After Barcelona we headed to Lisbon, Portugal as a part 2 to the Iberian trip. Ricardo and Irene headed to France, so we were on our own for this portion.
Sunday morning we got to the airport, got checked in and through security and sat down for a breakfast. Time went quickly and we almost missed our time for getting on the plane. They had closed the doors, but opened it back up for us and some others who had a late connection.
We got to Lisbon and had a nice pick up from the airport to take us to our Airbnb in the older part of the city, Alfama. We decided to try to bike to Belem, which would have been nice if we weren’t way up a hill that didn’t have straight streets or lots of room and was mostly stairs to get down to the boardwalk the quick way. We left the bikes and decided to walk. I enjoyed the walk, but Steph was starting to have her feet hurt by the time we made it to Belem about an hour and a half later. We got the famous egg tarts and shared a half dozen. We noticed on the walk that there was a Banksy exhibition and made a note to come back, as they were about to close by the time we saw it. We took the bus back to the touristy street and had some ginjinha and gelato.
Monday we went back to the Banksy exhibition in the morning and really enjoyed it. The exhibit wasn’t by Banksy, but about him and featured a good bit of his work and explanations of what they represented and were about. We then took the tram to the top of the hill where we were staying and to the Castillo de George. We hung out at a cafe overlooking the city before having dinner at Cantio do Aviles, which was good.
Tuesday we were supposed to have a cooking class, but after getting to the local market and waiting for an hour we decided the guide was a no show, so we went to the aquarium instead. This was nice and we got to relax and look at fish for a while. The aquarium also had puffins, penguins, and otters to round out their sea life offering. The puffins were adorable, and the otters are always fun to watch. They also had a fascinating exhibit on display of sea creatures made from fishing hooks.
We went to a nearby vegetarian restaurant for lunch, Ohana. It was really tasty food, and if this place were near our house I would be going there all the time. They even had a green smoothie with added turmeric. We then headed to the 24 de Abril bridge for an evening cruise. We took the trolley, and didn’t count on the main coastal street not being crossable by pedestrians. After we made it over a pedestrian bridge some ways away we made it just in time to get on the boat. The cruise was very nice, and relaxing. They gave us a bit of history of the buildings visible from the water.
After the cruise we went to an area called LX Factory, which was a gorgeous hidden gem. We stumbled on it while trying to get to the boat. This is an artist community with a touristy main street with lots of restaurants. I really liked the feel of the area and would recommend a visit.
Wednesday we spent the morning just relaxing at a cafe before lunch at AO26, a vegan restaurant. The vegan cheese was some of the best we’ve had. They also had a soup we had all the time on the trip (and before the trip with Adam) a strawberry gaspacho. We walked over to the Elevador de Santa Justa, and had a great view from the top. We walked along the ridge and took the stairs down to a small shop Ginjinha de Carmo to have the ginjinha in a chocolate cup. It was delicious and unique. We headed to the airport after a mixup with luggage that got sorted quickly. We got back to Barcelona and spend the night at the airport hotel there.
Thursday we got on our flight back to the US. We were connecting through Philadelphia, but the Philadelphia to SFO flight was cancelled once we got there. We were given a hotel room and got a nice dinner at a tasty Thai place. Friday we had time to kill so we got a nice veggie brunch and then went to see Toy Story 4. The flight back in the evening was thankfully uneventful and we even got back a little ahead of schedule.
Lisbon was a great city, and we could have spent a few more days there with things still to see. We were slowing down at this point in the trip as well, so we weren’t trying to pack in all the things like we could have. I enjoyed the relaxing parts just as much as the interesting ones.