Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Historic Belem District:Lisbon’s Living Museum, Lovely Lisbon Series 4

Historic Belem District 
Lisbon’s Living Museum 
Lovely Lisbon Series 4

It was our second day in Lisbon, we had 
a breakfast at the A Padaria Portugueza, 


…and we all headed to Centro de Congressos de Lisboa, 


....where the European Congress of Endocrinology would be held


…to pick up my convention kit in advance
as the meetings would still start the next day.


The convention center offered us a
panoramic view of 25 de Abril Bridge, 
and the scenic and historic Tagus River.


It was a very clear day and the huge Christ the Redeemer 
statue  was visible at the other side of the suspension bridge.


Built in 1966 and dubbed as Golden Gate's twin sister,
this enormous suspension bridge across the Tagus river
is a sight to behold in any angle and in any direction.


It holds the world record for its foundations also by going   
262 ft below the riverbed, and apparently much longer than
San Francisco's Golden Gate Bridge, which it resembles.  


Underneath is an attractive marina, lined by
lovely green pocket parks, restaurants and bars.



From the Lisbon Congress Center we took a metro and
disembarked at the Jardim Afonso de Albuquerque, 


…and enjoyed the breezy park sipping ice- cold
lemonade be bought from the park’ street vendor.


We walked our way to central Belem and passed 
by the Museu da Presidência da República. 


...which used to be the seat of governance and
official residence  the President of Portugal
and presently turned into a public museum. 


We then proceeded to the Mosteiro dos Jerónimos,


...one of the most ornate religious buildings of Portugal.


This grand monastery was historically associated
with the explorers in the past, and believed, where
most of them stayed to be prayed over and blessed
by monks from here that before their long voyage.


The Mosteiro dos Jerónimos is one of the
most popular tourist attractions of Lisbon and
should not be missed by anyone visiting the city.


In the past, the Mosteiro dos Jeronimos was apparently
built on the banks of the Tagus River. Presently the
waters edge is much farther than it was 500 years ago
and the space created by the receding waters is now
the site of the beautiful Jardim Praça do Imperio.


It was already almost noontime so we decided to
relax and rest at the Jardim Praça do Imperio, 
where we feasted of Nestle ice- cream and
was a refreshing relief from the very hot sun.



We later explored the 
Jardim Praça do Imperio, 


…admired the grand fountains,


… and wonderful sculptures. 


We then visited the Padrão dos Descobrimentos 
or the very popular Monument to the Discoveries,


…located at the bank of the Targus River.


The Padrão dos Descobrimentos is one
of the most iconic monuments of Lisbon,


…and was constructed to honor
the great Portuguese explorers.

It symbolizes Portugal’s 15th century considered
as the countries great  Golden Age of Discovery.


The monument was designed to appear like
the bow of a boat overlooking the estuary,
with the rear representing the Latin Cross.


We strolled along the Tejo Estuary, 


…the scenic riverside space between 
the  Padrão dos Descobrimentos,


...and the Torre de Belem.


The Tejo Estuary is  lined
with bars and restaurants,



…and stalls selling souvenirs to tourists.


We were all tired and hungry as it was already past
noon when we finished our long walk at the estuary,


...that we decided to dine at the 
Queijadas de Belem Restaurant,


…where we feasted on traditional
Portuguese dishes like Sardines, 


…grilled Salmon,


… and Bacalhau. 


I later joined the long queue 
Antiga Confeitaria de Belém, 


...to buy a box of the original Pasteis de Belém, 


…using an ancient 1837 recipe from 
the nearby Mosteiro dos Jerónimos. 


We then enjoyed the sweet loot
at the beautiful Jardim de Belém. 


Jardim de Belém’s numerous Jacaranda 
trees were in full bloom on our spring visit,
and the bright purple blossoms serve
as a colorful contrast to the greenery.


We lingered a little bit more at the park,


...before returning to our hotel in 
Campo Grande late in the afternoon.


Belem to the west of central Lisbon, and
is where for some of the city’s most iconic
and important tourist attractions are found.


Within Belem there is an abundance of 
wonderful cafes, restaurants, beautiful 
parks, historic places, and museums.


A visit in Lisbon is never complete
without having been to Belem District.

Read my other blogs on 
Lovely Lisbon Series

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