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What to do in Lisbon: 25 Things to Do in Lisbon Yo...

What to do in Lisbon: 25 Things to Do in Lisbon You Can’t Miss!

Wondering what to do in Lisbon, Portugal? Here are 25 things to do in Lisbon that you need to include in your Portuguese itinerary.

Lisbon is a great destination for a long weekend escape: it’s a multicultural, passionate, multifaceted city, and it will conquer you with its mix of modern and old-fashioned. Often underrated, Lisbon is one of my favorite cities in Europe together with London, and I hope you’ll like it as much as I do.

If it’s your first time visiting Lisbon and you’re wondering what to see in Lisbon with so many choices, I recommend you to start out with a very popular, essential tour of Lisbon that will show you the highlights of the city. Then work your way through this list. Ahem, I hope you’re spending at least a week in Lisbon to get it all done!

READ ALSO: The Ideal One Week in Portugal Itinerary

Check out my best Lisbon travel tips for where to go in Lisbon and the best things to see in Lisbon.

HOW TO SAVE MONEY IN LISBON

But first, who doesn’t want to save money and time? I bet you do, and so you should check out the Lisbon Card. This discount card comes in 3 versions – 24 hours, 48 hours, and 72 hours, and it’s highly affordable compared to many other cards for other European cities, with the 24 hours one costing as little as $21,63 at the time of writing.

But why do I think it’s a great deal? The Lisboa card includes:

  • Unlimited rides on Metro, Carris, Buses, Trams (including Tram 28), Funiculars and CP trains to Cascais and Sintra.
  • Free admission to 25 of the most popular museums and attractions including Jeronimos Monastery, Belem Tower, and Santa Justa Elevator, just to say a few.
  • Discounts to another 70+ attractions.

If you make a quick calculation, you can see just how much you can save by booking in advance your Lisbon Card!

THE 25 BEST THINGS TO DO IN LISBON

1| Go Up One, or Two, or Three Miradoures

One of the top things to do in Lisbon is to admire the view at one of many Lisbon’s Miradoures: at night, from sunset on, the Miradouro São Pedro de Alcantara [R. de São Pedro de Alcântara, get here with the Gloria funicular] gets pretty busy with students who meet here.

Another miradouro not to miss is the Miradouro do Graça [Calçada da Graça, get here by tram 28], from which you have an incredible view over the city and the Sao Jorge castle. Here you can also find an open-air cafe to relax with a view. 

Off the beaten path Lisbon tip: for a less known, but equally beautiful spot, head to the Miradouro do Monte Agudo [Rua Heliodoro Salgado, closest underground stop: Graça].

2| Wander Around the Alfama

Alfama is one of those places where all you need to do is wandering around, at your own pace.

In the Alfama you can breathe Lisboa’s past: the neighborhood survived to the 1775 earthquake and is the oldest area of the city, so put away that map and walk through the alleyways and the narrow streets (one of the top 10 things to do in Lisbon if you only have a weekend in Lisbon).

However, when you’re done with that, there a few things to do in Alfama that should be part of your Lisbon sightseeing plan.

⇒ Visit the Lisbon Cathedral [Largo da Sé], also called the Sé, one of the main churches in the city. It’s also the oldest church in Lisbon, with construction dating back to the 12th century. Visiting the cathedral is one of the best free things to do in Lisbon, but if you want to visit the cloisters, there is an admission fee of €2.50.

Lisbon Cathedral Opening Hours: 7 am to 7 pm everyday.

⇒ The Fado Museum [Largo do Chafariz de Dentro 1] is also interesting if you want to learn more about this traditional type of music.

Museu do Fado Opening Hours: Tuesday to Sunday from 10 am to 5.30 pm. Closed on Mondays.
Museu do Fado Entrance Fee: 5 euros

⇒ The Castelo de Sao Jorge (St. George’s Castle) is definitely worth a visit. The castle stands on top of the tallest hill in the city, and the views over the Baixa district and the Tegus River are magnificent from here. The eleven castle towers, the lookouts, and the gardens transport you back in time, and even the kids love visiting it.

 

St. George’s Castle is probably the most famous attraction in Lisbon, and the queues can be very long. Consider getting in advance a skip-the-line ticket.

Sao Jorge Castle Opening Hours: open from 9 am to 6 pm every day.
Sao Jorge Castle Entrance Fee: €8.50. The family ticket costs €20 and allows access to 2 adults+ 2 kids under 20.

3| Find a Bakery

Lisbon will certainly become a favorite destination for visitors with a sweet tooth: from the famous Pastéis de Nata in Belém, to tartes de maça, to travesseiros in nearby Sintra, Lisbon is a city in which to indulge your senses.

What to do in Lisbon: pasteis da cruz alta in piriquita, sintra

For a list of the best bakeries in Lisbon, check out my post about pastries in Portugal.

One of the best ways to explore the real culinary world of Lisbon is by joining authentic foodie experiences with locals in private homes. Isn’t it better than a regular food tour where you don’t get to interact with the locals? For me, absolutely! EatWith is the world’s biggest community for culinary experiences with locals, so go and check out all the dining experiences in Lisbon that you can choose from such as dinner in a chef’s home, or a pastel de nata cooking class.

4| Visit the Historical Neighborhood of Belém

Belém is one of the most famous neighborhoods in Lisbon. Although not particularly central, it’s easily accessible by taking tram number 15 in the Cais do Sodré station. 

In Lisbon’s most historic neighborhoods there are a few things you can’t miss. The Jerónimos Monastery (Mosteiro dos Jerónimos)  and the Belém Tower (Torre de Belém) are truly must sees in Lisbon.

