Along the Atlantic Ocean in south-central Portugal is that nation’s capital, and largest city, Lisbon.  The city proper has a population of 545,000 but a metropolitan area of over 2.8 million residents.  Lisbon is the 9th largest metropolitan area in Europe, and is Europe’s westernmost capital.  Lisbon also has the distinction of the continent’s only capital located on the Atlantic Ocean.

The weather in Lisbon is Mediterranean-subtropical, meaning mild winters and warm to hot, dry summers.  Daytime highs in July and August reach a nice 28 degrees Celsius with night time lows a mild 13 degrees.  In January, highs reach 14 degrees Celsius with low temperatures of a cool 8 degrees.

Continuously inhabited since 1200 B.C. the city of Lisbon predates London, Paris, even Rome.  In its existence, Lisbon has been claimed by Romans, Germanic tribes, the Moors, and eventually Christians.  Lisbon is known for stunning architectural achievements both old and new.  Buildings and monuments in Romanesque, Gothic, Manueline, Baroque, Modern, and Post-Modern styles dot the city landscape.  These different styles portray the history of Lisbon as well as indicate a thriving future of cultural significance.

Lisbon is unique for the special districts in town. These include:

Alfama:  An area in the southern part of Lisbon is the Alfama district The Alfama district is home to many of the city’s most prominent buildings of the Moorish style. One of the places to visit in this district is the Castle of St. George.

Baixa:  The Baixa is Lisbon’s downtown district.  The city centre was mostly remodelled after the major 1755 earthquake which destroyed the old city.  One of the places you should see in this area of Lisbon is the Santa Justa Elevator.

Belem:  Portuguese for “Bethlehem,” the Belem district of Lisbon was the departure point for explorers’ journeys.  Belem since then has been home to a royal palace and several museums.

Lisbon is served by Lisbon Portela Airport, located seven kilometres from the city centre.  Consider car hire at Lisbon Airport for travel to and around Lisbon.

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