Alisha Explores Lisbon & Sintra: Firecrackers and Bacalau





We may have been in Lisbon, the Porto fans were 10x louder.


Lisbon. Not sure what to say. I had a love hate relationship, but mostly a lot of dislike

It started off with our accommodations. We booked what may be my last Airbnb for a while (I’m not saying I’ll never do it again, but it may take me some time to come back). Our host communicated that we HAD to arrive to the apartment within a very strict hour timeline, and so we scheduled our time to arrive perfectly within their timeline. Our Airbnb host then proceeded to be 2.5 hours late to check ya in. Not only that, the room we booked and the room we got were 2 different rooms, leading to a lot of frustration and not a great start to our exploration of Lisbon. A lot of frustrations with our hosts.

Once we were checked in, we walked down the Main Street and got dinner at this tradition Portuguese restaurant, where we had this AMAZING fish rice stew. Yes. So amazing. We also had some other dishes, but that rice fish stew. Bomb. Dot. com. We caught a live music show in Barrio Alta and called it a night

The next day, I realized I was coming down with a cold and so we got some medication from the local farmacia. We wandered through Chiado and Barrio Alta districts and found Mercado da Riberia. It’s a large venue hall with some of the tastiest Portuguese restaurants lining the walls. We had our first bacalau a bras, a traditional codfish dish with egg and potatoes. Absolutely wonderful. We would eat many times after this.

We spent the next two days wandering the streets of Lisbon and eating delicious food. We saw the city wall and the statues in Belem.

On Sunday, we went to the FC Sporting stadium to watch the FC Porto vs FC Sporting(Lisbon) soccer game. Getting off the subway, we saw a swarm of fans in the green and white stripes. It was the first time I actually was hungry that day(was still sick), so had a bomb burger and hotdog from a truck while Boyfriend and I pregamed on beer. Once we had a good amount, we went into the stadium and our seats. It was my first live game ( and not a expo game) and it was intense.

First learning, the stadium did not serve any alcohol. They only had alcohol free beer and sodas

Second learning, the Porto fans were in their own section of the stadium, that had a huge metal fence around them, and a huge net fence above and around them.

There were police galore!

The Porto fans were maybe 10% of the overall fans but they were 200% of the sound. Their chants were catchy and they had outrageous fans. I saw folks shirtless, and trying to jump over the metal fence

I saw an epic fight in the Porto stadium as one Porto fan punched a man while he was rolling down the steps. Police went in with their combat gear

Overall, the game ended 0-0 and a little underwhelming.

The next day, we packed up and went on a day trip to Sintra to see the Pena palace. The Pena Palace is a architecture beauty that sits on top of the Sintra hill.

It’s a beautifully architected building that has vibrant reds, yellows, and blue colors. We walked around the palace and the grounds, also walking up to the highest point on the mountain.

After, we descended down the hill and started off on what was a TERRIBLE trail where we stopped many times and contemplated if it was better to hike back up and then walk down the street with no sidewalk coverage. Eventually, our path crossed the main road, and we continued on it.

We wandered around the Sintra old city and eventually walked back to the new city. We hopped on a train back to Lisbon for one last tour before we caught our overnight train to San Sebastián

Lisbon. It’s a great city to visit but I’m not so sure I’d visit again. The hills and the sidewalks (not at all flat and sort of hurts your feet) became stressful at times. Maybe we just spent too much time there. Not sure.

Tips for Lisbon:

  • Check out a football game! But drink all the alcohol you want before entering because there won’t be any inside!
  • Take the day train to Sintra and check out the Pena Palace. Don’t bother going inside, all the awesomeness is outside! DO take the bus one way the hill
  • Check out the Mercado da Ribeira for the easiest way to try all the best food of Lisbon in one location.
  • Have bacalau a bras
  • Have an egg tart for breakfast

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.