Oh Lisbon! What a beautiful city. I booked a trip there on a spur of the moment. I had taken time off work and was determined to squeeze in a quick trip before travelling to Nigeria for my friend’s wedding. Monday morning I was up at the crack of dawn and booked my flights and hotel for Tuesday for three days.
You’ll notice a recurring theme with a lot of my travel posts: I tend to only spend a few days in a new country/city. Why? 1. Naturally I have a limited number of vacation days which I try to maximise, and more importantly 2. I find that with a short timeframe, I am more likely to seize the day and explore as much as possible! Lisbon was no different, I savoured each moment of my short trip to this beautiful city. Here are five reasons to love Lisbon:
1. The Pasteis de Nata
Yooooo! Guys, I’ll admit I didn’t even know what these were before I went to Portugal, but now I’m obsessed. These little custard tarts are everywhere in Lisbon and they are just DELICIOUS. Yummy pastry shells with a bruléed custard filling (yes y’all “bruléed – we’re fancy haha!) They are to die for. I got to the point where I wasn’t even eating meals, just filling up on these.
One place I absolutely loved was the Pastelaria Santo Antonio, which is near Castelo de Sao Jorge.
Another great place was a little cafe I found walking from my hotel to the old town, It was right beside a pretty water feature in the shade of some trees. I spent a good hour or so reading and people-watching while I enjoyed my tart and hot chocolate.
Now I’m back home, I’m actually tempted to try out a recipe for these. I found what seems to be a great recipe on Leite’s Culinaria. Of course I’ll let you guys know how it goes, make sure you keep an eye out on my Insta Stories to see it first!
2. The Food
Right, so the few meals I did have were just epic. There were two restaurants in particular that I would absolutely recommend. The first, Capricciosa, a casual restaurant with outdoor seating on the Santo Amaro dock. You have to try the seafood linguine, it was mind-blowing – so good that I nearly ordered a second plate! You know that feeling when you know you’re full but you’re really sad that your plate is nearly empty so you consider pushing past and eating more? That was me! Thankfully the urge to not be an orobo* prevailed, and I respected myself and stopped there haha.
(*orobo = fattie)
The second restaurant was Atalho Real where I got my entire life from one meal! It was that good. So good I did an entire gushing post about it here. Delicious steak, delicious sides, delicious wine. What more could anyone want?
3. The Monuments and Historical Sites
From the “Torre de Belem” to the Jeronimos Monastery (both of which are UNESCO world heritage sites btw), Lisbon’s rich history is reflected in beautiful monuments, sites and museums. I’ll admit the crowds can be overwhelming but the sights are so worth it!
The Belem Tower was impressive but the queues were insane. I settled on a view from the outside because my patience just couldn’t hack the wait.
The Jeronimos Monastery was equally beautiful and surrounded by beautiful gardens and fountains.
The Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology lives up to its name and is another impressive figure along the water.
Further along the bank is the Monument to the Discoveries.
Praca do Comercio
4. The Nightlife
Before I went I had heard great things about Lisbon nightlife. I didn’t get to many bars as I only had two nights, and spent the first in my hotel room, ordering room service in my bathrobe! (don’t judge).
I did however manage a proper night out on my second day. A couple of my friends happened to be in town for a wedding so we met up and headed to K Urban Beach, a beachfront club. It’s a bit of a random spot, with party goers of all types and a mix of music on the dance-floor but I had the best time! I would definitely recommend you go at least once for the experience.
5. The Views
As far as cities go, Lisbon has to be one of the prettiest I’ve ever seen. A great way to take in the sights is by visiting some of the amazing rooftops bars and restaurants.
I went to the Sky Bar at the top of the Tivoli Hotel, which boasts delicious cocktails and spectacular views of the city – especially at sunset.
Another great rooftop is at Chapito, near the Castelo de Sao Jorge. They serve food on their terrace too but I would recommend booking in advance or be ready to wait a while! It’s a cosy and casual vibe and the views add to the ambience.
Have you been to Lisbon, what was your favourite part? Let me know in the comments below.