“Only as far as the masters of the world have called in nature to their aid, can they reach the height of magnificence. This is the meaning of their hanging-gardens, villas, garden-houses, islands, parks, and preserves.” Ralph Waldo Emerson
If you’re a foodie, you simply have to visit the Mercado da Ribeira. It’s across from the Cais do Sodré train station, so an easy walk from anywhere in downtown Lisbon. It reminds me of the Sarona Market in Tel Aviv but about 5 times larger.
I met my friend, Cristina, and we took a slow walk down the Rua do Alecrim to Cais do Sodré. I knew about this market but had never thought to visit. I was surprised at how the space had been so smartly converted into what it is now – the Time Out Market – combining the best of fresh produce, flowers, artisanal goods, an organic market, fresh fish, meat, a concert space, a start-up hub upstairs, and off course, all the eating places. You simply have to go and experience it for yourself.
According to the Project For Public Spaces (PPS) “great public spaces are those places where celebrations are held, social and economic exchanges occur, friends run into each other, and cultures mix.” They go on to say that “when theses spaces work well, they serve as the stage for our public lives.” The Mercado da Ribeira and Time Out Market certainly lives up to this premise.
Like most public spaces in Lisbon, history and culture is inextricably intertwined with food, wine and convivio (Portuguese for being together socially) – the things that characterise Portuguese culture.
This market can trace its roots back to the 13th century and was once one of the most famous fish markets in Europe. In 2010 the Lisbon City Council began the process of rehabilitation and renewal into what it is today (you can read more about it here).
The photo above and the one below show some of the original tiled murals which have been preserved over the centuries. They are intricate and beautiful. These murals have been recreated in some other places in the mercado as wallpaper or painted on.
You can eat food created by high profile chefs who have established concept stalls of their restaurants in the food court.
There are “24 restaurants, 8 bars, a dozen shops and a high-end music venue, all with the very best in Lisbon (the best steak, the best hamburger, the best sushi and the best live performances, amongst others)” – info taken from the Mercado’s official website.
This is one of the many living heritages of the city of Lisbon.
The space includes a concert venue and a cooking academy.
The Mercado also houses Second Home Lisboa, a workspace for start-ups, entrepreneurs and social impact organisations. For more info see here. I didn’t go up to take a look, something to do next time I am there.
Cristina and I could not leave the Mercado without sampling pasteis de nata from Manteigaria, with coffee, off course. Doesn’t it look good? It tasted delicious!
This was a wonderful find and I wish I had more time to explore it. I love the concept. When you are in Lisbon, you simply have to visit it. To whet your appetite even further, take a look at the concept video.
I had a hard time choosing just these photos for this post. When I was in Lisbon last month my wanderlust took me to one of the most mesmerising, interesting and beautiful structures I have ever been to date – the Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology or MAAT.
MAAT, located on the banks of the Tagus River is a complex worth visiting. Expect to spend at least half a day there.
The roof juts out, spaceship-like over the entrance. A gentle walk to the rooftop provides a 360 degree view of Lisbon – the river, the bridge, the Padrão dos Descobrimentos and the residential rooftops of the Lisbon suburb, Alcântra.
Amoeba-like in shape, it’s a complex structure that mesmerises the mind – and the finger on the camera shutter button 🙂
Designed by London-based architect, Amanda Levete, it is clad in 15,000 white ceramic tiles.
View from beneath the entrance, the passage on the right, disappears into the distance leading to the roof top.
The Ponte 25 De Abril, peeking out, as seen from the rooftop of the MAAT. Standing on the top, the structure seemed to move and undulate with the wind coming off the river.
Looking out towards the Padrão dos Descobrimentos silhouette’d in the background.
The residential rooftops of the Lisbon suburb, Alcântra. I love it that people come to the rooftop – there is no entrance fee to this section – to sit and chill, relax and enjoy the sun.
The rooftop of the MAAT. All the lines are gentle and curving, much like the cultural proposition of the space.
Walking down from the rooftop, looking towards the Ponte, the design of the steps converting human shadows into pacman-like blocky shapes.
The undulating lines are a photographer’s dream.
The 4 exhibition galleries of the MAAT are located below ground – it was constructed as a place to stimulate critical thinking and dialogue.
The MAAT is a short 10-minute train ride from the Cais do Sodré station – get off at the Alcântra station – it is between the road and the river. Trains runs every 20 minutes on the Cascais line.
The MAAT complex includes the renovated Central Tejo power station with various exhibits.
The trees bare, branches denuded of leaves, soon to be covered with lush greenery as winter turns into spring, creating an opaque cover overhead that provides welcome respite from the sun underneath it.
A stroll next to the Tagus River in Lisbon is very interesting. I never know what I’ll come across. This time it was river art – an industrious artist, using river rocks to create sculptures with a theme.
(Click on the photos to enlarge them)
Look carefully, the scene below is of The Last Supper.
And here is the artist himself…
A pretty lady.
This is an interesting picture because it has so much in it. Firstly I’ve tried to include the whole exhibit. And secondly…can you see the green frog on the right of the photo? Surprise…..!
A red velvet lined rock repository for his funding…
Each collection of colour representing an inspiration.
A message of welcome to the Pope who will be visiting Fátima soon.
I don’t know who the artist is. While tourists marvelled at his rock art he carried on, never looking up, piling rock upon rock, creating new works.