Freya Stark once said: “Curiosity is the one thing invincible in nature.” While visiting Lisbon one can definitely live this curiosity. Get lost in the streets of Bairro Alto, enjoy the great views from above because from up high one sees everything out of a different angle or taste the amazing cuisine that this unique city has to offer. You will not get disappointed and by a mean time you are lost in curiosity to get to know and feel Lisbon.
Bairro Alto is Lisbon’s cultural and bohemian heart which has been the home for many artists and writers from the 16th century on. The streets are known for its colorful and graffiti-ridden facades where behind one can find a mixture of traditional and international restaurants and bars. During the day, the unique passages exude a pleasant sense of calm while at night the district turns into a vibrant nightlife quarter. The neighborhood offers a little for people all ages, backgrounds and lifestyles. Especially during the weekend, you find a variety of people bar-hopping through the huddled roads standing outside having a drink and enjoying the pleasant mild nights.
Miradouro de Santa Luzía
From up high one usually has the best views. One of the best viewpoints over Lisbon and especially over Alfama is Miradouro de Santa Luzia, with its romantic terrace by the church of Santa Luzia. Sitting down at one of the stone benches, enjoying the breathtaking view over the charming corners of Lisbon or listening to the inspiring music of a street musician are just a few options visitors can experience and expect. On the façade of the church are two tile panels showing Lisbon before the earthquake and presenting the Christians attacking the castle.
Pastéis de nata o pastéis de Belém
The favorite and probably most known Portuguese dessert of Lisbon is the Pastel de Belém. It’s a crisp nest filled with custard dream, having a perfect golden crust with a dust of cinnamon. There are many cafés where one can find this amazing dish but there is only one patisserie, Pastéis de Belém, who still produces with the original recipe since 1837.
Elevador de Santa Justa
An elevator in the middle of Lisbon – yes. The elevator de Santa Justa, which has a height of 45 meters, connects Baixa with the two districts Chiado and Bairro Alto. In 1902 the student of Gustave Eiffel Raoul Mesnier de Ponsard built the elevator, that is why it has some similarities with the Eifel Tower in Paris.
Santini is probably the most famous ice cream parlour in Portugal. Since 1949 Attilio Santini creates a great variety of fresh and delicious ice creams, also vegan ice cream. On a hot summer day definitely a must do: let’s go for a Santini!
Restaurante / Cocktelería Topo
Topo is one of the many rooftop bars that Lisbon offers. Facing the popular Praça Martim Moniz, it provides a spectacular city view. It is easy to feel relaxed and calm while having a cocktail or beer outside of the terrace where multi- level wooden seating spaces are given to the guests.
The restaurant Chapito offers cuisine of the medium-high category. Attached to it is a theater, a library and a super nice bar to have a few beers. It is located in the old and historic part of the city.
Ginja, THE liquor of Lisbon. Ginjinha is one of the typical liquors of Portugal, which is served in a chocolate cup. For more than 170 years, in the 5th generation, the same family produces and offers this alcoholic drink. The bar is located in Largo de Sao Domingos. If you haven’t had a Ginja you weren’t in Lisbon!
Lisbon is full of roof top bars and terraces but this is definitely one of the most beautiful ones. It is decorated with potted plants and wooden patio furniture which create a natural ambiance and casual comfort. Watching the sunset from this 180° view terrace with a nice served Sangria, and it cannot get any better. If you wait a bit longer you might get pleased with a sky full of stars.
“All journeys have secret destinations of which the traveler is unaware.” (Martin Buber). What is your favorite secret destination?