After all that hilly huffing and puffing, time to have a break…


where else but in your oh-so-everday-European cafe. No coffees for me though but a foot-long baloney sandwhich with a hard crust. Quite forgettable really.

In any case, I thought I'd soak up the atmosphere of street life in Lisbon,a treat really, comming from Manila where people's idea of a cafe is most probablly in one of those spiffed-up, over-priced R & R theme parks in the city.

More poking around and….what's this???

The Portuguese capital's most iconic architectural caprice- the Elevador Santa Justa. Built in 1902 during the last years of the Industrial Revolution, this all-steel elevator connected the lower, working-class district of Baixa (pronounced Ba-Hia) to the more fashionable Chiado upper district.

Talk about going high society.

Well, this sturcture really made me wax-sentimental over my city's own San Sebastian Church – an edifice so closely related in terms of design origins yet so far in terms of structural preservation.

1.50 Euro and a few seconds later, we are whoooshed for this dramatic view of Lisbon's old downtown. The Castle of Saint George looking towards the hill.

That's where we came from(!).

santa justa 2

Now, another view of downtown and the river Tagus- where it all began.

santa justa view

Looking west(?) towards the city's Praca de Rossio, one of the several intimate squares dotted around the city.

In retrospect, I found Lisbon to be one of the most likaeable Iberian cities because unlike Rome, Paris or London where a visitor would always have a pre-conceived notion of their celebrated beautiy (god knows how Paris is being loved to death!) Lisbon's charm lies in her small hidden corners, past obscure, hidden alleys which lead to grand, spectacular vistas.

Oh, I love the underdogs! ;o)