Portugal
Santa Maria de Belém

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58 travelers at this place

  • Apr5

    Belem, Lisbon

    April 5, 2019 in Portugal ⋅ ☀️ 12 °C

    Bought a 24 hour public transport ticket to discover a further part of the city (but also we just cannot walk anymore). Belem tower, Jerónimos Monastery, and great view to the Ponte 25 de Abril bridge with small showers all day. We have tried the 'best pastel de nata in the world' (the queue was long but it was worth it) and later in the evening we had the best sandwich in our lives, bifana (warm pork meat in soak bread, yumi). Bairro Alto is the party district on the top of a hill (of course) with many great cheap pubs. We drunk, danced and made friends with some Bangladeshian guys who told us that we are made for each other, great last night in Lisbon!Read more

  • Mar28

    Belém's Incredible Monastery & Natas

    March 28, 2019 in Portugal ⋅ ☀️ 22 °C

    Belém isn’t just known for the National Coach Museum. The 16th-century Tower of Belém and the sail-shaped Discoveries Monument are featured on almost every postcard. Also there is the immense Gothic Jerónimos Monastery, and the very popular Pastéis de Belém patisserie, famed for its custard tarts. We only have so much energy and there is just so much to see and do!

    We wandered over to the Jerónimos Monastery after seeing the coach museum and were really impressed by its grand size (100m long) and the carvings on the limestone walls. King Manuel (1495) erected it as a thank you for the discoveries made by early Portuguese explorers. He built the church near the site where a small chapel stood where sailors spent their night before their frightening voyages, praying.

    Portugal was a wealthy country in those days and and no expense was barred from creating this spectacular monastery. You have to see it to believe it.

    The monastery is the final resting ground of Vasco da Gama, the Portuguese explorer who was the first European to sail to India. This is a UNESCO World Heritage site and was declared a National Monument in 1907.

    Now the time came to have a coffee and a great and we were in the right place!

    Everyone who visits Portugal learns about and eats the famous pasteis de nata, but to sink your teeth into the real deal, made using the original 187-year-old recipe, you need to stop in at a cafe called Pasteis de Belém. And guess what? It is practically next door to the monastery.

    The first owners of this well-known pastry shop (which was a sugar refinery at that time) purchased the recipe in the 1830s from the monks of the Mosteiro dos Jerónimos (Jerónimos Monastery), who first sold the pastries as a way to raise money. Flaky on the outside and creamy on the inside, they are delicious pastries, and it didn’t take long for the Pasteis de Belém to become one of the most popular pastry shops in Lisbon. The lineups tell it all.

    We were able to see where they make the 20,000 or so tarts a day and what a sight. Donna, Karen and Rob, and members of our family would be drooling. We just sat down at a table, sprinkled the hot tarts with cinnamon and powdered sugar and ate them with a cafe com leite (coffee with milk). Yum.

    Now we had to face our 40 minute tram ride home with a trolley full of students and tourists - it was like being in a can of Portuguese sardines! Wow!
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  • Day4

    Trip nach Belém & Tag der Entscheidung

    March 4 in Portugal ⋅ ⛅ 18 °C

    Zuallerallererst (wollte ich nur verwenden, weil es im Duden steht) fahren wir heute nach Belém, das ein wenig außerhalb der Innenstadt von Lissabon direkt am Wasser liegt. Hier gibt es vor allem ein altes und imposantes Kloster, ein Monument zu Ehren der Kolonialgeschichte Portugals (nochmal kurz an gestern zurückdenken) und die Pastéis de Belém zu entdecken.

    Ich übertreibe nicht, wenn ich sage, dass der letzte Punkt bei quasi jedem Touristen auf dem Plan steht. Auch non-Foodies kommen aufgrund der Origin-Geschichte der Pastéis in besagtem Kloster hier her und wollen diese angeblich nach jahrhundertealtem Originalrezept zubereiteten Törtchen probieren. Für uns ist das natürlich besonders wichtig ;) und wir werden nicht enttäuscht. Am heutigen, letzten Tag steht auch die Entscheidung zu den besten Pastéis de Nata aus unserer bisherigen Erfahrung aus, aber dazu später mehr.

