When it comes to visiting Lisbon, there are so many things to do. But which are the best places to see?
If you’re a big fan of old-world architecture, then Belem Tower is a must. The tower is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and its timeless style is hard to miss.
1. Bairro Alto
Bairro Alto is a picturesque quarter dating from the 1500s, that has traditionally been the city's bohemian haunt of artists and writers. Its grid of streets is quiet during the day, but transforms into one of the city's most vibrant nightlife districts at night.
Bairro Alto's bars and pubs are a magnet for local young people, who are keen to boogie and party until the early hours of the morning. But the district also has a surprising amount to offer for those wanting a day trip, with emerging street art and historical sights to enjoy.
The Igreja de Santa Catarina is the only church in Lisbon to have gilded altarpieces, and its interior features a magnificent rococo-style stucco decoration of 1727. It's also one of the best places in town to take in a sunset, with an outdoor cafe and terrace facing out to the port.
2. Bairro Alto Nightlife
As the sun sets, Bairro Alto's streets come to life, and the neighborhood becomes one of Lisbon's most vibrant party districts. It's a buzzy area of cozy bars, sweaty dance floors, and terraces with a view.
For a more low-key night, skip the clubs and head to Bairro Alto's pubs for pre-dinner drinks and tasty tapas. Or check out the hip rooftop bar Park, which has a garden terrace and fantastic views over the city.
You can also find a great selection of traditional Portuguese restaurants in Bairro Alto, such as Baiuca. They serve a wide range of delicious dishes and are known for their generous portions.
3. Bairro Alto Shopping
Bairro Alto is a charming bohemian district of Lisbon and a great place for shopping. Here you can find a variety of restaurants, bars and stylish shops that remain open till late.
During the day it is a very quiet area and is a perfect place to stroll around and have a chat with the people in the cafes or shops. It is also an excellent place to listen to fado music, a traditional style of Portuguese music.
The most famous store for shoes is Eureka, a well-known shop selling quality shoes since 2010. If you are looking for unique designs then head to this shoe store.
A prestigious shopping avenue and theater hub, Chiado has an elitist vibe with high-end shops and elegant cafes. It’s also the location of many of Lisbon’s most famous museums and theatres.
There are also many historic cafes and restaurants to sample in this part of the city, including the legendary Brasileira Café which once hosted poet Fernando Pessoa and boasts a bronze statue of him. The area is also home to a museum dedicated to Portuguese contemporary art.
The area is a gastronomic haven, with a wide range of restaurants to satisfy every taste. You can tuck into an Indian meal at Natraj Tandoori or try one of the city’s best seafood restaurants at Sea Me. And if you’re in the mood for a fast and healthy meal, Poke Bowls is a fun little spot with a build your own poke bowl menu.
Located on the slope between the Tagus River and the iconic Sao Jorge Castle, Alfama is an historic area that's home to some of Lisbon's most impressive landmarks. It's also a vibrant neighborhood with stunning narrow medieval streets, historic buildings and unique shops.
The oldest bairro in Lisbon and still one of the only areas that managed to survive the 1755 earthquake, Alfama is packed with important historical sites, excellent bars and restaurants and some of Portugal's most picturesque views.
The best way to explore the area is by foot. However, if you're short on time or are not confident in your walking skills, the local buses and trams that ply the narrow Medieval streets will get you up to most of the main sights.