Weekend Break: Lisbon

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI can’t think of a better place for a weekend break than Lisbon! Or certainly, as we were in the Algarve in August, the temptation to jump on the train for a day or two to explore was irresistible… 

I’d been a child but didn’t remember much and I was so excited to show Gus. We stayed with boutique hotel collective Hip Hotels the brilliantly central Hotel Lisboa Plaza (part of the Hoteis Heritage group) one of the oldest hotels in the city. We jumped off our train at Entrecampos station and the taxi was just a 10-minute ride. Two things: I’d forgotten how wonderfully walkable Lisbon is but also how hilly! And how pretty too! As we pulled up to the hotel’s lovely front, my camera was already out of my bag and I had to put everything down to get some shots of the super dreamy lobby – the colour palette so gorge! And the leopard statue, love!
Once we’d checked in – couldn’t recommend the super spacious family rooms more, loads of space for us all! – we sauntered into the dying light to meet a London-Lisbon friend of ours in the ridiculously picturesque old town quarter Bairro Alto. Luckily our friends knew just where to eat and we had the most delicious dishes of sardines and dorada at Adegas das Merces (do book though, it’s small and was fully booked on a Friday night) while Gus tucked into omelette. No problem with Gus being with us either which was lovely and super relaxed. On our way back we stopped on a busy hilltop miradouro looking over Lisbon.


We stayed at Hotel Lisboa Plaza

We ate at Adegas das MercesBelem 2 A 8, ZamBeZeMezzogiorno

We ice-creamed at Santini Gelados & A Padaria Portuguesa (various locations)

We cafed at Coffee Grill & A Padaria Portuguesa

We visited record store Louie Louie

We walked around Bairro Alto, ChiadoBelem and Portas do Sol


 

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FROM LOULE STATION TO LISBON…

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HOW GORGEOUS IS THE HOTEL LISBOA PLAZA LOBBY? GOALS!
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WE HAD TWO DOUBLE BEDS IN AN ADJOINING ROOM WHICH WAS INCREDIBLE!
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SETTING OUT AS THE LIGHT BEGINS TO GO…

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HEADING INTO BAIRRO ALTO OLD TOWN…

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FANTASTIC RESTAURANT – BUT YOU MUST BOOK!

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I should probably mention how extremely hot it was – 30C plus. The next day, a little wine weary, we gung-holy set off post breakfast into the midday sun and after 10 minutes of labourious walking (and Gus not really walking!) we ducked into the first cafe we saw. Coincidently it turned out to be one I’d seen mentioned in a guide book, Coffee Grill, and it did not disappoint with its lovely interior with light spilling in off the pavement. We fuelled up on coffee – although I did order what I thought was an iced latte and ended up with just a straight black one!) and popped into a nearby record shop Louie Louie where my husband has friends (super chuffed my pic of this made VSCO Selects!).

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WALKING AROUND CHIADO…

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THE LIGHT_FILLED COFFEE GRILL CAFE…

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LISBON’S BEST RECORD STORE!

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The trams are so wonderful to behold. Though I kept my eyes peeled for the 1930s ones, which are the only ones that can traverse some of the narrower, windy streets, so amazing! Eventually we jumped on one which took us all the way to Belem where you’ll find the Torre de Belem and the famous Pateis de Belem bakery – the queue wound down the pavement. It was pretty busy, and all the top-rated restaurants were booked out. But as luck would have it we found a table in the lovely Belem 2 A 8 where upstairs it’s a lot quieter and genteel which was just what we needed to cool down. I had the most delicious seafood arroz I think I’ve ever tasted – I still think about it.

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OMG, THIS WAS DELICIOUS!

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The famous one!
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WORE THESE SHORTS NON-STOP!

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Tired out we jumped in a taxi for a short ride back to our hotel for a little downtime before ice-cream time. Oh my goodness, the ice-cream parlours, it’s a serious thing. Much like visiting San Remo in Italy when I was little, the ritual of going for (and queueing!) is deepset. We went for Santinis, because there was such a big queue (right!) and Gus couldn’t bear to search any further! Oh my goodness it was worth, soooo delicious. We wandered slowly as the sun went down and made our way to an outdoor cafe for a glass of vino. I haven’t felt so pleasure-dedicated for a long time! We moved seamlessly onto supper and ate in a courtyard of restaurants and went for Italian – Mezzogiorno in Chiado packed full of Italians, so always a good sign and it was just perfect for each of our favourites – pizza (Gus & Myles) and lasagne (me)!img_2938 img_2949

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SERIOUS GELADO!

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WINE O’CLOCK!

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The next day – still oh-so hot! – I was keen to get some beautiful rooftop shots so we headed for one of the many famous miradouro Portas do Sol. Initially we wanted to take the tourist-magnet Tram 28 but in the end the queue was just too long and by good fortune we jumped on the much quieter Tram 12, took a lovely little wind up the hilly streets and jumped out at just the right place. So stunning, I could have stayed all day taking pictures. Dragged away, we explored the tile-heaven backstreets before taking a punt on Mozambique restaurant ZamBeze – just went for more of a typical chicken and chips type meal! – for our last lunch with views onto the sea and surrounding city.

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PORTAS DO SOL – ONE OF THE BEST VIEWS IN LISBON!

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SUPER PRETTY BACKSTREETS OF PORTAS DO SOL

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MORE ICE-CREAM 😉

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We had such an incredible time but I feel like we only scratched the surface and I can’t wait to go again and discover more. I hope you enjoyed the pics!


 

We stayed as guests of Hip Hotels and Hotel Lisboa Plaza (part of the Hoteis Heritages group). 

All shot on the Olympus Pen F with 17mm and 45mm lens

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4 Comments

    1. Ah yes, I visited Porto briefly many years ago, would love to go back, what a lovely idea! Really one of the most beautiful countries 🙂 xx

  1. Glad you had a great time in Lisbon! I miss it so much after living there all summer, although, thanks for introducing Cafe Grill and Louie Louie record shop, I hadn’t heard of either and will be sure to check them out when I return! Please tell me you found Manteigaria for a pastel de nata?! I think you would really enjoy rooftop bat Topo too as and when you do go back. If anyone you know is planning a trip I would love to help with any recommendations or a tour if they want. Great pictures as always Julia 🙂

    1. Thanks lovely! Oh how lucky to live there, amazing! Oh my goodness we didn’t unfortunately, gah, think will have to go back!! 🙂