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Lisbon, 12 facts

Facts about Lisbon is a topic that we started to make a list. Diversity is the main issue. You will find amazing things to do while you visit the Portuguese capital.

12 facts about Lisbon

Alfama, Lisbon, Miradouro Santa Luzia

1. Oldest City

Lisbon is the oldest city in Western Europe, even predating to Paris, London and Rome . Along centuries had several rebuild processes and even now you will see it. Visigods, Romans, Moors have been to this amazing city. Its the Portuguese capital since the XII century.

2. Seven Hills

Lisbon is constructed on seven hills. Its known in Portuguese as the city of “Sete Colinas” . Bring comfortable shoes to walk.

3. Vasco da Gama Bridge

Portugal, Vasco da Gama, Lisbon facts

Lisbon as the major bridge in Europe with 17 kilometres ( 10,56 miles ). The bridge is the 2nd connection from Lisbon to Alcochete / Montijo ( south margin of the Tagus River ). The first bridge is 25 April bridge and connects Lisbon to Almada / Setubal / Costa da Caparica.

4. Church Construction World Guiness Record

Santa Engrácia Church is mentioned on the World Guiness Book of Records has the church took more time to be constructed. The consctruction started during the XVII century and ended in 1966 ( XX century).

5. Graffiti

Lisbon as a great deal of street art with all, floors and buildings demanding your attention. Nowdays its a fact that artists have authorization from the city council to make their work. Vhils, is the most well known due to the vast work made and the participation on a U2 music video.

6. Great Lisbon Earthquake

In 1755 a huge earthquake struck the capital . Destroyed the main ancient buildings in Lisbon but also in biggest radius distance , such as in Sintra ( Pena Palace, that previous was a convent ). From the earthquake to tsunami, easily swollow Lisbon downtown .

7. Lisbon´s Oceanarium

Its one of the biggest aquarium´s in the World . His portfolio goes into 8000 sea creatures divided between the central main tank and four habitats . Total amount of litres : 8 million litres.

8. Baixa

Facts, Tram 28, Lisbon
Located in Lisbon downtown, Baixa is the civil parish where you will find an amazing amount of hotels, coffee shops, pastry shops, restaurants, tiny streets and amazing squares.

Lisbon facts

9. Sweet facts

Portuguese love sweets and the most famous is perhaps the custard . You will find it in most of the coffee shops ( which we make on the pastry class ). There is not specific hour to eat them . Breakfast, dessert with coffee or as snack, all are good options.

Pasteis de Nata Class, Lisbon, Portugal

10. Lowest and Highest Point

The Portuguese capital is constructed near water. From the river side ( Baixa, Alfama, Mouraria, Cais do Sodre area ) to the interior ( Areeiro, Alameda, Anjos,  Monsanto ). The elevation is 0m ( 0 ft ) to a maximum of 199 metres ( 653 ft) in Serra de Monsanto .

11. Civilizations

In Lisbon, you will twenty centuries of history . Roman ruins, Moorish castle. The city has an amazing diversity of cultures and civilizations vestiges.

12. Museums

Lisbon has more than 30 museums that can you visit. Tiles, design, fashion, Ethnology, Culture, Coach, Ancient Art, Archaeology are just some of the list you would love to visit.

These are some of the facts of the Portuguese capital, where you will find also amazing Portuguese that you will love to engage .

Why Tagus River is so important on Lisbon lifestyle?

Lisbon lifestyle is much more than small streets, food and history. Of course the city has an amazing history, has a capital since XII century. However, the locals and foreigners love also the amazing views.

After a small visit to one of our suppliers at Cooking Lisbon, on the way, we decided to stop at Christ the King located on the south margin of Tagus River. It was not an amazing day to take some pictures, cloudy and windy, however we thought that can give also good pictures.

Lisbon east side

Our first picture was very dark and you see the river traffic with catamaran boats. Boats connect the south margin of the river with Lisbon . In the oldest days, was mainly farms to supply Lisbon.  Some of the most emblematic Portuguese boats were also constructed in South Margin, as the caravel used by Vasco da Gama .

Lisbon, Praça do Comercio

A little bit closer, with a huge zoom we see part of Comércio Square. Reconstructed after the 1755 Earthquake is now days a beautiful square where you will find several restaurants and events.

It will be possible to walk along the river, where you will find several esplanades. On the Summer, people love the sun, a good drink and lots of chat. We easily get lost in time perception .

Lisbon South View

Visiting Christ the King we catch a foreigner watching Lisbon . We wonder what were the thoughts about the Portuguese capital, will she be interested on the Lisbon lifestyle of food, culture, art, history or any other subject?

The picture show us the Belém Tower, Tower of Discoveries and Jerónimos Monastery . Belém civil parish is on the background. Back to 18th century we had on this spot an amazing white sand beach .

Lisbon lifetsyle

Lisbon 25 April Bridge

The 25 de Abril Bridge is a suspension bridge. Connects two main cities such as Lisbon and Almada . Everyday thousands of cars cross the beach, since gives access to Costa da Caparica, one of the favorite beach spots for locals. The bridge opens in 1966 and its very similar to the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, USA .

Lisbon lifestyle, Tower Discoveries,

Belém civil parish is also know by the Pastéis de Belém. The Portuguese loves to eat good pastries ( but also foreigners, visiting the country and Lisbon ).

