Carmo Convent and Sardine Shop

Carmo Convent and Sardine Shop

[ Feb.2019 ] The weather was lovely on the third day in Lisbon in Portugal, too.

Unfortunately, because of my husband’s leg injury, we could not do much sightseeing this time, but just to enjoy the atmosphere of the city, we took an Uber to Largo do Carmo square.

A few people, including our guide from the day before, who used to be a Uber driver, said that in Lisbon, Uber is cheap and convenient, but we concluded that the ordinary taxis are more useful.

We used Uber twice during our stay but on the both occasions, it was difficult to meet the driver as they both said that they had some trouble with their GPS.

There were many taxis in the city and the fares were not so different.

When we arrived at the square, we saw that Largo do Carmo was not so big, but it had a lovely calm atmosphere with lots of greenery.

Apparently, in the early summer, it becomes purple with the Jacaranda flowers.

I would like to see that one time.

The reason we came here was because we had been attracted to a picture of the ruin of Carmo Convent, facing this square.

Carmo Convent had a history dating back to the late 14th century, but it was destroyed by the 1755 earthquake.

After that, some of the restoration work had been done and the building was used by the police, the military and even as a sawmill.

Nowadays, its skeletal figure is the charm here.

It appeared in recent history, too.

Marcelo Caetano, who succeeded the powerful dictator, Salazar, shut himself up in this building before surrendering during the Carnation Revolution in 1974.

Currently, it houses the archaeological museum and apparently, if you go into the museum,you can see the skeleton of the building better.

We did not go in there, but walked around it to see the lovely view.

Lisbon of the seven hills is the city of full of ups and downs, so you can see many kinds of views of various aspects.

Especially from here, we could see the back of the famous Santa Justa Lift.

After enjoying the view, we slowly walked down the slope and headed for Praça do Comércio.

On the way there, we came across a shop specialised in tinned sardines.

Of course, the sardine is one of the famous Portuguese products.

This country is very good at making nice souvenirs using their resources, which are well known around the world, including cork and tiles.

The entrance of this shop says “Industria Conserveria Portuguesa, established in 1853”.

I am not sure, but it could be run by an association of tinned sardines producers.

It was a simple shop and they had a great many tins on the shelf, sorted by producers and there were some information boards explaining about each producer.

The shop assistants were knowledgeable about each tin and when I could not decided which ones to choose, they came up and started to explain “This one is in the tomato sauce, while this one is dressed in olive oil” and so on.

In fact, even with the explanation, it was difficult to choose because there were so many.

Some of the tins were very nice and colourful with interesting pictures and the prices were reasonable, so we bought a few as souvenirs for friends.

By the way, there was another tinned fish chain shop in the town, as well as at the airport, called Comur, with a very showy interior as if it was an amusement arcade.

They are probably trying to be trendy, but because it was making a display of being unusual too much, we did not feel like going in there.