Yesterday (Tuesday) I managed to spend 16 hours out and running around Lisbon so I am actually looking forward to being able to take things a little easier when I get to Mexico (and sleeping just that little bit more). I started my day in the central square downtown and spent most of the day zipping around Lisbon in an army style jeep with 3 others, spiraling up and down the hills, squeezing through the narrow streets of Barrio Alto, skirting the Moorish castle Castelo de Sao Jorge, heading over the 25th of April bridge and climbing the Cristo-Rei statue to gaze upon one of the best views to Lisbon from across the river. Read more
Posts from the ‘Portugal’ Category
I arrived into Lisbon via high speed train from Porto (3 hours) and got off to find it was 34C. I took the blue line metro to where I was going to be based, Chiado, a residential area established in 1567. Walking up yet another inclined street halfway up one of Lisbon’s seven hills, I had to break for gelato while re-orienting myself with a map and get out from under my pack (but seriously, do you really need a reason for gelato?)
Since Monday I have done 3 organised tours around Lisbon which has been great as now I know more of Lisbon’s history, and also allowed me to let someone else do the driving for a bit, but it also means that I earmarked today (Wednesday) as a day where I am plan-free, and can just wander where I want, following the streets up and down hills and stopping for food when I find somewhere cute. Read more
It’s obviously a celebrated fact in Porto, but JK Rowling moved to Porto in 1991 to work as an English teacher in a language institute after her first marriage ended.
As she says, “Nine months after my mother’s death, desperate to get away for a while, I left for Portugal. I took with me the still-growing manuscript of Harry Potter, hopeful that my new working hours (I taught in the afternoon and evening) would lend themselves to pressing on with my novel.”
She was writing what became Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone at the time, and used the mornings to sit in cafes around town and write. Read more
I bought my Trenhotel high-speed night-train ticket several months ago, sitting in my freezing flat in Wellington, hunched over my laptop and under 3 layers of clothing and a rug, at the time heart in mouth as I attempted to navigate Renfe’s site in Spanish to book myself a sleeper compartment and not a seat for my all night train ride across Spain and into Portugal.
The departing train track in San Sebastian was changed at the last minute which caused a lot of anxiety for non PA Spanish/Basque speakers but finally figuring it out, I hefted my pack down the stairs against the human tide and back up to the new platform, quickly boarded the newly arrived train in the pouring rain to find my 4 berth female compartment (phew), all ready to leave. And waited, and waited… Read more