During our first visit to Lisbon we bypassed the Santa Justa lift almost daily, but did not venture upward to the viewing platform. This month we stood in line for 30 minutes on Saturday, March 11/17 to ride the elevator - and are so glad we did.
Designed by Raoul Messier du Ponsard who was a student of Gustaff Eiffel it has a cast iron structure enriched with filigree details. It opened on July 10, 1902 and is the only vertical lift in Lisbon (known as the city of seven hills) and designated for public service. In 2002 it was classified as a National Monument.
|Interior of elevator car|
|Lift with viewing platform above|
|Exterior decorative detailing|
|West side of viewing platform with bridge to city streets|
One we reached the top there are two levels of viewing platform. Views from the lower level are impressive, but to get the full picture one needs to climb 50 steps (yes, I counted!) up this winding staircase.
Well worth the effort - even if I had to talk myself into it!
|Sao Jorge Castle behind John|
|Tagus River in the distance|
When we walked across the 'bridge' that connects the viewing platform and upper level of the city we were rewarded with this amazing view of the ruins of the Carmo Convent (destroyed during the 1755 earthquake). To the lower right is an outdoor restaurant while another, the Bella Lisa is visible on the far left.
We opted to have a relaxing Saturday lunch and enjoy the impressive view of the castle from the one on the left, the Bella Lisa Restaurant.
|Castle and elevator to John's right|
Afterward we strolled around the plaza a little further west of the lift.
|Bella Lisa restaurant upper right, Carmo Convent to the left|
When we returned to the viewing platform we heard drums...
...and realized it was a women's march reminding everyone of the continuing struggle towards equality.
The first two videos were filmed from atop the viewing platform...
The third was filmed from street level.
I wasn't quite sure what these costumes represent, but they were memorable nonetheless.
Our final day in Lisbon (Sunday) we headed down to the waterfront via a busy plaza.
Situated on the waterfront is this huge plaza. As luck would have it there were local artisans displaying their creations under the shade of the arches.
The waterfront was filled with locals and tourists alike.
Many, including ourselves, stopped to view this one man's creations.
Final destination - Sunday lunch, but first we walked past this girl's school musical group performance.
All in all we had a wonderful week in Lisbon - as is evident by John's smile.
Of course the prospect of wine and tuna steak doesn't hurt to lift one's spirits either!
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