The Jerónimos Monastery [Praça do Império 1400-206] is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and it’s a beautiful work of architecture (the cloisters are impressive). Vasco da Gama spent here his last night before starting his trip to Asia!

You can visit the main chapel for free, but if you want to visit the monastery there’s an entrance fee of 10 euros, unless you have the Lisbon Card, in which case it’s free. You can buy your skip-the-line ticket in advance here.

Jerónimos Monastery Opening Hours: 10 am to 6.30 pm in the summer, 10 am to 5.30 pm in the winter

The Belém Tower is one of the most iconic monuments in Lisbon, and a fortified tower that was first built to defend the city. Go up the tower and enjoy the stunning views over the Tagus River, the April 25 bridge, and the statue of Christ the Redeemer. The entrance fee is 3 euros, but again it’s free with the Lisbon Card. I recommend buying your skip-the-line entrance ticket in advance so you can avoid the sometimes long queue!

Belém Tower Opening Hours: 10 am to 6.30 pm in the summer, 10 am to 5.30 pm in the winter

Time for a sweet break! Among other things to do in Belem is the Pasteis de Belem bakery [Rua de Belém 84-92], where 20,000 pastéis de nata (or custard tarts), are made everyday! The pastries are served hot, just out of the oven and they are. the. most. delicious. thing. Eveeeer.

READ ALSO: 7 Portuguese Pastries You Can’t Miss

If you want to join a tour, check out THIS TOUR that’s a 3-hour walking tour of Belém (pastry included!), or THIS TOUR that combines Belem (the Monastery, the Tower, and the Pasteis de Belem factory) with the Lisbon Cathedral and Chiado in half a day.

5| Ride Tram 28

Riding tram 28 from Martim Moniz to Campo Ourique is one of the most fun things to do in Lisbon – it’s also a great way to understand the geography of the city by driving past the main Lisbon points of interest, and to avoid some uphill walk, which doesn’t hurt!

 

This is definitely one of the top attractions in Lisbon old town, and trams get very packed at midday and peak hours when the locals come back from work. To avoid the crowds try and go before 11 am, even earlier in the summer.

You can also choose a tour that combines a ride on tram 28 with a walking tour of the beautiful Alfama neighborhood. ⇒ BOOK IT HERE

6| Take a Day Trip to Cascais from Lisbon

Head to Cascais, the most popular beach town near Lisbon, for some shopping and beach time. This popular destination is famous for its charming city center, with pretty, pastel-colored buildings, and its coastline.

 

Fun things to do in Cascais – beyond lounging at the Praia da Ribeira beach – include stand up paddling, cycling down to Guincho beach (the best beach for surfing in the area) which is 8 km away, and walking to the Boca do Inferno (Hell’s Mouth), a series of cliffs and caves about 20 minutes walking from the marina. They might not be the beaches of the Algarve, but are worth a visit!

How to get to Cascais: the best option is to take the train from Cais do Sodré station, departing every 20 minutes. 

If you prefer to join a day tour, check out THIS TOUR that includes Cascais, Sintra and Cabo da Roca in a full-day tour from Lisbon.

7| Enjoy the Nightlife in Bairro Alto

Lisbon is a city that doesn’t sleep: start the night at Bairro Alto (this neighborhood at day time is absolutely desert, many shops are even closed in the morning!), and sip Morangoska (a cocktail made with vodka and fresh strawberries) and Caipirinha in one of the many bars. Cocktails and shots are cheap, at about 3-4 euros. Going out in Lisbon at night is a must!

 

TIP TIME: the best night to party in Lisbon with the locals is Thursday, not Friday, when many students go back home and are mostly tourists to fill the streets.

8| Go treasure hunting at Feira da Ladra

For a very local experience, go treasure hunting at Feira da Ladra, Lisbon’s most famous flea market.
Every Tuesday and Saturday, from 9am to 6 pm, here you will find hundreds of stalls selling literally anything.

What to do in Lisbon: feira da ladra flea market lisbon

Vintage lovers and non will love to seek out weird souvenirs, but pay attention to your valuables while walking … there must be some reason if the name of the place means “thieves market”!

How to get to Feira da Ladra: the best way to get to the market is combining it with the ride on tram 28, and getting off at Arco de São Vicente.

9| Find the Best Souvenirs from Lisbon

If relatives and friends have asked for a souvenir and you are wondering what to buy in Lisbon, this time get them something different from those boring pins and shot glasses. At Conserveira de Lisboa [in the Baixa, Rua dos Bacalhoeiros 34] all they sell is premium quality canned food.

The shop has been running since 1930, when canned food was popular because affordable and but now it’s become some gourmet canned food. You find here the typical sardines, tuna and mackerels together with mousse of codfish and stuffed squids, and other yummy stuff.

4| Drink some Ginjinha

Ginjinha is a typical Portuguese liquor made of a cherry-alike berry.
One shot usually costs 1 euro and you can have it also with a cherry or a chocolate wafer, which makes the experience even sweeter.

The most popular bar to try it is A Ginjinha [at Rossio, Largo de São Domingos 8], but it’s also very popular in the many cafés around Praça da Figueira.

11 | Take a Day Trip to Sintra

 In a list of the top things to see in Lisbon, a day trip to Sintra is a must-do (and definitely a destination to be added to any road trip in Portugal). This is such a weird, and at the same time magical place! Sintra is a cute village surrounded by lush, green hills, it seems to be coming out of a fairy tale with all of its palaces and castles.

