domingo, 3 de marzo de 2013


I chose to go to Lisbon for this semester's school trip.  For those who are not the most up-to-date on geography, Lisbon's in Portugal, which is on the Iberian peninsula next to Spain.  It was about an eight hour drive from Madrid; an overnight trip forcing me to supplement sleep with gallons of coffee.

After the first day in the country, I could already see differences between Portugal and Spain.  The people in Lisbon were much more soft-spoken and friendly.  Everyone there spoke English, a change from Madrid where you're almost forced to learn the local language.  At the same time, the people there seemed sad when compared to the upbeat, high-energy nature of Madrid.

This friendly nut-salesman was photographed by Arianna Nava

We had a walking tour of the city on the first morning we arrived, but I was too tired to recall most of the things that happened.  Lisbon is situated on a hill and has the Santa Justa Lift to make travelling up and down the side of the city easier.  This tower is essentially a huge elevator that brings people up the face of the hill.
Photo by Lorna Lopez

We paused for lunch and what better way to immerse myself Portuguese culture than by eating at an Italian
Always the best food no matter where you go, anyway.

We went to a nice Portuguese restaurant for dinner that night, where we were treated to the country's cuisine and national music, fado.  Fado is an old style of music that focuses on the laments of the poor and broken-hearted.  A description can't do the art justice, so who else better to show you then the Queen of Fado herself, Amalia Rodrigues:

It rained on the last day we were in Lisbon, but it did not stop us from seeing more of the city.  We began the day by climbing the cobblestone streets up to an old Church, which had survived the devastating earthquake of 1755.  Interestingly, the beautiful streets that are made of broken rock rather than pavement are due to this earthquake, and making use of the rubble it had created.

Continuing up the city we eventually came to the Castle of São Jorge.  This fortification overlooked the city from the top of the hill, giving the perfect view of the bay, and the beauty of Lisbon.

Photo by Caprice Serafine

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