A cultural marvel, Lisbon is a city drenched in history and oozing with style. The coastal capital has a reputation for world-class seafood restaurants and amazing architecture. Portugal’s first and largest city boasts seven cinematic hillsides, the tops of which deliver some of the most incredible views in Portugal. From Gothic grit to glamour, Lisbon should be on every weekend-breakers must visit list. This article lists some of the best things to do in Lisbon.
The Elevator de Santa Justa lift
Every tourist should experience the view from the top of the Santa Justa Lift. The industrial age elevator functions as a transportation service to tourists wishing to save time and avoid walking uphill. It elevates passengers from the Baixa district up to the Igreja do Carmo church which sits on top of one of the many h
The outer ironwork structure of the elevator has been crafted to form superb neo-gothic arches, and the interior of the carriages are lined with sleek polished wood. Once at the top of the platform, visitors can witness a spectacular view of Lisbon’s grid streets and rooftops. At a measly price of €2.80, the Santa Justa Lift is a definite must see. The elevator is also part of the public transport network, so tourists with a travel ticket can ride for free! Tickets can be purchased on the Metro website, or from the metro station.
Culture vultures should be sure to visit at least one of the wealth of brilliant museums in Lisbon. From the first class Calouste Gulbenkian museum to the newly acclaimed Design Museum, there are collections for all tastes. Many museums in Lisbon are free on the first Sunday of every month, so it may be wise to plan your trip around these dates if travelling on a budget! Not sure which museum to choose? Read the 10 Top Lisbon Museums.
Torre de Belém
Torre de Belem is one of Portugal’s most renowned monuments and exhibits some exquisite examples of Portuguese stonework dating back to the 1500s. The UNESCO world heritage site is situated inside the parish of Santa Maria de Belém and was built to guard the entrance of the Lisbon harbour. You can catch a 45minute tram to Belem from central Lisbon.
The Mercado da Ribeira
Lisbon’s historic market hall is home to 35 permanent stalls from Lisbon’s most celebrated foodie restaurants and shops. The food court area was adopted by Time Out in 2014 and is now referred to as the Time Out Market Lisboa. Visitors can try Portuguese wines, ice creams and pastries from all over the country and visit the on-site eateries of the countries culinary hero- Henrique Sa Pessoa.
If you love small picturesque towns and romantic architecture, then Sintra is the place to go. The town is extremely beautiful and has become a huge tourist centre, mainly due to the mediaeval Castelo dos Mourous which sits on top of the Sintra Mountains. Although Sintra is situated in the Lisbon Region of Portugal, it is an hour away from central Lisbon so be aware of this when visiting. Sintra may be a good choice for those spending more than one night in Lisbon.
Praca do Comercio
A vibrant urban development, the Praca do Comercio (Commerce square) sits in the centre of the city, alongside the banks of the river Tagus. The square is also referred to as ‘Terreiro do Paco’ (Palace square) as it lies on the previous site of the Royal Ribeira Palace which was destroyed during The Great Lisbon earthquake. The earthquake destroyed much of Lisbon in 1755, which lead to the development of the Pombaline Downtown that we see today. The square faces out towards the river, and the Cristo Rei (statue of Christ) which overlooks the city of Lisbon.
This is a guest post by Blossom Higson who blogs at MostWorthyLittleJournal.com