Lisbon, Portugal

Lisbon (Lisboa in Portuguese) is the capital of Portugal. The city lies on the right bank of the Tagus, close to the Atlantic Ocean, in the region Estremadura.

Things to see and do

In Santa Maria de Belém you can find some world heritage like the Hieronymites monastery Mosteiro dos Jerónimos and the Torre de Belém (Belém Tower). At the monastery explorer Vasco de Gama is burried. Baixa is the centre of Lisbon. You can find the Rossio here, for centuries the most important square in the city. Almost adjacent to that square lies Praça dos Restauradores. Along the Tagus lies the very big square Praça do Comércio where you could find the royal residence, until Portugal became a republic in 1910.

In the district Bairro Alto, west of Baixa, you can find a lot of restaurants and nightlife spots. The district lies 30 m higher and is reachable from the centre by the Elevador de Santa Justa. This elevator is designed by the apprentice of Gustave Eiffel in neogothic style around 1900.

East of the centre is the Alfama, an old neighbourhood. With its steep streets, steps and alleys it’s a touristic sight. In Alfama you can find different fado houses. These are small restaurants where you can listen and watch the traditional fado. In this fado districts like Alfama, Bairro Alto and Mouraria, but also Lissabon and Portugal are sung. Tram line 28 goes right through the district, using very old trams. This tram is used by many tourists, but is still important for the people living in the district. The most famous and oldest church of the city, the Cathedral of Lisbon, is also here.

A few kilometers east of the centre is the “new centre” on the expo are: the Parque das Nações, know from Expo ’98. Here you can find the Oceanário de Lisboa, an aquarium, the Vasco da Gama mall, the Vasco da Gama Tower, a cableway and the train station Gare do Oriente.

The city also has two bridges worth seeing. The Ponte 25 de Abril, named after the carnation Revolution from 1974, connects Lisbon with the Outra Banda, the south bank of the Tagus. The design is modeled on the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco. Besides that there’s the new bridge over the Tagus: the 17 km long Vasco da Gama-bridge.

Museums

At the Museu Nacional de Arte Antiga, the most important art museum in Portugal, you can find a lot of work from North European painters like Jeroen Bosch and Albrecht Dürer.

The museums Museu Calouste Gulbenkian and Centro de Arte Moderna José de Azeredo Perdigão show a collection with Egyptian, Islamic, Chinese and Japanese art and paintings by Rogier van der Weyden, Ghirlandaio, Frans Hals, Rembrandt, Fragonard, Manet and Degas, together with moderne Portuguese and British art. The originally Armenian philanthropist Calouste Gulbenkian collected during his life more than 6000 artworks.

The Museu Nacional do Azulejo is the national museum of of tiles including the 18th century tile plateau of the panorama of Lisbon.

Parks

In Lissabon you can also find a lot of parks, like the Parque Florestal de Monsanto and the Parque Eduardo VII with the Estufas. The greenhouse complex consists of two glass greenhouses. In the Cold Greenhouse are fountains, streams and ponds between the hardy flowers and ferns. In the moist shelter of the Estufa Quente (greenhouse) it is a domain of cactusses, water lilies and flamingos. In the greenhouse different types of birds are present, such as dwarf parrots and a peacock. The Botanical Garden has rare plants and trees.

(bron: wikipedia.org)

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