Nothing is as exciting as traveling, and whether you only have a few days off for the purpose or several months, a trip abroad is one of the most stimulating things you can do. There is a huge world to discover and although there are many exotic destinations on the other side of the globe, there are probably so many places in Europe that are at least as fun and interesting. The Portuguese capital, Lisbon, is just such and there is something for everyone; art, food, lovely walks, nice people, lovely music and outstanding architecture. Maybe you want to exercise and live healthy, go to churches and cathedrals, eat and drink your way through Portuguese cuisine or shop to your heart’s content? No problem; Lisbon is the complete package!
Lisbon history in brief
According to mysteryaround, Lisbon is Europe’s westernmost capital and is located at the mouth of a river, right on the Atlantic Ocean. The geographical location early made the place an important port city and meeting place for merchants from different cultures, and it is believed that it was founded by the Phoenicians already over three thousand years ago. Here Greeks, Romans, Celts and Vikings met and the city flourished during both antiquity and the Middle Ages into our days. Portugal’s first university was founded here as early as the 13th century. From the 15th century onwards, many explorers’ expeditions were led from here, including Vasco da Gama’s travels around the world.
The character of Lisbon
The motley and multicultural background has made Lisbon a unique and mixed city, both in terms of culture and architectural landscape. Here, old monasteries and palaces are mixed with modern buildings, and you can go to everything from classical church concerts to rock-hard punk events and LGTB events. There are also fantastic parks and gardens to visit, where Portuguese travelers brought exotic trees and plants from distant lands.
See and do
It only takes a little over four hours to fly to Lisbon and that makes the city excellent even for those who only want to have a small city weekend. However, you should be prepared that this beautiful city will give more flavor, and even before you get home you learn to plan the return visit. This city can be compared approximately to Gothenburg in size and you can easily stroll around in the different neighborhoods, but if you want to concentrate on some specific attractions, here is a short list:
- Sao Jorge Castle. A huge castle built by the Moors during the Middle Ages, but later dedicated to St. Göran. The castle is open daily until 6 pm and you can both walk around on your own or on a guided tour. However, be prepared for many steps!
- San Jeronimos Monastery. One of Lisbon’s most popular attractions so be ready to queue. This Gothic monastery has much to see and discover, but do not miss the tomb of Vasco da Gama.
- BelemOne of Lisbon’s most beautiful and historic neighborhoods, with neighborhoods that you can get lost in with great pleasure. Wonderful small patisseries coexist with towers, palaces and gardens – you will definitely not be alone here but the place is well worth a visit.
- A fantastic marine museum where you can see exotic fish, meet penguins and rent a paddle boat.