How great is it that “good” in Portuguese is “boa” and “Lisbon” in Portuguese is “Lisboa”. And too right that they can say there is good in their country because there damn well was.
Not going to lie, I was a little apprehensive about going. Not because of Portugal but generally because the world is getting silly and angry with each other. I hate how I let the news freak me out about it because that’s what the bad guys want. So I thought “F U I’m going to eat some gorgeous seafood and get some sun”.
Arrived in Lisbon with the sun was shining. I hadn’t seen the sun in several weeks as UK weather has been truly and utterly depressing. Got on the metro and headed for the hostel. When I arrived I really was taken aback. The staff were super friendly and gave me an individual tour of the hostel – something I have never experienced before in my life. I was also told about the free sangria event that night (I mean HELLO) so I decided to get some dinner and then enjoy the delights of Portuguese alcohol.
I went to a little place for dinner just down the road and was waited on by a friendly man. For the record: I understand that a girl eating by herself seems shocking but I’m okay with it. I’m still okay with it the 5th time you’ve asked me as well. Anyway, the guy was really nice but kept offering to buy me a drink when he got off work at midnight. I don’t think his intentions were creepy but nonetheless it’s a no brainer. One free drink with a old man or unlimited free sangria at the hostel?
Went back to the hostel for the free sangria and the atmosphere was INCREDIBLE. I have never met so many fantastic people at a hostel before in my life. The odd one or two people here and there but there were loads at this one.
What a happy bunch. Met people from all over the world which was incredible: New Zealand, U.S., Canada, Peru, Poland, Germany just to mention a few. The Peru guy was hilarious though, he had been to a British school growing up so my accent was nostalgic for him. I got used to the staring in amazement of my charming accent eventually… 😛
We all then went out into Lisbon and had a few drinks in the street.
I am a strong believer in that the best way to see a huge city when you haven’t got many days is a bus tour. Oh I do love a hop on and hop off bus tour.
I spent the day wandering really which was lovely. It was windy but I could feel the warmth of the sun which was great.
Went out for dinner that evening with two girls I had met the night before. I ordered sardines because I really thought I should try some Portuguese food and the shock of when it was brought to me with the sardines still scales on WITH EYES. I have never had to REMOVE EYES from my food before. That was seriously frightening stuff. The sardines were delicious though. Cheers Super Mario in Lisbon for the food and the free port as well. Cheap and pleasant meal.
Sintra Sunday. I went with loads of people from the hostel to Sintra – a place just a little outside of Lisbon. When we arrived we noticed that the main attractions of Sintra were on top of the biggest hill in the world. We started walking up and decided that after 10 minutes that it wasn’t worth the heart attack we might all gain from walking so got the bus up the hill instead. Thank god we did, the heavens opened. We arrived at Pena National Palace at the top of the hill and it was beautiful.
The two girls had to go back to Lisbon and catch their flight which left me with the boys. Dear god. I mean they were hilarious but there is only so much chat about girls and their bums any one person can endure. The castle was cool though!
Me and the lads then headed back to Lisbon and had some dinner. I was boring and craved cheese so I had tortellini. The evening was chilled at the hostel. There was some jamming which was awesome but partly embarrassing. So much for my degree when the only things I know off by heart are ‘Dream a little dream of me’ on the piano and ‘Yellow Submarine’ on the ukulele. *must memorise more songs*.
Home again, home again, jiggety jig. I was quite sad to leave. The hostel is the best one I’ve been in by miles. When there’s free waffles (WITH NUTELLA), friendly staff and hostellers it’s the greatest thing ever. You can be in the most amazing city in the world but if there’s not great company back at the accommodation if you’re travelling solo then it’s not wonderful. So for anyone reading this go to Lisbon and stay at Goodmorning Hostel. You won’t regret it.
Cheers Portugal for fuelling my desire to travel and for the sun, delicious food and new friends.