One of my 30 Before 30 was to go abroad for a long weekend - shockingly, something I've never done! A couple of months after putting that together was NYE, where my friends and I formulated plans for a minibreak and Lo! Lisbon in May became a thing.
I'd never been to Portugal before and didn't know much about Lisbon at all, but I really liked it. It's got some beautiful architecture (even the battered old buildings are stunning - but there's some amazing modern stuff too, including awesome street art - graffiti doesn't seem like the right word) and the locals are incredibly friendly (and hell, I'm just going to say it: SO many attractive men. Seriously.) and it's really easy to get around. The first day we were incredibly disorientated - it's all little narrow streets - but after a day or so we got to grips with it. That said, if someone had abandoned me on the way home from dinner on the last night, I would have got totally lost, because I have no sense of direction. And had also drunk a lot of wine.
We stayed in a gorgeous apartment next to the cathedral, but definitely weren't there long enough - I'd love to go back. One of my favourite parts were their famous custard tarts - OH MY GOD THEY'RE AWESOME - but even more than that was the chance to catch up with my girls and have some quality time. Lisbon was lovely, but if we'd all holed up in my parents' house for the weekend, I know we'd have had just as much fun.
The only thing with Lisbon was the restaurants - you have to really look for a good one, and if you haven't done research before your trip (as we didn't), you might be disappointed (as we were). But we sought out somewhere awesome for our last night, so if you go, make sure you pay a visit to Santo Antonio De Alfama - SO good. The outside-only Pateo 13 was also really lovely. Although, Lisbon is very fish and red meat focused, and I don't eat seafood, so I ate steak every day. If you're a vegetarian, stick to the pastries (and make sure you stop by Pastéis de Belém. Tell them I sent you. They don't know who I am, but maybe it'll be a conversation starter or something.)
Here are a million photos!