It is impossible to discuss Lisbon for any length of time without someone making the comment - "ahhh, the Lisbon light..." And hardly surprisingly.
Lisbon was founded over 20 centuries ago, built on hills along the banks of the river Tagus, as it approaches the Atlantic ocean. Beyond the brightness characteristic of these latitudes, Lisbon has long benefits from plays on light and shadow.
Encouraged throughout centuries of architecture, this is reflected in the often extremely narrow streets winding their way up and down the riverfront hills, establishing the borders of historical neighbourhoods each with their respective traditions and styles.
This game has been visually opened up by more modern architectural styles, lighter and designed for the broad sweep of the avenues, even while always remaining interlinked with the river.
Culturally, Lisbon has managed to maintain its character through this play on light and shadow. The recognition of a past replete with maritime history, opened to the World by the Voyages of Discovery, born witness to in its museums, monuments and traditions. And the present is marked by an equal openness to the 21st century world with contemporary museums, prominent cultural events and all the styles of a cosmopolitan city.