What to do in Lisbon: palacio da pena in sintra

The most famous is the Palácio Nacional da Pena, a romantic and quite eccentric castle that has been declared a UNESCO World heritage site. This castle is so weird that visiting it was definitely one of the most fun things to do in Sintra for me. It looks like a kid went and designed it!

 

You can visit both the Palace and the Park, or just wander around the park, although for me it’s absolutely worth the visit the palace as well. 

Pena Palace Opening Hours: 10 am to 6 pm every day.
Pena Palace Entrance Fee: 14 euros for both palace and park. 7,5 euros for just the park.

If you want to avoid the very long queues, it makes sense to book in advance a Pena Palace and Park Skip-the-Line Ticket  BOOK IT HERE

Other places to visit in Sintra if you have enough time include the Moorish Castle and the National Palace of Sintra.

Castelo dos Mouros (Castle of the Moors) is a medieval castle that was built in the 8th century by the Islamic Moors, but was destroyed during the Christian invasion of Portugal. Restored in the 19th century, the castle grounds are beautiful, with a forest surrounding the hilltop castle, and great views over the Sintra region.

Moorish Castle Opening Hours: open 10 am to 6 pm every day.
Moorish Castle Entrance Fee: 8 euros. Book here the Castle of the Moors Fast Track ticket to skip the line.

The Palacio Nacional de Sintra (National Palace of Sintra) [Largo Rainha Dona Amélia] is right in the city center of Sintra. Visit if you’re interested in history and the history of the royals.

National Palace of Sintra Opening Hours: open from 9,30 am to 6 pm every day.
National Palace of Sintra Entrance Fee: 10 euros. Book here the National Palace of Sintra Fast Track Ticket to skip the line.

Other activities in Sintra include tasting the yummy, traditional pastries of Sintra, visiting the Arab-influenced, UNESCO World Heritage Site Monserrate Palace, and spending some time at Praias da Adraga, a wild beach near Sintra.

 

How to get to Sintra from Lisbon: take the train from Lisbon Rossio station, that runs every 15 minutes (€4.50 for a return ticket). You can also book a private driver for the day if you prefer.

You can totally visit Sintra on your own if you want, but it’s one of those destinations where going with a tour makes sense so you can pack more attractions in one day. Check these out.

Full-Day Sintra Tour from Lisbon with Pena Palace, that also includes Cabo da Roca, Cascais, and more.  BOOK IT HERE

– Sintra and Cascais Small Group Full-Day Tour from Lisbon, which includes Sintra of course, plus a few stops along the Estoril Coast.  BOOK IT HERE

– You can find more tours to Sintra HERE.

READ ALSO: How to get to Sintra from Lisbon – Train, Bus or Tour?

12| Visit the Colorful Food Markets in Lisbon

I love food markets, don’t you too? They are one of the best places to mingle with the locals and truly catch the feeling of a place, so make sure to insert at least one of these in your Lisbon to do list.

The Mercado de Alvalade Norte [Avenida Rio de Janeiro] is a daily farmer market where you can buy food directly from the local producers; it has become trendy since Anthony Bourdain visited it during his TV show “No Reservations”, but it’s still very much a traditional market where you find frsh produce directly from the farmers and freshly-made bread.

Mercado de Alvalade Norte Opening Hours: open Monday to Friday 7 am to 3 pm, Saturday 7 am to 4 pm

 

Check out also the colorful Mercado 31 de Janeiro, located in the Saldanha neighborhood [Rua Engenheiro Vieira da Silva], a typical neighborhood, local market.

Mercado 31 de Janeiro Opening Hours: Tuesday to Saturday 12.30 pm to 3 pm and 7.30 pm to 11 pm; Sundays 12.30 pm to 3 pm; closed on Mondays.

13| Watch the Sunset in Cabo da Roca

Visiting Cabo da Roca was one of the highlights of my trip to Portugal.

Cabo da Roca is the westernmost point in mainland Europe and it really feels like it’s the end of the world. There’s not much there but a lighthouse, a restaurant, and a souvenir shop but the rocky and wild landscape are totally worth the diversion.

What to do in Lisbon: Cabo da roca

At sunset time, where everything becomes a warm shade of orange and pink, it’s even better! But make sure you bring a sweater with you, it gets very windy up there!

 

You can combine Cabo da Roca with either a day trip to Sintra or Cascais. A few tours that include Cabo da Roca are:

Sintra, Cabo da Roca and Cascais: Full-Day Tour from Lisbon, that allows you to explore all the best destinations for day trips from Lisbon in just one day. Packed, but worth it. ⇒ BOOK IT HERE

Half-Day Sintra Tour from Lisbon with Transfers, where a private driver will bring you to Sintra and Cabo da Roca.  BOOK IT HERE

How to get to Cabo da Roca: it’s easy to get to Cabo da Roca from Cascais or Sintra, by taking in both cases the Scotturb bus number 403 that takes about 40 minutes from either city.

14| Listen to some Fado

In each what to do in Lisbon type of guide you’ll find this one recommended,  and it’s indeed an unmissable one when visiting the city.

Listen to some Fado, Lisbon’s traditional music genre, characterized by the slow and melancholic rhythm and recently added to the Unesco’s list of World’ s Intangible Heritage. It’s one of the best things to do in Lisbon at night.

Image by Festival Durance Luberon via Flickr

When heading out for some Fado, choose carefully the venue: most places in the Alfama offering the “dinner+fado” packages are extremely touristy, overpriced and I’ve been told that the food is nothing but mediocre.

