Unique bar ‘Pensão Amor’ (brothel) Lisbon: former red light district, sailors & pole dance

Rua Nova do Carvalho in Lisbon, located near the river Tagus, was for decades known as a street in the city’s red light district with bars named after European capitals (like Copenhagen,  Oslo or Roterdão (Rotterdam) and Jamaica to attract the sailors who stepped off their boats here.

Bar ‘Pensão Amor’ Lisbon: wonderful drawings on the walls of the stairs

Former red light district In Lisbon

‘Pensão Amor’ is located in a typical Portuguese 18th-century building. Once a cheap pension with rooms rented by the hour to prostitutes and their clients to enjoy a short moment of love 😉

Along the 5 floors of the building you can admire remake copies of old posters from burlesque shows and peep shows.

Drawing artist Mario Belem

Bar ‘Pensão Amor’ Lisbon: burlesque decor & ceilings with frescoes

Wonderful décor

The ceilings of this former ‘guesthouse’ are painted with frescoes, the walls are covered with mirrors, paintings and old posters, and decorative pieces give the space an old burlesque, relaxed atmosphere. Amazing! The wonderful décor is recalling the history of the building.

Bar ‘Pensão Amor’ Lisbon: the pole dance room

Pole dance & YouTube: Marina mey

Now ‘Pensão Amor’ is one of the most popular bars in Lisbon with various spaces for events like concerts, ateliers, a book store (love/erotica), a trendy hair saloon, bars and a bar with Peruvian specialties. The pole dance room is decorated with leopard and gold. Pole dance workshops are held here to learn the tricks of seduction…

Rua Nova do Carvalho, hip and trendy street in Lisbon

Area Cais do Sodré  

Nowadays this area is a hip and trendy region in Lisbon.

Rua Nova do Carvalho is a street lined with hip bars and clubs that become crowded after 2AM when the bars in the legendary area Bairro Alto start to close.

Rua Nova do Carvalho, hip and trendy pink street in Lisbon

More remarkable bars in this street:

bar/cafe Sol e Pesca, and Bar da Velha Senhora (Old Ladies Bar).

‘Pensão Amor’ Lisbon – Erika Reusens admires the bar in burlesque style

The bar has two entrances Rua do Alecrim 19  including an outside café terrace) and on Rua Nova do Carvalho.

YouTube ‘Pensão Amor’ & culture Lisbon

Bars | Cocktails  € 8.00, beer € 3. Open:  every day.  More information : Facebook

Bar ‘Pensão Amor’ Lisbon – stairs to the bar


More about the metamorphosis of this area: Portugaldailyview & video

Looking for a short-term apartment in Lisbon? My  100 m2 3-bedroom apartment in historic area Mouraria with 30 m lovely private patio 🙂

Bar ‘Pensão Amor’ Lisbon : drawing stairs to the bar

Noisy Tuk-Tuk cars Lisbon: sightseeing, polution & eco-friendly silent Tuk Tours

The last few years Tuk-Tuk cars are gaining more popularity among tourists in Lisbon. You see them everywhere in the city: cute little cars, but most of them make a lot of noise and they stink terribly !  🙁  🙁

Largo Maria da Severa Mouraria Lisbon & an eco-friendly Tuk Tuk

Mouraria is a very old neighborhoud with narrow streets where big tourist buses cannot get through.

The tuk-tuks in Lisbon will have to be electric starting next year, in 2018 🙂  🙂

Apartment historic area Mouraria Lisbon & lovely quiet , private patio

My 3 bedroom apartment in this area with lovely patio (30 m2) (short term rentals)

YouTube Movie Tuk Tuk Tour Lisbon

‘Do you like to Tuk-Tuk with me’ ? 😉 Voulez-vous Tuk-Tuk avec moi? 😉  I saw a car with a led display using this text in several languages. These little Tuk Tuk vehicles are most ideal for short trips and sightseeing and capable to drive through the small streets in the ancient historical neighborhoods of Lisbon like Alfama and Mouraria.

Tuk Tuk Lisbon Eco Tours Martim Moniz may 14 1

Lisbon Square Martim Moniz: lots of tourists are waiting for legendary electric tram 28

Square Martim Moniz : starting point of the legendary old tram 28

Nowadays several owners of Tuk-Tuk cars are trying to persuade you to take a tour (from 45 – 60 euro for one hour), but a ride with ‘elétrico’ tram 28 will also bring you to most tourist attractions of Lisbon….and much cheaper (around 4 euro pp).

Tuk Tuk Lisbon Tuk Tuk Mouraria Rua do Terreirinho sept 14

Historic area Mouraria Lisbon: street small restaurant Jose- Maria & Laurinda

Tuk-Tuk cars, origin & polution

The Tuk-Tuk cars often run on diesel and some very old ones are imported from Asia. Auto rickshaws of Southeast Asia started from the knockdown production of the Daihatsu Midget which had been introduced in 1957. There are too many of them in Lisbon  🙁  🙁

Tuk Tuk Lisboa Baixa sept 14

Tuk-Tuk cars Lisbon downtown city center & elegant shopping area Rua Garrett

Young enthusiastic drivers & Tuk-Tuk cars

One of the advantages of the tuk-tuk cars in Lisbon is the possibility making trips with young and enthusiastic people, who speak several languages. Most of them are especially trained to talk about the historic sites of Lisbon.

