My first journey to Lisbon – day 1

I have dreamed of travelling to Lisbon for a long time.

An additional premise to choose Portugal was the fact that our mutual friend Monia, has been living in Coimba for several months (lying 200 km north of Lisbon). Suddenly portal Fly4Free has posted on its board a post about very cheap flights of Ryanair from Krakow to Lisbon for January 2018. We did not hesitate for a long time and just an hour later we bought tickets for 240 PLN in two directions. The departure to Lisbon was scheduled for Friday, January 26 at 12:05, and departure from Lisbon on January 29 at 6:45. We were very excited!

Lisbon Initially, we thought that we would spend only one night in Lisbon, and the remaining time we will be in the place where our friend lives. For this reason, we booked the accommodation only for first night (via the AirBnb portal). However, later, we decided to stay in Lison for all our stay and to not waste time to travel to Coimbra.

My second friend, Julia, who lives permanently in Warsaw, came to Krakow the day before. From my perspective, I think that the departure from Krakow was at a very good time. We could still have breakfast at home and go to the airport.

Tenement house in lisbonI often travel from the Krakow Airport, but this time I was really surprised by the number of the travellers. Airport was really crowded. Fortunately, we had enough time to pass security control peacefully. In connection with Ryanair’s new baggage policy, we could have 2 pieces of free luggage (1 large, 1 small), but this larger baggage had to be placed free of charge in the luggage hall. The airport staff collected the bigger piece of luggage just before going to the gate. However, passengers who would like to have both luggage with them during the whole trip will also have to purchase a priority boarding service. In our case, it was 29 PLN one way. Ryanair’s new policy came into force on January 15, 2018. After reading the new regulations, it seemed to me that I would not be able to take the second piece of luggage (even placed in the luggage compartment) for free and I would have to buy an additional service for 29 PLN. However, after reading the new rules more carefully, I understood that I can have both luggage.

From my perspective, the information provided by Ryanair is not transparent to passengers, which raises many doubts. What’s more, for several months, Ryanair has introduced a policy of random allocation of passenger seats. For this reason, my place was 5 rows away from the allocated place for Julka. Fortunately, we managed to ask one of the passengers to change seats so that we could be together during the flight (about 4 hours).

During landing in Lisbon, we had the opportunity to admire the entire city from above. I must admit, that this landing was extremely stressful by the really strong wind which we felt in the plane. Fortunately, everything was fine and we landed safely in Lisbon. Our friend Monia was waiting for us at the airport.

I knew before that UBER is also available in Lisbon, so I checked the cost of travelling from the airport to our resident AirBnb. I was very surprised by the very low fare, which was 7.65 € for a distance of 8km, or about 32 PLN. Very affordable! The flat was located in the western part of Lisbon in a tiny tenement house. The flat was small, but very thoughtfully organized. We paid 180 PLN for one night. Without wasting time, we went for a walk and finally a well-deserved dinner! Monia has already been to Lisbon 2 times, which is why she was able to tell us what is really worth to see. She was very excited about the Tram 28, whose route goes through the entire old city. We agreed together that we will enjoy this route tomorrow.

Mourisca restaurant – typically Portuguese dishes

Portuguese Tapas

Our flat was about 4 km from the centre. A walk to the centre took us about 45 minutes. We were already hungry, so on the way to the center, we were looking for a restaurant for dinner. That’s what we stopped at the Mourisca restaurant, which was serving Portuguese dishes ( Immediately after entering the restaurant, our table was set with various interesting tapas (Portuguese dishes served in small portions). They brought us spicy peppers paste, olives, three types of local cheeses, tuna and sardine patties, octopus salad and fresh bread. However, these starters are not given free of charge and you have to pay for each one. Before my trip to Lisbon, my colleague mentioned it to me, but if I did not know about it, I would probably be surprised when I would get a bill.

We ordered three dishes; soup of the day (1.5 €), main course with cod (12 €) and cuttlefish (14 €) and fried shrimps (9.5 €). The soup of the day was given in the form of a cream. The taste of this soup surprised me with its acidity, but also with its sweetness. I could not guess its main ingredient. Finally, Monia tried this dish and it turned out to be a cream based on cabbage and carrots (Monia is already friendly with local flavours). I have to admit that it was an interesting combination for me which I will definitely try to prepare one day :).

Bacalhau à Lagareiro Shrimps in olive oil

The next dish was Bacalhau à Lagareiro, cod served with olive oil. The word Bacalhau means cod in Portuguese, but also in the context of the name of the dish it is a specially dried and salty cod. Bacalhau dish is very popular in Portugal and in colony countries such as Brazil, Angola and the Cape Verde. In Portugal, there are many variations with cod. Our dish Bacalhau à Lagareiro consisted of sirloin of cod, baked potatoes with onions. Portugalski deserThe next dish was fried cuttlefish served also with potatoes and other vegetables. The last dish was fried shrimp. Of all these three dishes, I enjoyed the most cod. His taste was different than the one I had earlier in my life. The texture was much more crunchy but still it was not too dry inside. The dish with shrimp disappointed us, as they were immersed in olive oil. The amount of fat in this dish was surprisingly large. Shrimps, unfortunately, were not very crunchy, and actually a bit gummy, but the taste was fine. I will not be able to say much about the last dish because I just did not try it … Well, I do not like cuttlefish or octopus. Although our Moni said they were tasty for her 🙂

In the end we were persuaded by the very nice waiter for a Portuguese dessert. Behind our back was a fridge with many types of cakes and other desserts. We were tempted by a three-layer bowl. The first of them tasted like a combination of pudding and creme brule. The second layer consisted of crispy cookies and the last one was whipped cream. The combination of these delicious three things, maybe in my case without whipped cream (I know, I know it is strange – but I do not like whipped cream!), it had to be delicious! This restaurant enchanted me with a friendly atmosphere. Our waiter, despite a difficulties with English, tried to always answer our question. The flavors were really new, especially Bacalhau à Lagareiro, which everyone should try.

Walk around Lisbon

After a well-deserved dinner, we finally had the energy for a long walk to the old town. On the way we passed beautiful restaurants, tiny bistros, huge wine bars as well as a shop with 40 kinds of sardine cans. We also passed other historic churches and cathedrals. The tiny streets added charm. The last stop was Figueira Square, where there were numerous stalls with local delicacies, hand-made jewelery and ceramics. This place attracted with its energy. However, we were a little tired, so we bought just three types of Portuguese cheese from one of the sellers. He was very nice to us. He gaved us to try every cheese which I pointed (sometimes just unconsciously). It seems to me that the prices were not very high. The average cheese price was 14 € / kg. For three small pieces we paid 2.75 €. From Figueria Square we went to our apartment. With each moment we were getting colder, as the wind was blowing in our ears. Finally, after 40 minutes we reached our apartment. We discover just one disadvantages of this apartment.. He was in a tenement house, which is very cool. So we turned on the heating and waited for the situation to improve, until we finally fell asleep thinking about tomorrow’s day.

Wine store  Cathedral Se Portuguese Bistro Portuguese CheeseSardine Cans

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