Palms and pastries
Lisbon Travel Blog› entry 3 of 8 › view all entries
July 2nd, 2008 – by: Jeroenadmiraal
In the morning, I accompanied my parents to a botanical garden they wanted to see (Jardim Botanico). It took us a while to get there, because (1) it was located on top of a hill and (2) the road seemed a lot shorter on the map, hehehe!
It was an ok morning. Not many spectacular events are known to happen in botanical gardens, but it was nice to be rid of the sound of cars for a while. This garden clearly specialized itself in palm trees. There was a palm hill, a palm avenue, etcetera. Next to the palms, there was a little butterfly garden (and who doesn't love butterflies? :-p).
Here is another thing Lisbon is famous for: pastries! I took my first bite in a pastry at lunch and I must say: these are nice! After that delicious snack I continued my trip through Lisbon on my own.
The plan was: just go here and there with the subway and visit random stuff. So my first stop was Campo Pequeno. This is Lisbon's bullfighting ring, complete with a massive underground shopping mall and cinemas. It is a grotesque, Moorish-inspired red building, with onion-like towers! I did not see a bullfight, unfortunately. They don't come cheap.
My second stop was park Eduardo VII, which is basically a 500m grassy slope, but it marks the end of a line of streets and squares that divide Lisbon into two halves. Lightning-like lines on the grass accentuate this (see the photo!).
I got back downtown via bairro alto to do some fun shopping, and to see the sitting statue of Fernando Passoa (a poet) in front of his favorite cafe. He's been sitting there for decades.
My final stop was the Alfama neighborhood, behind the castle. There are a lot of monumental buildings to see, but also a peek in really medina-like, colorful Lisbon streets. You can almost smell the soul of Lisbon. So what is there to find in Alfama? Well, a few buildings I was too late in the afternoon to visit! There is a cube-like building, dubbed the National Pantheon, that graces a thousand postcards. There is also an old monastery that will have to wait another day.
But not tomorrow. Tomorrow I will be in Sintra. One of the most extraordinary places I know of.
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