Eco friendly Tul Tours Lisbon f1 2

Eco friendly Tuk car in Lisbon, historic area Alfama

Eco (and silent!) Tuk Tours Lisbon

I have no commercial interest but maybe this article helps to make Lisbon cleaner!  😉 😉

Website Tuk Tours (more info and reservations)

Eco Tuk Tours Lisbon narrow streets old town Lisbon 3

Eco friendly Tuk Tour old town Lisbon: narrow streets of Alfama

Exotic former Palace garden Lisbon ‘Tapada das Necessidades’: free access, gossip & pink birthday cake

Exotic garden Tapada das Necessidades in Lisbon is a guarded secret even the most Lisboetas don’t know about. Beautiful grounds and palace peeling pink paint, with an incredible cactus garden and a setting for a picnic you usually only see in films. Since a few years it’s open to the public/tourists and it’s free!

Tapada das Necessidades garden Lisbon: birthday picnic party June 2012

Between the famous Prazeres cemetery (also really worth a visit!) and the river Tagus (Tejo) you can find this large (about 10 ha) exotical park, including a wonderful picnic area, a network of walkways, historical buildings, a garden and lakes. The grounds of the palace contain a remarkable collection of exotic plants known as “Tapada das Necessidades”.

Tapada das Necessidades Lisbon: Lilja & the candy-pink birthday cake, June 2012

Surprise birthday picnic & special birthday cake

Our lovely friend Lilja (70) from England, born in Iceland, was invited for a surprise birthday picnic. This beautiful lady likes shopping, like handbags, hats and shoes, and she loves to try on every pair of shoes before deciding whether to buy anything at all 😉  . That’s why this special birthday cake: a pink ‘hat’ decorated with elegant ladies shoes and a small handbag on top.

Exotic garden ‘Tapada das Necessidades’ Lisbon: prime location for a picnic or a lazy afternoon

The Palace (Palácio) das Necessidades was built in the 18th century in gratitude for prayers answered by Nossa Senhora das Necessidades (Our Lady of the Needs, a title dedicated to the Virgin Mary), whose first devotional chapel stood on this site.

Nowadays this palace is a Portuguese National Monument

Garden ‘Tapada das Necessidades’ Lisbon: walk through the immense, amazing garden

The ‘Tapada das Necessidades’ has been the stage for some important events in Portuguese history, as exemplified in the famous case of the box that king Dom Pedro V installed at the door, in wich everyone could leave their messages and complaints to the sovereign.

From 1910, the palace remained unoccupied for almost 40 years. In around 1950 it became the headquarters of the Portuguese Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Garden Tapada das Necessidades Lisbon: Rob and Felipe, June 2012

Sanitairy facilities & trees

It is really wonderful to walk in this garden, you have the feeling that it’s all yours, because there are almost no other people around… In the park are no sanitairy facilities, the guardians at the entrance cried: ” enough trees here”!…. 😉  😉

There are three lakes surrounded by exotic vegetation, sculptures, a waterfall, a fountain and a pool. Really beautiful but faded elegance….

“Hello? Thank you! I’m currently in Lisbon.. Yes! Celebrating my 70th birthday”

Small pink-washed cottages & gossip

Besides: officially the few small pink-washed cottages in this park were once the little prince’s playhouses. But there are rumors that young women lived in those little pink houses, being the mistresses of the king …  😉

One of the little pink-painted houses in the garden: playhouse for the little prince?

The abandoned buildings create a mysterious atmosphere…..and inside there’ s a lot of trash…….   More pictures of this park, the historical buildings and the exotic plants and flowers: Beautiful garden pictures getportugal.com

Tapada das Necessidades garden Lisbon: entrance/exit near the Palace

How to get there? Take the 28 tram to Prazeres. The main entrance of the park Tapada das Necessidades is through the Largo das Necessidades. This park is open to the public every day of the week – including Saturdays and Sundays, the entrance is guarded but entry is free.

The Palace (Palácio) das Necessidades, June 2012

Open: wintertime 8h – 18h (from Monday u/i Friday), from 10h – 18h (Saturday and Sunday). Summertine 8h – 19h (from Monday u/i Friday), from 10h – 19h (Saturday/Sunday)

Beach Costa Caparica Lisbon, gay Beach 19, beach train, Fonte da Telha & how to get there

If you want to escape the hassle and the heat of Lisbon on a hot summer day, try the beaches of Costa da Caparica, just across the Tejo river. The locals swarm to the village of Caparicabut just away from the village, past the vast camping sites tens of kilometres of white, unspoilt beaches are at your disposal!

Lisbon Costa da Caparica

Costa da Caparica beach in summertime.

Looking for a great place to stay in Lisbon? My 3 bedroom apartment with lovelypatio  (30 m2) in historical Lisbon

Take the little train (in season) at the end of the boardwalk and it will take you 8 kilometres south to the quiet stretches of sand. The train has 21 stops.

Portugal Costa da Caparica train

Little train Costa Caparica YouTube movie

The best beaches are Morena and Sereia, surrounded by dunes and with good bars. At almost every stop there’s a beachclub and the further south you go, the more you have the place to yourself.

Costa da Caparcia trans praia train

The ‘Trans-Praia’ train.

World famous gay Beach 19

Stop (paragem) 19, also known as Beach 19 or Praia de Bela Vista,  is where the nudist beach starts, also world famous for being Portugal’s most popular gay beach.

Gay clubs and parties in Lisbon

Lisbon Costa da Caparica Beach 19 1

As everywhere in the world: where the nudist beach ends, the gay cruising begins and this is the largest in Portugal.

In the vast bushes behind the railway track, guys from all over Europe and beyond, meet for some fun and relaxation.

Lisbon Costa da Caparica Beach 19 2 men near the sea

Beach 19 Costa da Caparica Lisbon

From Lisbon to Costa da Caparica: by car, go South to Caparica and south again all the way to the last access to the beaches. When the road goes uphill, you have just passed the access you want to go! Go past Praia do Rei until the parking at the end of the dust road. Upon Bela Vista, walk south, to the left of the restaurant. It’s some 2 miles of white sand beach and dunes! A taxi will take you there from downtown Lisbon for a little over € 20.

