Lisbon might not have the status of Rome or Paris in terms of sights, but the Portugal capital is really a pleasure to explore. From historical gems and world-class art, to an incredible food scene and picturesque parks, we are going to take a look at the top attractions in Lisbon to visit. And don’t forget that if you are from another country and taking a trip to Lisbon then you need to get an International Driver’s Permit (IDP).
- 1. Climb to the Top of the Belém Tower
- 2. Enjoy the amazing nightlife
- 3. Lounge at the beach
- 4. Enjoy a Fado Show
- 5. Visit the Oldest Bookstore in the World
- 6. Visit the National Museum
- 7. Ride the tram
- 8. Visit the Carmo Archaeological Museum
- 9. Try Pastéis de Nata in Lisbon
- 10. Check out the Padrão dos Descobrimentos Monument
1. Climb to the Top of the Belém Tower
One of the most popular things to see in Lisbon is the Belém Tower. Belem Tower was built in 16th century (around 1515) and was designed by architect Francisco de Arruda. The tower was originally used to defend the city but later on was transformed into a lighthouse.
2. Enjoy the amazing nightlife
Lisbon is that city that never sleeps, like literally! Each night end or rather begins with partying here. People who visit Lisbon will agree that Bairro Alto is the well-known for its vibrant bars and quirky pubs. People tend to go out of the different bars and drink together on the cobbled streets. The prices of drinks are highly competitive. If you are e party person – a night of exploring clubs and pubs in Bairro Alto is one of the best things to do in Lisbon. Lisbon also has become one of the most popular stag do destinations.
3. Lounge at the beach
One of the best things to do in Lisbon is to spend a day at the beach! Lisbon is a great starting point for day trips to dazzling coastlines, rugged cliffs, and world-class waves that have made Portugal one of the top surf riding destinations. The beach is a 30-minute drive from Lisbon, you can take a train from the Cais do Sodré station in Lisbon to the Cascais stop.
4. Enjoy a Fado Show
Fado is a musical symbol of Portuguese tradition. The music genre originated in Portugal in the early 1800s but only began to appear in Lisbon after 1830 before finally finding a popular rhythm in the early 1900s and one that is still followed today. Meaning ‘Fate’ or ‘Destiny’, the songs are generally quite melancholy and reflect on the struggles of daily life.
5. Visit the Oldest Bookstore in the World
Opened in 1732, Livraria Bertrand is recognized by Guinness World Records as the oldest bookstore in the world still in operations.
Opened by Peter Faure, the bookstore was a favorite haunt of Portuguese writers and intellectuals across different generations.
6. Visit the National Museum
One of the most notable aspects of Lisbon’s architecture is its vibrant ceramic tiles. You must check out the Museum Nacional do Azulejo, if you want to see the best tilework that the city of Lisbon offers. The museum is filled with tiles of all colors and sizes, some of which date back to the 15th century. If you want to enjoy a snack in the central courtyard, there is a lovely little cafe and restaurant there.
7. Ride the tram
The classic yellow trams, known as remodelados, have become a symbol of Lisbon, widely photographed and shared on the media. Tram 28 is one of the ‘jewels’ of Lisbon. This old tramway crosses the most famous districts of Lisbon such as Alfama, Baixa or Chiado. This traditional method of transportations is the most popular tourist activities in Lisbon.
8. Visit the Carmo Archaeological Museum
Located in the Largo do Carmo, the museum is a mandatory visiting place. Founded in 1389, and designed by D. Nuno Álvares Pereira, it was built in a gothic style. Following the 1755 earthquake, the church was partially destroyed. It’s very a peaceful place, and worth spending some hours visiting it.
9. Try Pastéis de Nata in Lisbon
Pastéis de Nata is the jewel of Portugal Culinary reputation. This custard tart, is a national favorite, made by egg yolks and vanilla wrapped in crispy dough, sprinkled with cinnamon. Everywhere you go you will find the natas. A visit to Lisbon isn’t complete without eating at least one Pastéis de Nata.
10. Check out the Padrão dos Descobrimentos Monument
The Padrão dos Descobrimentos is a bold and imposing monument situated on the banks Tejo Estuary. Created by Cottinelli Telmo and the sculptor Leopoldo de Almeida, the monument was erected in 1940. It’s 170 Ft (52 meters) tall, and it was designed to commemorate the ‘Age of Discoveries’ in Portugal.
Now that you have got some inspiration for (nearly) free fun in Lisbon, it’s time to plan your trip! Visit Lisbon and be amazed!