Saturday, 27 May 2017

Lisbon, City Attractions

Lisbon, the Belem Tower ©Solange Hando

First built in the 16th century to guard the estuary of the river Tagus, the tower was strengthened over time and fully restored in the 1990s. Listed by Unesco, it remains an iconic gateway to the Portuguese capital.
The tower gives its name to the nearby pastry shop where some 20,000 traditional custard tarts are baked every day.

Jeronimos Monastery in Lisbon ©Solange Hando

Across the road, this former monastery is also a Unesco site, built on a grand scale in the early 16th century and funded through taxes, raised from the maritime trade and paid in gold.
It is one of the finest examples of late Gothic Manueline architecture and hosts major events and exhibitions.

Rossio Square, Central Lisbon ©Solange Hando

Lisbon loves its squares, from small secluded plazas tucked under the trees to spectacular open spaces where tourists pose for the camera and locals gather to put the world to rights.
The elegant Comercio Square leads down to the river, with cool arcades and gourmet restaurants, while Rossio is known for its statues, Baroque fountains and cobblestones arranged in wave patterns.

Traditional Transport in Lisbon ©Solange Hando

In this city of seven hills, quaint old-fashioned trams add plenty of charm and nostalgia. The network in and around town includes 93 lines and covers 76km.
Number 28 allows you to hop on and off at all main tourist sites but it can be very crowded. Start early to avoid the queues.

Sao Jorge Castle ©Solange Hando

The largely rebuilt medieval citadel rises on a hilltop right in the town centre. It's a lovely place to explore, picnic under a tree or stroll along the ramparts with superb views of the old city and the river Tagus.

Discoveries Monument ©Solange Hando

Inaugurated in 1958 and shaped like the prow of a caravelle, this 52 metre high monument celebrates the early navigators and explorers who set sail from this spot, under the patronage of Prince Henry the Navigator.