By bus: from Praça de Espanha take bus 153 to Costa de Caparica busstation. Walk five minutes south along the boulevard and you’ll see the little train, that leaves every half hour (until end of September). The 161 bus from Praca de Areeiro will also take you to Caparica.

Ferry Lisbon Tagus River Martijn Kramers

Ferry to Lisbon Cacilhas

An alternative route includes a mini-cruise (15 min.) on the ferry from Cais do Sodré across the river to Cacilhas. Get on bus 138 (directo) to Costa da Caparica (bus 124 via Almada will provide you with a long detour past 1960 highrise architecture, that’s better avoided).

By train: cross the Tagus river to Pragal railway station and take bus 196 to Caparica. The train may be a good alternative on weekends, it’ll help you avoid the traffic jams on the 25th of April Bridge.

Praia da Fonte da Telha

Stop 21 (paragem) Beach Fonte da Telha

At stop (paragem) 21 at the end of the line where the little beach train turns, there’s the village of Fonte da Telha (‘Fountain of the roof’). This little fishermen’s village is perfect for that holiday feeling. This is the real Portugal, with some trendy beach cafés added to it. Fonta da Telha can also be reached by bus from Cacilhas harbour. Beach 19 is just a short walk from the centre of Fonte da Telha. A taxi there from Lisbon will put you back a little over € 30.

MECO Beach

Even further south, about 10 kilometres from Fonte da Telha: Meco Beach, a real mecca for nudists & surfers

Restaurant cafe Bruta Flor Lisbon: creative food, warm staff, live music & lovely place

Great selection of creative- and vegetarian meals in a lovely old little place! Cafe/restaurant Bruta Flor (Wild Flower) is located in Mouraria, a bit tucked away in the heart of the historical part of Lisbon.

Restaurant Bruta Flor, historic area Mouraria Lisbon, Saturday night February 2017

Nowadays Largo da Severaa in historic area Mouraria is a beautiful little square, named after Maria Severa, considered to be the first fado singer in Portugal.

Restaurant/cafe Bruta Flor  Mouraria Lisbon June 2017

This restaurant was once a typography workplace, now it’s been transformed into a lovely decorated dining space.

Restaurant/cafe Bruta Flor (Wild Flower) area Mouraria Lisbon February 2017

Historical area Mouraria & 900 years of history

Historical area Mouraria exists more than 900 years, together with Alfama it is Lisbon’s oldest neighborhoods of great historical value. The former Moorish quarter is a muddle of very narrow streets, stairs and small squares, which gives the visitor a glimpse of a forgotten age.

Restaurant Bruta Flor area Mouraria Lisbon & healthy creative dishes

Great selection of vegetarian dishes

We ordered a vegetarian meal: tomato couscous (yummy! € 8,50) and Thai chicken (€ 8,75), a bottle of fantastic biological wine Fossil (€ 13,00), small bottle of water (€ 1,30), olives (€ 1,00), and chocolate cake ice cream (€ 3,50).

Restaurant Bruta Flor area Mouraria Lisbon & friend Rob Plews, February 2017

There’s a variety of (bio) Portuguese wines available, my favorite: Fossil 🙂 bottle € 13.

There are also nights of live music: this night we really enjoyed Vitória.

Restaurant Bruta Flor area Mouraria Lisbon & Vitória  (YouTube)

Owners restaurant Bruta Flor Paula, Ruth & Ugo: world citizens

Owner Paula Froes: ‘We are a family of three, who decided to step up and do something for ourselves. All of us have their own professions but I am the only one who works on at least one of mine. None of us was born in Portugal. I come from Mozambique, Ugo and Ruth from England. We have also lived in Brazil. We are somehow a trio of world citizens’.

Restaurant Bruta Flor Mouraria Lisbon February 2017: owners Paula, Ruth & Ugo

Restaurant Bruta Flor, Mouraria : March 18 & NV Lissabon members

Music, Art & people 

Owner Paula: “As you come into our place you will probably feel the influences of our travels, both in the decoration, the food, the exhibitions, workshops and live music. The world is made of different people and that makes it exciting. There are many pleasures in life, amongst them eating, drinking, enjoying music, art and people”.

On the wall, a portrait of a French painter Séraphine Louis

Restaurant/cafe Bruta Flor area Mouraria Lisbon February 2017 & owner Ugo

Home made cakes

Bruta Flor is divided into 2 spaces: there’s a small and cozy cafe right next to the restaurant. From morning to evening there’s coffee and delicious cake (slice € 2.50, home made of course!), and for breakfast and for lunch a variety of healthy ideas to choose from (€ 3.50 – € 7.00).

Restaurant/cafe Bruta Flor Mouraria Lisbon, dinner March 2017

Tábua de Enchidos (Meat Board) € 11.50, Tábua Vega with guacamole , black beans, humus, raw vegetables, chips, wrap and toast € 9.00, queijo € 5,50 (1/2 board of cheese variety), glass of red wine € 2.80, coffee € 0.80.

Restaurant/cafe Bruta Flor Mouraria Lisbon & dinner with friends Loek Polack and Ans de Graaf

Bruta Flor: a mix of good food, comfort & adventure

Owner Paula: “Providing opportunities for people to meet one another, share their visions, arts, over a delicious meal. Life is not only about gathering, sometimes we just want to be by ourselves and have a good reading in a quiet environment. We would like to think this is also possible at our café. Comfort and adventure. Can we mix them? We believe we can. A flavour, a sound, a colour … there are many ways of tasting life”.

