Lisbon is certainly not the largest capital in the world. However, at least two days should be allocated for visiting it because it is really worth it!
This city is associated with steep hills, which are often used as viewpoints, yellow trams, fado music and canned sardines. For us it is exotic, colorful, climatic and with excellent weather. Well, at least for most of the year … Here we invite you to read about the weather in Lisbon and the temperature of air and ocean.
Although Lisbon is the most expensive city in Portugal, it is not very expensive compared to other European capitals. You just have to remember that this tourist-oriented city has, like all others, its pros and cons.
As a warm-up, we suggest you give this video. If you don’t fall in love with Lisbon after seeing it … there is no hope for you ; )
The current map of Lisbon
Lisbon is not located directly on the Atlantic Ocean, but on the Tagus River, which flows into it. It is the westernmost European capital. Check the current tourist map of Lisbon to locate the most important attractions:
Lisbon developed thanks to the maritime power that once was the Kingdom of Portugal. The dominance over the seas and oceans, and above all the trade associated with it, contributed to the city’s flourishing.
However, the Lisbon history page does not lack tragic moments.
One of them was definitely the Lisbon earthquake of 1755, when more than a quarter of the inhabitants were killed and more than 80% of the buildings were destroyed. The city rose from this tragedy and rebuilt, but many of the monuments were irretrievably lost.
Holidays in Lisbon
Lisbon as the capital of Portugal is not only a good place for a weekend getaway. Even more so at a time when cheap airlines fly to the capital of Portugal. It is also a city where you can spend a week or two and there will always be something to do, see and visit.
The multitude of monuments and the surrounding tourist attractions make Lisbon an ideal place to spend your holiday in an original way.
It is also suitable for a romantic getaway for two or a family vacation.
However, due to the mountainous nature of Lisbon, it is not a very friendly city for parents with small children in a pram and for elderly people, especially with mobility problems.
Yes, there are public transport and lifts in the steepest places of this city, but some attractions have to be climbed on foot, on your own.
Another video showing how beautiful Lisbon is:
Selected districts of Lisbon
Alfama – often called the heart of Lisbon. This is the oldest district of this city. The narrow winding streets and the remains of the Moorish golden age add to its charm.
It is in this part of Lisbon that the famous tram number 28 goes.
For years it was considered a district of elderly people and poverty, but now it is slowly changing. In addition to old tenements, which let’s be honest require renovation and restoration, you can sit here in one of the many pubs. Learn more about Alfama on the official Lisbon website.
Baixa – this is the opposite of Alfama. There are banks, offices and numerous service outlets in pretty tenements. The district was renovated in the 18th century after an earthquake. For this reason, the street layout is more structured and ordered here. The main points on the map are two squares – Comercio with the monument of King Jose I and the Arc de Triomphe and Rossio Square. At Comercio Square there is also the most famous street of Lisbon – Rua Augusta. In turn, Rossio Square is an evening meeting place for young people. It is here that you can sit in one of the many cafes to soak up the nightlife of Lisbon. Learn more about Baixa on the city’s website.
Bairro Alto – another lively place right after dark. Full of bars and pubs with loud music. Including also characteristic of the Portugal, fado. You can climb one of the many Lisbon viewpoints, which will be taken by the characteristic, historic elevator – Elevador da Glória. This is where you will find slightly cheaper accommodation in Lisbon, but you have to take into account the different sounds of night life. More about Bairro on the city page.
Mouraria – remaining in fado climates, is another district resounding with these rhythms. However, its fame is much worse, because currently it’s inhabited by newcomers from former Portuguese colonies. However, it is one of the more colorful parts of Lisbon and if you are not going here after dark, it is worth taking a look at Mourari.
Graca – is the highest situated district of Lisbon. A neat place well connected to the rest of the Portuguese capital full of shops and restaurants. By the way, see current prices in Lisbon in stores and restaurants. There are two viewpoints from which an amazing panorama of Lisbon extends. Its history is related to the workers’ movement and socialism of the previous century.
Chiado – is an elegant district of Lisbon. It houses the oldest climatic bookstores in the capital, baroque churches and cultural facilities. It is here on Rua Garret Street that fashion cafes, designer stores and boutiques are located. The district was rebuilt after the earthquake. There are two squares here where you can sit and relax and take shelter from the sun. Here you will also find monuments to Portuguese writers.
Belem – a showcase of Lisbon, a district with many monuments, most often visited by tourists. This is a place with famous attractions – the Jeronimos Monastery, the Monument to the Discoveries and the Torre de Belem tower. Here you can also visit one of the many museums, eat a local delicacy – Pasteis de Belem and relax in the garden Jardim to Ultrmar. Read more about Belem on the city page.