 

The Fado Music of Lisbon 3-Hour Cultural Walking Tour is a  great option if you’d like to combine Fado and a traditional Portuguese meal in a non-touristy way. Walk to some typical fado houses and alleys and squares off the tourist path with a live fado singer and guide, then have dinner in one of the most authentic fado houses of Alfama.  BOOK IT HERE

I listened to a local friend and headed to A Tasca do Chico in Barro Alto [Rua do Diário de Noticias, 39], which is a simple, small bar, and apparently one of the best Fado places in Lisbon. Here on Mondays and Wednesdays, starting from 9m, you can sip some red wine while listening to fado singers alternating every 15 minutes. A good alternative for budget travelers. Make sure you arrive earlier than 9 pm, the place gets filled up.

Another good option is booking your tickets for the very popular “Fado in Chiado” show. At about $20 per person, it’s an affordable alternative to the typical fado and dinner show.  BOOK IT HERE

15| Time to Bring Out the Kid in You at the Oceanarium and Pavilhao do Conhecimento

When you’re so tired from sightseeing that every church and every square looks the same to you, get out of Lisbon centre and head to the modern Parque das Nações area [closest underground station: Oriente] and visit the Pavilhao do Conhecimento [Largo José Mariano Gago, 1, Parque das Nações].

What to do in Lisbon: riding a suspended bike at Pavilhao do Conocimento

Visiting the Pavillion of Knowledge is definitely one of the best things to do in Lisbon with kids, but as an adult traveling with no kids, I can assure you that I had great fun experimenting with science, and riding a suspended bike was the highlight…yup, I’m a big kid!

 

Pavilhao do Conhecimento Opening Hours: Tuesday to Friday 10 am to 6 pm; Weekends 11 am to 7 pm.
Pavilhao do Conhecimento Entrance Fee: 9 euros for adults; 6-7 euros for children.

Another place you need to head to while in the area is the Oceanarium [Esplanada Dom Carlos I], which hosts 16,000 individuals of 450 species. Here you’ll find anything from penguins and sharks to jellyfish and sunfish. Kids love it!

Oceanarium Lisbon Opening Hours: 10 am to 6 pm every day.

BOOK HERE the Lisbon Oceanarium Entrance Ticket in advance and skip the lines.

16| Climb the Cristo Rei in Cacilhas

For a great, but off the tourist path, viewpoint over Lisbon, from Cais de Sodré take the ferry to Cacilhas, on the other bank of the Tagus river: the Transtejo Cacilheiros takes only ten minutes (departing every few minutes during the week and every 30 minutes in the weekend, one way ticket €1.25).

What to do in Lisbon: View of the 25th April bridge

Cacilhas is a picturesque district where you will breathe an authentic Lisbon feel.

 

Try one of the many good seafood restaurants or climb the Cristo Rei, Rio look-alike, statue [Alto do Pragal, Avenida Cristo Rei] to have a great view of the San Francisco’s Golden Gate look-alike bridge (a Lisbon must do)… did anyone say it’s a small world? 

Cristo Rei Opening Hours: open daily from 9.30 am to 6.30 pm
Cristo Rei Entrance Fee: 6 euros

You can also book here the 25 de Abril Bridge and Christ the King by Tuk-Tuk for your group.

17| Try the Traditional Portuguese Food with a Food Tour

I truly believe that Portuguese food is underrated. To try the traditional Portuguese dishes such as Caldo Verde and Bacalhau, why not joining a food tour? I don’t know about you, but I love, love, loooove food tours! Here are my favorites:

BOOK HERE the Lisbon Gourmet Walking Tour and Tastings: on this 3-hour tour of Lisbon’s traditional eateries, you’ll try petiscos, port wine, cod fish cake and more.

BOOK HERE the Lisbon Food Tour by Segway through the Alfama and Bairro Alto to eat custard tart, cod fish cake and many more dishes.

 

18| Visit the home of SL Benfica Football Club

Football fans, no worries. In Lisbon there’s something for you too: a stadium and a sport museum!

 

Visit the Luz Stadium, home to the world’s famous SL Benfica Football Club, one of the most famous teams in Portugal, and retrace the footsteps of legendary football players. The stadium was also home to the 2014 final of the Champions League.

Then, walk through the “History of Benfica” exhibition at the Museum Benfica Cosme Damião, and learn more about the most famous player of Benfica, Eusebio, and the history of football in Portugal.

BOOK HERE your Luz Stadium Tour and SL Benfica Museum Ticket 

19| Take a Day Trip to Fatima and Nazare

Get out of the city and discover what else Portugal has to offer beyond Lisbon – a lot!

Nazarè is a charming seaside town along Portugal’s Silver Coast about 75 km north of Lisbon, which makes it easy to reach for a day trip.

Nazare has become famous in the years for its giant waves that transformed it into one of the best surfing destinations in the world. Coming here and see some of the biggest surfers in the world ride these scary waves is a show of a lifetime, but even without the waves Nazaré is a charming, and relaxed seaside town, and you can literally have a full meal of fresh fish for 15 euros!

 

I loved, loooved Nazare. I actually ended up staying for 3 days, and totally recommend staying longer if you can, but if not, a day trip from Lisbon is still a great way to get a glimpse of it.

Next, another impressive destination that should be on your lista: Fatima. This town in the hills of Santarem became famous for the religious visions that happened here in 1917, for which the town has become an important pilgrimage center for Catholics.

Even if you’re not Catholic or into religion, in my opinion a day trip from Lisbon around this region is still totally worth it. The small villages and the stunning landscapes are something completely different from the capital, and will show you a different side of Portugal.

