City of Seven Hills
One of my most favourite adventures in recent times was to the city of Lisbon, which of course is the capital city of Portugal. Lisbon is mainland Europe's westernmost capital city and the only one situated along the Atlantic coast.
It was my first visit to the city and right from the off I was impressed with the architecture which is a stunning mix of the historic and the new, but also with the art that punctuates the city, often popping up when you least expect it.
This was on one of the motorway bridges from the airport to the city and caught my eye right away.
Lisbon is the largest city in Portugal with around 3 million people living in the Lisbon metropolitan area, which represents approximately 27% of the country's population
The city lies on the western coast of the Iberian Peninsula with the Atlantic Ocean and the River Tagus coming together on its seafront.
You will quite often see Lisbon referred to as the City of Seven Hills and that is very true when you are walking around - other than the seafront, most of the streets are on a hill or rise up to a hill as you travel along them. Strong legs are needed!
Lisbon is one of the oldest cities in the world and lots of architecture reflects that. In fact, only Athens is older amongst European countries.
Once you get down the hills towards the seafront you will start to see the landscape flatten off a little and the streets all seem to head towards the huge arch and square on the water's edge.
You can see the arch at the end of that street and once you get up close to it you begin to appreciate its magnificence.
The Arco da Rua Augusta is a stone-built commemoration of the city's reconstruction after the earthquake of 1755. It was originally designed to be a bell tower but finally transformed into a decorative arch. The arch itself lies on the apron of the Praça do Comércio, a vast open space that leads down to the sea.
One of the most striking images that you see whilst walking around the streets of Lisbon is the trams, a traditional form of public transport since their introduction in 1901.
The trams are a very distinctive yellow colour and their physical dimensions make them perfect for the narrow and often steep hills that they travel on.
I really like the bustle of the city, it is not mad like London or Paris, but more relaxed and compact with lots going on around you on the street. Every corner held something next and surprising, something different to explore and enjoy.