Lisbon lifestyle is very unique . Besides jobs, locals to eat well , drink even better and relax. On the Portuguese capital you will also find an amazing weather .

Codfish with cornbread

Codfish with Cornbread is one of the most famous Portuguese dish. You will find on regular basis in local restaurants in the whole country.

If you travel to Portugal, you should know that along the Portuguese coast codfish is not available. Now days, most of the codfish arrives from Norway (80% is imported from this country).

Codfish with Cornbread ( bacalhau com broa in Portuguese ) is the perfect dish for a meal with family and friends. Easy to cook, very few ingredients, five steps and its done. Its time to go to the kitchen and relief your senses while cooking this amazing dish.

Cooking Lisbon, Codfish Cornbread

Codfish with cornbread Recipe

( portions for 4 people)


4 codfish stands
1 big cornflour bread
8 small potatoes
1 small cabbage
4 cloves of garlic
Salt and black pepper to taste
Olive oil to taste
2 bay leaves


1. Boil the potatoes. After boiled give them a punch to flat them a bit.
2. Take the codfish skin out, probably you will need to use a knife for this. Season the stands with salt and pepper to taste.
3. Crumb the inside of the corn bread and add olive oil and 2 chopped cloves of garlic, work it until you have a kind of paste.
4. In an oven tray set the codfish stands and cover the with the corn bread paste. Add the potatoes, the bay leaves, the 2 cloves of garlic crushed and drizzle everything with olive oil. Cook in the oven at 180ºC for about 30min.
5. Blanch the cabbage and serve it with the olive oil.

Feel free to share this recipe of the Portuguese gastronomy. Cooking Lisbon as available much more recipes based on fish .

More four recipes with Codfish:

Clams Bulhão Pato Style

Clams Bulhao Pato Style has a fantastic story. Bulhão Pato was a poet from the 19th century .  He is better known from a dish that he didn’t even create. Seems curious?

Raimundo António de Bulhão Pato, born in Bilbau from a Portuguese father and a Spanish mother, will always remain in history linked to a Portuguese seafood dish with his name: Clams Bulhão Pato Style.Clams Bulhao Pato Style

Living a bohemian life style, gourmet, game and food, was a regular customer of some restaurants and taverns of the Portuguese capital. It was for sure in one of them, that he first ate what made in popular, not by creating it but by spreading the word about it!

It is known that the poet lived till his death in Monte da Caparica, near Trafaria in the South Bank of the Tagus river, a place that remains as one of the best spots to catch really good and fresh clams.

Although the recipe of Clams Bulhao Pato Style is actually very simple, the quality of the ingredients has an important role in the final result.

The poet might not be known for his poems, but since you taste this dish you will never forget it!

Clams Bulhao Pato Style recipe


1kg Clams
1dl Olive Oil
2 Garlic Cloves (sliced)
150g Cilantro (minced)
1 lemmon
1 pinch of salt
2 tbsp White Wine
1 pinch of pepper


Leave the Clams for 3 hours in a pan with water and salt, so they can release the sand. Use a large pan, add the olive oil and the garlic and let it warm um in the fire.

Add the cilantro, the white wine, and, after boiling, the clams. Season with salt and pepper. Stir everything. Close with a lit and cook in medium heat, till the clams open their shells.

When the sauce thickened a little bit and all the clams opened their shells, put them on a serving plate. Sprinkle with the lemon juice. Use the lemon slices to decorate the dish.
Serve with bread.

Codfish Minhota Style Recipe

Codfish  Minhota Style is based on Salted Codfish which is important for the Portuguese gastronomy, even its not available on the local shore.  Portuguese are the main consumers of cod with more than 6 kgs per year / person.

Codfish Minhota Style Recipe

Only on XIX century the ingredient started to be common on Portuguese cookbooks. Olive oil is important also along the codfish. It gives an amazing flavor during the cooking process or as decoration and taste when served.

Visiting Portugal, you will have available hundreds of dishes available based on codfish. Other main ingredients on the most of the recipes are: onions, olive oil, salt and bayleaf.

Codfish Minhota Style Recipe is often made on the cooking classes at Cooking Lisbon as a Portuguese cooking experience for foreigners.

Codfish Minhota Style Recipe

(for 4 people)


4 codfish stands
4 small onions
1 red bell pepper
1 green bell pepper
8 potatoes
4 cups flours
4 tablespoons paprika
1L olive oil
Salt and black pepper to taste


1. Season the codfish stands with salt and black pepper to taste.
2. Peel and slice the onions. Take the seeds out from the bell peppers and cut them into slices.
3. Cover the bottom of a pan with olive oil and the onion, season them with salt and pepper to taste, cook them in medium heat until soften and golden. Take them out and cook the bell peppers in the same olive oil till tender.
4. Peel and slice the potatoes thinly, deep fry them in olive oil until golden and crunchy.
Put the flour and paprika together.
5. Coat the codfish stands with the flour and deep fry them in the same olive oil where you cooked the potatoes. Take the stands out when golden and tender.

Feel free to share the recipe of Codfish Minhota Style on your favorite social networks. Cooking Lisbon is present on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Google Plus . Share and tag us.