Restaurant/cafe Bruta Flor Mouraria Lisbon, wall drawing: beautiful man & wild flowers 🙂

Restaurant/cafe Bruta Flor        Music: Caetano Veloso – O Quereres – Bruta Flor
Opening hours (closed Monday/Tuesday)  table booking recommended
15:00 – 23:00 (Wednesday – Thursday)
15:00 – 24:00 (Friday)
11:00 – 24:00 (Saturday) There are also nights of live music and painting exhibitions.
11:00 – 23:00 (Sunday)
Happy hours: 18:30 – 20:00. Phone: (00351) 915498119.  Facebook


Restaurant/cafe Bruta Flor area Mouraria Lisbon & view Largo da Severa Lisbon

Short-term rental in this area: my apartment (100 m2, 3 bedrooms), lovely private & quiet patio

Looking for an authentic apartment in this area? More info about my apartment in Mouraria & availability calendar

National palace Queluz Lisbon area: Rococo style, sexual orgies, Secret Histories & queen Carlota Joaquina

The National Palace in Queluz is one of Lisbon’s top tourist attractions, easy to reach by train from Lisbon or from Sintra. From outside the palace looks romantic, but what happened behind these walls when the Portuguese royal family lived here, about 200 years ago?

National Palace in Queluz Lisbon district & wonderful French-styled garden

History of Portugal & exorbitant decorated rooms in Rococo style 

While walking around in the many exorbitant decorated rooms of the National Palace in Queluz (Palácio in Portuguese , you realize that a ‘one afternoon’ visit is too short. Each room represents a piece of history of Portugal, as well as of Brazil.

Information in English is quite basic, unfortunately. In case you don’t like a group tour guide: there’s real good info at f.i. Wikipedia.

National Palace in Queluz & Robillion staircase: ingeniously designed steps adorned with statuary

Discovery of Brazilian gold & the wealth of Portuguese colonies

Queluz’s Palace architecture is representative of the final extravagant period of Portuguese culture that followed the discovery of Brazilian gold in 1690.

The National Palace in Queluz & YouTube video: an impression

Brazil was a Portuguese colony from 1500 till 1822; nowadays the Portuguese is still the language of the majority of people in Brazil.

National Palace in Queluz & one of the 2 sphynxes dressed in 18th-century costume

Foreign artists, architects & newly enriched aristocracy

From the beginning of the 18th century many foreign artists and architects were employed in Portugal to satisfy the needs of the newly enriched aristocracy; they brought with them classical ideas of architecture which derived from the Renaissance.

In its design, Queluz is a revolt against the earlier, heavier, Italian-influenced Baroque which preceded the Rococo style throughout Europe.

National Palace in Queluz district Lisbon, the ballroom & tourists , June 2017

Royal residence from 1794 – 1807 & Queen Maria I : a very sad story

Dom Pedro III started the construction of the Palácio de Queluz in 1747.  He married his 17 years younger niece D. Maria, Princess of Brazil, (1734-1816) in 1760. The couple had a happy marriage and they got six children.

But queen Maria suffered from religious mania and melancholia. This acute mental illness (perhaps due to porphyria) made her incapable of handling state affairs after 1792.

National Palace in Queluz district Lisbon & “Sala de Mangas” (Japonese drawings) decorated with tile panels (azulejos) illustrating the wealth of Portugal’s colonies

1794: Ajuda Palace destroyed by fire & smallpox

When the palace of Ajuda burnt down in 1794, the court was forced to move to the Queluz Palace, where the ill queen Maria would lie in her apartments all day. Visitors would complain of terrible screams that would echo throughout the palace. Her condition worsened after the death of her husband and the deaths from smallpox of her elder son and her daughter and their infant son. Maria died in Rio de Janeiro, aged 82. More……

National Palace in Queluz district Lisbon & one of the excessive decorated rooms

The juicy story about Queen Carlota Joaquina (‘the fury’ of Queluz)

Queen Maria‘s second son João (John, nicknamed ‘the Clement‘), took over the government in her name. In 1816, he succeeded his mother as monarch of the Portuguese Empire .
On May 8, 1785 Carlota Joaquina (1775 – 1830) of Spain was officially married to the future king João VI. The marriage was not consummated until 9 January 1790, when Carlota was 15 years old.

Doña Carlota Joaquina of Spain (Carlota Joaquina de Borbón y Borbón-Parma). Picture: Wikipedia


Marriage Joaquina Carlota with corpulent João (John) VI & the miracle of nine handsome children

Joaquina’s husband was good-natured, indolent, corpulent and almost as ugly as she was. His religious observances bored her, and they were quite incompatible. Nevertheless, she gave birth to nine children and, because they were all handsome, it was rumoured that especially the younger ones had a different father.

National Palace in Queluz district Lisbon & the empire bedroom

Sexual orgies 

After the birth of the ninth child the couple began to live separate lives. It was rumoured that Joaquina had bought a retreat where she indulged in sexual orgies. Source: Vortex magazine, WikiPedia

Movie trailer YouTube (English spoken) Carlota Joaquina Princesa do Brazil

Several Movies and TV series have been made about Carlota Joaquina‘s life. She had a bad reputation: infidel, manipulative and nymphomaniac. Carlota was religious, faced men and also transgressed the social norms of the time, which caused her to have many conflicts, also with the Portuguese authorities.

National Palace in Queluz district Lisbon & “Sala de Mangas” decorated with beautiful tile panels

Napoleon Bonaparte & transfer of the Portuguese court to Brazil in 1807

Anticipating the invasion of Napoleon’s army, Joaquina’s husband João VI ordered the transfer of the Portuguese royal court to Brazil before he could be deposed.

