Lisbon (Portuguese: Lisboa) is the capital of Portugal situated on seven hills at the wide mouth of the river Tagus (Tejo) where it meets the Atlantic Ocean. A port city, an economic centre, a cultural powerhouse and a thriving mix of Portugal's rich history and vivid contemporary culture, Lisbon enchants travellers with its white bleached limestone buildings, intimate alleyways, and an easy going charm that makes it a popular year round destination.
- For other places with the same name, see Lisbon (disambiguation).
Lisbon is also the capital of the Lisbon Region, comprising many other splendid tourist destinations such as the UNESCO World Heritage site of Sintra, the seaside resorts of Estoril, Cascais, the world class museums or Almada famous for its hilltop Cristo Rei statue, all of which are connected with Lisbon by excellent public transportation links.
Lisbon is built on seven hills, so getting around Lisbon can be a workout. Many slopes and few really flat areas is one of Lisbon's trademarks. This is also a city of enchanting contrasts: The elegant squares, broad avenues, monumental buildings and rectangular layout of the lower areas quickly gives way to the hilly, narrow, winding, unpredictable and cramped streets of districts such as Alfama and Bairro Alto. The elegant dining rooms and smart rooftop bars of expensive hotels seems like a different world compared to the excellent restaurants disguised behind an inconspicuous façade in a modest Bairro Alto street. Quality patisseries and restaurants thrive side by side with late night bars and noisy discos. The old, tiny squeaky trams (one of the city's trademarks) are no less of a contrast to the efficient metro network.
The Portuguese capital is often perceived as less frantic than other million cities, and traffic and barkers are less aggressive than in many other tourist destinations.
According to legend, Lisbon was founded by the mythical Greek hero Odysseus, during his travels home from Troy. However, most historians believe that the city was founded around 1200 BC by Phoenician settlers, utilizing the calm and fresh waters of Tagus river and the proximity to the sea. The Phoenecian name of the city is Alis-Ubo, meaning "safe harbour". Eventually it became part of the Carthaginian Empire. After the Punic Wars, it became the main trading hub of the Roman province Lusitania, under the name Felicitas Julia Olisipo, later Olisipona. During the decline and fall of the western Roman empire, the Iberian peninsula was invaded by Vandal and Visigothic tribes.
In 711, Lisbon was captured by Muslim forces. During this period, the Castle of São Jorge was expanded. Much of the Moorish heritage is preserved in the nearby Alfama, the oldest standing district of the city. In 1147, a crusader army en-route to the Holy Land helped king Afonso I conquer Lisbon and return it to Christian rule. After the completion of the Portuguese Reconquista some hundred years later, Lisbon was made the capital of Portugal.
The golden age of Portugal, and consequentially Lisbon's history, started in the 15th century. In 1415, the young prince Henry "the Navigator" conquered Ceuta, thereby establishing the first European overseas colony. He later founded the Sagres school of navigation in the Algarve region and thereby sparked the age of discovery. During the reign of King Manuel I "the Fortunate" (1495-1521), Portuguese navigators found a way around the Cape of Good Hope, and Vasco da Gama eventually found a sea route to India, thereby ending the Venetian monopoly over European-Far Eastern trade. King Manuel gave his name to the "Manueline" architectural style, of which the Tower of Belém in western Lisbon is probably the most well-known example. On marrying princess Isabella of Aragon, king Manuel I ordered the conversion or expulsion of the Jewish and Muslim populations. The Portuguese colonial empire grew steadily through the centuries, and eventually came to include the Azores and Madeira in the Atlantic; Brazil in South America; Angola, Cape Verde, Ceuta, Guinea Bissau, Ivory Coast, Mombasa, Mozambique, São Tomé e Príncipe and Zanzibar in Africa; Ceylon, East Timor, Flores, Formosa, Goa, Hormuz, Macau, Malacca and Moluccas in Asia. The Portuguese Oriental trade led to the establishment of the Japanese port city of Nagasaki in 1571.
