Friday, 24 November 2017

Portugal - Casino, Pink street and Viewpoint in Lisbon

Our visit to Portugal was fast coming to an end.
On Thursday 14th September, my husband, daughter and I had lunch at another refurbished market, this time in Alges, on the coast halfway from Lisbon to Cascais.

The Algés market opened in the 50's, selling fruit, vegetables, meat and fish.
In 2015, it changed it's concept (probably due to the popularity of Mercado da Ribeira in Lisbon), adding food and drinks to it's traditional products.
It's smaller than the Lisbon one, but well decorated and pleasant. You order your choice of food, pay for it and get a buzzer. When it buzzes you collect your tray.
There are drink stations and the waiters will come around to your table to take your drinks order, but not food.
The market is open from 10am to midnight from Monday to Thursday and from 10am to 1am on  Friday and Saturday.

They also have entertainment, and we heard about this market from our daughter who a few days before had been invited by a friend for dinner and a concert at the market.
And that's when she saw that one of the eateries was selling snails which she and her Dad love!  The lady said the season was about to end too, and this was the reason for our visit.
My choice - Sweet potato chips with 3 chicken sausage (farinheira) balls with mustard. Husband & daughter's choice - snails and chocolate cake for me.
After my meal I went to the pastry counter and chose a slice of chocolate cake.
It was a cake from "The best chocolate cake in the world" (looking at the Portuguese website  I just discovered that the cake gets sold in a couple of Sydney suburbs too).
It's a flourless cake, and yes it was good, crunchy with all it's different layers, but a bit too sweet for my taste as since I cut down on sweet stuff, most sweets are just too sweet.

We had previously arranged to meet with the 3 Doctors at the Estoril Casino that evening after dinner, with the rest of my family too.
The Casino has daily shows and you have to consume 10 euros (food or drink) during the night while you sit watching the shows, so it's very reasonable.

Estoril Casino, Flamenco show
On that evening the show was a Flamenco show with a dancer/singer and his band.
We enjoyed it, the tiny dancer was very agile and passionate, the only thing was that he was obviously getting hot and sweaty with all that dancing so at every turn his sweat would fly around him...glad we weren't sitting within reach 😊😊.

It was well past midnight when the show ended and we said our goodbyes. The Doctors were going to fly to France the following day (Friday) and we would be flying to Marseille the day after.

* * * * * * * * * *

On Friday 15th September, my daughter and I took the train into Lisbon, so we could hunt for a couple more murals, check out Lisbon's Pink street and later meet with a friend I originally met in Perth, but who was in Lisbon on a trip from his native Island of Madeira. 

Just a 4 minute walk away from the Cais do Sodre Station is the Rua Nova do Carvalho, better know as Pink street.

Situated in the former seedy suburb of Cais do Sodre, this street has become the center of Lisbon's nightlife. In 2013, during an urban renewal project, this street was painted pink and it now attracts locals and tourists who come to eat, drink and dance at the various clubs and bars.
Some of the bars have names alluding to what the area was previously known for - mainly prostitution and sailors - like "Cantinho do Prazer" (Pleasure's Corner), or "Pensão Amor" (Love Guesthouse), which was a former brothel, still complete with a striper pole and seductive atmosphere. 

Pink street
Pink Street, photo taken atop the arched bridge

From the Pink Street we walked around the corner and climbed some steps where we found coffee shops on two of the landings, both with outdoor tables, and we stopped for a juice and coffee on the first one.

River views, old tram, mannequin hanging from shop wall, landing with coffee shop, nice blue building
After our stop we walked towards the meeting point where our friend would wait for us, and on the way there we walked past an old ceramic factory - Sant'Ana, which was established in 1741 and still operates today. The factory can be toured, and they will make replicas of tiles you like too.

We walked past the Church of Sao Roque , where I quickly went inside to investigate. This Roman Catholic church was the earliest Jesuit church in the Portuguese world, opened in 1619. Very plain on the outside, but very ornate inside, with a beautiful ceiling.
The ceiling structure was executed by Flemish professionals under the order of King Philip II of Spain from 1587 to 1589. In the 17th century another painter added the central medallion and the biblical scenes along the sides.

Just two minutes down the road we stopped to take photos of the "Elevador da Gloria" or Gloria Funicular. This funicular railway line was inaugurated in 1885, connecting the downtown area of Restauradores Square to the uptown area of Bairro Alto.
We didn't travel down with it, but I did it last time I was in Lisbon, just for the fun of it, as you can also descend the street which is easier than climbing it.
There's always murals on the one side of the street.

The very colourful Gloria Funicular, murals on the left side of street

Right next to the Funicular is the Miradouro Sao Pedro de Alcantara at Rua (street) Sao Pedro de Alcantara, one of Lisbon's best viewpoints. Below is a beautiful and well kept garden. They were renovating the area, so they had a fence all around, and there was no access to the garden either. 

Sao Pedro de Alcantara Viewpoint over Lisbon and the Saint George's castle
The gardens below the Viewpoint (photo from 2016)
And it was time to meet my friend for coffee, so we made our way into the city center walking through the narrow cobbled streets.
As you can see on the photo below the cars in this narrow street were for some unknown reason at a standstill...glad I don't drive in Lisbon!

Narrow cobbled street in Lisbon

Funny shop front
After coffee and now laden with 3 Madeira Honey cakes given to me by my friend B (they are dark, not too sweet and last for ages) - one for my Mom, one for us and one for a common friend in Perth, it was time to go and catch a train back to Cascais.