Carlota Joaquina fought until the last minute not to leave for Brazil, asked for help from her parents, but diplomatic agreements made it difficult for Spanish kings to participate in Portuguese affairs.

National Palace in Queluz district Lisbon & entrance restaurant June 2017

Carlota Joaquina & caipirinha, Brazilian’s famous cocktail

Caipirinha is the national drink in Brasil and also very popular in Portugal. It is said that Carlota Joaquina invented the drink when she lived in Brazil, mixing her beloved Cachaça liquor (a spirit distilled from fermented sugarcane juice) with fruit and sugar. Supposedly, she drank incredible quantities of the liquor, and the palace had to order dozens of bottles for her each month.

Delicious! Caipirinha Recipe (and video)

Ingredients of the caipirinha. Picture: Wikipedia

‘Secret Histories of Portuguese kings’

“The nymphomaniac wife of King João VI, Carlota Joaquina, will have been the ‘inventor of caipirinha“, according to writer and journalist Alexandre Borges. Book: ‘Histórias Secretas de Reis Portugueses’ (‘Secret Histories of Portuguese Kings’), in a new edition.

As the Napoleon wars ended, Carlota returned with the king and the family to Portugal in 1821. She died at the Queluz Palace in 1830 at the age of 54.  It is speculated whether she died because of natural causes or whether she, in fact, killed herself.

National Palace in Queluz Lisbon district

On the assassination Carlos I in 1908, the palace passed into the ownership of the state. Portugal was in the turmoil of revolution and the monarchy fell two years later.  Since 1940 it has been open to the public as a museum.

Worth a visit!

Short term rentals: my 3 bedroom apartment in Lisbon with lovely patio (100 m2):  5 minutes walk from starting point tram 28 in Mouraria: 

Prices, opening times & how to get to the Palace in Queluz from Lisbon

  • Location: Largo do Palácio, Queluz, Portugal
  • Open everyday, except main public holidays, from 10.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m. my experience: during luchtime (12:00 – 14:00) there are not many visitors
  • Palace and Gardens 5 €, Gardens 3.5 € (over 65 yrs.) 10 € adult. More info
  • Train: Lisbon-Sintra line, get off at Queluz/Belas (ca. 1 km walk to the Palace, easy to find)

National Palace in Queluz Lisbon district


Bar Flamingo Mouraria Lisbon: surprising place for night owls & crazy psychedelic bathroom

The Flamingo Bar in area Mouraria Lisbon is one of the best surprises of recent times. A perfect place for a night out (till 03:00) with friends and good music !

Strike a pose!! Bar Flamingo in Lisbon, owners Jorge Gomes Moreira & Ana Batel

Vintage decor with an aristocratic twist

The space, a former lavandaria (dry cleaning shop), is cozy, quite small, but with a very original decor: vintage with an aristocratic twist.

Bar, dance- and nightclub Flamingo is situated at the same square as the famous bar Anos 60, that has recently closed its doors: Largo do Terreirinho in Lisbon.

Bar Flamingo Lisbon: June 12, Lisbon’s craziest night , friends Margriet, Rob, Lilja & bar owner Jorge

Owners Flamingo Bar: Ana BatelJorge Gomes Moreira

Owner Ana Batel: ‘Flamingo is a journey, you’ll never know what’s going to happen but you always can count with good mood: Time Out Lisbon rated our bar the bar with best good mood for square meter !! although we only have a few square meters 😉  ‘.
‘Good music, especially when me, Ana, choose the playlist, sorry Jorge… and of course there’s the craziest psycadellic bathroom in Lisbon – a bathroom that turns into a disco floor’.
Bar Flamingo, the craziest psychedelic bathroom in Lisbon & Saturday Night Fever!
Strike a pose!! We’re always vogueing!
Owner Ana Batel: ‘Dead Combo (a Portuguese Indy Electronica band) shoot all the photos of their latest album in Flamingo, but especially from us… 😉  we’re always vogueing! Strike a pose!!’
Bar Flamingo in area Mouraria Lisbon: Colin Ginks & Garçon Niere
Variety of music styles & Ana’s famous cocktails
Surprising music: hip hop, rap, funk, jazz and unclassifiable.
Although this small bar opened not so long ago in Mouraria, Ana’s (gin) cocktails are already famous in Lisbon…… !
Bar Flamingo in area Mouraria Lisbon & cocktail Red Hot Chili Gin 🙂
Cocktails  € 4 –  € 8);  Gin € 5 – € 10
Bar Flamingo owner Ana: ” Cucumber Daiquiris, Red Hot Chilli Gins, Peach Margueritas & so on & of course infinitive madness!! – that’s why Atlas Lisboa rated us one of the best of 2016!! “
Bar Flamingo in area Mouraria Lisbon, owner Ana Batel & June 12, Lisbon’s craziest night
Happy hour: always from 6 to 8 p.m
Beer Estrella Galicia (20 cl) 1€;
small sangria 1€;
cocktail of the day 4€;
Bar Flamengo in area Mouraria Lisbon & 2 very nice girls!
Cocktails from 5€ to 8€; Gin from 5€ to 10€; whisky, vodka & rum 5€;
liquors 3€ to 4€
Shots 2€
Beer from 1,5€ to 3€
Sangria from 1,5€ to 3€ (small or large glass)
Wine 2€ (glass)
Bar Flamingo in area Mouraria Lisbon & decor with an aristrocatic twist 🙂
June 12: Lisbon’s craziest night & Santo Antonio (Saint Anthony’s Day)
In June, the month of the Festas dos Santos Populares (Feast Days of the Popular Saints), the Lisbon nights are filled with lively festivities that take over the city’s historical center. On the Eve of Saint Anthony’s Day, June 12, Lisbon turns into one big party!
Bar Flamingo in area Mouraria Lisbon & June 12 2017, Lisbon’s craziest night
Bar- dance & nightclub Flamingo – Largo do Terreirinho 16, Lisbon
Tuesday to Thursday from 6 p.m. to 2 a.m
Fridays & Saturdays from 6 p.m to 3 a.m.
Sundays from 8 p.m. to 2 a.m.
Happy hour from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m (wine 1 euro, beer 1 euro) Facebook (more info)