With the loss of heirless young king Dom Sebastião in 1578, Portugal enters into a period of succession crisis. By 1580 the Portuguese nobility keen to avoid a civil war that would disrupt the empire, agreed to enter into an Iberian Union under king Phillip II of Spain, cousin of Dom Sebastião which becomes Phillip I of Portugal. Due to the Spanish desinterest in Portuguese empire matters and beligerance against the English, the union brings deep discontent within Portugal while the Windsor Treaty with England is suspended due to Spain's Crown commissioning of Portugal maritime assets and resources towards the Great Armada's failed invasion of England. The aftermath caused serious setbacks to Portugal's capacity of maintaing such a vast empire. By 1640 the restoration of Portugal soverenity is re-established and the marriage of king Charles II of England with Princess Catherine of Braganza, is celebrated as means of independence reassertion and surety.
The darkest known nature caused catastrophe in the history of Lisbon occurred on All Saints Day (November 1) 1755, when one of the most powerful earthquakes in history destroyed two thirds of the city. The earthquake was powerful enough to break windows as far away as London, and may have killed as many as a 100,000 people in the Lisbon area. The catastrophe led to disillusion with the optimism in contemporary enlightenment thought, inspiring the French philosopher Voltaire to write "Poem on the Lisbon Disaster" and Candide. However, the reconstruction of the city, organized by the Prime Minister Marquis of Pombal, became an expression of the enlightenment architectural ideal, with broad streets in rectangular street patterns. The reconstructed areas in Baixa are therefore sometimes called "Baixa Pombalina" and the new buildings were designed with an innovative built-in earthquake resistance framework system. Alfama, in the eastern part of the city, was the only part of the city centre which survived the destruction, and is consequentially the only area which has preserved its medieval irregular street pattern.
In the early 19th century after being invaded by France, Portugal fought in the Napoleonic Wars on the anti-Napoleonic coalition side. Although on the winning side of the war, the exiled king João VI and his government decided to set up permanent court in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 1808. In 1822, declared independence from Portugal. A few years later, the sons of João VI vied to rule Portugal by hook or by crook, eventually going into a civil war between the two brothers, autocratic prince Miguel and his more liberal brother Pedro IV. Pedro IV won the war, but died only a few months after the victory, thereby leaving the throne to his teenage daughter Maria da Glória. During her reign, the nearby palaces in Sintra were constructed. During this era, fado music was developed in the Lisbon region.
1900 to today
In 1908 King Carlos I of Portugal and his heir, Luís Filipe, were assassinated by republicans on Praça do Comércio. The young prince Manuel was also wounded, but survived and assumed the throne. However, only two years later, in 1910, he was dethroned and exiled in a republican coup. In 1916 the Portuguese republic entered World War I on the Allied side. The Portuguese democracy didn't last long. In 1926 General Óscar Carmona seized power and imposed a dictatorship. He appoints Prof. António de Oliveira Salazar finance minister and later becomes the prime minister, who in turn implemented a corporatist governing style known as Estado Novo (New State), under which the state reorganized all aspects of life from an economical perspective while ignoring ordinary citizens civil rights. During World War II Portugal asserts a neutral position, but cedes the Azores to the Allied cause. After WW2 Portugal, becomes a NATO founding member. During the Cold War, Portugal enjoys record levels of economic growth. In 1961 the Indian Union unilaterally annexes Goa and by 1960 the African colonies want independence but Salazar refuses their demands and plunges Portugal into lengthy anti independence wars while in metropolitan Portugal, civil discontent rises due to the suppression of democracy and civil liberties. State security apparatus PIDE/DGS, arrest, torture, exile and sometimes kill dissents and pro democracy activists. In the early hours of April 25th 1974, a military coup led by leftist junior army officers followed by massive civilian support on the streets of Lisbon, ousted the dictatorship government. Soon after the revolutionary period, Portugal became a democracy and independence was hastily and haphazardly granted to their overseas colonies. Approximately one million overseas, mostly destitute Portuguese, returned to Portugal and become known as retornados. Economically, the country faced ruin but international loans kept it afloat. The new "Constituição" enshrines democracy and everyone's human rights. By 1986 Portugal is accepted into the EEC now EU and gradually begins recovering. In 1998 Lisbon hosted the International World Fair, Expo 98. As part of the fair, the new "Parque das Nações" neighborhood in eastern Lisbon was built, while in the same year the Vasco da Gama Bridge across the Tagus, was inaugurated as the longest bridge in Europe and Lisbon native José Saramago wins the Nobel prize in literature.
