Trivia: Lisbon

Posted by Iris Hami

Apr 21, 2014 12:05:15 PM

Some Trivia about Lisbon

Miradouro de Santa Caterina lisbon portugal travel vacationMiradouro de Santa Caterina
(By Andrea Puggioni [CC BY 2.0], via flickr)

Nothing makes a trip to a new location more fun than searching out trivia to learn about your new location and then exploring the region when you arrive to learn more. In that vein, here are ten interesting facts about Lisbon’s past and present. Click the + signs to reveal the information!

[spoiler title="Lisbon is older than Rome. " open="yes" style="fancy" icon="plus-square-1"]

, via Wikipedia
Archaeologists have shown that there may have been a Phoenician settlement in the area now known as Lisbon, as early as 1200 BC. In fact, it is theorized that the origin of the name Lisbon comes from “Allis Ubbo” which means “safe harbor” in Phoenician due to the proximity of the River Tagus and the transport possibilities it offered. [/spoiler]

[spoiler title="Lisbon was almost destroyed on Nov. 1, 1755..." style="fancy" icon="plus-square-1"]when an 8.9 magnitude earthquake struck. (Strong enough that it was felt in Scotland!) The quake killed more than 40,000 people and almost destroyed the city of Lisbon. According to Scientific American, the tremors began about 9:30 a.m., and the first building collapsed by 9:40 a.m. As if that wasn’t enough, a 12 meter tsunami washed over the city at 10:10 a.m., and by the end of the day, 75 percent of the city was in ruins.[/spoiler]

[spoiler title="Pack your sunscreen and swimsuits because..." style="fancy" icon="plus-square-1"]Lisbon sees approximately 260 days of sunny weather every year, and is one of the only European capital be have beaches in close proximity.[/spoiler]

[spoiler title="The oldest district in Lisbon is..." open="yes" style="fancy" icon="plus-square-1"]

Alfama, meaning fountain or baths in Arabic, and one of the only ones that survived the earthquake in 1755. During Muslim Rule, the rich and noble frequented the area to utilize the local waters for its restorative properties. When the rich moved out during the Middle Ages, sailors and fishermen moved in. They channeled the local waters into public fountains which functioned as public baths. Although none of the baths are in use, you can still spot some of them such as Chafariz d'El-Rei.[/spoiler]

[spoiler title="The longest bridge in Lisbon is..." style="fancy" icon="plus-square-1"]the Vasco da Gama Bridge. This 17 km (11 mile) long bridge took 18 months to construct. It is as long as the road-rail tunnel-bridge that links Denmark and Sweden. Cost for construction was $1 million in U.S. dollars.[/spoiler]

[spoiler title="Hidden gallery beneath Lisbon's Streets" style="fancy" icon="plus-square-1"]A Roman underworld lies beneath Lisbon’s streets – the access is at the top of Rua de Coneaio. There are corridors, bridges, rooms and galleries hidden under the shopping district of Lisbon.[/spoiler]

[spoiler title="The church that holds a record for Longest Construction Time in the World for a Church is..." open="yes"  style="fancy" icon="plus-square-1"]

, via Wikipedia
The Santa Engracia Church. Construction started in the 17th century and the last dome was put into place in 1966. Word is that the current Santa Engracia Church stands where a 16th century church was destroyed and rebuilt. It took several hundred years to complete the rebuilding process.[/spoiler]

[spoiler title="Locals are called..." style="fancy" icon="plus-square-1"]“Afacinhas” which means “little lettuce.” This association began in the 19th century when residents would meet for lunch at vegetable gardens outside the city and enjoy large salads together.[/spoiler]

[spoiler title="Lisbon and the Seven Hills" style="fancy" icon="plus-square-1"]Lisbon is built on seven hills. Those are the Castelo, Graca, Monte, Penha de Franca, S. Pedro de Alcantara, Santa Catarina and Estrela.[/spoiler]

[spoiler title="What do vinegar-makers, wine-makers, and Lisbon have in common? " style="fancy" icon="plus-square-1"]

, via flickr
They share the same patron saint, Saint Vincent which attributes to the black and white tones of Lisbon’s streets.[/spoiler]

Do these trivia about Lisbon make it more interesting? We sure hope so! In a city as old as Lisbon, there is bound to be plenty of history and wonders for travelers to discover and share. Whether you want to explore Jewish Heritage in Portugal, have specific sites to see in Lisbon, or just want to get lost in a new culture, Gil Travel can help you plan your getaway. Contact Gil Travel today to get your perfect trip started.

Topics: Culture and Heritage, Facts about Israel, Israel Travel, Jewish Heritage, World Travel