Bar Flamingo in historic area Mouraria : Largo do Terreirinho 16 Lisbon
5 minutes walk from square Martim Moniz (tram 15, 28 stop & metro)

Riverfront restaurant Ibo Lisbon: sophisticated cuisine & flavours from Mozambique

Restaurant Ibo in Lisbon is a remarkable culinary experience! A sunny day, delicious food and a beautiful view over the river Tagus: what more do you want for lunch during a trip to Lisbon? 

Restaurant IBO Lisbon Tagus River 2

Restaurant ‘Ibo’ Lisbon facing the Tagus river: a surprising culinary experience

Lisbon is divided into 2 parts by the river Tagus, Portugal’s longest river. Restaurant ‘Ibo”, situated at the north bank, is housed in a former salt warehouse built in the beginning of the 20th century, next to Cais do Sodré ferry terminal.

IBO Restaurante Erika Reusens flavours from Mozambique 1

Restaurant ‘Ibo’ Lisbon: my friend Erika Reusens likes dishes with flavours from Mozambique

The restaurant’s name refers to an island in the Indian Ocean north of Mozambique: Ibo. We ordered:

Caril de Camarão (shrimp curry) 19 €, Caril de Galinha à Mocambicana (chicken curry) 19 €, a bottle of white wine, Castello D’Alba 18 € (exclusively wines from the best Portuguese producers and winemakers), agua (water) 2 €.

If you are not curious for a different experience: restaurant ‘Ibo‘ also offers Portuguese gastronomy.

Restaurant Ibo Cais do Sodre Lisbon view from terrace

Restaurant ‘Ibo’ Lisbon & wonderful views from the terrace

Former colony of the Portuguese empire

Mozambique became independent in 1975, after over four centuries of Portuguese rule: famous explorer Vasco da Gama reportedly rested on the island in 1502. In the late eighteenth century, Portuguese colonialists built the Fort of São João, which still survives, and the town, as a slave port, became the second most important in the region. Nowadays the beautiful Ibo island is a popular tourist area.

Restaurant Ibo Lisbon facing the Tagus river nov 14

Restaurant ‘Ibo’ Lisbon, a sunny day in November & one of the friendly waiters

Starters: in the more expensive Portuguese restaurants you have to pay for starters like bread, cheese and often olives or shrimps.

The waiter will bring you some unrequested starter dishes: as those are not free, feel free not to touch them and they will not be charged on your bill (não, obrigado).  In this restaurant you pay 3 € for a starter (some bread, tapenade and humus) which is OK, because sometimes 10/15 € is added for a small starter you did not ask for.

Restaurant Ibo Lisbon facing the Tagus river nov 14 shrimps

Restaurant ‘Ibo’ Lisbon & flavours from former Portuguese colony Mozambique

Camarões selvagens à Laurentina (wild shrimps), € 19: really delicious! Glass of white wine (VB Crasto) € 5.50

Lovely ladies & Laurentina beer

The waiter told me that Laurentina is Mozambique’s oldest beer brand. The name is dedicated to lovely ladies: ‘laurentinas’ 😉 . Read more…  

Restaurant Ibo Lisbon facing the Tagus river nov 14 papaya desert

Restaurant ‘Ibo’ Lisbon: papaya dessert (sobremesa)….. whow!!  🙂  € 8

This restaurant specializes in the food of Mozambique but adds a few influences from another former Portuguese colony, India’s Goa. The freshness and quality of products is ensured, because the owner, João Pedrosa, daily visits the nearby old and Lisbon’s legendary market Mercado da Ribeira (really worth to go there , only 5 minutes walk).

Restaurant Ibo Lisbon facing the Tagus river ladies toilet

Restaurant ‘Ibo‘ Lisbon: casa do banho (ladies’ room)

Don’t expect an interior decorated with all kinds of art from Africa. There’s a modern and bright decoration inside the restaurant. Until I visited the ladies’ room: a beautiful portrait, this African lady on the wall! But she doesn’t seem to be very happy….

Restaurant Ibo Lisbon facing the Tagus river view from terrace ferry

Restaurant ‘Ibo‘ Lisbon & terrace view: ferry to the other side of the river Tagus

From here you can easily take the ferry (every 10 minutes) to Cacilhas (a part of Lisbon, the other side of the river), return ticket: cheap : more………….

Ibo Restaurante, Cais do Sodré,  Lisbon, Armazem A – Compartimento 2. Phone (00351) 961 332 024. Also open for lunch on Sundays.

Website Ibo restaurant (also in English)

Lisbon: how to recognize good cheap Portuguese restaurants & tiny place José Maria & Laurinda

The Portuguese appreciate eating and drinking well. The influence of Portugal’s former colonial possessions is clear, especially in the wide variety of spices used, like piri piri (small, fiery chilli peppers), as well as cinnamon, vanilla and saffron.

Lisbon cheap restaurant Jose Mouraria

Pataniscas de Bacalhau & rice 7.50 euro (fried cod): delicious!

Tiny place, good traditional Portuguese food! Historical area in Mouraria, Lisbon.  Restaurant/cafe ‘A Vaidosa Terreirinho Ginginha’, Rua do Terreirinho 58: José Maria & his wife Laurinda.   

