Archive for the ‘Portugal’ Category

Historic Holidays in Lisbon

Friday, July 27th, 2007

The capital of Portugal, Lisbon boasts of a 2000 years old history. There is a wonderful peculiarity in this city. It is said that it was constructed over seven hills and hence it has plenty of ups and downs (literally) – it is the only place in the world where an elevator would take you from one road to another.

Historical Attractions in Lisbon

This city, which is by the way the largest in the country, was under Arab occupation until 1147 AD when King Alfonso Henrique liberated it his capital city. The city prospered greatly after the Court was shifted there mid thirteenth century and by the seventeenth century is was a major commercial power of Europe.

Since it is a historic city, there is plenty to see in Lisbon – there are ancient and opulent castles such as the St George’s Castle and Terreiro do Paco, large and impressive cathedrals such as the Lisbon Cathedral, and other historical monuments such as the Belem Tower and Mosteiro dos Jeronimos. The architecture of the city and the perfect blend of past and present offers an unparalleled charm that no one can resist.

You will also find here the world’s longest suspension bridge, the Vasco da Gama Bridge which links the airport on one side with the railway station on the other side. History lovers would revel in visiting the Alfama district which is capable of transporting you back into the 16-17th century with its winding streets and medieval buildings.

LisbonSunset View

Other Major Attractions

Check out the Calouste Gulbenkian Museum and Carmo Archeological Museums which would thrill you with historical facts and exhibits. For art lovers, the National Museum of Contemporary Art is a must see. The Museum of Fado is an exceptional place where music is the main focus – you will find here everything you ever wanted to know about the lilting music of this country. Among the major attractions, you will find here (Almada – on the banks of River Tagus) almost identical replica of the famous statue Cristo Redentor (Rio de Janeiro) called the Cristo Rei.

Shopping in Lisbon

If you love shopping you will need to visit the Amoreiras where you will find a concentration of more than 200 stores, many restaurants offering every type of cuisine you would want or imagine, theater and even a church. So, coming here would be able to take care of all your needs. Do not forget to try out the local and very famous drink called ‘ginjinga’ – this is something you would find only in Portugal.

The other major shopping spot would be the Avenida da Liberdale which is lined with hi-end shops and restaurants as well as theaters. While you are in the vicinity, check out the Eduardo VII park which offers some phenomenal views of the entire city. A must-see and experience is the Elevator de Santa Justa which links two districts, i.e. the Baixa and the Bairo districts.