Northants Nutters at Sea (2024) – 5th July (Day 7)

Reading time: 5 minutes...

Here we are, as part of the Northants Nutters group! It’s Day 7, and we’re on our second (and final) day in Lisbon. We set sail later for Leixões in Portugal at around 5.30pm tonight.

P&O’s Ventura: 3,078 Passenger Capacity, 1,205 Crew and 8 Nutters!

Northants Nutters – Previous Tour Dates (double-click here)


Missed a Post?

Day 1 – Setting Sail (eventually!)
Day 2 – Sea Day 1
Day 3 – Santander, Spain
Day 4 – Sea Day 2
Day 5 – Vigo, Spain
Day 6 – Lisbon, Portugal


Day 7 – Friday, 5th July

6.45am: Morning all! Weather-wise, it’s ‘more of the same’ today – Sun, Sun and more Sun, with the hottest part of the day being the middle of the afternoon. It may be just a few degrees cooler than Thursday, but as we were to discover, there was a much more humid day waiting for us.

After last night’s banquet, we skipped breakfast – even I couldn’t stare at a sausage this morning! 😖

Today’s itinerary was a super-relaxed one! Having spent most of my life slagging-off Cruise Excursions for their lack of value and general over-pricing, today we’re going on one! It’s a P&O’s organised walk called (imaginatively!) ‘Lisbon on Foot’ (how do they think of these names? 😀). It’s just us two – a Nutter-free day – until we all meet tonight at Paul and Sue’s to experience the Ventura sail under the famous 25th April Bridge as we head for our next stop – Leixões.

Walkies!

10.01am: On first glance at the above, I thought the name of our Guide was Pastel, but Pastel turned out to be a tart (of the traditional variety) – note to self: read the small print, Palmer! 😮.

Christina in full flow

It was a popular tour with around 20 in the group. ‘Christina’ introduced herself as our Tour Guide. She was a local and therefore knew an awful lot about her home city. She was also very mindful of the increasing temperature and directed us into the shade at every opportunity, It might only have been 10am (ish), but it was already a few degrees north of the promised 23°C, according to the temperature on a nearby building! 🥵

The Destination

The general direction of travel was UP and Christina pointed us to our final destination. From where we were standing it looked like a bit of a slog (especially given the increasing temperatures), but Christina had a cunning plan to get us some of the best views across Lisbon, without having to supply us with rope and oxygen! That plan was to ‘meander’ upwards, zig-zagging our way to the top.

10.15am: It didn’t take us long to appreciate that this Tour was the perfect complement to yesterday’s ‘race around the city by bus’. Some of the sites that we’d seen from a distance on the top deck, came more sharply into focus – quite literally! 👍

It’s certainly a colourful City. Whereas other destinations might reach for the grey and darker hues to decorate their buildings, Lisbon is different and needs no excuse for slapping bright colours on things. Pinks, greens, blues, and yellows are a popular choice. Even the bougainvilleas seemed brighter than back home! 😎😎

We learned that when the rebuilding of the Lisbon commenced (post-earthquake) it was agreed that wherever possible they’d try and mimic the older designs – and there’s plenty of evidence that this has been implemented in the sense that in many areas, it’s an ‘old’ new (or is that ‘new’ old?) city 🤔

10.45am: These were interesting. Tiles play a big part in external facias out here, but this was far more specific. The first: ‘The Battle for Lisbon’ and above: ‘Views of Lisbon’. Both are quite large (15 foot plus) and in really good condition.

The location – Miradoure de Santa Luzia – is also considered to be one of the best viewpoints in Lisbon – and from here, we got a clear view of Ventura.

11.15am: As we continued our zig-zagging, Christina took us to another superb viewing platform, next to the Zambeze Rooftop Bar.

Having now reached the highest point of our walk – Portas do Sol Viewpoint – it was time for descent! And not a moment too soon. It was now even hotter and although the frequent shady stops had helped, we were all thinking: How long before the promised stop for a drink and the legendary tart? 😋

If yesterday’s Bus fiasco confirmed that the ROADS can get very congested in this capital city, then it was pretty similar as a pedestrian. If you’re not a fan of crowds, then best stay away during the Summer – there were people everywhere! 🙁. Clearly a popular destination especially in and around the Square.

11.35am: Descent before dissent as we were now officially ‘downtown’ and negotiating the crowds, hopefully getting even closer to our promised cuppa! 🥴

…whilst admiring the views from nearby Rossio Square.

11.50am: Yes, it all felt a very vibrant City, but we were all now in need of serious sustenance! 🥴

The restaurant, Cozinha da Estação was within easy reach and at last, we settled down a cold drink and the main event – a Pasel De Nata all round! For those who haven’t tried them, they’re like a custard tart with an optional sprinkling of cinnamon.

Yummy! 👍😋 It certainly got our tastebuds going, but they’re not to everyone’s taste, as the rest of our table demonstrated. 😮

12.15pm: Next stop? The Railway Station. Christina explained its significance during WWII, where because of Portugal’s neutrality, it became a VERY popular destination for displaced citizens across Europe attempting to get to the USA.

12.35pm: We were now on the final lap of the Tour. Above is the Santa Justa Lift. The hills of Lisbon have always presented a problem for travel between the higher and lower streets and this technical marvel (for its age) solves the problem. Opened in 1901 by King Carlos there’s more information HERE.

12.55pm: Our final stop (and for me, the most visually impressive) was the Rua Augusta Arch. Built to commemorate the city’s reconstruction after the 1755 earthquake, it is constructed completely from stone. There is a lot of detail contained in the arch itself and a comprehensive interpretation is HERE.

Wow! It had been a very interesting Tour. Christina certainly knew her stuff – and didn’t mind sharing it! I think in the end, as good as it was, the humidity got the better of me, and I was pleased to be heading back the Ventura. My legs were also telling me, they felt like they’d been given a serious workout this morning!

They had! 🥴. Time for ‘feet up’ before joining the rest of the Nutters later for our ‘sail away’ under the 24th April Bridge.

Sail Away

5.55pm: We’re all round at Paul & Sue’s ready for departing Lisbon and heading for Leixões.

Hic! 😀

The Bay Tree Restaurant

6.35pm: Here we are again! Time for our evening meal with our fellow Nutters!

Great food and service again! 👍

Evening Entertainment

8.30pm: Entitled ‘Paradise Rock’, it was billed as a ‘timeless tale of love and loss’. I enjoyed the familiar rock anthems and the singing and music together with the lighting and stage effects was flawless, but it somehow didn’t come together for me – and I’m not sure why! 🤔. OK, the dialogue was a bit cheesy in places, but the acting was good. Out of everything I’ve seen on-board so far, this felt like the weakest offering. Having said that, they were all toe-tapping tunes and it was a pretty full house. Maybe it’s just me!! 😮

Tomorrow

It’s an early start tomorrow for us – we have to be off the Ship by about 8.45am! Ouch!! 😖. We’ve got another morning walking tour, this time it’s around the streets of Aporto town. Catch you all tomorrow!

10.15pm: Nighty-night! See you Saturday, bright and early!


Discover more from Steve's Blog

Subscribe to get the latest posts sent to your email.

Keep Reading

PreviousNext

Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *