Portugal has never been top of  my travel list, it's not that I haven't wanted to visit it's more that I've had a "I'll go there eventually" attitude. But this year my uni's surf club ended up going to Portugal (that post will be up soon) and I was looking for somewhere to travel for my summer so doing that was a no brainer. Of course I didn't book the flights until about two weeks before and it was much cheaper to stay longer so that's what I did. And my first stop was Lisbon, where I spend 2 days/3nights and it's safe to say I got an awful lot done! And so I'll talk you through what I did, kind of like a little city guide I guess.

Where I stayed
Rua Cmilo Castelo Branco, 2C - Lisbon, Portugal
I haven't got any photos of Urban Garden Hostel,  I just forgot to take any, whoop. I found these guys from searching for an eco hostel in Lisbon and booked though Hostel World. It was a nice hostel, with double bunk beds (yes), a nice atmostphere, really clean bathrooms, cool living space, and generally pretty welcoming staff, plus it was good value for money. But it wasn't very vegan friendly, I kind of assumed that being an eco hostel it would be pretty vegan but at breakfast I coud just have toast and then in the evenings if I wanted to join the hostel meal I could just eat everything there was to offer except the meat, for the exact same price. Not ideal, there was a super market directly under the hostel so I could go and buy my own food but I was just sad that at breakfast I could only eat toast (there is a place round the corner that does amazing vegan pancakes which I will talk about later though). So it's a really nice hostel, but it could do better.

What I did

Day 1!
These are in order as I tended to wander from one thing to another, makes it easier if any of you are planning to follow this.
Rossio Square
1100-200 Lisboa, Portgal
This was the first place I just ended up, I wanted to walk towards the general tourist centre of town so I wandered on in, it was quite early when I went so I saw people heading off to work, and there weren't many shops open. But I was sight seeing so it didn't really matter. I wandered around Rossio Square, saw the beautiful Rossio Train Station, and then headed up to Carmo Covent

Carmo Convent / Carmo Archiologial Museum
1200-092 Lisboa, Portugal
This is a ruined church, destroyed along with much of old Lisbon in an Earthquake in 1755 it is a really beautiful place. You do have to pay to get in (I think around 5 Euro) but it's definitely worth it, I sat on the little astroturf bits in the sun, said hi to the local cat, and then went to explore the museum attached which is in the part of the Convent that's still a building. You can't take pictures inside the museum area, hence why I have none, but it's cool in there. There's artifacts from throuout human history including two child mummies from ..... And, I discovered art created in Nottingham brought to Lisbon, it's a small world. I then got lunch round the corner, but I'll talk about where I ate in the next section.

After lunch I went for a wander around and took pictures of some of the more modern architecture around the Convent, before accidentally stumbling across the Santa Justa Elevator

Santa Justa Elevator
R. do Ouro, 1150-060 Lisboa, Portugal
Here you can see all over lisbon, if you pay to go up to the top which I didn't. Even if you don't pay to go all the way up it's still a great veiw, though they do have wire around so you can't see the "best" view. I didn't actually discover the base of the tower until the next day when I stumbled across it and was like "oh ok that is tall!", there are two entrances to this and one is near the Carmo Convent.

Rue José Domingos Barreiros, No2F Armazé 5, 150-161 Marvila - Lisbon, Portual
This was the only place I went in the whole of Lisbon that I didn't walk to (though it is entierly possibly to walk to). And it was also the most expensive place I visited at 20 Euro for a ticket. TO get here I went down to Comércio Plaza to the bus stop there and took the 728 for around twenty minutes, until I was at a stop just around the corner for the museum.

I was debating whether or not to write a whole seperate post for the museum, firstly because it was totally photogentic and #bloggerlife, but also because I had mixed opinions about the place. It's not so much a museum as it is an interactive gallery? And it's litereally made for you to take 101 instagram pictures in. I think I would've had a lot more fun here if I hadn't been on my own, make up free, sweaty, and just not feeling 100% myself. It was a place where you could jump around in a pool full of foam marshmallows, sit in a tub full of ball pool balls, play a gummy bear VR, and take pictures with unicorns. All while having your photo taken by the attendant in each room. It was made for bloggers and it all felt a little fake? because of that. As I said, with a bunch of other people I would've had a lot more fun playing around but there was a group of people in front of me I just had to stand and wait for in each room, and I just felt like I was there to stand, pose, get my (not vegan friendly) sweets and wander to the next room. I think I just wasn't feeling it that day, oh and half of my instagram posts for the next month are from here so it wasn't all bad.

If you're in Lisbon and love all things pink, sweet themed, and instagrammable then this is for you. But hurry as it's only open till August 31st!

On my way back from The Sweet Art Museum it's safe to say I was seriously exhausted, not helped by the fact I thought I'd got on the wrong bus on my way home (I hadn't). So I didn't really do anything that evening, just made a lot of noodles and made friends in my hostel over dinner before heading for an early night.

Day 2

Day 2 started off wandering out to get pancakes, which I will talk about in the "What I ate" section below, after which I took a long walk to LX Factory, one of the new friends I'd made the night before told me about it and so I took a walk down to there. It took about 2 hours on the way there because I took a lot of detours and photos every few minutes.

British Cemetery
R. de São Jorge 6, 1250-235 Lisboa, Portugal
One of my detours, stumbled upon it by accident, this may seem like a weird place to sight see and visit but there's something I find so calming about Cemeteries and gave yards. They make me feel so present and just remind me of how precious life is, not only that but they're like visiting a beautiful public garden with no other people in them. Plus the way graves are decorated can tell you an awful lot about the culture you're in, even if it is a British cemetery in another country. Oh and above all this Cemetery had a pink church in it.

R. Rodrigues de Faria 103, 1300 - 501 Lisboa, Portugal
In what used to be a manufacturing complex, LX factory is now somewhat of an alternative shopping centre. There's small boutiques, ethical and sustainable businesses, alternative tour companies, publishers and other creative companies, plus some pretty good restaurants. I highly recommend this if you like shopping and exploring but not so much high street, there's also one of the coolest book shops I've ever seen with an industrial style art exhibition, sadly the ehibition was closed when I was there. It's worth a walk around the whole thing too as it has some of the coolest grafitti all the way around, and the creepiest bathroom art I have ever seen. It's also underneath a very big bridge (though not the one that's the longest in europe) so that makes it a cool photo location too.

R. 1º de Maio 103, 1300-472 Lisboa, Portugal
This is just around the corner from LX Factory so if you're going there you might as well go here too. Underground village is a co working space made from old shipping containers and buses and it is a blogger paradise. If you are a digital nomad you can rent a space here to work. If you're not a blogger or digital nomad it's still a great photo location, and they have a cafe (didn't eat there, don't know if it's any good). Plus just around the corner I found an old tram which made for a good photo location, there's also a very good bridge view here.

Near Underground Village there's also the Transport museum, where you can learn all about Lisbon's famous trams and even ride around the site in one, I didn't go in here though as I didn't want to spend any more money and I was exhausted and needed to head back for a nap. The way back took me about an hour and a half because again, lots of photos needed to be taken.

Watching the Game
As I got back for my nap a girl from my hostel said she was going to watch the Spain v Portugal world cup game in the Commerce square so of course I said yes! You may not be able to do this on your visit, as it's no longer the world cup, but if there's anything similar I would really reccomend going. I couldn't even see the game but the atmosphere was awesome, there were guys with kegs of beer on their back selling Sagres, and that last goal! Great stuff.

Sardine Festival
Now we accidentally got caught up in this, and I can't say I wanted to be caught up in this. Had either of us had more energy I probably would've been up for drinking and dancing but as someone who doesn't eat fish there wasn't much else for me at the sardine festival. I was glad that I at least walked through it though. Unless you're in Lisbon in mid June you won't experience this either but Lisbon is full of festivals so definitely give one a go.

What I ate

First night I ate at the hostel, and I said about that above, it was alright food but not really made for vegans. So I'll just talk about outside the hostel. Oh and before I do, if you don't already have the Happy Cow app and you're a veggie or vegan then get it! It'll tell you all of the vegan friendly food places around you and honestly made eating in Lisbon such a breeze whereas without it I'd be left wandering around aimlessly, hangry, trying to find food.

Calçada Sacramento 36, 1200-022 Lisboa, Portugal
This was lunch on the first day and is a two minute walk away from Carmo Convent, an all you can eat buffet style place with east Asian food. It's a set price menu which is pretty good value (7,50 Eruo I believe) with cake as an extra, I recommend the cake! I used to love this style of cake before I was vegan and it's honestly the best cake I have had since going vegan, I want to go back here just for this cake. It was layers of sponge (?) with layers of vanilla buttercream style icing and even thinking about it now has me drooling. Vegan cake is what my dreams are made of, and this was the ultimate dream. The buffet food was also pretty darn good, especially for the price.

R. Rodrigo da Fonseca 82A, 1250-193 Lisboa, Portugal
The amazing vegan pancakes I talked about above were from here, it was not too far from my hostel and had your classic vegan health foody place. They do yoga lessons and meditation sessions, and serve food made with locally sourced ingredients. There pancakes were so good, I never used to like seeds on things, as healthy as they are, but this changed my mind. I now eat seeds on my breakfast every day! They help small businesses and local farmers, and do really good food, that's eveything this site is about so I'm very glad I found them.

The Therapist
103, R. Rodrigues de Faria, 1300-501 Lisboa, Portugal
The Therapist is where I ate in LX factory, I wandered around but it seemed to be the only place open that did a lot of vegan food, so I settled on their chow mien and a smoothie (pedal powered, electricity free smoothie in a plastic free compostable cup too). Not only do they have an organic cafe but The Therapist is also a school lecturing on all sorts of wellness and treatments; they are called The Therapist after all.

BDO Bifanas Bar
Rua de S. Paulo 39, 1200-014 Lisboa, Portugal
I stumbled across this little bar by accident, heading out from the football game we were lucky to find anywhere to eat. Yet we found a small bar doing vegan burgers in traditional Portuguese buns. Only 4,50 Euro each too! It was jam packed by the time we'd sat down and even thought about ordering, but it was a game night so maybe it's not that busy every day? Either way, a stroke of luck ending up there.

So that's it! A crazy amazing two days. Even though Portugal wasn't on the top of my bucket list I would recommend putting it on yours! It's a great city, and I want to go back so I can at least have a night out there. I have more posts coming up about the rest of my stay in portugal so stay tuned for those!