Estrela – is a part of Lisbon in which the Parliament building is located with four figures sitting at the front. They symbolize strength, justice, caution and temperance. The famous tram number 28 passes through the district, stopping at the baroque Basilica of Estrela. There is also a Star Park here with beautiful vegetation, greenhouses and a Chinese pavilion.
Cais do Sodre – at one time it was a fishing port. Currently, the district with numerous night clubs that stand in the place of former brothels. Tourists also come here to enter the elegant market that was built on the site of the former fish market. In this district there is also an important train station that connects the capital with nearby towns, where we get to the ocean. Find out more about Cais do Sodre on the city page.
Bridges in Lisbon
At this point it is also worth mentioning one of the bridges located in Lisbon, namely the famous Ponte 25 de Abril, i.e. the Bridge on April 25. It connects the capital with the town of Almada, on the other side of the Tagus River.
However, something else attracts tourists here.
This red construction is deceptively similar to the Golden Gate suspension bridge from San Francisco. The bridge, of course, serves as a highway, but also two railway lines run through it.
Access to the bridge is paid.
See on the map where exactly 25 de Abril Bridge is located:
The second prominent bridge in Lisbon is Ponte Vasco da Gama, also connecting the two banks of the Tagus River, i.e. the capital with the city of Montijo. It was created to relieve traffic on the Bridge on April 25. There are six lanes on it and entry from the north is paid. Its construction was divided into four stages, probably due to its remarkable length of over 17 kilometers.
It’s impressive, right?
See on the map where Ponte Vasco da Gama is located:
Means of communication in Lisbon
In Lisbon, there are several types of public transport that you can use. There are trams, buses, rail and cableways called elevadors and of course metro lines.
Trams in Lisbon
Tram lines currently serve mainly tourists and are mostly served by historic small vehicles called Remodelado. The most famous line is number 28 and during its entire route it passes through most of the attractive tourist districts.
In turn, the bus network covers the whole of Lisbon and easily reaches even the suburbs of the capital. Cableways, called lifts, are another means of urban transport, used on the steepest hills (Elevador da Bica, Elevador da Gloria, Elevador da Lavra, Elevador da Santa Justa), which is also a tourist attraction to try in Lisbon.
However, the most convenient method of getting around the Portuguese capital is, as everywhere – the metro. In this means of communication, we do not stand in traffic jams, you only move from one point to another without any problems. In Lisbon there are four subway lines (red, green, blue and yellow), but their layout may seem a little complicated.
However, some metro stations are arranged so interestingly that they are in themselves an attraction for tourists. For example, one of them is lined with traditional mosaics made of azulejo tiles. Find out more about Lisbon metro on its official website.
Interestingly, to these four means of transport around Lisbon you can also add suburban ferries, floating on the river, from which you can admire the capital from the water. Not forgetting also about taxis, which, however, are notorious – due to the fact that they tend to wildly overprice their services.
As you can see, Lisbon is well connected and transport is not a problem.
In the era of cheap airlines, there is no need to think about the means of transport at all. The plane is the fastest form of transport, and Lisbon airport is only about 7 kilometers from the center of the Portuguese capital. What’s more, the airport is well connected by public transport. You can get to the city by metro (Vermelha), city buses and of course by private transfer, the latter including shuttle buses and taxis.
At the end of something that maybe on a daily basis you don’t pay much attention but when going on vacation to Lisbon it is worth having it in mind: local time in Lisbon. Keep in mind that unlike most of continental Europe, Portugal uses Greenwich Mean Time (UTC), like British Isles.
Important telephone numbers and addresses in Lisbon
Below we present information on important telephone numbers that may be useful when you spend your vacation in Lisbon:
International calls: 00 + country code
Telephone code to Portugal: +351
Emergency number: 112
Police – Tourism Station at Praça dos Restauradores: (+351) 213 421 634 / (+351) 213 421 623
Fire brigade: (+351) 213 422 222
Trains (CP): (+351) 808 208 208
Buses (Carris): (+351) 213 613 000
Metro: (+351) 217 980 600
Taxi – Autocoope: (+351) 217 932 756
Airport (arrivals and departures): (+351) 218 413 700
“Ask me” Tourist information – Airport: (+351) 218 450 660
Below are some other important information about pharmacies, shops and shopping centers, post office, banks and restaurants that will be useful for tourists visiting Lisbon:
Car rental in Lisbon
In Lisbon, as in every major city, you’ll find several well-equipped car rental companies.
As always, we are waiting for your opinions on Lisbon. If you had and had the opportunity to be there then share your impressions in the comments. Any opinion about this city will help us better plan a vacation in the Portuguese capital.