Lisbon is hitting travel headlines as more and more Brits discover the beauty of Portugal’s capital. This foodie hotspot is located just over two hours away from London and is quickly becoming one of the go-to long weekend destinations. We love visiting Lisbon for its beautiful architecture, great weather and friendly locals. But what are our top 5 things to do in Lisbon?
TOP 5 THINGS TO DO IN LISBON
1 DO A FREE WALKING TOUR
Regular readers will know that we love a free walking tour. Designed to suit every budget, free walking tours are the best way to get to know a new city. The free walking tour offered by Lisbon Chill Out is one of the best free walking tours that we have done. Meeting at Praça Luís de Camões the tour lasts three hours and takes in most of the historical centre of Lisbon.
2 TRY THE ORIGINAL PASTÉIS DE BELÉM
Pastéis de nata (or Portuguese custard tarts) are everywhere in Lisbon. There are whole bakeries dedicated to perfecting these fantastic little pastries. But for a taste of the original you need to venture out of the centre of Lisbon to Belém. There are a number of things to see and do in Belém including the Belém Tower and the Jeronimos Monastery but the custard tarts are the highlight.
Monks at the monastery first started baking these custard tarts in the 18th century. While you are in Belém pop into Pastéis de Belém where Portuguese custard tarts have been baked since 1837. Don’t just take our word for it, in 2009 the Guardian listed Pastéis de Belém as one of the top 50 things to eat in the world.
3 CHECK OUT THE TIME OUT MARKET
Many of you will have picked up a Time Out magazine on your commute. Filled with information about what is going on that weekend, Time Out is an institution in many cities across the world. In Lisbon they have gone one further and created the Time Out Market. All of the 24 restaurants at the Time Out Market have been carefully chosen by Time Out’s network of independent city experts to create a unique dining experience in the centre of the city. There are 8 bars on site as well, so why not make an evening of it?
4 CHECK OUT THE BARS IN BAIRRO ALTO
If you visited Bairro Alto during the day you would not think much of it. It’s quiet, picturesque streets are not something that you would want to write home about. But in the evening, this part of Lisbon is transformed into one of the city’s most exciting quarters. Behind the quiet exteriors lie a network of small bars, Fado houses and restaurants that open until the early hours of the morning. The festivities spill out into the narrow cobbled lanes with a mixture of tourists and locals of all ages and backgrounds creating an unforgettable atmosphere.
5 CHECK OUT THE VIEW FROM CASTELO DE SÃO JORGE
For the best views of the city you have to check out the viewpoint at the Castelo de São Jorge. It’s a long walk up the hill but the view at the end of it is well worth it. The viewpoint is actually the final stop on the free walking tour with Lisbon Chill Out but if you’re looking for the viewpoint yourself just search for Miradouro do Castelo de São Jorge on Google. Take your time soaking in the view over Lisbon before exploring the hilltop fortress.
Have you visited Lisbon recently? What did you enjoy the most? Let us know in the comments below.