Just arrived in Lisbon? Not familiar with the city? Want to learn more about the Portuguese capital, its culture and heritage?
This exciting interactive exhibition chronicles the capital’s extraordinary timeline, from its humble beginnings as a Roman trading post in 138 BC right up to the present day. Along the way, the virtual journey highlights Lisbon’s extraordinary role during Portugal’s golden age of discoveries, the dramatic 1755 earthquake and the subsequent rebuilding of a “new” city, among other pivotal events.
A witty and informative narrative peppered with amazing facts, amusing anecdotes and first-hand accounts of life in Lisbon over the ages regales the visitor via a wireless audio transceiver and headset. The sights and sounds of the city positively jump out at you.
A hologram-like image of city planners mapping out the new Lisbon after the 1755 earthquake. — Photo courtesy of Paul Bernhardt
Of special note is the film presentation that recreates the moment when an earthquake struck the city on November 1, 1755 – All Saints’ Day. Worshipers had assembled in churches across the city for morning service when the first tremor struck. The film depicts in frightening clarity the fear and panic as buildings collapsed under the violent shock waves. The auditorium actually shakes as the scenes are played out – an unnerving experience that brings home the dreadful reality of that fateful day.
The next chapter of the story showcases the re-construction of the city led by savvy visionary, the Marquês de Pombal. In another example of technical wizardry, visitors are met with a hologram-like moving image of the minister and his fellow town planners poring over blueprints as they ponder the rebuilding of the city. It’s like you’re in the same room.
Who said history was boring?