The sail up river to Lisbon was spectacular. The bridge was in view as soon as we left Oeiras and the huge statue of Jesus on the south bank. Soon we passed Torre de Belem – a real fantasy castle – then the monument to the Discoverers leaning into the river. Soon it became just another port and we were looking for Doca de Alcantara.
Torre De Belem
As we passed under the bridge the noise was intense and we hoped we would not be able to hear it from the marina. It soon quietened, fortunately, and though we could hear it later it was just a gentle hum and we soon got used to it. We motored on but could see no sign of the marina. We had tried email and phone to book a berth but always got no reply. Now we tried all the VHF channels given in the almanac and pilot book. Still nothing. Just as we thought we would have to go back out, we saw the marina, well concealed behind a container port - again!
The Doca de Alcantara
Tagus river view
While not luxurious, Doca de Alcantara has all the basics except a washing machine! However, access to town is great. Lots of mullet and shellfish as usual, but there were also several large jellyfish in the marina all the time. A few minutes walk there is a tram/bus stop making access to town quick and easy.
Lisbon is a fascinating city as those of you who have been will know. It is like a series of villages with different character and atmosphere in each part. Like Porto it is also up and down all day long.
Outside the Maritime museum - Don't think we have room for it
The pavements are black and white cobbles with varying motifs depending on the area. Buildings are of all ages, some completely covered in coloured tiles, some Art Nouveau, some Art Deco, something for everyone. Lovely squares with tall trees and statues of all the heroes, with pavement cafes adding life to the scene. The old fashioned trams everywhere are quaint, but very efficient.
We had a great week exploring and catching up with the family. It was lovely to hear Lukas learning new words. My favourite is “turtle” learned at the excellent oceanarium. They had a special exhibition of five rescue turtles they are rehabilitating to re release into the ocean.
Outside the Oceanarium
On the riverfront
We moved back to Oeiras on Wednesday afternoon and we all spent the last day together at the pool and beach. All too soon the week was over and we were left on our own once again
Lukas at the helm!