Top attractions in Lisbon
Portugal's capital city offers an unpretentious culture coupled with a splendid, historic cityscape. As one of Europe's oldest cities, it's also one of the most fascinating to explore! Here are some top tips to get you started.
The magnificent Jeronimos Monastery near the shoreline of Belém was once home to the Hieronymite monks – Catholic hermits whose primary role it was to pray for the King's soul!
The loosely translated Upper Neighborhood is Lisbon's most historically opulent quarter. Bairro Alto is a great place to wander, its preserved romantic ambiance boasts some of the city's top attractions!
Built in 1147 and subsequently developed over time, the Lisbon Cathedral is a bold mix of architectural styles, yet maintains the imposing authority of its Medieval incarnation.
Once the scene of celebrations, bullfights, executions, and uprisings, Lisbon's historic Rossio Square is the meeting point of choice for locals and tourists alike.
The city's oldest district can be found between the São Jorge Castle and the Tagus River. Alfama is the place to be for Lisbon's best restaurants and Fado bars!
Whether cycling along its bank or cruising its waters, be sure to explore Lisbon's pulse. Tagus River's estuary is a haven for fish, crustaceans, and birds, including flamingos!
Called Praça do Comércio in Portuguese, this vast town square is also known as Palace Square (Terreiro do Paço). The Royal Palace stood here before being flattened by the 1755 Lisbon Earthquake!
Not only did his 16th-century harbor fortress defend the municipality of Lisbon from coastal attack, but Belém Tower was also crucial to Portugal's role in the era's Age of Discovery!
Chiado's subsequent recovery after a devastating fire in 1988 has made it perhaps the wealthiest corner of the city. It's now Lisbon's most famous shopping district!
With the advent of electric power, Lisbon built two elevators to improve access between its hilly streets. This peculiar feat of engineering is a true relic!
Lisbon is lucky enough to have the warmest winters in Europe without the disadvantage of suffering from intense summer heat. Nevertheless, the subtropic coastal climate is prone to sudden bursts of rain even on its clearest days, so be warned! Going in late spring or early autumn generally means cheaper hotel prices and more manageable crowds.
The heart of Lisbon makes a great choice for a long weekend, but many of its top attractions lie within the city's greater subregion. Top day trips include Belém, Sintra, Fátima, and Cascais, with many more besides. Each will need at least an entire day to see, if not two.
Though Lisbon is cheap by the standards of most European capitals, getting one of the cabs waiting outside the airport can be expensive. If you're traveling somewhere central without much luggage, it's undoubtedly cheaper and easier to take the metro. It should only take about 25 minutes to the city center.
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- Spring or autumn
Things to Do in Lisbon
Top Attractions in Lisbon
Cities in Portugal
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What people are saying about Lisbon
Highly recommend if you have only a few hours to spare on your trip to Lisbon! Marisa, our guide was extraordinary and the trip was amazing. Though a bus tour, our group was a comfortable size and not overwhelming at all. Sintra was breathtaking. We visited Palacio Nacional de Sintra, the only extant medieval palace in Portugal. The drive through Sintra was stunning, and the vistas along the coastline were spectacular. We visited Boca do Inferno, Cabo da Roca (westernmost point in Europe), and the lovely seaside resort of Cascais. The experience I gained on this tour was an key reason I booked my return trip back to Portugal within 6 weeks of returning home! HIGHLY recommend this tour and returning to spend more time in stunning Sintra and Cascais!
A great day with Nuno in our small group. He helped us get to the Palace even with the roads being closed and the ticket saved us time to go right in. Beautiful sights and wonderful insight as we drove from Lisbon to Sintra and to my favorite part - Cabo da Roca! Such an incredible sight after a nice local Portuguese meal before heading back through Cascais. Nuno was a fantastic guide with great connections to people and excellent knowledge of the history and area of Lisbon!
We had a wonderful day, with a wonderful tour guide. Ricardo’s knowledge of all we covered was amazing. Pena Palace was amazing, and we had the most perfect weather for the views from the palace. Just be wary if you struggle with mobility, as there is quite a bit of uphill walking. Would strongly recommend these small group tours, as the place is so crowded it would be hard to hear in a group any bigger.
Barbra and Isabel provided an informative and fun packed day. It was a shame that due to the restrictions we couldn’t visit Pena Palace but they both worked hard to provide very good alternatives and make the day very worth while. We also had a great group of fellow travellers. Very relaxed and informative we thoroughly enjoyed and would recommend to others.
Our tour guide made this trip brilliant. We were 2 groups with different nationalities he took time to explain everything to everybody. He was very enthusiastic and knew a lot about all the places we visited. Obidos was the most beautiful - Fatima was very peaceful and I also enjoyed visiting the houses where the 3 kids lived