Monday, October 16, 2006
Tales from Lisbon # 3 -The Beach & things that live in the sea
Oceanário de Lisboa
If you like sea life, a visit to Europe's largest Oceanarium is an absolute must. It's inhabited by 16,000 animals and plants and based around four smaller aquaria, displaying the fauna and flora of the Atlantic, the Pacific, the Indian Ocean and Antarctic. We spent hours with our noses pressed against the glass, entranced by menacing sharks, enormous tunas, cute penguins and cuddly Otters. The central tank is visible throughout the Oceanarium and holds an incredible 4 million litres of water.
We went to the beach three times in the week that we stayed and we were spoilt for choice. There are some great beaches in Lisbon, only a 30-40 minute train ride from the Cais do Sodré station in the centre. On our first trip to the beach, we visited Cacsais, a popular tourist resort and former fishing port, it has several small beaches in and around town and lots of lovely shops and restaurants.
For our last two visits,we opted for Estoril. As soon as you step off the train, you walk through a tunnel and you're on the beach. I prefered the fact that there were virtually no shops, only a handful of restaurants and bars along the beach giving it more of a sense of isolation.
Estoril is famous for its casino, the inspiration for the casino gambling scene and title for the Ian Fleming's novel 'Casino Royale'.
I couldn't resist taking a photo of the man behind us wearing white socks.
He should have been wearing these