Monday, February 24, 2014

Lisbon, Portugal: Alfama

Actual date of this event: 7-9 February

My absolute most favorite part of Lisbon was Alfama! Almost fully pedestrianized - or at least it seemed that way as no cars could fit down half of the streets - Alfama is labeled as a labyrinth. I challenged Luke to use his "elite sense of direction" and not Google maps to get us out of the maze. He accepted that challenge... for about ten minutes... and then began using his phone "to be looking for other things". The area doesn't have a whole lot to it, but it is soooooo does. My knee was still bothering me, but I was so lost in the uniqueness of Alfama that I barely felt the pain.
So here is what we did.... we headed straight to the Lisbon Cathedral. Took a peak inside to catch our breath, and prepare for the awesomeness that we were about to experience in Alfama!

We let our eyes choose which way looked most interesting. And walked.

Watch out for that #28 tram... it might ya!

Luke and I stopped for a late lunch and drinks at some point... I have no idea what the name was or what street it was on or if it was in the southern area or the northern area of Alfama... but it was a small family restaurant, it was good, the pints of beer were 1.50 euro and main dishes were 6 euro!
Moving on... but we can't wander without a road beer. I chose the mini-beer because it was too cute to not purchase! Pardon my red wine teeth...

{It wasn't us - I promise! We are always respectful in other countries... except for the public drinking... we blame that on Louisiana.}
Are open glass containers legal on the streets of Alfama? I don't know. But we figured it was okay because we came across a group of joint-rollers at one point. Eventually, we came across the São Vicente de Fora Monastery. 

Behind the São Vicente de Fora Monastery is the Santa Clara Market which sells everything. It's basically like a flea market - Nokia cell phones, naked Barbie dolls, toothpaste, Polaroid cameras, scarves, pocket watches, boom boxes, laptops, etc. I really wonder where all of this crap - I call it crap because it looked like a big outdoor attic - came from.

And the Santa Clara Market surrounds the National Pantheon.
We continued our wander through Alfama - going up and down every path and stairway, some of them a few times.

Eventually, we ended up by St. George's Castle and used the excuse of rain to have a large beer.

It was about this time that we made our way to Miradouro da Senhora do Monte for some nice views of Lisbon.
But hunger struck us again as the sun went down, so we decided to head back to Alfama for tapas at Caso SÉrio. We enjoyed the flaming Chorizo, so much that we got another order for dessert, but the Roasted Goats Cheese was also a big hit.

Have I convinced you yet to make your way to Lisbon? I have convinced myself that another visit to Portugal is needed... hopefully this time we can make our way south to the Algarve! Anyway, I am missing one last piece of the Lisbon puzzle... and that is the super goofy picture of Luke from my sneak peek post. Funny Moment: Lisbon coming right up!

The hard bedrock foundation of Alfama saved the area from much damage in the 1755 earthquake.

Other Lisbon posts: Sneak Peek, Belem, Miradouros, BaixaBairro Alto

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