Portugal is one of the most beautiful and historical countries in Europe, it has wonderful sites to visit, and also has many of the tastiest pastries in the world, and some of the best restaurants in Europe. You can check the collaboration made with Belgian Taste Buds on our blog and their Fine Dining in Lisbon post – just brilliant!
If you are wondering what to do in Lisbon for a few days don’t miss out on these recommendations to have a wonderful time and get to see the very best! Some Portuguese names are included so you can find exactly what you are looking for just by asking any local or reading any of the signs.
♥ Matias Damasio– Loucos ft. Héber Marques
Europe is a beauty because flight tickets are cheaper than in America. I would recommend if you are traveling from another part of Europe to look at Aegean Airlines.
There are a bunch of hostels, and many hotels to choose from, but to be honest, I always prefer making sure I will not encounter bed bugs after a day of exploring, so I prefer to spend a little bit more for a comfortable hotel. I have 2 recommendations for you;
- Stay at InterContinental Lisbon, which is at Rua Castilho, 149. Great service, quality, and location!
- If you are looking for something more traditional, yet super comfy and beautiful, check out Casa do Barão, a family house and B&B located on the peaceful street of Chiado.
If you are traveling on a tight budget, or even if you want to save some money on transportation to spend on different things like eating in nice spots like the ones recommended by Belgian Taste Buds, and trying as much as you can from Portuguese cuisine, the best way to see around is by using the metro and getting familiarized with it. It is not hard at all to find your way around. Just keep in mind that it is open from 6:30am to 1:00am to fit your plans accordingly. You can plan your journey and look at fares info HERE.
1.Go to Sao Jorge Castelo!
To reach Castelo de Sao Jorge you must take tram 28E in Rossio, there are many tourists so you will know when you have reached the destination as they will announce “Castelo.” Inside the castle, it is worth going to the dark chamber as you get to hear the history of Lisbon. I would suggest going on the first day to see all options while in Lisbon.
2. Music lovers: you will love Fado Museum!
If you are music lover stop by Fado museum. Fado is a music genre that can be described by a Portuguese word “Saudade“, symbolizing a feeling of loss, or longing. The museum will explain everything that you need to know about Fado, its history, and its emotional content.
3. Do not miss Alfama!
One of the most authentic and attractive areas of Lisbon. Alfama is the oldest district of the city, which prior to the 13th century used to be home to the poorest residents. Nowadays wandering in its narrow streets you will catch yourself observing and, of course, exploring some of Lisbon’s most important buildings – Se Cathedral, Lisbon Castle, National Pantheon. The best way to explore Alfama is to take a slow walk from the Tejo estuary uphill to the castle. The best viewpoint of Alfama is the Miradouro de Santa Luzia. From there you can enjoy breathtaking views of the whole Alfama and the Tejo.
4. Historical Belem!
You can reach Belem via subway or via tram from the downtown area. You have to go all through the green line and then take a bus that is 728, 18E and 15E. Once there you can buy a ticket to visit all the historical monuments, Padrão dos Descobrimentos and Belem Tower which is a must as it is an icon of the Portuguese maritime discoveries. Don’t forget to go to Pastéis de Belém to try one of the delicious pastries! There are many restaurants but one that is around the area and is very near to the Padrão dos Descobrimentos is “Portugalia.”
5.Streets to explore!
A walk through Avenida Da Liberdade is a must until you get to Praça dos Restauradores which is in Lisbon’s beautiful central plaza, and then you can continue walking through all the “baixa”. The streets are beautiful and you will feel as if you are in another world with so much beauty and wonderful architecture. If you continue walking you will make it to Praça do Comércio and in these streets you will see The Santa Justa Lift. Something else that you shouldn’t miss is going to Baixa Chiado, and walking around and having an ice cream at Santini’s and a “Pao de Deus” in Padaria Portuguesa.
6.Gardens for the romantic!
Eduardo VII garden is beautiful as it is near Marquess of Pombal Square, in the center of the city.
7. Fun at Bairro Alto
Try to spend some time at Bairro Alto, a central district of Lisbon, close to Baixa-Chiado metro station. If you go during the day you will find that this neighbourhood seems really quiet, but it is a totally different world by night time. It is Europe’s neighbourhood of bars and pubs, where apart from the best cocktails, you can try amazing Portuguese foods. When in Bairro Alto, make sure you visit Miradouro de São Pedro de Alcântara – a place not only with amazing view, but also street concerts and performances.
You have to see this place -it looks like it has been taken out from a Disney movie. In Sintra you can walk in the city center, and I suggest that you visit a coffee place called “Piriquita” and try a “Travesseiro de Sintra” – so delicious, and if you can, bring me one back because I’m dying to eat one again!
Of course, you shouldn’t miss the Moorish castles and gardens “Quinta da Regaleira” and spent the whole full day wondering and feeling like you are in some sort of movie, other places not to miss in Sintra are the Sintra Palace and Monserrate if you have some time to spare.
♡Special thanks to Justė Petkevičiūtė and Lisa Lienert, fellow world travelers and great friends that were kind enough to share some of their fantastic photography for this post. ♡
Enjoy Lisbon and let me know if this guide was useful, and what you enjoyed most of your visit!