Restaurant Mouraria Rua do Terreirinho Laurinda & Jose Marie March 15

Restaurant/cafe ‘A Vaidosa Terreirinho Ginginha’, Rua do Terreirinho 58 Lisbon

 Owners Laurinda, Jose Marie & sr. Julio (l), April 2015

The Portuguese cuisine is rich, filling and full-flavoured. There’s also Arab and Moorish influences, especially in the south.

Restaurant Jose Marie & Paula bacalhau a bras January 2017

Restaurant José Maria in Mouraria Lisbon January 2017

Lunch with Paula: delicious bacalhau à brás  (salt cod): 6 euro pp

Portuguese breakfast

Traditionally just coffee and bread, often enjoyed in a cafe (pastelaria). Recommended: toast (tosta mista) with ham & cheese (queijo e presunto), or delicious sweet pastries like pastéis de nata, real calorie bombs! Coffee: strong (bica) with milk (galão – garoto), tea (chá) with or without sugar (açúcar). The pastalerias are often a part of the social life in the neighbourhood.

dutch ladies 4 feb Jose Marie lunch

Historical area Mouraria Lisbon Restaurant José Maria & his wife Laurinda

Lunch with Dutch friends, February 4, 2015: Denise, Jolanda, Margriet and Feikje


September 2016: Erna and Tonny Deegens & friends Marijn and Anneke

Good & cheap typical Portuguese food

In this tiny restaurant in Mouraria you can enjoy a 3 course meal (starter, like cheese/ham, soup, main course, dessert, water, coffee and wine) for only about 9-10 euros pp. Not open on Sundays.

Restaurant Jose Marie e Laurinda delicious bitoque

For me, Laurinda’s bitoque is the best of Lisbon 🙂  🙂

If you don’t feel like experimenting, try abitoque’. It’s steak and fries, with a fried egg, garlic and rice (ca. 7 euro).

Caldeirada (fish stew) : 6.50 euro. Recipe 

Looking for a nice apartment in this old neighborhood? (6 persons can sleep comfortably)

Lisbon Mouraria apartment 3 bedrooms patio 30 m2

My apartment in this area (100 m2), 3 bedrooms & lovely patio (30 m2)

Short time rental3 bedroom holiday apartment with sunny patio in this area

Laurinda Restaurant Mouraria fesh fish

Laurinda & delicious fresh fish

How to recognize cheap and really Portuguese restaurants?
A little bit disorderly, but very clean; a big TV screen, people like watching TV while eating (a lot of football, futebol), TL-tubes on the ceiling and paper table-covers. Prices (in Lisbon) between 8 and 15 euro (three courses and wine).

Eating & drinking Portugal displays and football


There’s a lot of seafood restaurants, many with very beautiful displays of lobsters, shrimp, oysters, and crabs, but a big TV-screen, football (futebol!) is also really important….!! 😉

Lisbon be prepared free strarters

Starters, typical Portuguese (not free in more expensive restaurants)

Be prepared: in the more expensive restaurants you have to pay for starters like bread, cheese and often olives or shrimps (camarao) (from 3 – 10 euro).

Unrequested starter dishes

You won’t pay for starters if you don’t eat them, the waiter will take them away (não, obrigado), ‘no thank you’. The waiter will probably bring you some unrequested starter dishes: as those are not free, feel free not to touch them and they will not be charged on your bill (but check it, especially in restaurants with lots of tourists!).

Or, they ‘offer’ you a glass of portwine (and charge 4-7 euro on the bill). Tips are not usual in Portugal, but a few euro is ok.

Restaurant Carmar Lisbon Espetada near Martim Moniz

Espetada: a typical Portuguese dish: 6.90 €

The espetada is a typical Portuguese dish made usually of large chunks of beeff rubbed in garlic and salt, skewered onto a bay leaf stick cooked over hot coals or wood chips.

Carne de porco à Alentejana Lisbon Mouraria cheap restaurants

Carne de porco à Alentejana 

Carne de porco à Alentejana (pork stew with clams, potatoes, coriander and garlic. Meia dose, ( half portion, 6.00  euro).This is a traditional Portuguese dish, particularly near the Atlantic coast.

Lunch (almoçar): between 12:00 and 15:00. Dinner from 19:00

Like in all mediterranean countries lunch (almoçar),  is a big affair for Portuguese, served between noon and 3 o’clock, often in a restaurant (and often paid by the employer).

Menu list with 2 price columns

When dining in Lisbon, you will notice that some restaurants have a menu list with 2 price columns. The cheaper list is for half-portions (meia dose), the higher priced list is for full-portions (dose)

Usually three courses, including soup (sopa) like f.i. caldo verde (a soup of cabbage and potatoes).

Eating drinking Lisbon Caldo Verde soup

Caldo Verde, a popular soup of Portuguese and Brazilian cuisine.

Fish, like codfish (bacalhau) or charcoal-grilled sardines (sardinhas assadas) or meat (rabbit and pork are very popular), Coelho a caçador (rabbitstew, in red wine), accompanied with a small bottle of red or white wine (uma garaffa de vinho branco ou tinto) or Vinho Verde (a young sparkling ‘green’ wine, low-alcohol).

Restaurant Casa da india Frango chicken piri piri

Chicken (frangopiri-piri (the African devil..), is also a very popular dish. Restaurant Casa da Índia, in Bairro Alto 

Desserts (sobremesas): crême brulée (pudim flan), chocolate mousse and a big variety of almond cakes (amêndoa). Toucinho do céu (bacon from heaven) or barriga de freiras, (nun’s bellies), recipes originally created by nuns in the 17th and 18th Century. Often cheese (queijo), from sheep or goat’s milk. Very popular is ‘queijo da Serra” from the region of Serra da Estrela.

