Sorry for neglecting this space, but I had lots on my plate – mum and sis were in town, visa issues, ongoing Portuguese lessons, etc. Took my Portuguese A2.1 exams yesterday and it was apparent that I had not been my conscientious self for the past couple of weeks. Passing shouldn’t be a problem though. Was reminded of what people say about prioritization and learning to compromise on things that are secondary. I suppose that in the grand scheme of things, family time is more important
Anyway, I have a backlog of activities to blog about. I’ll probably have 3 or 4 entries on “Mum & Sis in Portugal”. For those of you who are intending to visit Portugal, you may refer to these posts while planning your itineraries
17 August was a “walking-intensive” day for us. Knowing how much mummy loves gardens, we kick-started her Lisbon tour with breakfast at Jardim Amália Rodrigues. Mummy took so many photos that we had to repeatedly remind her that there were many other photo-worthy views later during the day.
Following which, we walked to Parque Eduardo VII. It is the largest park in Lisbon and named after the British King Edward VII who visited the Lisbon in 1903 to reaffirm the Anglo-Portuguese alliance. The distinctive feature of Parque Eduardo VII is its box-cut hedges. The photo below also provides an overview of our intensive morning walk because we made our way to River Tejo (in the background) before lunch!
Along the way, we stopped at the statue of Marquês de Pombal. He was the Prime Minister who ruled Portugal from 1750 to 1777 and reconstructed Lisbon after the 1755 earthquake. Mummy also enjoyed the long Avenida da Liberdade stretch, which is beautifully lined with trees and luxury brand shops. By the way, we successfully resisted temptation to enter the shops as we were behind schedule! We passed by Rossio, which was one of the main squares in Portugal in the Middle Ages – the setting of revolts, celebrations, bullfights and executions.
Thereafter, our walk brought us to the Baixa district of Lisbon and Praça do Comércio. After the 1755 earthquake, Marquês de Pombal reconstructed the latter in the shape of a “U” facing River Tejo. We finally reached our intended “before lunch” destination at 2pm! Yeah!!!
Lunch was peri-peri chicken, followed by Santini’s!!! If any of you ever visit Portugal, Santini’s is a must-try!!! Personally, I find it better than Ben & Jerry’s and Häagen-Dazs. The strawberry and chocolate combi never fails to cheer me up
Thereafter, we visited the Igreja de São Roque, which survived the 1755 earthquake relatively unscathed. One of its chapels, Capela de São João Baptista, was reportedly the most expensive chapel in Europe in the 18th century.
Are you starting to feel that Lisbon is an underrated travel destination? Regardless, stay tuned for Part 2…