Your flight from Manchester to Lisbon
Your flight from Manchester to Lisbon, the capital of Portugal on the banks of the River Tagus, will be swift and enjoyable. Here the Tagus opens up before it enters the Atlantic, forming a natural bay and a perfect harbour. The Phoenicians, who named their only harbour on the Atlantic coast Alis Ubbo, “beautiful bay”, came here about 1200 B.C. The Portuguese name Lisboa still echoes the founding fathers from Tyros and Carthage.
Over the hills of Lisbon
The Romans, the Visigoths and the Moors had their turn in Lisbon as rulers until the Reconquista in 1147, when the modern history of Lisbon as the centre of Portugal started. Henry the Navigator started Portuguese seafaring and trade in the 15th century, making Portugal a world power and a rival to the Spanish ambitions. In the early 16th century it was the home of the richest King in the world, King Manuel I. Lisbon is built on seven hills, which can be a steep climb. The fortress São Jorge watches over the city on one of the hills. The Visigoths laid the foundations of the castle in the 5th century. The beautiful view that you can have from up here makes the fortress a “miradouros”, literally “golden view”. These spots are found on each of the hills, but also along the banks of the Tagus. Take a ride in the historic streetcars through the several quarters of Lisbon, where they navigate through tight alleys and climb up steep streets. Even more fun is the Elevador de San Justa, an elevator straight out of Jules Verne’s technical design fantasies, built in 1901. It connects the lower quarter Baixa to the higher Chiado area.
Let Lisbon’s special flair enchant you
The great earthquake and the subsequent tsunami on the 1st November 1755 destroyed most of the city and was one of the greatest tragedies of its time. One of the few surviving buildings is the old monastery Mosteiro dos Jerónimos. This 16th century building was the burial ground for many Kings and members of the Royal family, but the most famous burial in the monastery is the explorer Vasco da Gama. The Torre de Belém, a mixture of fortress and lighthouse on the banks of the river, is one of the most famous landmarks of Lisbon and another one of the few structures left standing. Lisbon has developed a unique musical style, maybe the only city that can lay this claim. “Saudade”, the sometimes melancholic and gloomy state of mind of Lisbon, may be an echo of the destruction of the city. The musical expression of this feeling is the famous Fado, intense songs full of longing and heartbreak, accompanied by classical guitar. You can find specialized Fado places, mostly for tourists, but you can also listen to Fado in regular cafes and bars of Lisbon. The great food of Lisbon is a wonderful cure for “saudade”, and hundreds of reaszaurants are serving the hearty and fish-centric Portoguese cuisine. Try Ameijoas na cataplana, a stew from clams and pork, and for dessert there is nothing more typical then the famous Pastel de Belém, a cake filled with vanilla cream. The Miradouro do Adamastor is a wonderful spot to watch the sunset over the river and the city. In the evening the Bairro Alto is the place to be. Clubs and bars are everywhere and compete for the patronage of tourists and locals alike. Enjoy you stay in Lisbon, but don’t forget your flight back home to Manchester!
Information Airport Manchester
- Name: Manchester Airport
- IATA Code: MAN
- Distance to downtown Manchester: ca. 18 Km
- How to get to and from the airport: train, local train (Manchester Metrolink), car rental, Taxi
Information Airport Lisbon
- Name: Humberto Delgado Airport
- IATA Code: LIS
- Distance to downtown Lisbon: 7 km
- Transportation: underground, shuttle bus, rented car, taxi
What else to see in Lisbon
- Praça do Comércio, great square near the river
- Palácio de São Bento, former monastery, today the parliament
- Parque das Nações, premises of EXPO 1998