Lisbon cheap restaurants bill paper cover

Mouraria Lisbon, tiny restaurant Marie-Jose and Laurinda

Bill: no credit cards

In the smaller restaurants the bill is usually written on the paper table cloth…you can pay cash only. Our bill for 2 persons? 16 euro, incl. a glass of home made Aguardente bagaceira……(litt. firewater)

Mouraria Lisbon Street tiny restaurant Jose Marie & Laurinda nov 14

Mouraria, Rua do Terreirinho 58  Lisbon near starting point legendary yellow tram 28

Street view from tiny restaurant Marie-Jose and Laurinda, 3 minutes walk from lively square Martim Moniz and starting point legendary tram 28, a ‘must do’ Lisbon attraction!

Mouraria Lisbon restaurant Jose Marie e Laurinda jan 16

January 2016

Restaurant/cafe ‘A Vaidosa Terreirinho Ginginhain area Mouraria

Rua do Terreirinho 58 Lisbon

Market Mercado da Ribeira Lisbon: from fresh fish to funeral flowers & 750 seats gastronomical area

Near the Cais do Sodre train station, on the other side of the road, you will see the beautiful building of the Mercado da Ribeira (market near the river, since 1882), topped with a Moorish-style dome. Worth a visit!

Mercado da Ribeira

Market Mercado da Ribeira, near the river Tejo, Lisbon

Market: open daily 05:00 – 14:00. Closed on Sundays. Address: Avenida 24 de Julho Lisbon.

Mercado Da Ribeira overview market

Market Mercado da Ribeira Lisbon

The cities biggest open food market is selling everything: from inky octopus and fresh seafood to fabulous fruit, from real Portugese products like ‘hot’ piri-piri to funeral flowers waiting for a dead body…..   :-(

Mercado da Ribeiro Lisbon funeral flowers

Market Mercado da Ribeira Lisbon: funeral flowers

This is Lisbon’s cheapest market. The seafood forms a large part of the Portuguese cuisine with 1001 ways to cook it. Bacalhau is the Portuguese name for cod, a very popular fish, so much that they have a different bacalhau recipe for each day of the year!

Mercado da Ribeira Lisbon fish

Market Mercado da Ribeira, Lisbon: every day fresh fish

There really is something to find for everyone  :-(

Looking for an authentic apartment in the historical center of Lisbon (short term rentals)? My 3 bedroom apartment (100 m2) with lovely private patio (30 m2)

Mercado da Ribeira Lisbon June 2014 Pig

Market Mercado da Ribeira, Lisbon

In 2007 the market celebrated a 125 year of existence: beautiful pictures are on the walls from fish sellers (varinas) of the Ribeira Market from a hundred years ago, when the fishermen moored their ship here to sell the fresh fish.

Mercado da Ribeira Lisbon Varinas

Market Mercado da Ribeira Lisbon fish seller (varina, year: 1900)

On Sunday mornings there is a Collectors fair from 09:00-14:00, like coins and stamps. The 2nd floor of the market has also been converted into a touristy ‘cultural’ centre. It sells locally produced items such as port and honey, and handicrafts.

Mercado da Ribeira Lisbon 2014 Time Out gastronomical area Gal

Next to the food market: TIME OUT foodhall & gastronomical area representing the best restaurants and chefs of Lisbon

The area gathers about 30 spaces, providing around 750 seats. Where you used to go only for fresh fruit and vegetables, now you have some of the best restaurants and chefs of Lisbon represented. The idea is simple: you grab the food and drinks from one or several restaurants of your choice (not necessarily the same as your family and friends), and go sit in the food court where you’ll be able to interact with everyone there.

Mercado da Ribeira (River Market) Lisbon: Time Out magazine food pavilion

Traditional Portuguese sandwiches & nails

Did you ever try a traditional Portuguese sandwich like the Prego? or a Bifana (pork)?  a Prego is the most popular and incredible garlic steak sandwich in the Portuguese cuisine for many years. The Portuguese eat the prego’s (literally: nails, referring to the full stomach after eating one ;-)   with mustard or piri-piri)

Mercado da Ribeira petiscos tapas March 2015

Market Mercado da Ribeira Lisbon Food Hall: Portuguese petiscos (tapas)

Petiscos (Portuguese tapas)

Small plate dishes are called petiscos in Portugal, so basically the same as Spanish tapas. (More….  ). Don’t say this to the Portuguese, the Spanish invasion (1762) is still fresh in their memory…. ;-)

Mercado da Ribeira petiscos tapas March 2015 atum

Market Mercado da Ribeira Lisbon & petiscos (tapas)

Cozinha da Felicidade (petiscos a portuguesa):

Atum com batata doce (tuna and sweet potatoes) 9.50 euro, agua sem gas (water) 1.50 euro

Mercado da Ribeira Lisbon 2014 Time Out restaurant terrace

Mercado da Ribeira Lisbon restaurant: fresh seafood

Restaurants and terraces outside the market

Also new are the restaurants outside the old market: we enjoyed fresh Atlantic seafood and a delicious Portuguese wine.

Market Mercado da Ribeira Lisbon new 2014 restaurants terrace

Market Mercado da Ribeira Lisbon: restaurants with terraces

Vacation trip to Lisbon? check the calendar of my 3 bedroom apartment with wonderful patio

‘Time Out’ Food Hall: Gastronomical area near the market hall
Opened May 18 2014.
Opening hours: Sunday to Wednesday 10am to midnight; Thursday to Saturday 10am to 2pm

Thanks to  Thijs Verhoeven