First things first, this is our 100th post!!! Calls for a celebration.
This is a continuation of our first day of travel in Lisbon, Portugal. We pick up this post from our visit to Belem Tower that ended at around 6 PM as dusk was setting in. The main Lisbon attractions that are open after dark are the two elevated viewpoints we visited, the Arco Triunfal da Rua Augusta and the Elevador de Santa Justa. Right off the bat, we should state that we loved the Arch as a viewpoint more than the elevator for reasons we’ll state. But lets share our last picture on the way to the city centre that shows off how beautiful any random street in Lisbon looks like.
First look at Praca do Comercio
The arch was located right at the picturesque “plaza of commerce” that is lined with cafes, bars and restaurants. The whole area is very popular with tourists with good reason. Plus as it is a transport hub, you will most likely visit this area multiple times (like we did). We took a few shots of the plaza before making our way to the arch.
Viewpoint 1: Top of the arch
We got tickets on showing our Lisboa card and took the elevator to the clock tower. The clock faces the other side of the arch and hence not visible in the pic above but it is as traditional a clock as you can get. We loved to see all the gears moving about every second 🙂
We then took the final set of stairs to the top to be placed right behind the statues at the top of the arch. The views were beautiful and you can see the statue’s details from up close. The clocks bell is also in the rooftop area so you’ll be treated to loud gongs at the top of the hour (we didn’t witness that). We wish we had enough time and sunshine to see a sunnier Lisbon from this viewpoint!
One of our favourite things about these night pictures is how the streets are illuminated and the many rooftops dark creating pathways of light.
Tip: Bring your low light gear along to be able to do justice to the views at dusk (we don’t have any such gear).
Viewpoint 2 : The elevator after dark
A couple of mishaps happened on the way to the second viewpoint. Firstly, we did not know where the official ground level entrance to the elevator was and we wrongly followed the map to a place near the top of the elevator. Luckily for us, a bridge connects the top and a restaurant on the street level so we literally just walked straight to the top (that is possible). Secondly Dalek dropped our battery pack rendering it unusable. Travellers will know how scary that situation can be (luckily for us, a quick wall charge fixed it).
The best part of the elevator view is the straight line view of the castle. But the cons are that it is more expensive and crowded in a smaller area. Both attractions are free with a Lisboa card but if you’re trying to save money and want to see a viewpoint, go to the arch.
So our AirBnb was close to two restaurants we had looked up, the other one being a famous steakhouse called Carvoaria Jacto. This place is famous for service a Portuguese cattle steak called Mirandesa. We also ordered a classic Lisbon starter of Azeitão Cheese with pumpkin & walnut jam (which is a Portuguese delicacy and a really delicious combination). The steak was cooked perfectly medium rare and the beef was packed with flavour! Plus it was topped with garlic. There was so much cheese that the starter became our dessert 🙂 Went back to our flat after this lovely meal (30 EUR for 2 people, cash only).
Lisboa card cost benefit – Day 1 Savings
1-day public transport pass : €6.15
Jeronimos cloisters + Tower of Belem : €12
Rue Augusta Arch : €2.50
Elevator : included in 1-day transport pass
Total day 1 savings : €20.65 for 24 hours (out of €31.50 for 48 hours)
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