Tour Locations | Lisbon: The Age of Discovery

  • LOCATION 25 | Lisbon: The Age of Discovery

    Around the Marina 2 - Doca do Bom Sucesso

    Turn left and and continue walking, keeping the marina on your left.


    On your right are two main avenues, Avenida Brasília and Avenida da Índia. Their names evoke the Portuguese exploration of the seas.

    Tejo. River. Road. The Tejo leads to the World.

    That's a verse by Alberto Caeiro, one of the pseudonyms used by the writer Fernando Pessoa. He preferred to call them heteronyms.

    Tejo is a synonym for Lisbon. From the time of the first inhabitants, the importance of the city was grounded on the river resources and easy navigability towards the inner mainland.

    The Tejo elevated the city to the Atlantic capital. Not by chance did King Afonso III choose Lisbon as capital of the Kingdom of Portugal in 1255, and King Manuel I choose to build his palace on the river sands in 1498. This is where the products of the world arrived, during the period of the Portuguese Diaspora.

    The 16th century poet Camões described Portugal as the spot “where the land ends and the sea begins.”

    Did being the most western point in Continental Europe contribute to an overseas expansion? What drove the Portuguese to explore the immense seas never before navigated, like Camões wrote? Was it due to being confined to only one mainland neighbour, Spain?

    “The sea with an end can be Greek or Roman. The endless sea is Portuguese”, wrote Fernando Pessoa in his poetry book “Message”.

    Keep walking straight.

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