Lisbon ....... a city that made me fit with tourism and travel

Travel & Leisure

  • Author Mo Othman
  • Published June 15, 2020
  • Word count 2,002

Tourism and travel are running in my veins, I love airports, and the "bags" and their arrangement do not bother me. The adrenaline hormone rises in every take-off and landing of a plane in any city, but unfortunately this feeling has recently subsided, due to the increase in the twinning of cities and the excessive globalization that has led to the copying of cities and their streets, to lose the luster and what makes it unique in its type and shape. Hidden in most cities, there are "boutiques" and small independent cafes, and international brands known to have been replaced, and this made me quarrel with travel and tourism for a period of time, until I decided to travel to Portugal, specifically to the capital, Lisbon.

There is a popular Lebanese proverb that says: “The nearby church does not heal”, meaning that people go to the farthest church to perform the vow, with the aim that God will respond to their prayers, and sometimes I feel that this thing applies to tourism, so you see people cut hours and hours of travel to countries in The world is far away, and they leave the places nearby for a later time, and this is what happened with me in the matter of visiting Portugal, which I visited for the first time in my life in December, and welcomed the new year.

I heard about Lisbon and Portugal, but I did not know that I would find this kind of uniqueness in them. It is a city in which beautiful time has stopped, not paying attention to the trendy wave that is sweeping the rest of Europe, has its own luster, ancient roads paved with stones, its people quiet like the Atlantic Ocean that overlooks it, transportation is enjoyable, its food is delicious, and its prices have not ride the wave of outrageous high prices in Old Continent.

This is Lisbon in short, but there is a long way to go Because it deserves it, it is the capital of Portugal since 1256, and it is considered its largest city, and it is located on seven hills, and therefore you find its geography distinguished by hills, flights, and lodges, and for this reason I emphasize the wearing of comfortable shoes, and leaving high heels at home.

Lisbon attracts more than 3 million tourists in one year. The majority of visitors are from Italy, Germany and Britain, in addition to many other nationalities. What distinguishes Lisbon most is: museums, beautiful squares, historical buildings, narrow streets crossed by the colorful and colorful "tramway", and its average climate throughout the year.

London starting point

The journey started from London, and lasted two hours and twenty minutes. Lisbon Airport is only a few minutes away from its center. This feature is rarely found in any other tourist city. Taxis are available at very cheap prices, and the trains are very organized, and you can take them directly from the airport, and the Uber application is available, but it is not cheaper than the "taxi".

The first look at the city starts from the vicinity of the airport, but in Lisbon the magic starts from the middle of it, and as soon as you reach it the feeling of familiarity begins with this city.

Stay in Lisbon

There are several hotels in Lisbon on all budgets. What is worth noting here is that the prices are very reasonable, and Lisbon is a cheap destination compared to other European cities. The best way to get a good booking is to go online. There are several sites specialized in tourism, where you find many great offers that mix travel tickets and accommodation, such as "Voyage Prive" or "Booking.com".

My choice fell on the "five-star" Corinthia hotel, located 5 minutes by car, when you make a reservation do not make the location near the city center affect your choice, and the reason is that the city is small, and all the important landmarks in it are close to each other In terms of distance, as I mentioned earlier, the "taxi" is cheap, and the journey does not exceed any destination of 7 euros.

Mobility

Public transportation in Lisbon is efficient, which makes moving from one place to another easier, and the “metro” is the most used method, in addition to electric trams, public transport buses and taxis. The best and cheapest way is to buy a card that authorizes you to use the electric "tramway" and the "metro" at the same time, and there are some trams that require a special card, but the price does not exceed 6 euros back and forth.

The most beautiful and most important visits

If you have time, I advise you to visit the cities near Lisbon, it is worth traveling to, each has its own character, and in the event that the trip is short, I will guide you on the most beautiful visits in the heart of the city, and I advise you to visit the city of Sintra, which is 30 minutes away by train, it is Worth a visit and differ from Lisbon.

Tram 28

The electric tram has shrunk in Lisbon, but it is still very much present, and city residents use it for transportation, as it is not only tourist. However, the most famous tram, which cannot start or complete a visit to Lisbon without its use, is tram 28, and the reason is that this route starts from the «Martim Muniz» in the center of the country, and ends in the other part of the city in «Campo Urique»; You can sip a cup of coffee with a piece of candy in a café nearby.

This tram is distinguished by its yellow color and its wooden benches. If you want to take it from the starting point at Rossio Square, I advise you to walk to the second station, it is not more than two minutes by walking, instead of waiting in a long line in the first station. The only problem is that you avoid the queue but you may not find a seat. Since the tram empowers passengers to dismount and ride at any time, and from any station, you will quickly find a vacant seat at the next station.

