Postcards: Lisbon

Visited Lisbon for a few days, an absolutely stunning city, built on seven hills, and because it’s built on hills, it’s afforded some of the best views from wherever you are. Liking a good walk and a good hill, and a good view, I set about taking advantage of everything Lisbon had to offer.

In the city centre of Baixo stands the imposing, theme park ride-esque, Santa Justa elevator (also called the Carmo Lift) which boasts beautiful views of Lisbon atop a spirally staircase. Down on the ground, the Port of Lisbon on the Tejo River, affords people moments alone and together, as the sun sets over the impressive 25 de Abril Suspension Bridge.


I was staying in the Alfama district of Lisbon, it’s the old part of the city, made up of higgledy piggledy streets, home of Fado the Portuguese Blues and the famous number 28 Tram, which runs through Lisbon and takes you to the top of the hilltop hosting the Moorish Castelo de Sao Jorge. From there you can get a good look over the city in it’s grandeur. 


If you go to Lisbon, take a day trip to the beautiful town of Sintra, it’s architecture classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, it boasts the mediaeval Castelo dos Mouros, the Pena National Palace and the Sintra National Palace. I went to the Pena Palace, one of the 7 wonders of Portugal, which stands on the second highest point of the Sintra Hills. in the 18/19th Centuries it was the summer residence of the monarchs of Portugal. It’s a pretty steep walk to the top through the Park of Pena to look down on the Palace from “High Cross” it really shows the scale of how high you are. The colourful architecture of the Palace is an infusion of different styles of including neo-gothic, Neo-Manueline, Neo-Islamic and Neo- Renaissance. It does have a slightly Disney feel to it, all Palace’s should be this colourful! 


Not satisfied with climbing to the top of the Sintra hills, I worked my phone’s pedometer to the limit, by jumping on a long bus to climb the rocks of Cabo da Roca, the most Western point of Europe. All there is, is sea for miles and miles, if you keep swimming you hit America….eventually…. It’s a humbling experience, it literally feels like the end of the earth, as you battle fairly strong winds to avoid plunging to the rocks below! It’s worth a climb further down then people might normally go, your feet will be ruined like mine were, but it’s worth it for these stunning views.

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