 

Here it’s a great day tour that includes Fatima and Nazaré:

– Fatima, Obidos , Batalha and Nazaré Group Tour, which includes Nazare and Fatima + the medieval village of Obidos and the  UNESCO World Heritage monastery of Batalha from the 14th century.BOOK IT HERE 

20| Enjoy All the Ethnic Food in Lisbon

If you love ethnic food as much as I do, head to the Martim Moniz area full of African, Asian and Middle-Eastern restaurants. The Mouraria Shopping center [Rua da Mouraria 1] is the best place to buy ingredients for trying and cook your own ethnic dinner.

Tip for strong stomachs: sushi can easily become an expensive choice, but all-you-can eat sushi dinner at Japonês Dao [Rua da Palma 245] for, SIT DOWN, €9,90 (at lunch €6,90)?? What are you waiting for?

21| Discover the Street Art in Lisbon

Lisbon is renowned for its street art – at any corner, you’ll find some treasures in the form of street art and graffiti. There’s an explanation for this: Lisbon is so colorful because the city of Lisbon actually encourages and sponsors street art events, as street art (the good one, not the ugly tags on the walls!) is seen as a way to revitalize the neighborhoods in the outskirts.

 

In the Mouraria neighborhood, you can find beautiful art dedicated to fado, which was born in this are of the city. Then head to Alcantara and visit the LX Factory, a social hub for artists full of artwork. 

If you want to stay more in the central areas, the Bairro Alto offers some of the best of Lisbon street art; the best can be found around Rua de São Boaventura and Travessa dos Fiéis de Deus. The Alfama and Graça also hide street art murals – search for them in the small alleys and narrow pathways.

If you prefer to join a tour and learn more about street art from a street art expert, join this 3-hour Lisbon Street Art, where you’ll see the best large scale murals in Lisbon.  BOOK IT HERE

22| Take a Cruise in the Tagus River

The Tagus River, or Rio Tejo, is the longest river in the Iberian Peninsula, and a cruise is the best way to see Lisbon from a different perspective. 

You can go on a Yellow Boat Tour and take in views of the most emblematic monuments in Belém and pass under the 25 de Abril bridge (BOOK IT HERE), or you can go a little more fancy and opt for an affordable 2-hours Sailing Tour with Champagne on a yacht (BOOK IT HERE). 

For the ultimate romantic experience, you can opt for a 2-Hour Sunset Cruise, and watch the sun dipping behind the horizon of the Atlantic Ocean.  BOOK IT HERE

 

23| Take a Wine Tour in Evora, Alentejo, or the Setubal region

To all the wine lovers out there, let me tell you: you really shouldn’t miss the opportunity to visit the Douro Valley near Porto, in the north of Portugal. If you have limited time, however, you can still enjoy wine in one of these regions easily accessible from Lisbon.

The Alentejo region and Setubal Peninsula are incredibly beautiful. You’ll find wineries here, of course, but also castles, fortresses, shrines and monasteries immersed in beautiful landscapes.

Join a full day-tour that will bring you to both these regions: you’ll learn about the wines of Portugal, visit 2 wineries in the Setubal Peninsula and Alentejo region, have lunch at a traditional restaurant, and taste award-winning wines.  BOOK HERE the Alentejo Wine Tour from Lisbon

Otherwise, you can opt for the very popular Private Wine tasting Tour in the Setúbal region, where you’ll head to Azeitão, a picturesque region famous for its cheese and wine. You’ll visit 3 of the region’s wine cellars, and sample regional wines, cheese, and sweets from Portugal. BOOK IT HERE 

The city of Évora, two hours away from Lisbon, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Join a day tour and enjoy the views from the top of the Évora Cathedral, visit the Roman Temple of Évora and the very creepy Chapel of Bones + of course enjoy a wine and oil tasting at Enoturismo Cartuxa.
BOOK HERE the Évora Full-Day Tour with Wine Tasting from Lisbon

 

24| Explore Lisbon Off the Beaten Path

This list will keep you busy for a long time as it is, and some of them are actually pretty unusual things to do in Lisbon, but if you’re looking for a few more ideas for exploring Lisbon off the beaten track, here you go! Check out these cool things to do in Lisbon.

⇒ For the more active among you, you can choose wild canoeing in the beautiful Arrabida Natural Park, or enjoy a surfing and yoga session at Costa da Caparica (a great idea if you visit Lisbon in August or July when the temperatures are high).

⇒ What about an helicopter flight over Lisbon? Definitely an experience you won’t forget any time soon! Another luxury option if you want to treat yourself is staying overnight aboard a luxury yacht while you cruise Portugal’s scenic coastline. It’s actually more affordable than you think!

⇒ Are you an adventurous eater? Then check out the Brave Foodies Tour, one of the most weird things to do in Lisbon, where you’ll try he most “weird” Portuguese dishes. Anything from Pork’s ears, Rooster bloody Rice, Chicken feet, testicles… apparently these are all yummy! But don’t tell me I haven’t warned you…

⇒ Did you know you can see bottlenose dolphins in their natural environment not far from from the Portugal capital. Head to Setubal, board a restored salt galleon, and head to one of the most beautiful bays to find the dolphins.

⇒ And if you’d like to go on an off the beaten path tour with a local, discovering the local side of the city and the non touristy things to do in Lisbon, is one of the best unique things to do in Lisbon.

 

25| Feel like a Local

Still have time and wondering what to do in Lisbon? This is guaranteed to make you feel like a local.
Sit down at a cafe, relax, and enjoy some people-watching: this is what the people here do, and it’s a must do in Lisbon.

HOW TO GET AROUND LISBON

It’s very easy to get around Lisbon by public transportation. With a network of trams, buses, funicular, and metro, there’s always a way to get anywhere you’re headed. You can search here how to get to your destination.

