We caught an evening flight* from Seville to Lisbon, Portugal, our last stop in the journey. It was time to navigate a new city and a new language for a brief time before heading back across the Atlantic.
Arriving quite late, and without having much sustenance to speak of, we ventured out in search of a restaurant. Lesson #1: dinner apparently starts earlier in Portugal than it does in Spain. The restaurants that were still open were no longer seating folks, so we found a cafe/bakery open late and found some (quite good, though cold) food to go. Lesson #2: as our taxi driver mentioned, the economy is not in great condition in Lisbon; perhaps the many times we were quietly offered “special goods” out on the streets of Lisbon provides evidence of that fact.
We awoke somewhat refreshed the next morning, and ventured out for the daytime version of the city tour. Lisbon is a hilly city, so we took the Santa Justa elevator from the Baixa section of town to the Barrio Alto. Here we took in the views over the city, wandered a bit, and settled in just after noon at the Port Wine Institute. Not receiving the warmest welcome (to put it mildly), we left after sharing two tastings, and, at least, my learning that I like port!
We rode the cable car back down below, but meandered back uphill towards the Castle of Sao Jorge for a tour. Rains began to dampen the visit but quickly ended just as we stumbled upon a fantastic view of the terracotta-roofed city. Lisbon is certainly photogenic, though seemingly, and ironically, there is a construction site on nearly every block. Having survived our hill climbs, we settled into a low-key evening of local seafood and sparkling wine.
On our second day in Lisbon, we caught the bus to Belem, where we toured the Jeronimos Monastery (which has a beautifully designed cloister), and also visited the Monument to the Discoveries and the Belem Tower. But our second day in Lisbon was Day 14 of our trip, and these travelers were out of sightseeing steam. We returned to the hotel, readied our baggage, and spent the evening sitting outdoors at the nearest restaurant. The next day would be long, but would bring us to our final destination: home!!!
There’s still so much to process from this wonderful trip, and I plan to share much more (including photos!) Until then…
*Flew on Portugal’s TAP Airlines from Seville – not my highest rated airline experience…