The scenes you see during the trip are so beautiful, I can still hear the tram shivering in my ears. You walk the narrow streets, and you see the houses and their residents. There is a strange feeling that I felt there, nostalgia for the Valparaiso region in Chile, and the plateaux of the city of San Francisco, but the charm of Lisbon is strange and unique.

I advise you to return by tram at sunset, as there is a station on top of a plateau overlooking all the sights of the city, where coffee and lemonade sellers spread, who benefit from the farewell sun every day.

"Tuk Tuk"

"Tuk Tuk" has an important center for movement and tourism in Lisbon. Remarkably, the majority of the drivers are women, and it is easy to tell if a "tuk-tuk" is for a woman, through decorations and flowers that cover the "tuk-tuk", which can seat four people.

This method of transportation is very beautiful, but the prices vary from one driver to another, there is no specific price, so use your own method to obtain a good price. And I agree with the driver to wait for you at the stations where you want to take pictures.

São Jorge Castle

It is located on a hill in the historical center of Lisbon, and is considered one of the main tourist sites in Lisbon. The castle overlooks the entire city, and visitors can use dedicated sights to enjoy the view of the city, as well as the Tagus River. The castle was built in the Middle Ages. The castle has a rectangular shape, has 10 towers, and has fences, parts of which extend between residential areas.

The most beautiful squares

The most famous arenas: Rossio and Brasa Commercio; Where New Year's Eve celebrations are held. For the first time in my life, I bid farewell to the year, with thousands of visitors from all over the globe. But the experience was fascinating despite the overcrowding and gravity scrambling.

From these arenas and towards Tagus, you reach Alacantara, which was once a marina, and today it has become a distinctive address for café seekers and nightlife.

By walking, you also reach Alfama, the historical part of the city, and the "Fado", which is characterized by narrow roads and small squares.

Cultural attractions are numerous in Lisbon, and are shortened by “Gulbenkian” and other museums, such as the Maritime Museum in the Belém region. It was opened in 1963 and is considered one of the most visited museums in Portugal and one of the most important tourist attractions in Lisbon. The museum displays all aspects of navigation history in Portugal and is managed by the Portuguese navy.

The museum includes a variety of collections, such as historical paintings, marine artifacts, many examples of Portuguese ships, from nineteenth century sailing ships, warships, fishing boats, and many royal pearl boats.

The Peruvian metro station is a beautiful landmark. It has the tallest escalator in the city.

It is a beautiful area in Lisbon Belem, it is famous for its many cultural monuments, in addition to its tower located along the ocean. And translating the name into Arabic “Bethlehem”, from this point Vasco de Gama set out on his two-year journey, discovering the Cape of Good Hope, and the way to India. The tower was built in the fifteenth century by King John II as a defensive position. You can enter the tower and see the most beautiful views from the upper deck in it. This tower was destroyed in the Lisbon earthquake in 1755, and then rebuilt in a smaller form than before. And if the wait is long to enter the tower, I advise you to buy a ticket for the tourist elevator near it, the wait is lower, and the ticket price is about 7 euros for adults. From there, you can see the April 25 bridge and other corners of historic Belem.

Belém is also famous for having the oldest known Portuguese dessert shop. You can enter the Fabrica Pastes de Nata, and eat there instead of waiting for a long time. Dessert is a dough stuffed with custard, with a layer of cinnamon, and the taste is wonderful and delicious.

The "Rua Augusta" arch, located in the Baixa neighborhood of Lisbon, is one of the most famous human-made arches in the world. The arch is a historic building attracting visitors to Lisbon. It was built to commemorate the city's rebuilding after the 1755 earthquake.

The Lisbon Zoo, founded in 1884, is considered one of the most important tourist destinations, with around 800,000 visitors annually, and the park is not just an entertainment establishment; But to preserve endangered species, scientific research and educational activities. It includes about 2,000 animals of 300 species, distributed among 114 mammals, 157 birds, 56 reptiles, and 5 amphibians and arthropods.

Where to eat and what?

In Lisbon you will not need a guide to the best restaurants; Because most of the restaurants are good, and their food depends on fish and seafood. The best thing to do is to walk on your feet, and let it be your guide.

If you are a fan of restaurants with beautiful views, I advise you to “La Paparucha”, it offers good types of meat and overlooks the most beautiful scenery.

I tried several restaurants in Lisbon, but I found myself more than once in the "Time Out" market, as it is a covered food market, which includes a large number of places that offer different types of kitchens, including Peruvian, American and Italian, so you choose what you want , And sit wherever you wish. The idea of ​​the place is very beautiful; Because you can taste more than one dish from more than one kitchen. And don't miss the grilled octopus, served on boiled and seasoned potatoes.

Lisbon one of the best places to travel

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