A single ticket valid on trams, buses, and metro costs € 1,50, and a day ticket valid 24h costs € 6,40 (if you’re heading to Cacilhas too, the ticket costs € 9,50).

You can also buy the tickets on board buses and trams, but it’s more expensive – buses € 2, trams  € 3.

If you’re planning to visit museums and Lisbon attractions with an entrance fee, it might make sense to buy a Lisbon Card for 1, 2, or 3 days that includes unlimited transport and free access to 25 museums + discounts for many others.

BOOK HERE the Lisbon Card: 24-, 48-, and 72-Hour Options

Another way to see the city is by using the Hop-On Hop-Off bus network, 

BOOK HERE the Lisbon 72-Hour Hop-On Hop-Off Bus, Tram and Boat Ticket

You’ve got multiple options when it comes to transfers from and to Lisbon airport. You can choose between a private transfer, a shared transfer to your hotel, and the AeroBus.

BOOK HERE an affordable Private Transfer to/from Lisbon Airport 

⇒ BOOK HERE a Lisbon Shared Transfer To/From the Airport and from/to your hotel. Available 24/7 and affordable.

⇒ BOOK HERE the AeroBus Lisbon Airport Shuttle, that runs daily from 7.30 am to 11 pm and has multiple stops around the city. This is your cheapest option to get from the airport to the city and viceversa.

 

WHERE TO STAY IN LISBON

When it comes to hotels, Lisbon offers a great amount of accommodation options, for all necessities and budgets. Check out my favorite ones and book your accommodation using the map below ⬇

 

Luxury & Boutique Hotels

Santiago de Alfama – Boutique HotelLocated in the middle of the Alfama neighborhood, this 5-star hotel boasts incredible views. The stylish, bright 13 rooms and 6 suites all come with different designs and layouts. The best place in Lisbon to stay? Maybe! Check out prices and availability for Santiago de Alfama – Boutique Hotel

Valverde Hotel: This 5-star boutique hotel features fancy vintage interiors and a small pool. Location is everything, and Valverde Hotel is located on the most exclusive Avenida de Liberdade in a heritage building, in the best district to stay in Lisbon. Check out prices and availability for Valverde Hotel.

Inspira Santa Marta Hotel & Spa: A boutique hotel, Inspira Santa Marta Hotel & Spa is a leader among sustainable hotels – “Doing the right thing” is its slogan. Book also for its Feng-shui inspired modern design and the Spa. Check out prices and availability for Inspira Santa Marta Hotel & Spa.

 

Luxury for Less: $100 or less

Casa do Mercado Lisboa: A charming boutique bed & breakfast. Simple, yet elegant decor with wooden floor. Its location, steps from the Bairro Alto, makes it ideal as a base to visit the city.
Check out prices and availability for Casa do Mercado Lisboa.

Lux Lisboa Park: How does a rooftop heated pool and Jacuzzi sound? Soundproof design rooms with wooden floors and a white theme. Great location in the heart of the city.
Check out prices and availability for Lux Lisboa Park.

Neya Lisboa Eco Hotel: An environmentally-friendly hotel in the heart of Lisbon. We like its commitment to sustainability and the fact they provide bicycles for you to visit the city.
Check out prices and availability for Neya Lisboa Eco Hotel.

On a Budget

House Sao Bento: Beautiful rooms that come with an incredible price tag. The self-service kitchen is a plus. Good location, a 12-minute walk from Bairro Alto.
Check out prices and availability for House Sao Bento.

Boho Guesthouse Rooms & Apartments: Gotta love the colorful and bright design of the rooms mixed with the dark wooden floors. Not what you’d expect from a budget option! Great location, 2-minutes walk to Cais do Sodrè. Check out prices and availability for Boho Guesthouse Rooms & Apartments.

Nomad 64Cosy hostel with a homey feeling. Very modern and clean (shared) facilities in the central San Antonio neighborhood. Check out prices and availability for Nomad 64.

Not what you were looking for? Check out the best prices for Lisbon hotels.

What are your tips and suggestions for things to do in Lisbon, Portugal?

READ MORE…

The Perfect One-Week Portugal Road Trip from Lisbon to Porto
How to Get from Lisbon to Porto

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  1. Alan Papworth

    25 August

    Thanks for the great advice given Steph,am going in November so should be less touristy too

    • Stef

      25 August

      Hi Alan, I’m glad you liked the tips. I think you will love Lisbon in autumn, definitely less tourists, less waiting in line for the must-sees and it shouldn’t even be too cold! Let me know how you liked the city

  2. Jessica

    22 January

    This is great thank you! Ill keep you updated on what we will think about Lisbon after going there in February!

    • Steph

      25 January

      Glad it’s helpful and keep me updated! I’m sure you’ll have a great time though 🙂

  3. Paulo

    24 January

    Many thanks for this wonderful article Steph, we are sharing with our followers 🙂

    • Steph

      25 January

      Thank you so much Paulo!!

  4. Chloe

    25 January

    Definitely visit the Oceanarium, it’s absolutely amazing!

    • Steph

      25 January

      I will have to go next time I visit Lisbon then 🙂

  5. Sileas

    17 February

    Very nice post about Lisbon, I just been there recently and felt totally the same about that beautiful city!

  6. […] 17 things you need to do in Lisbon by (Every) Steph […]

  7. Franca

    23 February

    I haven’t been to Lisbon yet, but the more I read and hear about it, the more my curiosity increases, I must go! I think I’d like this city and its markets, it looks a perfect place with plenty to do for everybody 🙂

    • Steph

      24 February

      Oh you have to go Franca! And if you head to Portugal make sure to visit Porto as well, I liked it even more than Lisbon!

