Monday, September 01, 2014


It's been a long time since my dormant travel bug tickled my toes.

And Lisbon, what a lovely city! You don't hear much about Lisbon in the grand spectrum of European cities. Most people go to Barcelona or Rome or Paris for long weekend breaks. But the Portuguese capital started to make its way onto the pages of travel magazines a year or two ago.

It is the most underrated city I've been to. I think. It's not completely overrun with tourists, the avenues and streets are wide and walkable (all covered in white cobbles - not a street or pavement is without the smooth cobbles. I did trip and fall on face, sure, but whatever), and the people love children.

Women, men and children would swoop in and touch Sebastian wherever we went, and were so accommodating in restaurants and while we travelled. We walked with him everywhere, up and down streets, all over town basically. My little boy was a (mostly) lovely traveller - very relaxed, even stretching across our laps during the flight there,to sleep.
(Beginner's luck?)

The flight back deserves its own post.

Anyway. The weather was perfect. About 28 degrees, stark and sunny - about the average temperature I enjoy most. Sebby could wear his summer clothes a bit longer, while me and the Brit ran around scantily-cladded.

I managed to reverse all the work I have done on my diet, via the medium of 'pasteis de nata', those criminally-good custard tart thingies the Portuguese make so well. We went to the original cafe where the initial recipe was sown by nuns. Seriously.

We slotted them like biscuits, fresh and crispy from the oven. I can't really describe how tasty these were, so I won't.
But I will say this: never in my life has I tasted something so crispy and crunchy, and yet so buttery and smooth all at once. Dusted in cinnamon, warm from the oven's embrace..... No wonder Cafe de Belem sells 20 000 of those bad boys a day. (And at 1 euro a tart, they're dong OK....)

We ordered Portuguese food in, loitered by the pool on top of our apartment, meandered through gardens and tiny streets.

We took Seb on buses, on the metro, everywhere. The little lad's mind must have been blown a few times.

Anyway, enough talking, more pictures. Lisbon is hands down a wonderful city, well worth a visit. It's small enough to walk around over a few days, the weather is amazing, there are beaches nearby and I believe it has a cracking nightlife.
(One area we couldn't partake in, was the night vibe in Bairro Alto where I was told that the streets become awash with bucket-sized mojitos. Next time.)

 Many buildings are covered top to bottom in tiles.
 Arco de Augusta

 The secret-recipe pasteis de Belem in process.
 Look at this thing.

 Oh ja. I bought a new set of 'fun' shades. They're red velvet Ray Ban reflectors, cue right. I haven't been in a duty free for a while. It shows, doesn't it.
 The Cafe de Belem hall - filled with snacking tourists!
 My heart melts.
 No trip to Portugal would be complete without a dish of grilled sardines.

 Portuguese windows
 My sunglasses can reflect everything within a 20 mile radius.
 Standard pavement view.
Mother and boy child statue.
 Our pool with Lisbonic [sic] views

 Seb's bath time in the sink. Not overly impressed.
 Husband and views

 Ifound an old friend - at a 'museu de cerveja', a 'beer emporium' basically. Mozambique in a sip.

 Them tiles.
 It's not quite's more sort Atlanticanean.

 Bougainvillea eeverywhere....
 Dried fish. Not keen.
 Warm in Portugal. Keen.
Our first family trip.

It was lovely to spend four glorious days, just me and my little family. So good for all of us.


Coffee and Books Cape Town said...

Lemme live there! And as far from the East as poss! And they discovered NATAL and named it.1492? Strong links x

Coffee and Books Cape Town said...


Val said...

Lovely photos!! Looks like a beautiful place to visit.Thanks for sharing - am sure it did you both a power of good. :)

Pebbles said...

I was there a year ago :-)Such a beautiful city!