What To Do in Lisbon Portugal, My Personal Recommendations

Ah, Lisbon! A city that dances between the echoes of history and the whispers of modernity, where every corner is adorned with tales of exploration, resilience, and the vibrant spirit of its people.

Having traversed various cities across the globe, Lisbon remains my cherished gem. It is a place where the past intertwines seamlessly with the present, offering a tapestry of experiences that enchant the soul.

In this humble guide, I invite you to embark on a journey through the cobblestone streets and sun-kissed alleys of Lisbon, unveiling its hidden treasures, savoring its culinary delights, and immersing yourself in its rich culture.

Whether you’re a history buff, a food enthusiast, or a seeker of nightlife adventures, Lisbon has something special in store for you.

Sightseeing Splendors

Castelo São Jorge: Dominating the skyline with its majestic presence, St. George’s Castle is a testament to Lisbon’s medieval heritage. Climb its ancient towers, immerse yourself in its lush gardens, and behold the panoramic views of the city below.

Alfama: Lose yourself in the labyrinthine streets of Alfama, the oldest district of Lisbon. From hidden lookout points to historical landmarks, this charming neighborhood beckons you to wander and discover its secrets at every turn.

Mouraria: Venture into the birthplace of Fado music, where the soulful melodies resonate through the cobblestone alleys. Dive deep into the heart of Portuguese culture as you explore this vibrant and captivating neighborhood.

Ride the Tram: Embark on an unforgettable journey aboard Lisbon’s iconic eléctrico tram. Wind your way through narrow streets and steep hills, experiencing the city’s charm from a unique perspective.

Praça do Comercio: Marvel at the grandeur of Lisbon’s main square, Terreiro do Paço, with its breathtaking views of the Tagus River. Delve into history as you explore the regal buildings that once served as the epicenter of Portugal’s maritime empire.

Elevador Santa Justa: Ascend to new heights aboard the Santa Justa Elevator, a marvel of 19th-century engineering. Take in the panoramic vistas of Lisbon’s skyline as you journey between the upper and lower quarters of the city.

Ruinas do Carmo: Discover the haunting beauty of the Carmo Convent ruins, a poignant reminder of Lisbon’s resilience in the face of adversity. Wander through its ancient arches and open-air nave, where history whispers tales of bygone eras.

Belém: Venture to the historic district of Belém and delve into Portugal’s Age of Discoveries. From the iconic Belém Tower to the majestic Jerónimos Monastery, this UNESCO World Heritage Site invites you to immerse yourself in the grandeur of Portugal’s maritime past.

Pasteis de Belém: Indulge your taste buds in the irresistible delights of Pasteis de Belém, Portugal’s most beloved pastry. Savor the creamy custard-filled tarts at the very place where they originated, and let their delectable flavors transport you to culinary heaven.

Culinary Delights

Bacalhau: Dive into the depths of Portuguese cuisine with bacalhau, a beloved dish featuring salted cod prepared in a myriad of delicious ways. From bacalhau à bras to hearty fish cakes, savor the rich flavors that have captivated palates for centuries.

Queijo da Serra: Delight in the creamy goodness of Queijo da Serra, a delectable cheese crafted from sheep’s milk and thistle flower. Let its velvety texture and nuanced flavors tantalize your taste buds, offering a true taste of Portugal’s culinary heritage.

Pastel de Nata: Indulge in Portugal’s quintessential pastry, the irresistible pastel de nata. With its flaky crust and creamy custard filling, this iconic treat is a must-try for every visitor to Lisbon.

Food Markets: Immerse yourself in the bustling ambiance of Lisbon’s food markets, where aromas of freshly baked bread and sizzling seafood fill the air. From Mercado de Fusão to Mercado da Ribeira, discover a world of culinary delights waiting to be savored.

Restaurants: Dine like a local at Lisbon’s hidden gems, tucked away on side streets and frequented by discerning food enthusiasts. From traditional bacalhau joints to cozy taverns serving up authentic Portuguese fare, embark on a culinary journey that will delight your senses.

Shopping Escapades

Bags Made from Cork: Explore the eco-friendly allure of Portuguese cork products, from stylish bags to accessories crafted with sustainability in mind.

