7 reasons to consider Lisbon the coolest capital of Europe
The capital of Portugal is not inferior to other magnificent cities in Europe. For some reason, completely undeservedly, tourists bypass this city. Lisbon can be considered one of the pearls of tourism, because there are seven reasons for this.
1. Nightlife is cooler than in Madrid
If you think that you go to bed late in the Spanish city, take a night’s walk in Lisbon. There are slightly fewer nightlife venues, but there is an uninterrupted flow of fun on the streets that ends (probably) only with the dawn over the Tagus River. The most stormy fun takes place on Bairro Alto Street, where overnight nights over 250 bars serve visitors. Next, head towards the promenade, in the area of the Cais do Sodré train station.
The most popular place here is the former Pensão Amor brothel, where the interior makes every possible use of erotic motifs, and the bartenders prepare stunning signature cocktails.
In the predawn dawn, take a bite to eat at the Santa Apolonia docks, where the popular Lux is the real king among the super clubs of Lisbon.
2. Experimental cuisine
At one time, the capital of Portugal was known mainly for bacalhau (dried cod), quaint old coffee houses and taverns. Now, there are many restaurants with experimental and gourmet cuisine. Seafood is still popular, but the main trend is to create modern, sophisticated and at the same time affordable dishes. Savor gourmet food from the brilliant chef José Avilés at his famous Belcanto establishment with a Michelin star. Or send to the more affordable Cantinho Bistro. Avant-garde European and Portuguese cuisine can be found on the Avillez menu. There is a wide selection of dishes, starting with sea bass with seaweed and ending with lamb meat with mashed vegetables.
Lisbon also loves juicy bifans – pork buns that are sold in eateries on every corner. It would be a big mistake not to try pies stuffed with eggs – pasta de nata. Try also delicious custard desserts and shortcrust pastries at the famous Antiga Confeitaria de Belem.
3. The irony
It may seem that the inhabitants of Lisbon will brag to tourists about their many advantages and achievements: the world’s first empire, the best custard buns, sea bass served with seaweed. On the contrary, Lisbonians treat themselves with irony.
The Portuguese writer Fernando Pessoa once eloquently summed up the national spirit: “I woke up quite early and long prepared for existence.” This peculiar melancholy with an admixture of self-irony helps residents of the city to remain in good spirits no matter what.
4. Castles and beaches
On the coast, inhale the salty Atlantic air, sunbathe or catch a wave. Fans of boating can rent a boat and travel along the Tagus River. At Cascais, a nearby establishment, try seafood and grilled fish served in special domed dishes – cataplans.
Take the train to Sintra. Forty minutes from the main station of Lisbon – and the tourist gets to a place where time has long stopped. Here, among the lush wooded hills, watch the palaces and mansions of aristocrats.
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5. Incredible design
Wherever a traveler is, in this city it becomes clear: modern design is the main feature of Lisbon. Stylish leather chairs, large wine signs, interiors combining the heritage of the past and the latest design trends – the capital loves to look good.
Expo 98 Pavilion, created by architect Alvaro Siza Weira, received the prestigious Pritzker Prize. The Museum of Fashion and Design MUDE also looks very interesting.
6. Great art
London, Paris, Madrid, Berlin – are known for huge collections of art objects. Lisbon also has a large number of such galleries. The famous Gulbenkian Foundation gathered representatives of eastern and western art.
The Museu Berardo Museum contains mainly works by artists of the 20-21st centuries, from Picasso to Jeff Kuhn. Museu de Arte Antiga is a 17th-century building that contains more than 500 works by artists.
7. Fascinating streets
Walking around the city, it will never become boring. After all, under the feet of a tourist is a diverse and fascinating paving stone. Also, you can not take your eyes off the walls of houses decorated with special ceramic tiles – azuleos.