Monday, 26 September 2011

history gets to you

Lisbon is waking up and some early bodies are beginning to wander throughout the square. From our hotel room we can see into parts of two squares. We are in the Alfama, old part of the city, narrow, winding and cobblestone alleys and majestic old buildings (unfortunately many of which are in various states of disrepair), you can see that Lisbon is not as wealthy as some of it's neighbours. 

The hotel is a boutique hotel, arty farty in a renovated old building. We've taken some photos of art work in the corridors, door entrances etc... we will put them up later.We are enjoying a bathroom that works and having a bath to soak in at the end of a tiring sight seeing day!

Yesterday we hopped on board a tourist bus and visited some of the significant sights, getting off to explore St Jeromes Monastery and Belem Tower. The hop on, hop off bus works well here where public transport is limited and walking is not ideal (Lisbon sprawls over seven hills) We got a feel for the place and saw some of the newer areas to balance the older areas where we are focusing our time and attention.

As part of the tourist deal, today we will catch a tram that winds it's way through the older part of the city, saving our legs from all the up hill treks.

(Col here now)
So this is a big call but I reckon this hotel is probably the best Maria has found on our various travels. I really like the quirkiness, and the breakfast, which is included in the rate is exceptionally good in a bright and funky room.

It was great to get out yesterday and explore, and yes, the shorts and T-shirts were the go, along with sunscreen. The open top buses were fantastic. Perfectly clear skies and high twenties temperatures. My health is coming good too so all good.

It's kind of cliche to say so, but coming from our part of the world the history really gets you in Europe. At every turn there are buildings that have been there before Europeans even knew Australia existed. We'll check out some more today, and then tonight we've got a reservation for dinner at a place that was recommended but was booked out last night.

I'll put some photos up from our excursion yesterday ...