My trip has just ended and since my experience is still fresh in mind here some insights and some tips for visiting Lisbon:
Expectations: my impressions on this city are not yet clear. Definitely I would say this is not a city you fall in love at first sight. It is a city you learn to like though the time, through the understanding of its unique beauty.
Being a capital you might expect grandeur but it is not what you find. The city is decadent and chaotic but also easy going and friendly. And maybe the fascination of Lisbon is created by this alternation of styles and atmospheres.
You can see that once it was a great city, capital of the empire but being destroyed several times by earthquakes and fires every time the reconstructions brought something new and not always harmonic with the surrounding.
History and geography influenced the development of a city straddling two worlds creating startling contrasts: you almost don’t feel like in Europe, you feel the transport that this city and country always had toward the Atlantic.
The sun is fundamental: I would suggest to travel to Lisbon outside the winter period because this city changes completely with the sun. It is a city made for hot weather and sunny days. With the sun the views are amazing because all the tiles surfaces reflects the light entangling you in a magical atmosphere. On the other end with rain this city seems very very desolated but luckily the weather changes a lot so don’t think black if the morning is cloudy.
Be ready to walk a lot: public transport is sort of expensive and not very functional so walking is the best solution but the city configuration is quite peculiar, built on several hills everywhere you need to go you will end up going up and down a thousand times. Bring your comfy shoes.
I hope you love Bacalhao: the traditional food here is Bacalhao (codfish) cooked in all possible ways: in the oven, grilled, boiled, fried and much more. Accompanied mainly with potatoes and onion:
A part from great sobremesas – desserts! They are very various and nice but I hope you like sweet!
Nice point: at least you know that food is really cheap and you can have a complete dinner for 15,00€ or so.
Some more random shots of Lisboa an more coming soon… Enjoy!