Following the quite stressful start to this day, we cannot get to our hotel fast enough to freshen up, decompress, breathe and lie down prior to exploring more of the city. As it turned out our hotel or called guesthouse was centrally located. We couldn't have picked a better location.
The only disadvantage, if you would call it that, was taxis or any motor vehicle couldn't go in and deposit us in front of the hotel. We had to walk a few blocks, even dragging heavy luggage it was worth it. This is Rua das Portas de Santo Antão in the Santa Maria Maior area.
All the places we didn't know we wanted to see was within walking distance. Rossio Square for example is a 2-minute walk.
Rossio is the liveliest square in the city, where people stop to sit and relax, or for a drink at the several atmospheric cafes with outdoor sitting.
On either side of the square are two baroque fountains, and in the center is a monument measuring 27 meters in height. It consists of a pedestal with marble allegories of Justice, Wisdom, Strength, and Moderation, qualities attributed to Dom Pedro IV, whose statue stands on top of the monument.
In the 19th century the square was paved with cobblestones in wave patterns, a design seen today in many other pavements all over Portugal, and that has spread to Portugal's former colonies from Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) to Macao (China).
On the north side of the square is the Dona Maria II National Theater, a monumental neoclassical building built in the 1840s. The portico has six Ionic columns (originally from the Church of St. Francis, destroyed in the 1755 earthquake), and crowning the pediment is a statue of playwright Gil Vicente. (info from here)
Back to the pedestrian only cobblestone street that is Rua Das Portas de Santo Antao where our hotel is located, I found this description online: Leading up from behind the National Theater is Rua das Portas de Santo Antão, a lively pedestrian-only street known for its seafood restaurants. Even if you are not a fan of seafood, look out for the eye-catching tanks filled with gigantic lobsters by the windows. Most of the restaurants have outdoor seating.
It is also the location of the classical Coliseu dos Recreios, the Lisbon Coliseum, opened in 1890 as a circus, and today a concert venue.
Taken from the balcony of our room looking down on wet street. Centrally located also means the noise level could be high.
Strolling the length of the street on a cold wet night just to take photos.
Early morning waking up to a better weather on day 2. Next door to our hotel is this restaurant that opens for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
A great deal. For the price we had a large room with three beds, private ensuite bath and a balcony overlooking the street. The only downside is that there is no elevator and we had to climb up the three flights (one very long and steep) carrying our heavy luggage. It is a basic accommodation that gave us what we needed - a safe clean room to sleep and bathe and free wi-fi.
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