From Berne to Lisbon – by plane
Not with a night train but by plane, yet inspired by Pascal Merciers book. Leaving Switzerland on a cloudy pre-pre-summer day and arriving in a warm Lisbon, a city I wanted to get know for a long time.
And yes, it is a beautiful city, despite economical and emigrational issues. It has the right size to discover most places by foot, but if you prefer public transport there are plenty of busses, subways and trams at your disposal. Oh yes, and ships which cross the river Tejo. Even though I’m wondering if one couldn’t name it a “lake” or even a kind of a fjord, considering its size.
We stayed at an Air BnB close to the castle and, almost, on top of one of the many hills. That doesn’t just sound like a lot of hiking and climbing, it is like that. At least if you missed the “elevador”, elevators which would bring you a little easier on top of the hills.
The city was clean and vivid with lots of tourists, hence, many locals trying to sell you things. And with things I mean drugs. And with drugs I mean teabags pressed like hashish and flour packaged like cocaine. On one day I was counting eleven young men who wanted to sell these things. A simple “no” is accepted though, and they will even wish you a nice stay. We didn’t meet any pickpockets and in four days we were only asked twice for money. Both times in the subway. We felt very secure and the Portuguese we met were very friendly. Even the car drivers were stopping in front of a crosswalk and would let us crossing the streets.
We had a great stay in Lisbon and would recommend the city to everyone, particularly to people who like old cities, oenophiles – wine lover, and fans of the Mediterranean climate.
Some more impressions can be found here.