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Lisbon Travel Guide | Portugal

Updated: Dec 19, 2023

In this article, I will offer you the best places to see and visit in Lisbon.

Also, I will share some great rooftop terraces I found for food and cocktails, as well as some Lisbon local special dishes you have to try.

  1. Ride with a cable car

  2. Lisbon Aquarium - the largest indoor one in Europe

  3. Jeronimos Monastery - now museam

  4. Padrão Dos Descobrimentos

  5. Belem Tower

  6. Rossio Square

  7. Praca do Comercio

  8. Santa Justa Lift

  9. Alfama Area - the old town of Lisbon

  10. Extra: 2 best rooftop terraces

  11. Local food you have to try!

  12. Video

The Best Places to See and Visit in Lisbon

Ride A Cable Car

Riding a cable car (called a Telecabine) is a must on your trip to Lisbon. Head over to the Parques de Nacoes, also known as Nations Park along the Tagus River, where you will access them at the Oceanarium or Old Vasco da Gama Tower. It is a fun ride along the river, and you’ll get to see the Vasco da Gama Bridge along with other scenic views. The cost is only 4 Euros for a oneway ticket or about 6 Euros for a roundtrip.

Lisbon Aquarium

The Lisbon Aquarium opened in 1998 and is the largest indoor Aquarium in all of Europe! It’s home to over 16,000 animals in over 450 species and is a sight to behold architecturally. There are many exciting exhibits to see both large and small and four unique habitats, including the Tropical Indian coral reefs, the Temperate Pacific kelp forests, the Antarctic Coastline, and the North Atlantic rocky coast. Admission is 13 Euros for kids 3-12, 19 Euros for adults, and 15 Euros for seniors 65+.

Jeronimo’s Monastery

If you love Gothic architecture, you need to check out Jeronimo’s Monastery. It originally opened in 1495 for the Order Of Saint Jerome and is now classified as a National Monuments used as a museum. You can tour the grounds alone or with a guide and take in the stunning architecture that is full of history. Tickets are 10 Euros, and there are many discounts available.

Padrao Dos Descobrimentos

You don’t want to miss seeing the Padrao Dos Descobrimentos, a monument built to honour the 15th and 16th-century Portuguese explorers who helped the Portuguese become the most powerful maritime nation of the time. The imposing monument built of concrete, limestone, and ashlar stone highlights the men who were integral in helping Portugal succeed and cultivate the rich heritage its citizens hold dear today.

Belem Tower

The Belem Tower is officially known as the Tower Of Saint Vincent and was used as an embarkation area for Portuguese explorers. It was known as the ceremonial gateway to Lisbon displays the gorgeous Manueline Style of the Portuguese Revolution. This fortified tower is constructed of Lioz limestone and stands an impressive four stories high and 30-meters wide. It resides on a very small island on the coast of the Tagus River along the Lisbon shore.

Rossio Square

Rossio Square is known as the heart of Lisbon and is the place to go when you want to shop, eat, and relax! Many outdoor cafes surround the gorgeous cobblestone square, and the lively and exciting atmosphere is sure to impress. You can also see the gorgeous architecture of the churches, train stations, and buildings that surround you as you take in the electricity only Rossio Square can deliver.

Praca do Comercio

Known locally as the Terreiro do Paco, the Praca do Comercio is a picturesque harbour plaza that offers spectacular views and once welcomed royal dignitaries. It is home to the oldest cafe in Lisbon, Martinho da Arcada, the Pousada Hotel, and the Museum of Lisbon.

Santa Justa Lift

The Santa Justa Lift is the only remaining vertical lift in Lisbon and connects the lower streets of the Baixa to the higher ones of Carmo Square. Built as a way to combat the hills of the region and open up transportation, the Santa Justa Lift is a favourite stop among tourists and locals alike.

The Alfama Area

Your trip to Lisbon wouldn’t be complete without visiting the Alfama area, which is the oldest district within the city. You’ll enjoy meandering through the cobblestone streets surrounded by traditional Portuguese homes and taking in the unique and colourful character the area has to offer. Once home to the poorest citizens, Alfama is now an artisanal district, beloved by those who reside there.

2 best rooftop terraces in Lisbon

If you’re looking for other unique places to visit in Lisbon, check out the Silk Club and Noobai. The Silk Club is a rooftop restaurant and bar that overlooks the breathtaking views of the city and has some of the most delicious food you’ve ever tasted! You’ll enjoy 360-degree views of Lisbon, which are lit up at night and sparkle against the scenic ocean backdrop. Noobai is another rooftop restaurant located in Santa Catarina Belvedere and offers impressive views of the river, historic districts, and modern buildings. The food is incredible, and the ambience is even better!

Local Foods

Lisbon is home to some of the most delicious cuisine in the world, and while there, you have to try some of their traditional dishes. Each one is unique to the region and uses locally grown and harvested ingredients to provide you with a taste sensation unlike any you’ve ever experienced! Here are a few local dishes you must try!

Bacalhau a Bras - A cod dish with scrambled eggs, potatoes, black olives, and parsley. Popular among the locals, the flaky cod melts in your mouth and the salty olives deepen the overall flavour.

Cozido a Portuguesa - This dish is so popular in Lisbon, many restaurants have a day devoted to it! It has all the meats - beef, pork, sausage, and chicken, made into a stew with plenty of delicious vegetables mixed in.

Bifana and Prego meat sandwiches - These two local sandwiches pack in a ton of meat to satisfy even the largest appetite. The Prego is a beef sandwich that focuses on quality sauces, and the Bifana is a pork sandwich that is packed full of garlic!

All the above see with your own eyes in the video below. Also, get a small glimpse into one of the best surfing spots in Portugal!

If you want to do some surfing too, while in Portugal, then there is a lovely surfing town just 1h drive from Lisbon - Ericeira. To find out more about the place and the best surfing spots around, read my ERICEIRA blog!

If you are looking for a relaxing beach time, you might want to visit the South of Portugal too, the Algarve area. More about this area read on my ALGARVE blog and watch this video:

If you are looking to move to Portugal, check out these residency options in Portugal!


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