    Wir vertreiben uns ein wenig Zeit in Belém rund um die Sehenswürdigkeiten und fahren anschließend in die Stadt zurück. Nach einer kleinen Ruhepause gibt es berühmt-berüchtigtes BBQ-Hähnchen (oder in meinem Fall Salat und Chips :D) bevor wir den Abend nach einem weitläufigen Spaziergang entlang der Avenida da Liberdade im bekannten Bar-Viertel Bairro Alto bei Live-Musik und Getränken ausklingen lassen. Sehr spaßig, können wir auch nur empfehlen.

    Jetzt zu dem wichtigsten Teil (für mich). Unsere Einschätzung der Pastéis de Nata. nach Tiers (Ränken?), da eine exakte Abstufung aufgrund des zeitlichen Abstands dazwischen etwas schwierig war. Trotzdem ist mir der erste Eindruck der hervorragenden, frischen Pastéis in der Manteigaria (Rua do Loreto) am besten in Erinnerung geblieben. Etwas überraschend fand ich persönlich, dass einige die großen bekannten Namen auch tatsächlich zu den Besten gehörten, obwohl ich mir in der Online-Recherche viel Mühe gegeben habe auch kleinere Konditoreien zu finden und wir einfach mal spontan welche probiert haben.

    So, without further ado:
    Tier 1 (wortwörtlich die Crème de la Crème): Manteigaria, Fábrica de Nata, Pastéis de Belém
    Tier 2 (gut - mittel, jetzt auch grob in geschmacklich absteigender Reihenfolge): Alcôa (könnte es frisch in Tier 1 schaffen), Pastelaria Aloma, Pastelaria Batalha, Pastelaria Versailles (Flughafen), Pastelaria Batalha (vegane Variante)
    Tier 3: Starbucks... Ich bin ja durchaus mal ein Anhänger des Venti Java Chocolate Chip Frappucino mit Sojamilch ohne Sahne am besten zubereitet bei Vollmond, aber die Pastéis kann man leider nicht gutheißen. Man kann sie essen, aber es ist ein himmelweiter Unterschied zu den geradezu göttlichen Eiertörtchen ganz oben auf der Liste. ;)

    Mehr Pastéis de Nata haben leider weder die Zeit, noch mein Körper hergegeben, aber falls ihr das hier lest und weitere sehr gute Kandidaten habt, schreibt gerne mal einen Kommentar. :)
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  • Day10

    Belém by TukTuk-Tour 1/2

    September 6 in Portugal ⋅ ☀️ 29 °C

    Mit einem Elektro-TukTuk wurden wir erst durch das Zentrum chauffiert und dann Richtung Belém geführt. Dabei durften natürlich die legendären Pastei de Nata mit dem Originalrezept aus dem Pastéis de Belém nicht fehlen. Neben der Bäckerei haben wir das Kloster besucht, im dem das Rezept des beliebten portugiesischen Gebäcks entwickelt wurde und ein Blick auf die Regierungsgebäude geworfen.Read more

  • Day47

    Day 47d. Lisbon, Portugal

    September 20, 2019 in Portugal ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

    The Jardin de Belem contains monuments in front of the Presidents Palace known as Palacio Nacional de Belem which is expansive and remarkably pink
    But our destination was The Monsteiro Jeronimos, the magnificent Cathedral that houses the tomb of Vasco da Gama the famous navigator who found the way to the Spice Islands (Indonesia) .Read more

  • Day5

    Day 4 in Lisbon

    April 22, 2017 in Portugal ⋅ ☀️ 70 °F

    So, each day gets tougher to get out of bed, but by God we did it! Hiked up a few small hills to a Farmer's Market, where we bought some bread and cheese and then ate at a small restaurant in this pretty little park next to the market. Afterwards, we headed out for a 10 minute walk to a metro stop, where we jumped the metro for two stops to a train station where we were going to catch a bus to the Tile Museum (Tiles are definitely a big time Portgugese thing). After waiting around for a bit, it suddenly dawned on me that perhaps we were on the wrong side of the station! Sure enough, whipping out Google Maps and studying that little arrow which shows which direction.the Tile Museum lies revealed our error! So we went to the other side and after about a 20 minute wait , the bus showed up and we jumped on it for the mile ride to the museum.

