Portugal day 2…u
nlike day 1 of exploring and finding great spots and stumbling upon first time situations, day 2 was filled with tourists times three.
We started the day purchasing the metro and tram day pass for 6 euros. We went to Belem on the west side of Lisbon. The tram was filled with hats, cameras, and bags. everyone got off and started walking one way. we saw the ocean and took off that way, and sure enough we found the icon everyone was trying to visit. A big statue of magellen and the explorers. At first I didn’t like going, but seeing the huge statues of the explorers was pretty cool, and imagining exploring back in the day with no reference of anything, and certainly no herds of people going to the same spot. After that we went to the tower of belem, which you had to pay to get in, we declined, then to the monastery/museum which we also declined to pay and go in, and then went to get a pastry de belem, which was actually pretty good. We then decided to go back and get on the old vintage tram. We saw a spot where a lot of people were gathering and saw the yellow tram and decided to get on it. One tram was filled with people and took off but we waited about 30 minutes for the other one to come. Once it came we got on and found seats next to the open window. We started the very slow trek up one of the hills. After 15 minters the driver said finished. We were all pretty confused. Everyone thought the tram was going to the 7 hills in lisbon. After a pretty touristy dud of a day we went back to the hostel and asked our friend at the desk what happened. He laughed and said you need to be on the other side of the street, you took it at the very end when it only had one stop left. Although I’m a little skeptical of that, i agree with the concept. He said you know what tourist’s do, they see a line or a crowd and flock to that line. They don’t ask they don’t think, they just assume it is what they wanted to do. Completely agree, and even though I have always been against that, today I found myself right in the middle of doing that. Lesson learned…will not happen again.
After all the problems, we came back to the hostel and re-grouped. Decided on a plan on executed it, well I guess kinda. We decided to go to one of the seven hills in lisbon that we hadn’t been to yet. We saw kinda where it was on a map, and decided to just go with a bottle of wine and have it while the sun set. We took the metro to get there and then found out our GPS mapping system wouldn’t work so it was back to the normal map and road signs, which I thought was awesome. We eventually made it to a nice park, and tried to find the good view we thought we would see, but to no avail. So we decided to try and find the place we knew had a good view although it was 830 and the sun was basically set. We started walking to that view and it started to be 915, at that point walking up and down the cobblestone streets we started to work up an appetite. We decided to save the bottle of wine and hit the Barrio Alto district for some dinner. We asked two other people where the district was and one pointed it out to us, and then we started walking towards where he pointed. I guess he realized he told us the wrong directions and came running from his outdoor dining table to tell us the right directions. We followed and found the awesomely, overwhelming Barrio Alto district where there are 500 small bar and restaurants, it’s unlike anything I have ever seen in my life. So many options, but at the same time so much life, and so much originality. We are going back for sure. We found a cheap place to eat and then sat on one of the tiny streets and opened up our bottle of wine.
We explored all the streets we think! but amazingly there were so many places, I don’t even know how to describe. every place had about 4 tables inside or outside and had good food and caprihinas for 3 euro for an XL. There was great live music everywhere and wasn’t too crazy. We met some guys from Switzerland, and a guy named Suzan from Australia and had a great time with them until around 3 in the morning. We decided to try and find our way back to the hostel with very little knowledge about where we were and where our hostel was. We decifierd our way through the streets and kinda found some places that looked similar to what we looked at before. We eventually found our way back around 3:30 in the morning, and everything was good. From bad to good in one day.