Lovely Lisbon has always been on my list of places to travel and is still there even after my visit (it was love at first sight) – the wines and the sunsets, the history and culture rounding every cobblestone turn, the Baroque architecture and the street music… Discover more in my Lisbon guide:
The renovated Mercado da Ribeira – Although it opened just a few months ago, this market-like food hall is already a hit. Tons of food stalls which are hosted by some of the city’s best restaurants and chefs. Definitely a place I want to try the next time.
Cafe Lisboa – Inside the São Carlos National Theatre, this is a beautiful spot in Chiado for lunch by young rising star in Portuguese cuisine – José Avillez. A charming space with a beautiful terrace as well.
Largo – For dinner in Chiado. The oval lamps illuminate the brick covered arches and green walls – simple sophistication. Sit next to the aquariums where medusas are floating and try the amazing Portuguese cuisine. I could have chosen one of everything on the menu, it all looked so good!
A Brasileira – opened in 1905 in Chiado, this is the most famous bar in Lisbon, especially because Fernando Pessoa used to drink his coffee there.
Grapes & Bites – Located in Bairro Alto, this beautiful tapas bar serves excellent small plates and delicious Portuguese wines.
Pap’açorda – Another Lisbon institution located in Bairro Alto. Head there for dinner. The décor is simple and understated, and the food is amazing.
Las Ficheras – Authentic Mexican in a really fun and colorful space in the Cais do Sodré district. Come here for quesadillas and muitas margaritas!
I know the most places are in Chiado and Bairro Alto, but trust me, there is a reason why! That’s the best part of the city!
Passport Lisbon – In the pulsing heart of Bairro Alto, on Praça Luís de Camões, there is a pretty hostel with minimal design. That was the place where we stayed and we chose it because of the location. It has suites and rooms with private bathrooms, so it’s exactly like a hotel. But the best thing in our suite was the big window with a view over the square and the river behind, and the music that was coming from the street musicians. You can easily walk the narrow streets of Bairro Alto and Chiado or just take the famous Tram 28, which stops right in front of the hostel. What can I say – if you want a true Lisbon experience, this is the place!
Memmo Alfama – Affirming Portugal’s reputation as having the best budget accommodation in Europe, this hotel offers views over the Tagus river right in the heart of Alfama. Member of Design Hotels™, this place is my other choice if you want to feel like a local. An abundant use of wood and warm tones creates a soothing, homey ambience that balances the authentic with the contemporary.
WHAT TO SEE, WHERE TO GO
Belém – A neighborhood famous for its pastry (Pasteis de Belém) and its monuments near the river. Tour the monastery (Mosteiro dos Jeronimos) – one of the oldest in Europe, Torre de Belém, Padrao dos Descobrimentos, and the Centro Cultural de Belém (Contemporary Art Museum). In a far-off corner, somewhere between Lisbon and Belém, an old industrial site has recently been converted into an exciting new art and design district. LX Factory is creative hub full of galleries, cafes, bookstores, and clothing boutiques, this is the perfect place to while away a few hours.
Chiado / Bairro Alto – Amazing sunset views, funky tunes, and chilled out vibes – that’s what these two so different quartiers have in common. Chiado is full with boutiques, art galleries and small bars. Bairro Alto has the music in its heart –narrow streets with shops, bistro and small bars where you can enjoy nice tapas, wine and fado. Don’t miss Convento do Carmo and Elevador da Gloria from where you can see Lisbon in 360 degrees.
Alfama – A very charming, very old part of town with azulejos (the typical colored tiles) at every turn. Great photo opportunities. Don’t miss the Castelo de São Jorge(São Jorge Castle) at the top of Alfama for an amazing view of the city.
Parque das Nações – Since Expo ’98. Skyscrapers, concert halls, the longest bridge and the second biggest oceanarium in Europe – yes, we are still in Lisbon. You can see the big difference between the old and the new part of the city. Start from Jardins d’Agua and the Oceánario then walk along Passeio das Tágides. Stop for a quick bite before heading to the bridge and the tower of Vasco da Gama. Even if you’re not tired, jump on the Teleférico for a breathtaking view over the Tagus river and Parque das Nações.
Sintra – One of the most beautiful and poetic places in the world, just a little outside of Lisbon. You will feel as if you are in a fairytale here. Wander around, grab a coffee, do a spot of shopping, and take plenty of photos. Get lost in the magic. A few hours will be enough.
Did you already fell in love? If you are still not sure whether buying or not you tickets, check out my vlog from Lisbon <3