I love Europe. When you take time out to think about it, the amount of completely different cultures, languages and architecture nestled side by side is truly mind-blowing. And it is all so easily accessible on our doorstep (unless the Tories decide to make life harder…). So what better holiday destination than a week in Lisbon, Portugal? Being a Portsmouth boy I have always admired the Portuguese’s naval history; they trail blazed their way through the Americas, India and the Philippines amongst others. And you truly feel this sense of maritime history as you walk trough the streets of Lisbon; explorers such as Vasco Da Gama look down at you from every town square. There is also an undeniable Brazilian vibe in Lisbon, or does Brazil have a Portuguese vibe? I’m not sure. Either way the cachaça flows feely and cheaply, the steep cobbled streets are colourful and the music is always on. I can’t recommend Lisbon enough as a city break, it is inexpensive, vibrant, cultural and steeped in history. However don’t expect any kind of service with a smile, the Lisboans seem to have perfected the art of being impolite without being rude. Our social codes and conventions of hello’s, thank you’s and goodbyes are a world away. Are the Portuguese rude? I don’t think so, perhaps they stand less on the social pomp and ceremony that us Brits do. Either way it’s a top city, obrigado Lisboa!
PS: You must like fish or meat, if not don’t bother.