STYLE etc has been busy totting up the must see attractions for a long weekend in Lisbon. As more and more people seem to be visiting Portugal’s capital city and returning full of enthusiasm we knew it was time to make a visit. At the beginning of September, STYLEetc spent four days exploring Lisbon and sampling everything it had to offer.
If you enjoy fresh fish and desserts you will be absolutely spoilt with the variety of options on offer. On a friend’s recommendation, after landing we immediately headed to the Time Out Market, which is fairly similar to Camden Market in that it’s quirky and has many different cuisines on offer. We selected codfish served with marinated shredded peppers and carrots with several slices of new potato – absolute foodie heaven. Located on the north bank of the Tagus River estuary, Lisbon is surrounded by water so the fish is extremely fresh.
A personal favourite snack of the trip was undoubtedly the sweet tasting Pastel de nata – a traditional Portuguese custard. Natas cost rough a 1 Euro, depending on where you are, and the delicious tarts can be topped with icing sugar or cinnamon.
Explore on foot as much as possible – Prior to departing Manchester, we were informed to not bring sandals or high heels and that trainers would fare much better on the hills and cobbled streets of Lisbon.
Save yourself the discomfort and invest in a supportive pair of trainers that will aid you to see the sights as much as possible. Lisbon is such a beautiful city, complete with cobbled streets and decorated with stunning tiled art work; it is a very vibrant city with lots of bright decorative colours. It felt very refreshing to be in a capital city that had such a relaxed vibe.
3. Visit Landmarks
São Jorge Castle was the last tourist stop before leaving the sun and heading back to Manchester on our trip. Situated above central Lisbon, the castle looks down on to the city and provides you with stunning views and Terracotta rooftops that stretch for miles.
There was also a charming wine van offering ‘wine with a view’ – which definitely did not fail to deliver. Being Lisbon’s top tourist attraction you can usually expect rather long queues, but as we visited outside of the main holiday season there was only had a short wait before being able to explore. A tour guide is advisable to show you around and explain the historical significance of the castle.
4. Shop Local
Factory LX – A cool market with a slightly hipster feel that features art, architecture, fashion and lots of charming cafes is a must to visit. A favourite places within Factory LX was Livraria Ler Devagar, a beautiful bookstore and library covered with books from floor to ceiling.
An eye catching sculpture of a cyclist hangs directly in front of the entrance and sets the tone for the unique space that it is. After wandering around for a while we fancied a quick sit down which brought us to stumble upon Landeau Chocolate, whose moto of “If nothing else works try chocolate cake” is definitely something we could get on board with.
Bairro Alto – An absolute must if you want to unwind with a well-earned cocktail after a day spent sightseeing. It’s a district of Lisbon that turns into the city’s hub of nightlife, providing a selection of fantastic restaurants and bars.
A similar concept to the conventional “strip” you can find in popular holiday locations but with the added edge that is so prominent throughout Lisbon. We also drank at several bars on The Pink Street which is still busy and popular but a short walk away from Bairro Alto. Bars in Lisbon didn’t seem to get busy until at least 1.30am so we opted to enjoy a longer day in the sun, dine later than usual and then head out for drinks at around 12am.