What To See In Lisbon In 2 Days
So how did I come to the Portugal conclusion?
- Well for starters there’s a sepia-toned oval-framed portrait of a white man with a beautiful young black lady that hangs on the wall of my mother’s childhood home.
- Whenever she can my cousin Tanya puts in some painstaking work gathering documents; government records, marriage certificates and death certificates. She managed to trace our family tree right to the sepia-toned oval framed portrait.
- Based on the timeline of the Slave Triangle – ships that sailed from Portugal to Africa, to the Carribean and back to Portugal. Since, my parents are from Barbados – which is not only the most beautiful island in the Carribean, it was also controlled by Portugal for awhile.
- Lisbon is one of the oldest cities in western Europe, with a history that stretches back to its original settlement by the indigenous Iberians.
- Lisbon flourished in the 15th and 16th centuries as the centre of a vast empire during the period of the Portuguese discoveries, This was a time of intensive maritime exploration, when the Kingdom of Portugal accumulated great wealth and power through its colonization of Asia, South America, Africa and the Atlantic islands.
- Evidence of the city’s wealth can still be seen today in the magnificent structures built then, including the Jerónimos Monastery and the nearby Tower of Belém, each classified a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983.
Getting to Lisbon
Santa Justa Lift
The perfect way to get connected to a city is to establish your bearings. The best way to establish your bearings is from the air or a high point in the city. The Santa Justa Lift does that while it connects the lower streets of the Baixa with the higher Largo do Carmo (Carmo Square). As you’ll discover rather quickly the hills of Lisbon can get steep – for those looking the strengthen their glutes no problem but for the rest of us it’s a problem.
Commerce Square | Arco da Rua Augusta
This square is also called Terreiro do Paco, which was made in place of Ribeira Palace that was destroyed by an earthquake in 1755. Many festivals, concerts, processions and executions took place over the last centuries.
Although it is still early in the morning, I figure now is a good a time as any to enjoy a beer. Aura Lisboa is in the heart of Lisbon overlooking the Tagus River and surrounded by the Terreiro do Paco Square. In addition to festivals, concerts, processions and executions its also a central meeting place for the locals.
I was told by friends, colleagues and fellow travel bloggers, that when planning what to see in Lisbon riding tram 28 to climb the steep hill from Baixa to the castle and Alfama is an absolute must1. These trams are a huge part of the Lisbon public transport network.
A Padaria Portuguesa
It’s a popular spot so it can get hectic.
However, all that time waiting, mouth-watering will convert into a soothing feeling when you finally have that ‘Pao de Deus’ (Heavenly bread) in front of you…
It is incredible.
Portuguese pastries are incredible.
The fish and seafood are incredible and the way they do chicken with that peri-peri sauce is also incredibly, incredible.
My good friend Zara Quiroga from Backpack ME sent me the 2nd edition of her ultimate Lisbon food guide – Lisbon In 100 Bites. The pictures are simply stunning and along with the descriptions, it’s guaranteed to get your tummy rumbling.
Lisbon Cathedral is an ancient cathedral that was made by the first king of Portugal in 1150 for the city’s first bishop. It has two tower bells and a beautiful rose window which resembles a medieval fortress while inside it looks Romanesque.
If you take 28 Tram, it will take you past the cathedral.
While walking around our Airbnb accommodations we discovered this church. The church of Graca was built in the 16th century. Four Atlas style figures are placed at four corners which symbolize the four rivers.
Rossio Square is another one of those typical European squares that made me fall in love with Europe. This beautiful place is always occupied by people who want to sit and relax. In the center of the square, there is a monument and two fountains on either side of it. Perfect for two of my favourite pastimes – drinking beer, drinking coffee and people watching.
Castle of St George
This beautiful castle can be seen from every part of the city. However, trekking up to the castle will cut into your Lisbon itinerary – Well maybe just mine. It once served as a Moorish royal residence in the 6th century. The main gate of the castle has a statue of King Afonso Henriques and a series of cannons on display.
I have to admit, I was not expecting this. I only ever saw Christ The Redeemer in Brazil but then again there is a connection between Brazil and Portugal so it does make sense.
This 90ft structure of Christ that welcomes you to Lisbon is a must be seen. You have to take the commuter ferry from Cais do Sodre station to reach here.
What To See In Lisbon In 2 DaysConclusion: Personally, I think Lisbon is underrated. 2 Days in Lisbon will definitely give you a new appreciation of what a great city it is. Need I remind you Portugal is connected solely by Spain on one side and the Atlantic Ocean on the other. This means fresh seafood. So please do not come here and not have seafood or at least try fish. They got catching fish and preparing fish locked and mastered. However, they also know how to prepare chicken. They use this delicious secret spice sauce called Peri-Peri on the chicken and the fish and the meat…it’s incredible. The Portuguese also make incredible pastries as I mentioned earlier. Speaking of food, for the true foodie pick up Lisbon In 100 Bites the ultimate Lisbon food guide by Zara Quiroga. Awesome and delicious stuff!
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