Posted on

Urban splash: street art in Lisbon

For cutting-edge street art, head to the Portuguese capital, Lisbon. From derelict buildings to art galleries, new graffiti is appearing every day
See a gallery of Lisbon’s fantastic street art

Lisbon is an elegant city of pastel buildings with terracotta roofs, jumbled together on steep cobbled streets. So it was a shock to see a 40-foot burglar bursting out one of them.

I had just arrived and was taking a taxi to the city’s enticing Bairro Alto. Looming out of the dark on Av Fontes Pereira de Melo was an enormous building. Where the windows should have been, there was nothing but starry night sky, and an immense black figure making his escape. I got such a fleeting glance as we sped past that I wondered if I had imagined it. Retracing my steps the next morning, I found a cluster of formerly grand, now derelict, buildings. Artists had been let loose on their crumbling walls and boarded-up windows. As well as the six-storey-high “burglar”, there was a figure drinking from planet Earth with a straw, a giant crocodile, and some sinister birdlike creatures. The scale was breathtaking, and the gaudy colours incongruous but brilliant in the busy street.

Continue reading…

Posted on

Adam Buxton: A Maldives getaway from the kids

It sounds like a dream holiday. But would Adam Buxton’s sceptical wife Sarah agree to renew their marriage vows in the Maldives?

“I’ve got some exciting news,” I announce as my wife loads the children’s supper plates into the dishwasher. “I’ve been asked to write a travel article for the Guardian. They’re going to arrange for you and me to spend a week in a luxury resort in the Maldives. It’s the holiday of a lifetime!” All day I’ve been imagining Sarah jumping up and throwing her arms around me at this point. Perhaps we’ll twirl around the kitchen. Instead, she turns back to the dishwasher and says, “Don’t take this the wrong way, but why would they ask you?”

“I don’t know, Adam and Joe stuff, maybe my hilarious YouTube videos?” I offer, struggling to take it the right way. “Look, it doesn’t matter why they asked me, aren’t you excited?”

Continue reading…