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Cayte & Ian Travels

Lisbon, Sunday 15 July

PORTUGAL | Sunday, 15 July 2018 | Views [107]

Ian at the Jerominos monastery

Ian at the Jerominos monastery

Happy birthday dad!!  Hope you had a great day.

Headed off to Belem today via metro and tram and fluked a street festival with marching bands, bands on horseback and market stalls with interesting local goods for sale – but just browsing.  Went up to the top of the Monument to the Discoveries for a good overall view.  The Belem district was once a major maritime port and is on the Tagus River close to the Atlantic and not far from the 25 April Bridge which looks like the Golden Gate (and I am assured is 30m longer).  From there to the Maritime museum which highlighted Portugal’s contribution to the expanding world of the 14th-18th centuries including the opening of the trade routes to India.  At the end it had a display of maritime vessels including a few sea planes which made Ian’s day.  Despite Ian’s misgivings we queued for the the Jerónimos Monastery which was an amazing building, even from the outside. It is a UNESCO World Heritage site and a National Monument.  The architecture is Manueline, a Portuguese style from the 16th century with Gothic tones.  It had a great display of timelines lining up World, Portugal and the monastery itself and I was quite absorbed.  It is also the final resting ground of Vasco da Gama, the Portuguese explorer who was the first European to sail to India.  One queue for the day was enough so we passed on Pasteis de Belem and missed out sadly on sinking our teeth into the original 187-year-old recipe (more my miss than Ian’s I feel).  But made-up for it by finding a bar to sit and watch the World Cup final – a good game but I really wanted Croatia to win – their captain Modric seemed a really good player and endeared himself to us through the games we have seem while over here.  We were surrounded by patriotic Frenchmen in the area we were sitting, and they had a lovely time.  Our dinner was this great paella – the seafood here really is magnificent.

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