  8. […] still blaming me for fattening up, by the way). Here are the Portuguese pastries i’ve found while exploring Lisbon (and that you should not miss if you have a sweet […]

  9. Brooke

    29 June

    Martin Moniz and Sintra sound like the unique places to experience culture and history, and that’s where I’d start my trip. I hear Portugal is a hidden gem and I’d love to visit.

  10. Michelle

    10 September

    These are great tips, thanks for the post! Will keep this post in mind since Lisbon is on my list of places to visit next year. Have a great day!

    • Steph

      15 September

      Thank you for reading! You will love Lisbon, it’s hard not to 🙂 Let me know how it goes

  11. LxWay

    17 March

    Great article Steph we will share it with our followers 🙂 When you decide to visit Portugal again we got the apartment you need with special price for bloggers and writers. Just ask for our Media Rate 😉

  12. […] the trip was amazing! Here a guide on What to do in Lisbon. […]

  13. […] ALSO: What to do do in Lisbon: 17 things not to […]

  14. […]  Choose something like Birkenstock that will give that hippie touch to your outfit. Same tips for Lisbon as […]

  15. […] was a great year, which saw me drinking tea with the Berbers, exploring Portugal and touring London with a homeless, but it looks like 2015 travel plans will be even more […]

  16. […] in the centre of the historical district of Baixa, you are walking distance to some of the best things to do in Lisbon such as Saint George’s Castle (Castelo de Sao Jorge), the picturesque neighbourhood of Alfama, […]

  17. […] like Braga in the north, Tavira in the Algarve, and Monsanto in the east. Once you’ve done all there is to do in Lisbon, consider venturing further afield to one of these other […]

  18. Totally agree! We’ve been to Lisbon for the first time last year, and I absolutely fell in love with their Pasteis de Nata! Close second: delicia folhoda. Had them for breakfast every day. 😉 Did some nice finds on the flea market, had a ginjinha, got shaken on tram 28, listened to some Fado at Tasca do Chico (what a coincidence!), and visited Sintra. Too bad we missed the Pavilhao do Conecimento though. And we should head back someday to visit Cascais as well. One thing we loved as well: the Lisbon Escape Game. One of the coolest escape rooms we’ve solved so far! Oh, and the view from the top of the Monastery of SaoVicente de Fora was gorgeous as well!

  19. Susan

    10 June

    Thanks for your tips. One of the most informative articles I’ve read on Lisbon.

  20. Hi Stefania!

    I`m going to Lisbon this Thursday and I`ve been looking for some special tips of what to do. All I was finding was more of the same touristic ideas, until I found your blog. As a fellow travel blogger this is exactly the kind of content that I share and that I seek, so thank you! Already saved this post for my upcoming trip!

    Thank you!

  21. Great article Stefania!!! I had a lot of fun in Lisbon, it’s such an amazing city although I could live without the super steep hills haha

  22. […] time I go to Portugal, I fall in love a little bit more. Porto is absolutely charming, there are so many things to do in Lisbon, the coast is simply wow… and the Douro Valley didn’t disappoint either. Here […]

  23. […] visit to a Fado House to hear this beautiful Portuguese tradition with your own ears. For more things to do in Lisbon, check out that […]

  24. Andrew

    8 February

    Hi thanks for the tips, heading to Lisbon in May, it all sounds great!!

  25. Michael

    26 February

    I’ll be in Lisbon in Oct,do you recommend a Hotel where a walking tour of The city square and old town is possible. We’re excited to see your city. Thank you

  26. Joao

    26 December

    Lisbon is packed with turists these days so expect long queues for anything that is slightly popular, overcrowded streets that cause you stress and artificial souvenir shops everywhere. Also, Lisbon became very expensive over the past years featuring currently in the 100th most expensive cities in the world (http://www.theportugalnews.com/news/lisbon-in-top-100-most-expensive-cities-in-the-world/46025). If you want to have an authentic cheaper experience you should go somewhere else in Portugal (e.g. Aveiro, Coimbra, Guimaraes, Nazare, Obidos, Evora, Troia, Tavira, Lagos, Vilamoura).

    • Steph

      30 December

      Oh so sorry to hear that! Definitely different from when I was there 4 years ago then. I visited a few other places such as Nazare and Coimbra and Porto and truth is, I’m absolutely in love in general with Portugal! I went back last year to visit Porto and the Douro Valley and I can’t wait to go back to explore more of the south in particular! Where do you suggest me to go?

  27. Agness

    17 January

    Steph, this is an amazing list to do in Lisbon. I’ve got to try to visit that place again. Cheers from Taipei…

    • Steph

      18 January

      Thanks girl!I alos wanna go back so bad! Maybe this summer…

  28. jim corbett

    18 January

    Lisbon is the great place for tourism. Once I was there in last year and most of the place that you have mentioned I visited. And it’s a great experience. I loved this place and looking for another trip over there to explore more of this place. And thanks for posting such great content.

    • Steph

      23 January

      Thank you Jim for your nice words! It’s really easy to fall in love with Lisbon, isn’t it?

  29. Laura

    29 January

    My trip to Portugal: (+) Great weather and great food (except in Lisbon where it is overpriced and not authenthic), (-) Lisbon is overcrowded, noisy and stressful specially in Baixa and Chiado. I made day trips to Sintra/Guincho, to Alcochete/Costa da Caparica/Sesimbra and to Comporta and loved every bit of it. Also went a bit north of Lisbon to Nazare where you can see the biggest waves in the world. Honestly, I’d spend as little time as possible in Lisbon. Just rent a car and go around Lisbon. It’s cheaper and more authenthic.