    Got off, explored - = actually petty good! Had some ham and cheese sandwiches and then the plan was to head towards Belem where the Jerónimos Monastery
    https://goo.gl/maps/6fc5g56vcYS2 lies along with those world famous custard pastries (ok, so you haven't heard of them, but you should - scrumptious - we had already had a few, but these were warm and served with powdered sugar and cinammon! But I digress! First of all we decided we didn't want to wait for an hour for a bus to come by, so I whipped out my Uber app, requested a driver and within 2 minutes he pulled up. 10 minutes later we were at our destination. Great guy - nice Mercedes. We then jumped on the 15E tram using our Zap cards which we had just refilled (refillable Metro cards). Note - zap cards can't be refilled in the Metro in Lisbon with Visa cards - won't take them. We kept using cards and wondering what the hell was going wrong - well, had it confirmed later by a shop clerk.

    Waited on the tram for Belem - the sign said it would show up in 25 minutes - everybody is standing in the sun. It gets down to 4 minutes and then suddenly it jumps back up to 23 minutes. People were getting a bit crazy by then. It finally shows up and we pack on like little sardines (a Portuguese thing) . Totally smashed for the 30 minute ride. Fiinally make it to the monastery - impressive! Sprawls over about 3 blocks. Interior is amazing as is the church. Definitely a must see in Lisbon. Headed over afterwards to see the monument "Age of Discoveries" (built in 1960) on the water dedicated to Vasco de Gama and his explorers - Awesome memorial - starting to wear out, backtrack to the pastry shop we had heard so much about - world famous custard tarts - oh boy , were they good - warm - slightly crunchy crust - dang - consumed 4 between us and took 6 to go. (for a video by Rick Steves on Portugal and how these are made , see this https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KYh4SiuFvsc Back to the tram, we caught one of the old fashioned ones - again packed - nice thing about this one was that it didn't stop at any of the 14 stops on the way back to Lisbon - too full. So we got back fairly quickly. Spent a 1/2 hour in a Lisbon souvenir shop, then took a 10 minute stroll north towards our apt with a sidetrack to a Rick Steves recommended little hole in the wall where I had a Bifana sandwich (marinated pork - another Portuguese speciality) and Janet had Monkfish stew with rice. Oh , did I say I had a half bottle of Portugal red wine? Do you know how hard it is to type this at 10:45 after a half bottle?

    So tomorrow - we're heading to the airport on the metro bright and early where we are going to pick up our little ECAR to head south to the southern coast of Portugal and 2 nights in Lagos. Should be interesting adventure.!
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  • Day7

    Delights of Lisbon

    April 21, 2017 in Portugal ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

    We began our tour of Lisbon today under the leadership of our guide Anna by visiting St. Jerome monastery. Afterwards we went to the explorers monument and also to Belem tower. We had lunch at a lovely restaurant called The Patio and then went to the Convent of the Mother of God. That building is now a museum to the blue tiles for which Lisbon is famous, the "azulejos." The architecture is an amazing reminder of the former glory of the Kingdom of Portugal. This nation had the good fortune of "getting in on the ground floor" of the explorations of the sixteenth century. Much of the early wealth realized in that enterprise found its way to this city and the remnants of that wealth are indeed glorious. Failure to reinvest this wealth, along with competition from other nations, left Portugal as an economic and political backwater by the end of the eighteenth century. Still, Portugal was not completely erased. There is a monument to an early Portuguese airplane that made the first transatlantic crossing. It is fortunate, though, that Portugal has maintained her buildings and the art. It was interesting that there were quite a few Brazilian restaurants here, and also Brazilian food and music. It is as though the mother country was affected as much by her daughter as Brazil was by Portugal. The food here is fantastic, and there is a lovely old ambience to the city that must make it a delightful place to live.

    We visited a museum for carriages and coaches that has an interesting recent history. It seems that the European Union had voted funds to be distributed to its member nations for historical and artistic purposes. Portugal was not about to turn down free money, so it accepted a major grant from the EU without any clear purpose in mind. Years passed until the European Union finally told Portugal either to use the money or return it. The Portuguese government was quite undecided about how to spend the funds and very nearly lost them. Finally they realized that Portugal possessed one asset that few other nations in Europe had--an abundance of historical carriages and coaches. A team of historians used the money to renovate an old warehouse. Then they got the owners of these old vehicles to loan them to the museum. Now there is a very interesting and very large museum housing everything from sedan chairs to royal coaches. I realized that many of the places we visited can be photographed better from the ship. So as we leave Lisbon I plan to be on the sky deck taking pictures.
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You might also know this place by the following names:

Santa Maria de Belém, Santa Maria de Belem

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