Through the train window I took photos of this monument  - Discoveries Monument -
located in the suburb of Belém, on the north bank of the River Tagus, from where the ships departed to explore and trade with India and the Orient.

The 52mt high piece of concrete was inaugurated in 1960 to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the death of Henry the NavigatorIn the form of a ship's prow, with the figure of Henry the Navigator at the top and on either side along the ramp are 16 figures (33 in total) looking towards the sea, representing figures from the Portuguese Age of Discovery, which include monarchs, explorers, cartographers, artists, scientists and missionaries.
The monument can be climbed and from where you have views of other monuments in the Belém area, but I've actually never climbed this monument.

Next time I'll be in Marseille, so look forward to seeing you there.

And back to the present day, today (23 November) we commemorated my grandson's first birthday. I can still remember the day he was born and our first visit to the hospital, and can hardly believe that he's growing up so quickly - now crawling, already standing holding on to things, 6 teeth....
He's such a joy, always smiling.
So happy birthday to little J. On Saturday he will have a big birthday party with lots of little kids from Mother's group and Day care.

A month ago, and on the day he was born in 2016


  1. É tão engraçado ver Lisboa através dos olhos de quem está fora e aprecia! Eu sei que me estou a repetir ;-)
    Ainda não me convenci a entrar na Praça de algés desde que se tornou também um local de comidas. Em miúda entrava lá tantas vezes!!! Detestava o cheiro do peixe, mas adorava ir comprar a dobrada e as iscas de vitela ao talho de que a minha mãe gostava!
    Queijo flamengo do bom comprava-se à porta nas bancas que lá estavam que vendiam queijos, bolos, bolachas, pão.... que belas memórias me despertou Sami, obrigada!

    1. O meu marido tambem viveu uns anos em Alges quando veio de Mocambique. Quando fomos comer ao Mercado ainda passamos pelo apartamento onde viveu e locais que lhe deixaram boas memorias. Gostei da zona alimentar no mercado de Alges.

  2. Same buzzer-concept often here, too, but also with drinks - no idea about "follow-up-drinks", though.
    I could not brave up tasting snails.
    € 10 isn´t much for an otherwise free show, good concept - minus the sweat, ewww, LOL.

    Those Perth-Lisbon meetings are incredible!
    A pink street - how cool!
    (Did you know btw that here in Bruchstrasse (red light ditrict) women really are not welcome? I thought it was a joke, but it appears to be true. Which is sad, I have to send Ingo some time as the architecture is said to be nice).

    The ceramic factory sounds very tempting.

    I´ve never seen such a difference in outside-inside as with the Church of Sao Roque. Amazing, I´d never expected this.

    Cobbled streets are a pain to walk on (for me).
    Oh, my goodness, what if emergency is needed there at that very moment?!

    The yellow shop-car looks cute.

    I like the monument of Henry the Navigator (but would never climb it).

    Happy Birthday to the fast-growing grandson of yours xx

    1. Thanks Iris. Never tried snails, find them disgusting, so can't bring myself to taste the type that you eat.
      Don't know what it was like before around the pink street area, but maybe women aren't so comfortable going to the red light district either. I was also amazed at the plain church that was so beautiful inside.
      We just came back from J's birthday party, it was a fun day and he and the other kids behaved very well.

  3. I think I'd give that chocolate cake a go!
    An amazing visit with so much to see & admire!

    1. Thanks Christine. I used to be addicted to sweets, but no longer, so even if I bake I reduce the amount of sugar the recipe suggests.

  4. Babies grow so quickly. In fact before you know it, they are teenagers. I think you see them through different eyes than your own children. Thank you for sharing your visit to Portugal. I've enjoyed it very much, more so because I knew some of the places you visited. I've just checked and it wasn't the Gloria Elevator we travelled on but (I am getting annoyed. I can't find the name).... Ok, it must have been Bica. It is not where I remember it to be.

    1. Thanks Andrew, yes babies grow far too quickly. When I look at tiny babies now I can hardly remember when he was that small. He's at the funny stage now, copying everything.
      Apart from the "Gloria funicular" there is the "Bica" and the "Lavra" ones, all interesting to travel on.

  5. Beijos para a vovó e para o netinho.

  6. I have been to most of these places, except the new Alges Market. When I lived in Lisbon (when I was studying there) the young people did not visit the area. Today is a beautiful place, I am told. My children love it when they stay in Lisbon.

    Lisbon is a beautiful, beautiful city! And Cascais, and Estoril...
    : )

    1. I didn't know the market before but enjoyed it now, it's very well done.
      Lisbon is beautiful, but when I lived in Portugal for 12 years we lived near Coimbra and didn't really visit Lisbon that often, just Cascais as my parents and sister live there. Now I see Lisbon through the eyes of a tourist and really love it too. There's just so much to see and so much history.

  7. Gostei bastante de passear pelas ruas de Lisboa através das magnificas fotografias.
    Um bom fim-de-semana.

    Dedais de Francisco e Idalisa

    1. Obrigada Francisco, gosto imenso de visitar Lisboa. Bom fim de semana para si tambem.

  8. My keyboard is still not working. Stopped by to let you know I was here and to wish you a beautiful Thursday. Eat, drink, love, enjoy the beauty of Portugal.

    1. Thanks Elizabeth, hope your keyboard gets fixed soon. so annoying when we have computer problems. Hope you're having a nice weekend.

  9. Such a nice post with lovely pictures but the star of the show is little J.

    All the best Jan

    1. Thanks Jan, yes at least he's a star in our eyes and our hearts. Grand kids are the best!


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