Sunday, May 29, 2016

Lisbon, Portugal

Lisbon is a beautiful city. We had a lovely time wandering the streets downtown and making our way around the area on Portugal's train network.

We stayed in a central area, and that meant we were within strolling distance of many major sites.

A large avenue extends from the waterfront; it has a lovely median.

Lisbon is on an inlet off the Atlantic and it has a gorgeous waterfront.

The city has a huge number of hills, but that gives it some very unique features. 

There is an elevator here that is part of the city's extensive transit network; it's really cool to see it out in the streets of an urban area.

Aside from the Metro, there are trams and funiculars here. We ended up riding on everything except the elevator.

We had a few nice meals here, and one weird experience at a vegetarian restaurant. (We were made to wait so long for your food, over 40 minutes, that we just eventually left.) There was plenty of good food to be had though.

On the whole, the experience was really pleasant and positive. 

People were generally friendly and helpful. Like Spain and Italy, there is a slowness about the pace of life here, which for me is appealing in some aspects but can be annoying in others. 

Lisbon is famous for its gorgeous tile work, and it doesn't disappoint.

It's a very charming place.

We also took a day trip to the westernmost point of the European continent by hopping on a train. 

It was near a cute town called Sintra where the 'cultural landscape' has been designated a UNESCO heritage site. There was a little flea market. There was also a convenient tourist shuttle bus that made it easy to catch a ride out to the coast.

There are many other attractions on this tour, like the amazing Moorish castle

It was built around the 10th century after the Moorish conquest of the Iberian peninsula.

We had a look around.

I loved our visit to this enchanting piece of history.

We spent a short time at Cabo de Roca, the westernmost point on the continent of mainland Europe.
There isn't a lot here. You can get some gifts or refreshments; there's a small shop and a cafe and not a lot else but some very dramatic scenery. 

The sun was setting on our day and we rode the bus back into town for a train.

It was a pleasant ride with a bunch of other tourists.

It was a nice few days. I would love to return to Portugal one day.

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