Lisbon, Portugal- What to See, Eat, Do

This past weekend I headed to Lisbon, Portugal for my first weekend trip of my study abroad adventure. Portugal wasn’t even a place I considered visiting until my friend asked me if I wanted to join him. I can definitely say I am happy that I said yes and had the opportunity to experience such a beautiful city.

Lisbon is a city that is best seen by wandering the streets aimlessly. My friends and I had no specific plans but to walk around and take in whatever sights we could find.

To See…


The Jerónimos Monastery happened to be only a 15 minute walk from the Airbnb we were staying in. It took my breathe away the moment I saw it. The details of the carvings of the stone are something a picture cannot even capture. The construction began in 1501 and was completed in 1601. The beauty is priceless, both literally and figuratively, making it a must-see!


We decided to walk up a bunch of tiny alleyways in Aflama which somehow led us to this gorgeous view. From here you could see the entire city, including the 25 de Abril Bridge. Did you know this bridge was built by the American Bridge Company, the same company who built the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco (hint the resemblance)? Explore the city streets and let them lead you to magical spots like this one.


To Eat…

Portugal is known for their traditional pastry called the pastel de nada, a creamy custard egg tart. They are traditionally eaten in the mornings with coffee, and that is just what we did. Every morning of the trip, actually. I recommend Pastéis de Belém, a pastry shop with an endless selection of sweets and a buzzing environment.

pastel de nata

Being a seafood connoisseur, of course I was most excited to try the fish of Portugal, specifically the ceviché. Ever since I went to Puerto Rico I have not been able to find ceviché that compares to theirs. While Portugal’s still comes in second, it was nearly as delicious. I recommend trying the grouper ceviché and prawn tapas at Mesón Andaluz, a hidden gem just off the popular pink street. One of the things I loved most about Lisbon was the incredibly generous, kind people. You definitely don’t find those in London or New York City! The manager of the restaurant was making jokes and slipping me free food. How could I not love this place?

Portugal octopus ceviche

While I usually head to a certain restaurant for its trendy atmosphere, there was something special about eating in the quaint restaurants owned by the local people. The food was authentic and never disappointed. You can find many cafés with outdoor seating along the streets of Alfama, all with spectacular views of the colorful buildings and city streets.

To Do…


After realizing a tuk tuk was the same price as an Uber, we quickly embarked on an adventure in one driven by a local, from Belém to Alfama. The fresh air in our faces was liberating and the experience was like no other. Our driver was extremely friendly and told us all the best places to see.


Lesson learned: say yes to everything. Well, almost everything. Say yes to life, say yes to exploring, say yes to new cities. Life has a funny way of working itself out. I am sure glad I said yes to Portugal.

Foxfire Mountain House

(Warning: this may be my most aesthetically pleasing post to date.)


Last Thursday I was wisked away to the Catskill Mountains in upstate New York for a creativity summit with Free People and Polaroid (read more about this experience here). After being in school for nearly a month and barely surviving the stress of moving houses and starting classes, an escape to the woods was much needed. You know you’ve reached a place of tranquility and relaxation when you no longer have cell phone service.


As a girl from Pennsylvania I usually traveled to the Poconos for my dose of nature, or to the creek two minutes down the street from my house. Needless to say it was not hard to find little wonders around me.


Being surrounded by mountains brought me back to my childhood trips to the Poconos, watching the deer outside my uncle’s cabin. It was the simple things like placing corn cobs outside for them to eat and jumping in leaf piles that made me so happy.


The Foxfire Mountain House reminded me just how enjoyable unplugging and taking in your simple surrounding can be.


My favorite part of this hotel is all of the history built into it. The building opened as an inn in 1914 and has been passed down through generations of families. In 2015, a couple restored the house after it had fallen into overgrowth and decay, bringing it back to its original state.


The hotel now has 11 rooms for guests to stay in, each with their own unique attention to detail. They even have a private cottage available, equipped with your own kitchen, living room, bathroom, and bedroom.


All of the unique design elements of this inn come together to make a place that is truly magical. From the lily pond outside to the vintage Sari curtains, no detail goes unnoticed. It is inspiring to be in a place with so much character rather than a commercialized chain hotel whose decor is the same around each corner.


This yellow velvet couch may be my favorite thing in the entire house. Secretly storing the image of it away so I can someday find one for my apartment.

If you’re in need of a city escape or are looking for some creative inspiration, take a weekend trip to Foxfire Mountain House. You can look forward to fresh air, home-cooked meals, and a surprising elements of design in each room.