I had heard nothing but raving things about Lisbon- an exciting, alternative city with heaps to do: great food, abundant sunshine, cheap eats and attractions.
I loved Lisbon when I visited in April, so much in fact that I didn’t hesitate to return for another long weekend at the end of June. It rained a bit too much for my liking in April, but it’s still a fantastic city nonetheless (and one that will not break the bank at that!)
Also known as the Old Town, This is my favorite area of Lisbon. Walk around, take it slow, and admire the colors and tiles that surround the winding streets. There are hidden alleys, tiny squares, hole-in-the-wall restaurants, and beautiful tiled houses. Don’t worry about getting lost– it’s beautiful.
Castle of St. George
Located in the Alfama District, it offers sweeping views of the city. For 5€, you can also wander around the grounds and admire the remaining castle walls. The oldest parts of the castle date from the 2nd-century, and today, 18 towers still stand.
Sé Cathedral and Carmo Convent
Sé Cathedral is the oldest church in the city; construction started in 1147. Inside, there are also archaeological ruins to admire.
This medieval convent was ruined during the 1755 Lisbon earthquake. Although it’s missing its roof, the foundations still stand, and it is visible throughout various parts of the city. You can take a free tour and learn about the various emblems and findings on display inside. There are even two child mummies!
Tram 28 & Estrela Basilica
A highlight of any visit to Lisbon is a ride on the number 28 tram. The 40 minute route passes through most of Lisbon’s districts or neighborhoods, including Baixa, Graça, Alfama, and Estrela. Our group personally rode it to the famous Estrela Basilica.
Located in the southwestern most point of Lisbon is the neighborhood of Belem. The three things to see in this area of town include the famous Belem Tower, the Jerónimos Monastery, and the delicious Pastéis de Belém. You can buy a combo ticket for the monuments; I recommend checking everything out and then relaxing with a dessert!
Praça Do Comércio & Rossio Squares
Lisbon is home to Western Europe’s largest square, Praça Do Comércio. The yellow architecture is bright and cheerful, and in June it was also home to the Euro Cup fan zone. It’s also the place to get the best cherry liquor shots.
Rossio Square is especially known for its black and white patterned tiles. It is stunning!
One of the most authentic things you can do in Lisbon is listen to Fado music. There are a ton of places to choose from but the best are in the Alfama District. The style is almost like Portuguese Blues, and it’s beautiful.
Located 30 minutes west of Lisbon, this is a great place to hit the beach and escape the hussle and bussle of the big city. We were able to rent bikes and explore up and down the coast.
There is a TON to do in Lisbon, in addition to many day trips. I highly recommend a free walking tour to get your bearings, because Lisbon is huge.
Have you ever been to Lisbon?