It started as a short trip and turned into love. Here are 10 ways to know you’re completely obsessed with Lisbon.
Eventually, short trips turned longer. The local custard tarts are now your favorite go-to snack.
You fell in love with the ever-present sun, friendly locals, and soul-soothing food at first meeting. Now you’re completely consumed with everything from the canned fish to the tascas. Don’t feel bad. We’re infatuated with Lisbon too. These are 10 ways to know you’re completely obsessed with Lisbon—do you recognize a few of the signs?
1. Your social media is full of pictures from Lisbon
We get it. Lisbon is magical. Buildings covered in colorful azulejo tiles, narrow cobbled streets, historic trams, and centuries-old neighborhoods make the city an open-air art gallery and history museum. So it makes sense that you want to share its beauty with the world. These days, images of Lisbon take over your Instagram and Facebook profiles.
2. You find that no other destination compares to Lisbon.
Lisbon is peaceful, and it’s recognized as one of the safest cities in Europe. Nowadays, new concept shops and magnificent restaurants are adding a brilliant shine to Lisbon’s old-world charm. And in addition to the bustling day-to-day activities and exciting nightlife, there is a close-knit community that reminds us of small-town life. It is truly an authentic destination.
Combined with the coastal vibe and a lifestyle meant to keep residents under the sun, what’s not to love? One of the 10 ways to know you’re completely obsessed with Lisbon is when it stays at the top of your “must travel” list no matter how many times you visit.
3. You complain about the hills but insist on climbing to the top of them…regularly.
Your hips burn at the thought of climbing to the top of Graça, Alfama, or Bairro Alto. That never stops you, however, from finding restaurants, hotels or apartments at the top of Lisbon’s highest hills. After all, these peaks offer the best views (and sunsets!). Hopping on the trams and funiculars are fun too, but walking ensures extra time for snapping the photos that you will share on Instagram later. Plus, you’re less likely to feel bad about snacking on the many pastries and petiscos after a day of urban hiking through the city.
4. Bifanas, frango assado, and bacalhau make your mouth water.
Speaking of delicious recipes, bifanas (pork sandwich), frango assado (roasted chicken), and bacalhau (codfish) are just a few of your favorites. Other recipes that you love may include chouriço (spiced pork sausage), caldo verde (kale soup), and cozido à Portuguesa (boiled stew). After enjoying flavorful Portuguese cuisine, you feel like you’re spoiled for life.
5. The thought of leaving makes you cry.
Crying at the thought of leaving and again on the way to the airport is another of the 10 ways to know you’re completely obsessed with Lisbon.
6. You love snacking on snails.
Maybe before falling under Lisbon’s spell, the thought of snacking on snails may have turned your stomach. Even adventurous foodies may feel less than enthusiastic about a bowl of snails. Yet, after one summer in Lisbon, the butter, garlic, and oregano-flavored appetizer changed your tune. Now, you’re excited to see the “há caracóis” (“there are snails”) signs at café and tasca entrances. Caracóis, a favorite summer snack, are best enjoyed with toasted bread and cold beer.
7. You’re in love with the Tagus River.
Mornings are better with a run by the Tagus River, and nights turn more magical when spent at a riverside kiosk or a rooftop bar. You may even walk all the way to Belém on a regular basis (even though it takes 1 hour and 30 minutes each way) just for time by the water.
8. You’re hesitant to travel to other parts of Portugal.
Portugal is a beautiful country with so much to explore. Despite planning exciting surfing trips along the coast and train rides past the rustic vineyards, you feel a twinge of guilt at the thought of leaving your beloved Lisbon. You may even turn an adventure or two down just to end up spending the day at a miradouro (viewpoint), shopping, or sitting by the river. Turning down an opportunity to explore more of Portugal may be one of the biggest signs out of these 10 ways to know you’re obsessed with Lisbon.
9. You have a favorite café or tasca where the servers and the owner know you.
It’s like having your very own Cheers bar in the Portuguese capital. Only, you visit around the clock, depending on what you’re in the mood for (coffee, a meal, or drinks). Tascas and cafés fill most neighborhoods and it’s normal to find a place where you feel at home.
10. You love the Portuguese language.
Your Portuguese may not be perfect but that’s okay. You have fun attending shows, events, and communicating as best as you can with the locals. Your friends can always count on your attendance when planning dinner and a show at a fado restaurant. You may even be as bold as to buy a book written by one of Portugal’s classic writers like Fernando Pessoa or José Saramago (good luck!).