Portuguese Footwear: Step into style with Portuguese footwear, renowned for its craftsmanship and quality. From elegant leather boots to stylish sandals, discover the perfect pair to complement your wardrobe.

A Vida Portuguesa: Immerse yourself in the nostalgia of Portugal’s past with a visit to A Vida Portuguesa. Browse through a curated selection of traditional wares, from vintage toys to artisanal soaps, and take home a piece of Portuguese heritage.

Loja da Burel: Experience the warmth and beauty of authentic wool products from the Serra da Estrela mountain range. From cozy blankets to stylish backpacks, indulge in the timeless appeal of Portuguese craftsmanship.

Embaixada: Step into a world of creativity and innovation at Embaixada, a palatial residence transformed into a haven for Portuguese designers. Explore a diverse array of fashion, art, and design, and discover unique treasures to adorn your home and wardrobe.

Seaside Serenity

Beach Escapes: Unwind amidst the sun-kissed shores and the azure waters of Lisbon’s coastline. From bustling urban beaches to secluded coves, find your perfect spot to soak up the sun and savor the tranquil beauty of the sea.

Nightlife Adventures

Fado: Immerse yourself in the haunting melodies of Fado, Portugal’s soulful folk music. From intimate taverns to atmospheric clubs, experience the raw emotion and timeless beauty of this beloved musical tradition.

Bars: Discover Lisbon’s vibrant nightlife scene with a visit to its eclectic bars and watering holes. From the historic streets of Bairro Alto to the trendy enclave of Pink Street, raise a glass with locals and fellow travelers alike and toast to unforgettable nights in the city.

Clubbing: Dance the night away at Lisbon’s hottest clubs and venues, where beats pulse and energy abound until the early hours of the morning. From the legendary Lux to the beachfront vibes of Urban Beach, surrender to the rhythm and let the music guide your footsteps.

Beyond Lisbon

Day Trips: Venture beyond the city limits and discover the enchanting beauty of Lisbon’s surrounding areas. From the towering waves of Nazaré to the historic charm of Sintra, embark on unforgettable day trips that reveal the diverse wonders of Portugal.

As you bid farewell to Lisbon, may your heart be filled with cherished memories and the promise of return. Whether you’re drawn to its storied past, its culinary delights, or its vibrant nightlife, Lisbon offers an experience that lingers long after you’ve said your goodbyes.

So, pack your bags, embrace the adventure, and let Lisbon’s enchantment captivate your soul.


Q: Is Lisbon a safe city for tourists?

A: Yes, Lisbon is generally considered a safe city for tourists. Like any major city, it’s essential to remain aware of your surroundings and take common-sense precautions, such as avoiding poorly lit areas at night and keeping an eye on your belongings in crowded places.

Q: What are some must-try dishes in Lisbon?

A: Lisbon offers a diverse culinary scene, but some must-try dishes include bacalhau à bras (stir-fried cod with potatoes and eggs), pastel de nata (custard tart), and queijo da Serra (sheep’s milk cheese). Exploring local markets and dining at authentic Portuguese restaurants are excellent ways to sample these delicacies.

Q: Are there any specific recommendations for vegetarian or vegan travelers?

A: Yes, Lisbon has options for these travelers. Jardim dos Sentidos is a recommended restaurant offering plant-based dishes, and exploring food markets like Mercado da Ribeira can also yield vegetarian-friendly options. Additionally, many restaurants offer vegetable-based dishes alongside traditional meat options.

Q: What are some off-the-beaten-path attractions in Lisbon?

A: While Lisbon’s popular landmarks are undoubtedly worth visiting, there are also hidden gems to explore. LX Factory, an old factory turned creative hub, and Madre De Deus Convent, home to a stunning tile museum, offer unique experiences away from the tourist crowds.

Q: How can I experience traditional Fado music in Lisbon?

A: Lisbon offers various opportunities to experience traditional Fado music. Restaurants and bars in neighborhoods like Alfama and Bairro Alto often host Fado performances, and dedicated Fado clubs like Clube do Fado provide authentic experiences. It’s advisable to make reservations in advance for Fado performances.

I’m Venessa Ruybal, the passionate traveler behind this blog, and I invite you to join me on a quest to delve deeper into the heart of destinations near and far.

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