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I flew for the first time in my life on an airplane on a Friday the 13th. Destination, Lisbon.

My memories of this city are very strong, emotionally with a special resonance in my heart. Lisbon is without a doubt in my top 3 favorite European cities. I love the climate here, the architecture, the gastronomy, as well as the sound of one of the most beautiful languages in the world, Portuguese.

It’s a city of contrasts, where you can enjoy the exuberant parties of Bairro Alto, only to become nostalgic to the rhythms of fado music played at night in a neighborhood bar. The whole city is crisscrossed by narrow, sloping streets paved with cubic stone, where you can spot the famous Tram 28.

I was lucky enough to have friends in Lisbon who knew where to take me to see many sights, some of which I found the most beautiful: Belem Tower, Jeronimos Monastery, Lisbon Aquarium, Discovery Monument, Cristo del Rei, Vasco Da Gama Bridge (the longest bridge in Europe) and 25 April Bridge.

The Belem Tower is one of the most symbolic buildings in Lisbon and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  Even though it’s a very narrow corridor, I advise you to climb the tower, because the main attraction is the upper terrace. Immediately next to it, you can see the Monument of Discoveries, which depicts prominent figures from the Portuguese era of geographical discoveries – Vasco da Gama, Pedro Alvares Cabral and Magellan – on its sides.

I really enjoyed the Aquarium, which is he second largest in the world and where I saw many species of fish and animals. I also climbed the Cristo del Rei statue, modelled on the Statue of Christ in Rio de Janeiro, located in Almada, a city linked to Lisbon by the 25th April Bridge.

Even if you have a fear of heights, you must try a unique experience, the funicular ride.

Passing under the Arco do Rua Augusta, you reach Lisbon’s central point, the Praça do Comércio, right on the banks of the Tagus estuary.

If you want to see one of Portugal’s most sophisticated destinations, take a trip to Cascais, a refined resort, where you can stroll around Cascais Marina and admire the yachts at the shore. Even if you’re not a gambling enthusiast, don’t miss the famous Casino Estoril either,  as the casino itself is the largest casino in Europe and the place that inspired Ian Fleming, author of the novel Casino Royale.

For one day I chose to go to the beach in Costa da Caparica. The Atlantic Ocean water is very cold, but it made up for it with very fine, golden hot sand and beautifully landscaped beaches.

There, at a beachside terrace, we ate the best butter shrimps. The fact that it’s an affordable destination, where you find the best seafood and the best fish, has always attracted me to Lisbon. It’s also known for their traditional dessert, the famous pastel de nata (vanilla and egg tarts), which is unlike anything you’ll find in Romania, the taste is totally different.

Lisbon is always a good idea for a holiday that will fascinate you with its history, gastronomy and services. The people are relaxed and friendly. With plenty of activities to do and places to see, I think Lisabona is the right place, even if you want to explore it with your gang of friends or your loved one.

Travel, live, love..in the free Portuguese spirit.

Mada

 

 

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