Today we start a new category “A touch of local”. In this category you will find a portrait of locals that are part of our partners which means we like what they do 😉 They are bars or restaurants owners, gallery curators, or, like in this case they are doing a special type of walking tours. For the first article we will start with Anne from Lisbonne à pied, a project that organizes guided tours in French about the city of Lisbon.
When and how did the project come to life ?
I have always loved traveling. Travelling means new landscapes but also meeting new people. When in 2012, I decided to come to Lisbon to join my Portuguese boyfriend, I looked for an activity that would allow me to meet people traveling while staying in Lisbon. My early days in Lisbon, I walked the streets up and down. Connecting my pleasure to walk in Lisbon to my professional activity was a great opportunity. So I decided to offer guided tours of Lisbon in French. At that time, the French began to come more and more to Lisbon and the offer of visits in French was not very developed. I started at the right time.
How many people work in this project ?
The team has grown over the years. We are 5 guides today. We all come from different
horizons which enriches our exchanges and experiences. We all have another activity besides guiding. We have a common approach but a personal experience that brings different touches to the visits.
What is the project about ?
We wanted to offer something different from the classic cultural tours. A visit
like the one we make with our friends or families when they come and visit us.
Personally, I love walking around the city watching and listening to what’s
going on. This is how Lisbonne à Pied was born. Visits are private, the group
is small and people already know each other. This way, the dialogue between
the guide and the group can be established quickly and nobody is afraid to
ask questions. It also makes it possible to better adapt the visit to the group.
We propose itineraries but they sometimes change during the visit depending
on what people have already seen in Lisbon, their desires, the weather
conditions. The tours are cultural but not only. We want to tell the incredible
story of this small country that was an important and rich empire in the past but
also tell the story of today’s Lisbon. Gastronomy is one of our favorite
During your tours, what is important for you to show to people?
It is common that people visiting Lisbon with us have no idea of the history of the city and the country. We give them the information they need to understand the context in which their stays take place. The goal is not to knock them out of information but to leave with the outlines and the desire to document themselves during their stay or back home. We also like to let them discover what is important to us in Lisbon, the little details in Portuguese culture that makes it different. The topics are often improvised according to the centers of interest of the groups. We often speak gastronomy and Street Art but not only! Finally, we share with them the stakes of the development and the mutation of the city, the increase of mass tourism for example. We do not give our opinion but we give them info and facts to make theirs.