    • Steph

      6 February

      I actually really liked Lisbon! Matter of taste I guess. I also maybe liked the rest of Portugal better, and for cities I like Porto better than Lisbon, but I really think that Lisbon is a must-see, it offers a lot.

  30. Emily

    14 February

    I love this! So many great ideas! I’ve been to Lisbon twice now, but still haven’t checked all these off of my list, so I’ll definitely have to hit them next time.
    The Alfama district is by far my favourite place in Lisbon. I agree, it’s such a beautiful spot to just wander at your own pace!

    • Steph

      18 February

      Definitely! You’ll have to stay for like a month to do them all 🙂 eheh, a good excuse though, Lisbon is such a cool city!

  31. Peter

    14 February

    Lisbon is nice but it is so packed with turists that you can’t even fit on the sidewalks of Baixa and Chiado. Overtourism is killing the city. If I ever come back to Portugal I’ll try to visit Porto and the Douro valley, and maybe rent a car and visit Braga, Coimbra and Aveiro.

  32. Eric Wilson

    13 March

    Fantastic Post!

  33. maria

    2 April

    Be aware of scams in Lisbon. The latest one is a bunch of kids dressed up as if they were part of a NGO asking tourists for donations to assist poor people. It’s all fake and it’s a big scam. Also be aware of pickpockets because they are very professional and they are pretty much everywhere in Lisbon. Hate to say this but unfortunately my city is no longer the nicest place to visit.

  34. Dorianne

    9 April

    Dear Steph,

    I’m thinking of visiting Madeira Island and Lisbon this year for about 10 nights during christmas/new year period. I almost read all your article re Lisbon and found it very interesting.

    Would appreciate to know what are your views for a holiday in Lisbon during this particular period.

    Thank you 🙂

    • Steph

      31 May

      I’m so sorry Dorianne, I completely missed your comment! First, I’m jealous about Madeira, I’ve been wanting to go for so long. I’ve never been in LIsbon at Christmas time, but I’ve been told it’s a nice time to go. Temperatures are lower but not as cold ad the rest of Europe, but it can get crowded. Nice festivities and traditions, but it might not be the same Christmas spirit that you get for example in Germany.

  35. lushi

    10 April

    The BEST guide i have read and believe me i have read a few !!! LOVED IT

    Thank you for sharing

    • Steph

      9 May

      Thank you so much!! I’m so glad to hear it 🙂

  36. maria

    30 April

    Lisbon became the new Venice. Crowds and crowds and crowds everywhere.

    • Steph

      6 May

      Oh no! I’m so sorry to hear Maria! I’m probably heading back there this summer, I hope it hasn’t changed too much from my last time there :/

  37. Maria

    8 May

    Good luck with that. Lisbon is overhyped, period. I can picture Lisbon in the summer with some guys pushing people back to the sidewalks like you see in the metro stations in China. But I’ll leave the judgment to you and then you’ll let me know if it really changed or it is just me increasingly fed up with noisy tourists pretty much everywhere.

  38. Anna

    27 May

    Thank you so much for your wonderful post!
    That´s an amazing inspiration!

    Happy Monday,
    Anna

  39. Liz p

    28 May

    We are considering either Girona or Lisbon in October with two teenage girls . Which do you think would be best for a city break ?

    • Steph

      31 May

      I haven’t been to Girona so I’m not sure, but I lived in Barcelona for almost a year and I can tell you that Girona is quite small. It could be a good base for some day trips (including to Barcelona) but the city in itself can be visited in one day. Lisbon is bigger and there’s a lot more to do, so it depends what you want from your trip!

  40. Jennifer Sawle

    29 May

    Hey Steph! Thank you for your list of things to do! My family plus another will be heading your way on December 24th! We are SUPER excited. Looks like we will be staying in the Historic neighborhood our first 5 days. I read about the Winter Carnival, do you know if it’s open on Christmas Day? Can you recommend any restaurants that will be open on Christmas Day as well? Can’t wait to visit this amazing city!

    • Steph

      31 May

      Hey! I would recommend you to Google it as it’s quite specific information, and I’ve never been in Lisbon at Christmas time. Happy travels!

  41. Bitoque

    26 June

    Lisbon…
    The city center is becoming a theme park and, step by step, houses in the old neighborhoods are being replaced by short term rental houses and airbnb things. The real typical shops, restaurants and bars are being replaced by fake-typical shops, souvenir shops, fancy mainstream like bars and restaurants.
    Lisbon real soul is slowly decaying and being transformed into a fake soulless city center.
    Yes. It’s good to keep the town live and also good for the economy, but my feeling is that Lisbon real soul is vanishing and, in some years, we’ll have almost empty neighborhoods filled with beautiful fake facades hiding airbnb things and fancy food restaurants that have nothing to deal with the real Lisbon.

    • Steph

      27 June

      Unfortunately you’re not the first person who told me. It’s so sad! I haven’t been in a couple of years, but it must be changing fast. The first time I visited, 5 years ago, yes there were tourists but it didn’t feel overcrowded at all, compared to how other European cities are in the summer. Really a bummer.

  42. Thanks for all these great ideas. We just spent a week in Lisbon and this was definitely helpful for planning our trip!

    • Steph

      13 August

      So great to hear!I love Lisbon, hopefully I get to go back soon!

  43. Paco

    14 September

    That was a great read!!

    Thank you 🙂

  44. I love Croatia

    3 December

    Absolutely stunning! Thank you on a detailed impressive guide!

  45. Serhat

    16 November

    One of the most comprehensive guides I’ve ever read. Thank you.

    • Steph

      19 November

      So glad you found it useful! 🙂

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