Stroll the Portuguese capital’s stone streets, where sounds of local musicians fill the air and freshly caught fish is served at kerbside restaurants.
Lisbon seamlessly blends old and new world charm; inside the historic architecture and whitewashed houses that line its streets there’s a prospering contemporary arts scene. With great weather for most of the year and a relaxed population, this charming city is one of the most popular holiday destinations in Europe.
Take a walk through the winding cobblestone streets of Alfama, the historic district at the heart of the city. Admire the medieval architecture of churches and small city squares. Pay a visit to the Castle of São Jorge, perched high above the city, to be met by the sounds of guitar-wielding musicians that add to the romance of the streets. Listen out for fado, Lisbon’s own style of music.
Explore the picturesque Chiado district, where bold, tiled mansions and boutiques line the streets. Stop for a coffee at a café or eat local dishes such as bacalhau (salted cod). Lisbon’s position on the edge of the Atlantic Ocean means the seafood here is some of the best in Europe.
Seafaring has been a way of life for the Portuguese for centuries and the Maritime Museum celebrates the nation’s long lineage of sailors. Walk through exhibits of boats and maps from the 1800s. Learn about local marine life at the Lisbon Oceanarium, one of the largest aquariums in Europe.
Spend time exploring Lisbon’s other museums. Visit the Gulbenkian Museum to see 6,000 artefacts and works of art from all over Europe. Learn about developments in 20th-century fashion at the Museum of Design and Fashion.
Treat yourself to coffee and cake at the internationally renowned Pastéis de Belem. Line up alongside throngs of locals who come to eat here daily. The thin, flaky crust and rich custard centre of Lisbon’s iconic pastel de nata are well worth the wait.
Lisbon’s international airport is 10 kilometres (4 miles) north of the city centre. Use the subway, bus and rail systems to get around with ease. Explore the old quarter’s cobblestone streets on foot to discover local boutiques and hidden bars and restaurants.