First day in Portugal

The plane for Madrid

So I make it to JFK airport from LaGuardia with about an hour and a half to spare. I look out at the grey skies over New York and wonder what the weather is like in Lisbon. My iPhone is shut off and sans sim card. I unlocked it prior to leaving and I plan on getting a sim card in Lisbon soon.

Arrival in Madrid - Barajas

Arrival in Madrid - Barajas

So Jet-Lagged!

The Barajas airport in Madrid is huge. It’s easily twice the size of the Detroit airport. I had to take an underground tram from terminal 4S to get to terminal 4, where the connection to Lisbon was. I had about an hour and forty minutes to catch my connection, but luckily I made it with about 15 minutes to spare, after going through security, AGAIN.

Rua de Almirante Reis

So we’re gonna fast forward to Rua de Almirante Reis, in Lisbon. This is the street where my hotel for tonight is located. After getting to the Lisbon airport I really thought there was going to be customs or something, but there wasn’t. I just walked out. I guess its because my official point of entry was Madrid and they made me go through security there. In the Lisbon airport I left via the “nada para declarar” exit and no one stopped me.

Castelo São Jorge

This is the Castelo São Jorge. I’m going to visit it tomorrow. In this picture I’m on my way to the Rossio station to catch the Yellow Bus double-decker tour bus. Unfortunately I forgot to snap a photo of the bus itself, but it was an open top double-decker that was kinda ridiculous winding its way through the narrow cobblestone streets of Lisbon.

Top of the Bus

I guess this sort of shows the bus, or atleast the view from the top. This is the Figueroa Square, with the Rossio station right there.

Portugal's colors

So we begin to drive off towards São Sebastião, a central part of Lisbon, going to the magnificent Parque Eduardo VII.

Top of the Parque Eduardo VII

You can see most of the city from here!

Basillica Estrela

After the Parque, we drive to the Basillica Estrela.

Inside the Basillica Estrela

When I walked in there was someone jamming on the pipe organ which I thought was funny. He was obviously learning how to play it and had a teacher nearby. I walked around and eventually found a “guide” who would show me the roof of the place for 5€. In reality he just collected money and let you walk up there. He had some tickets and fanny-pack to make him look (somewhat) legit.

Me on top of the Basillica Estrela

This is another viewpoint from which you can see most of the city. Lisbon is situated on top of many hills that give it a very picturesque view from atop something tall.

Jardim Estrela - Pond

Across the street from the Basillica Estrela is the Jardim (garden) Estrela. This is considered to be one of the best parks in all of Lisbon. I have to agree.

Ducks in the Pond

The yellow building to the right is a restaurant and there is a shaded eating area next to it.

The Menu

Since they were out of the Peixe, I went with the carne. Yes, it is Spaghetti Bolognese. I was hungry.

My First Meal in Portugal

Spaghetti with meat sauce. I know it’s not very Portuguese, but at least the beer is. BTW the extra large and fresh basil leaf on top of the Spaghetti made the dish.


After lunch in the Jardim Estrela, I hopped back onto the Yellow Bus Tour and headed towards Lisbon’s most famous landmark, Belém. The head honcho of Portugal lives here.

Torre de Belém

Across the way from Belém is the tower, that is actually in the waters of the Rio Tejo. There are steps that descend into the ice cold waters surrounding the tower. I stepped in with my sandals and it was nice and refreshing.

Miniature of the Torre Belém

Right in front of the Torre de Belém is a miniature of the same in bronze. It was donated by the Rotary Club of Lisbon.

Doca de Belém

Down the street from the Torre de Belém is the Doca de Belém. This is an iconic landmark for Lisbon. It features Vasco De Gama at the top holding a Portuguese Caravel, the ship they used to explore the world during the Age of Discoveries.

What a day!

Ok one last picture of this giant landmark with a woman in the picture for scale. I am exhausted from traveling and then immediately sightseeing. Boa Noite!

4 responses to “First day in Portugal

  1. Looks like you are having a good time there, I’ll show the pictures to Mommy. My little Sony camera really served it’s purpose and did a great job capturing the memories beautifully.

  2. Pingback: Best Cafe in Lisbon? Round 2: Tram 28 Line « Expat In Lisbon·

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