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Lisbon is the perfect destination for a relaxing long weekend visit. The number of shorter stay visitors to the city is increasing fast, a rise driven by the number of cheap tickets available on the low cost airlines that fly direct to Lisbon.

As a destination Lisbon boasts wonderful climate - with balmy conditions during the spring and very hot summers tempered by the cooling breeze that comes from the Atlantic Ocean. Historically speaking, Lisbon is an ancient city with a fascinating and often turbulent past that is aptly reflected in the diverse architecture and the many tourist attractions. The somewhat tricky economic climate in Portugal ensures that the city is very good value for visitors from overseas - particularly in terms of transport, accommodations and eating out.

Lisbon has a single airport which is handily located within the city itself. Transfers from Lisbon airport are cheap and quick with frequent metro trains going into the centre of town.

Lisbon is a vibrant city with plenty of great nightlife. The heart of the action is centred in the lively Barrio Alto district where you will find a great variety of cool underground bars. At the weekend, the party spills onto the charming cobbled lanes, where there is a friendly and highly sociable atmosphere. If you are looking for something more sedate, head over to Rossio square where you will find calm, candlelit restaurants.

To get a sense of the history of the city, spend some time wandering round Alfama, which is the oldest area of the city. This district is a positive maze of ancient architecture that lines narrow streets that stretch right from the River Tagus up as far as the beautifully restored castle, one of the city’s most famous sights. Running through the centre of this quaint part of town is the yellow tram, the perfect way to navigate the steep hills and tight curves that characterise Alfama. Every Saturday there is a large flea market that specialises in antiques and is well worth a visit.

The Baixa district is in marked contrast Alfama. Here you will find evidence of the past great wealth of the capital, with elegant avenues of huge houses and impressive squares. Baixa was devastated by an earthquake in 1755 and has since been entirely rebuilt on a grid system (a world first). Baxia is the beating heart of the city, with some outstanding restaurants, lovely open air cafes and some truly excellent shopping destinations.

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