Very close to each other (same metro station and everything), you can find two of the most beautiful and magical places right in the center of Lisbon.
Baixa and Chiado are my two favorite places where I can easily go anytime I want, because the transports are really good and being in the center of Lisbon I get there quite fast.
There you can see all types of people, from suited men in the middle of a day of work, to goths and hippies, and families of tourists on a daily walk. It makes me feel good to see all these different people, the diversity of human race.
In Baixa there are a lot street artists along the many streets: statue man/woman, musicians, dancers, and all kinds of performers. In Chiado you can find it too, specially around the metro station where lots of people stop to watch and listen... It doesn't matter if they are shopping, if they went there for a drink, or if they just finished work and are on your way to go home: most people stop and join the crowd.
One day I went there with my boyfriend on one of his first days in Lisbon and I wanted to show him the magic of the place. It was amazing when we were going up on a big street in Chiado and we see lots of people just standing there listening to a couple who was playing violins and singing opera, in the middle of the street. Simply magical!
In Baixa the streets show you the old Lisbon. The buildings, the statues, the pavement. You go down until you arrive Terreiro do Paço and you can sit down and watch the river.
|One of the many streets on Baixa|
|When you arrive to Terreiro do Paço|
|Inside the square of Terreiro do Paço|
|In Terreiro do Paço, the statue of D. José I, king of Portugal (someone told me it's São Jorge...I'm just telling what people told me)|
And if you are hungry, you can go up again on the opposite direction of the square to the tower (Torre do Relógio). You can find lots of restaurants, some with fast food, some with big and nice cooked meals. Some of them are quite cheap, by the way, you just need to look for it instead of going in the first restaurant you see.
When I was there with my boyfriend the first time, I took him to a nice restaurant right in front of the tower where they serve, among other very tasty things, Francesinha, a typical Portuguese dish from Porto (in the North of Portugal). I know I should have told him to eat something typical from Lisbon, but I love francesinha, and it's hard to find a place where they make it well. When it's well made, it's divine!
|Torre do Relógio|
It's a mixture of meats, including beef and sausage, chips, fried egg, bread, ham, cheese and an amazing sauce with lots of things I can't quite remember them all. Sometimes it's a little to spicy for me, but I always eat it all, because I really, really love it!
If you go up a little further you arrive to another square: Rossio. The train station also stops there.
|In the square of Rossio|
Again in Baixa, you can try to find the way to the castle, Castelo de São Jorge. On your way up you see lots of churches and beautiful places where you can have an amazing view of Lisbon.
|Really cool tree on the way to the castle|
|One of the churches you see|
|And this is part of Lisbon; you can see it on your way to the castle|
I'm sorry, I don't have any photos from the Castelo de São Jorge... My fault!
And if you are in Chiado you can go up a little bit and you find yourself in Adamastor, a place to chill while having a drink with your friends. It's really romantic too for couples, specially because of the sunset.
The place is always crowded. You can either sit on the little coffee shop, in the stones on the ground where you can stay near the river, or in the grass.
But if you are there at night, you might want to go back to Chiado, at Praça de Camões, maybe drink a ginjinha there (really good drink!), and then go up to Bairro Alto. There are lots of types of bars, with different music, ambiance, people. You just need to choose. It's my favorite place to go out at night.
And it's still the old part of Lisbon, so you can enjoy the architectural beauty anytime.
I'm sorry if this was a long post and it gets a little confusing... I want to show you this part of Lisbon the best I can. Feel free to explore these places on the Internet. I don't have anymore pictures to show you. Hope you liked it.
Labels: Ideas and opinions, Portugal nowadays