Lisbon will surprise you. It’s probably not the most famous city in all of Europe but don’t let its humble reputation fool you, Lisbon’s great with its long Maritime history, Atlantic positioning and its range of things to do. We’ve got you guys 10 brilliant recommendations on what to do in Lisbon from some clued up locals who know the city best – we’re going to share with you their insider tips on how to get the most out of Lisbon so you can have yourselves a great time exploring the Portuguese capital!
1. Torre de Belem
This 16th-century wonder is located on the bank of the Tagus River and is an architect’s dream. This beautifully crafted tower was used for defense back in the day but is now a great sight to see to get an insight into Portugal’s historic past. Take a tour around the neighborhood where you’ve got the chance to see all of this charming district and make a friend along the way.
Lisbon Carnival is an experience to behold, it’s is a week-long event that will take you to the old streets of Lisbon to experience the delights of Carnival. There are festivities all over the city as well as colorful parades, impressive costumes, and enough samba music to have your hips shaking from dusk until dawn. It’s definitely an event to get involved in if you want to experience the spirit of Lisbon!
3. Miradouro da Senhora do Monte
Lisbon’s an astounding city with the Tagus River splitting through the city. If you’re one for a good, long walk and a great view then the Miradouro da Senhora do Monte is definitely a place to go. Once atop, you’ll see before you the expansive city stretching up the Atlantic with spectacular views of the city’s castle.
This is a brilliant place to sit and watch the sunset as you hear the hum of people talking, the sound of guitar and a beer in hand. Bliss, no?
4.Shopping in the Bairro Alto
Shopping and Lisbon go hand in hand. In Lisbon’s Bairro Alto you have everything you need from vintage to new, from high street to designer. Lisbon’s Avenida da Liberdade has what you’re looking for if you want your hands on some new clothes or a chic outfit for a special occasion. Ana, a design graduate from the city, even has an awesome fashion tour with a personal shopper where you can discover some great boutiques in the city as well as Lisbon’s own designer shops.
5. Oceanario de Lisboa
The Lisbon Oceanarium is one of the best aquariums in the world and was even used for the grounds of the World Exposition in 1998. The aquarium is in the Parque das Nações (The Park of Nations to you and me) and is the largest indoor aquarium in Europe. So if you wanna set your eyes on the huge sunfish or get up close to some sharks then Lisbon’s Oceanarium is for you.
6. Sintra and Cascais
Sintra which home of Romanticism. Sintra has beautiful palaces, castles and is rich with its mesmerizing green nature. The architecture here is so important that it is even a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Take tours from Lisbon to these two villages where you have the chance to see the bright side streets, as well as a stop at the Boca, do Inferno: a coast recess with cliffs that shows you how powerful the sea is – it isn’t one to be missed, we promise!
7. See Lisbon’s street art.
Lisbon has a good relationship with street art. In fact, many streets and graffiti artists have painted old and unused buildings to give them a new lease of life making them into huge works of art.
There is a lot of local enthusiasm for these unique masterpieces and you just need to walk around the streets of the city to witness it – a bonus is that it’s free!
8. Pastéis de Belém
The Paséis de Belém is the birthplace of the original custard tart. What crème brûle is to France, what apple crumble is to the UK, the pastéis de nata is Portugal’s answer to dessert perfection. At this authentic Lisbon café you can order a delicious, melt-in-your-mouth delight and it is a must try for anyone who is stepping foot in Lisbon (and has a sweet tooth)!
9. Explore the Almafa
The Alfama is one of the oldest neighborhoods in Lisbon and has a lot of historical importance as well as the tramline running through the district. But, our locals tell us that the Alfama should be discovered by foot because of the unexpected sea views and narrow streets.
10.See Lisbon’s nightlife
It’s said that Lisbon’s Bairro Alto has the most bars per square meter than anywhere else in the world which makes it a perfect place to go and grab a beer with a local. There’s no better way than mixing a good drink and good conversation with a new friend in Portugal’s capital. Thankfully, we have.
Little old Lisbon has a lot on its plate to feed you. This cultural hub is growing and is rapidly growing a reputation as a go-to place to visit in Europe, check out our friend Taiwos’ site for a photoblog of Lisbon and some more sights in Portugal to visit. The music and art scene in Portugal is worth witnessing and our list of 10 incredible things to do in Lisbon will definitely keep you busy and have you talking about the city for a long time.