I had heard that tourism was already on the rise in Lisbon, but I didn’t realize exactly how much until encountering mobs of people in the city center that first afternoon - the types of people that love to congregate along sidewalks and that don’t know how to walk in a consistent manner. I knew that I had to change tack, so I started waking up early and getting a jump start on the day before heading back and taking a siesta in the early afternoon. This way, I got to avoid peak crowds and the hottest time of day, as well as satisfying my great love of naps without feeling like I was sacrificing vacation time.
Lisbon is a bit smaller than other metropolitan centers, which may be one of the reasons why the tourists seemed so much more noticeable, being condensed into a smaller, more central area. Its size, however, brought about a different travel experience for me. Whereas I normally have an overwhelming list of things that I want to see and do and eat that is a mile long, I was able to explore Lisbon in a rather carefree and relaxed manner. Instead of rushing about, trying to outrun the sense of impending regret and fear of missing out, I got to walk around and truly savor the character of the city. The tourists may have changed Lisbon forever, but if you really listen, its buildings still have their own stories to tell.
Camera: Canon 6D
Date: September 2018