Lisbon offers a rich and varied history, a buzzing nightlife, and is blessed with a glorious year-round climate.
You’ll enjoy a city that effortlessly blends traditional Portuguese heritage, with striking modernism and progressive thinking. You will enjoy seeing buildings covered in glazed tiles and fine mosaic cobblestone sidewalks as you discover the best things to do in Lisbon.
BEST THINGS TO DO IN LISBON
Torre de Belém is an iconic landmark in Lisbon located near the mouth of the River Tagus.
During the 15th and 16th centuries, Portuguese navigators transformed Lisbon into the world’s main trade hub. The Belem Tower was originally conceived as a lighthouse, the tower was eventually built as a defensive fortress to protect Lisbon from enemy ships on the orders of King Manuel I.
The UNESCO World Heritage Site was designed by architect Francisco de Arruda and is adorned with Manueline symbolism and stone carved maritime motifs.
The magnificent Mosteiro dos Jerónimos is one of the many UNESCO World Heritage Site in Lisbon and is a national treasure. The monastery was commissioned by King Manuel I in the mid-15th century by the invocation of St. Mary of Belém.
The design of Jerónimos Monastery is a mix of Gothic and Renaissance elements and is a must-see on your trip to Lisbon.
Castelo de São Jorge
The Castelo de São Jorge is one of Lisbon’s most prolific monuments built high up on a hill overlooking the city. The castle was founded in the 10th and 11th centuries and endured a turbulent history surviving conflict and sieges by the Castilians and witnessed the birth of Portugal as a seafaring nation.
Declared a National Monument in 1910, the castle underwent major restoration work in the 1940s to the beautiful castle you see today. Discover more about the history of Lisbon, and the Torre de Ulisses (the Tower of Ulysses) in the. Museum at the castle.
Praça do Comércio
Before the earthquake of 1755, the Royal Palace was located on the spot where the square, Praça do Comércio, is now hence why locals still refer to this as Terreiro do Paço (Royal Yard).
Praça do Comércio provides access to various attractions that mustn’t be missed: Pátio da Galé; Cais das Colunas; and the innovative Lisbon Story Centre.You can climb up the Arco da Rua Augusta to look out at the symmetry of the streets, the calçada portuguesa and the view of the river. There is an iconic statue of José I, mounted on his horse Gentil, the work of sculptor Machado de Castro.
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Ride a Remodelado tram
The Remodelado trams were commissioned in the 1930s, to handle the steep gradients in Lisbon and are unsuitable for modern trains. For this reason, the classic trams are still operational and if you take a ride on Route 28, you can catch many of Lisbon’s landmarks along the way.
Drive over the 25 de Abril Bridge
The 25th April Bridge looks very similar to the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco so you’ll not be surprised to discover it was designed by the same company taking 45 months to complete.
Ponte 25 de Abril (in Portuguese) is the longest suspension bridge in Europe. It has two levels, the top-level is for cars and the lower, is for trains.
It was inaugurated on 6 August 1966 and was named Salazar Bridge, after António de Oliveira Salazar, dictator of Portugal until 1974. After the Carnation Revolution that took place on 25 April 1974 and Salazar’s regime was overturned, the Bridge was given the name of the 25th of April.
Devour pastéis de nata
You will not walk by a bakery in Lisbon without the temptation of the creamy custard pastries. The Portuguese dessert dates back 300 years and were created by Catholic monks at the Jerónimos Monastery. The nuns and monks used egg whites to starch their clothes, and the left-over egg yolks became a major ingredient in desserts. Once you try one, you will be hooked!
PLANNING YOUR PERFECT LISBON TRIP
Plan ahead for your Lisbon trip
- Find the best hotel deals in Lisbon on Booking.com
- Get your airport transfer booked from Lisbon Airport
- Find the best train ticket deals with Rail Europe
- Download WeSolo Travel App to plan trips with like-minded travellers
Book a tour of Lisbon
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