lisbon stories :: madragoa or my love for doors & windows

i think this might be a bit of a cliche for photographers, right? doors & windows? what can i say? lisbon is this city filled with typical corners and historical neighbourhoods, like most cities are. the historical corners will obviously differ from city to city, according to each city’s history, but as i started this adventure capturing lisbon’s corners and sharing my stories with you, i was amazed to discover that so much of this city is covered in vibrant colours! there are walls and walls covered in colourful tile, creating these interesting patterns that i will reproduce sometime in the future. doors are left untouched, showing signs of all the years exposed to the sun, the rain or the wind. old once white curtains are still showing in the windows, making a perfect detail for an imperfect story. last friday my wandering heart went to a quarter called madragoa, one of the most popular quarters in lisbon, located near the tagus river.

my journey began in my quarter taking the 15 tram and getting down in santos. from there i started going up the calçada ribeiro santos and then turning right towards the rua de santos-o-velho. from there i just wandered through the streets, taking pictures at the buildings, windows and colourful doors. looking and trying to capture every detail with my memory as well. i had heard so much about this quarter and i didn’t have any idea where it was until i was on the tram. as i had a pocket guide of this area, i decided to check this one in particular for the first time. and i was amazed at such beauty in these streets and the view over the river. this is what i love about living in this city, the amazing sun we have, which reflects perfectly on the white buildings and the river.

this quarter is one of the most typical and you can see that for its architecture. just like on my neighbourhood and others similar, buildings are not that tall and there are several similarities between them, as the architectural line was respected over the years, and whoever buys a house in these places, often ends to renovate whatever they feel like it, but the facade is kept. black lamps are also a frequent detail on the streets, as well as the tiled walls and colourful wooden doors and windows.

madragoa is also one of the most popular quarters in lisbon for the popular marches, which happen every year in lisbon’s city holiday. during the whole month of june, st. anthony is celebrated in every corner of this city and on the night before the holiday, the marches go down the main avenue (avenida da liberdade), competing with each other. there are always a few that remain the favourites year after year, and madragoa is one of those favourites, ending up often in 2nd or 3rd place. alfama is the big winner, with no doubt!

from where i started my journey, i went through lapa and ended up near the assembly, a much wider area with newer and taller buildings. some of the well-known colleges are here, mostly associated with economics and management. but my day wasn’t finished, not even close. from here i went to principe real, chiado and baixa, before i went back home. to wander around in lisbon you sure need one thing, to be prepared physically speaking, because it’s not for no reason that they call lisbon the city of the 7 hills! this is one day always going up and down the streets, so if you’re coming here, please be prepared! more to come next week! i have a full post on these beautiful yellow trams!

p.s. some of these images are for sale as fine art prints, write me an email if you want any of these!

Lisbon’s Travel Guide

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    • oh thank you so much anka!! i know, there are so many of us that love doors and windows, they have that charm, right? :)

  1. I also love colorful doors and windows!
    What is the problem if it’s a cliché? They’re beautiful and deserve the attention! ;)

    • hello ana! long time no see!!! yes, you’re right, no problem at all!! they are just too charming to let them get unnoticed! :)

  2. a madragoa : )
    a primeira casa e bairro onde vivi, assim que me mudei para Lisboa, foi na Madragoa. Estive lá um ano, na rua da Madre, num res do chao restauradinho e aberto à vizinhança. Saudades : )

    • que giro!!! :) imagina que eu não fazia ideia de onde era a madragoa, e afinal era ali tão perto! gostei muito do ambiente, mas gosto é disto, dos bairros, de saber quem mora ao lado e de ir com a carteira na mão às compras, sem precisar de carro para nada! chegar e dizer bom dia, e levar um sorriso para casa!

  3. Compreendo tão bem essa paixão por portas e janelas… :) Apesar de ser somente uma fotógrafa wannabe, o que é certo é que estas fotos também existem por lá nos meus arquivos. E como adoro a zona da Madragoa. Durante cerca de 4 anos trabalhei bem próximo da Igreja de Santos que surge na foto e vezes sem conta fiz essa rua que surge também na foto. Adoro o pitoresco desta zona. E muitos parabéns pelas fotos, sempre tão bonitas e a transmitir tanta serenidade :)

    • olá fiona!!! adorei ler o teu comentário! é tão giro encontrar depois pessoas que se identificam com as fotografias e trazem à memórias as histórias passadas naqueles lugares! embora tenha iniciado esta rubrica para partilhar a minha perspectiva sobre lisboa, mais dedicada aos estrangeiros que usualmente adoram a cidade, é nos que cá vivem que suscito mais emoções! e é mesmo giro sentir isto! uma vez conheci uma rapariga que vivia numa rua da mouraria que fotografia! beijinhos e obrigada pelos comentários!!

  4. lovely lovely photos! love them!
    how do you achieve the blur? have you bought a new lens (tilt shift, lensbaby or sth similar) or is it post processing? either way, keep up the good work!

    • hello mateja!!! how are you?? thank you so much for your comment! yes, this is a tilt-shift 24mm lens! it’s not mine (sigh!), but i’ve had it since i went to new york and i haven’t had the chance yet to return it to its owner, so i’m having a great time with it now!! have a great day!!

  5. oh my, I hoped you’d say ‘post processing’, haha. another lens to add to my ever-growing list of must-buys *sigh* :) yeah, noticed it with your NY photos for the first time, they were simply gorgeous…good luck with everything and have a fun weekend (with lots of photo opps :) xo
    (maybe the lens owner will forget he/she owned it in the first place and you can keep it :)

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