have a lot of animal shots, loving them as I do! Have sent you a link for the Custard Tart recipe…you must try it and let me know how it turns out!

      I’ll have to start on Albufeira next πŸ˜‰

      1. I love keeping the blog and reminiscing and sharing through it, but sometimes all the pictures I take get overwhelming to process and then share in a logical order. I still have a catalog from a recent kayak trip. So I know just how you feel – like you have a ton of cool stuff to share. Sometime.
        How did you deal with the language? Do you happen to be fluent in fifteen languages or something and Portuguese is on the list πŸ˜‰

      2. You said it!

        I wish!!! I used to be fluent in Japanese as a child when I lived there for a while but I’ve forgotten it now 😦 it’s been so long πŸ˜› Hubby and I speak a spattering of Portuguese but fortunately they speak a while lot of English πŸ™‚ Must be because of the British tourists that flock there every season πŸ˜‰

  2. Holy cow! Those pictures are so much fun! I loved so many of them. The sky was so blue, the buildings so many arches and colors, from age and paint both! Love it.
    Those animal pictures – so awesome. The peacock feathers…a rabbit ready to drive a convertible or something (who would have thought)?! Green wine, caiparinas…mmmmm. Oh my gosh, I have to go there, that is awesome!
    Thank you Heather for poking at her to get those pictures up! πŸ™‚ I am going to go look again

    1. Thanks Elisa πŸ˜€ I’m so glad you mentioned the sky – it was one of my favourite things to photograph! We don’t see skies like that too often in India 😦

      Do go! I fell in love with Lisbon, and can’t wait to go again – hopefully next year! Loved your comment on the rabbit!!! You’re o right – all he needs is a rabbit-sized Harley and he’s good to go πŸ˜‰ And if you haven’t had a Caiprinha yet – go have one this instant πŸ˜›

      Btw – Heather also recommended The Kingkiller Chronicles!! She’s very good like that πŸ˜‰

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