Finally…girls’ weekend again
What were we thinking when deciding to get up before 5am to catch a flight? Certainly not how tired we would be once the day would come to an end.
The ones who read my blog regularly, might remember that our last girls’ weekend brought us to Barcelona. Apart from great memories we were left with the deep conviction to plan another weekend as soon as possible. A few ideas for destinations where a flight has to arrive at the destination at the same time from our home towns Amsterdam and Geneva, and leave roughly around the same hour too.
Edinburgh, Barcelona again, Berlin, Rome… . They all got finally kicked off the list. Edinburgh is hardly reachable from Geneva without any stops in between. Barcelona can be repeated (we love it), but just not yet. Berlin and Rome we keep for later. Lisbon won the race and to have as much time as possible it had to be the earliest flight possible. And not one minute did we regret the choice.
Here are 8 reasons for you to choose that city for a (girls’) weekend…
1 The Portuguese people… Whoever we turned to – they all got out of their way to help. I know, I was impressed with Californian friendliness in an earlier blog, but I think the Californians just got beaten by the Lisboetas. On more the Portuguese had to make the effort of speaking in a foreign language although I was ready to make the effort the other way around and take out my Portuguese. I was surprised by their excellent level of English and not only just among the youth which would be less surprising, but older people also showed us their impressive language skills.
2 Fabulous food… You will only be sorry to not have enough time to taste all you feel like. Avoid the very touristy restaurants, if you can. But if you don’t, you won’t be much disappointed either.
There was this one great restaurant we discovered thanks to the heavy rain. We did not want to go far from where we stayed. It was raining cats and dogs but we were starving. So we relied on our friend Google once more and checked the restaurants which were at walking distance. A quick review check and a few minutes later we felt like the luckiest as we got the last not reserved table and were tasting the excellent food. I hesitated to give the name of the restaurant (sometimes you want to keep the best for yourself) but Susanna, who served us, does deserves to be mentioned. So if you want nice food and even more excellent service, try this restaurant Fumeiro de Santa Catarina – a gem, like other guests said.
3 The Lisbon hills… Because they offer you spectacular views and because after all the food you eat, you are happy to work off all the calories consumed and that is just what happens when you discover the lovely ups and downs of that city. You might get back with a firmer bum than when you arrived, even after all the pasteis de nata you can not resist eating.
4 Great public transports.. It starts at the airport where you can either take the shuttle bus or you take the metro. I would avoid the latter as the view in the metro is the same no matter what city you are in. In town go for tram 28 and do a round trip, take a boat at Cais de Sodre or take the train to Sintra. But whatever transport mean has your preference…beware of pickpockets, never seen a city where they are as active as they are here, but ones you are aware you spot them quite easily.
5 Shopping malls… As you know, shopping is really note how I like to spend my time with but whoever likes it will be in heaven with the big shopping malls Lisbon has to offer…and they all have great food courts too.
6 Lisbon is reasonably sized… Of course it is a capital, of course it is big, but the city centre itself is overseeable and can be managed easily.
7 Live music… Fado is the traditional music, which might need some getting used to but you might end up enjoying it just like I do. But if you feel like anything else you will find it too. There are some good choices of concerts in Lisbon and if you are not too picky and just want a blast with reggae music, pop or rock you will find your luck in the messy but fun Bairro Alto and enjoy a drink.
All in all a perfect long weekend with lots of fun, sillypictures (and I don’t even share them all), great long talks which is not surprising to anyone who has ever been on a weekend with a very dear friend.
Ps We also found a jewel of an apartment to rent, but I admit this time I am too selfish to just share the info openly…But if you wish any info on it or on Lisbon and take the effort to get in touch with me, I will tell you the secret.
For more Lisbon pictures check out my previous post on that great city “Lisbon never deceives”