The Portuguese capital Lisbon has always been attracting people from all over the world. The beautiful buildings from ancient centuries, the excellent location at the Atlantic Ocean and estuary of the Tejo River, the warm climate and the friendly inhabitants is an attractive and interesting mix.
Lisbon has around 545.000 inhabitants and is the largest city of the country. The first settling have been here more than 4000 years ago, so it’s older than the city of Rome! The harbour has been used by the Phoenicians and the Carthaginians 1200 years BC already. After that a changeful history has taken place: Romans, Germans, Arabs have conquered that area which is the nowadays Lisbon.
The first seafarers and discoverers like Vasco da Gama and Henry the Navigator have started from Lisbon to discover the world and made Portugal to a big player in the world. The discovery monument as well as the Torre de Belém, Jenrónimos Monstery are highlights for every visitor. But Lisbon has not always been the capital of Portugal, also Guimarães and Coimbra.
In 1755 Lisbon was destroyed by a big earthquake, but it has recovered and many buildings have been rebuilt. And Lisbon has retrieved its old glamour. In former years the tram has been pulled by horses, now there are only 5 tram lines left from 17.
But there has been a visible reduction taken place, as there are less and less inhabitants from 800.000 in 1980 to 500.000 in 2010! Many inhabitants moved to the outer parts of the city, due to structure issues, too much traffic and ailing building fabric.
Lisbon has three old quarters: Baixa in the very centre, where you can find the main shopping streets and representative buildings and the access to the waterfront, then Barrio Alto, a beautiful quarter with many narrow streets, beautiful Portuguese tiles, restaurants and fado bars and last but not least Alfama, also laying on a hill with a beautiful view over the entire city. The pitoresque trams wind through the narrow and steep streets. Take the tram #25 and you will experience the real Lisbon.
The complete harbour and riverside area with the stunning bridges, the maritime atmosphere Nowadays Lisbon is a joyful and lively city with a very high quality standard of living which is very worth a visit.
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About me: As one of the founders of eurovisionlive.com I am responsible for the interviews with the singers and the editorial content. My passion for the Eurovision Song Contest exists since my early childhood. The exotic music, different cultures and languages have given a lot of inspiration to me. Since my very first ESC in Dublin 1994 I particularly appreciate the get together and friendship of all the nationalities and Riverdance was a thrill!