|Climate chart (explanation)|
Lisbon enjoys a Subtropical-Mediterranean climate, with mild winters and very warm summers. Strongly influenced by the Gulf Stream it is one of the mildest climates in Europe. Among all the metropolises in Europe, here are the warmest winters on the continent, with average temperatures above 15.2°C (59.4°F) during the day and 8.9°C (48.0°F) at night in the period from December to February. Snow and frost are unknown. The typical summer's season lasts about 6 months, from May to October, with an average temperature of 25°C (77°F) during the day and 16.2°C (61.2°F) at night, although also in November, March and April sometimes there are temperature above 20°C (68.0°F) with an average temperature of 18.5°C (65°F) during the day and 11.2°C (52.2°F) at night. Rain occurs mainly in winter, the summer is very dry.
Lisbon is very close to the ocean and that brings windy and fast-changing weather, so you'd better bring a jacket or an umbrella with you, at least in winter, spring and autumn.
The city stretches along the northern bank of the river Tejo as it flows into the Atlantic Ocean. As the terrain rises north away from the water, steep streets and stairways form the old tangled neighbourhoods or give way to green parks in the western suburbs. Basic navigation is easy by learning the main axis from the Praça do Comércio (the waterfront) through Rossio (main square) and Avenida da Liberdade (main street) to Praça de Marquês de Pombal and Parque Eduardo VII on the top. Each neighbourhood (such as Alfama or Bairro Alto) is distinct and easy to recognize. The hilltop castle and the waterfront are clear reference points, and landmarks such as the Santa Justa elevator, the Rossio station façade, the massive Cathedral (Sé de Lisboa), the white dome of Santa Engrácia and Augusta street arch (Arco da rua Augusta) also add to the sense of direction. Also look out for the two huge bridges across the Tejo. Navigating the winding, hilly and narrow streets can be challenging however, only the most detailed map give the precise location.
It's often said that Lisbon lacks a defined "downtown", but tourists will find most of their points of interest in the relatively compact area centered around the vast Praça do Comércio, facing the river. This is the starting point of the pedestrianized grid of Baixa (lower town), which immediately borders other historic quarters of Alfama, Chiado and Bairro Alto. Further northwest from Baixa stretches Avenida da Liberdade, a broad boulevard resplendent in leafy trees, chic hotels and upmarket shops, terminating at the circular Praça de Marquês de Pombal. The financial centre, however, is further removed (hence the notion of "no downtown") up north towards the hills, and not directly connected to the historic districts.
Other districts of interest to the tourists are generally those by the riverside - the historic Belém in the southwest, the modern Parque de Nações in the northeast and the gentrifying Alcântara by the Bridge of April 25.
In December 2012, Lisbon was reorganised into five zones (zonas), which are further divided into 24 civil parishes (freguesias). While the zonas reflect the actual characteristics of each area well, which also aids orientation for the tourists, freguesias serve mostly administrative purposes and are of little interest to tourists. More important are the unofficial bairros (neighbourhoods), which lack administratively defined boundaries, but are entrenched in local tradition and referred to in most tourist guides and even official publications. The main characteristics of each zone and most prominent bairros are outlined below.
The historic centre of Lisbon is the river-front belt formed by the hills of Bairro Alto and Alfama and the flat area of Baixa between them. It contains the following bairros:
- Baixa - this part of the city was completely rebuilt after the 1755 earthquake by the Marquês de Pombal. The planned layout, greatly different from what you will see in the more ancient neighbourhoods, is a testimony to the ideas of the Enlightenment.
- Chiado - take a stroll along the historical streets of this elegant shopping district, stopping for a cup of coffee with the statue of Fernando Pessoa, Portugal's great Modernist poet.
- Alfama - this neighbourhood still bears signs of the Moorish presence in the city, with the buildings very close to each other, and very irregular streets. It's very atmospheric and a great spot in which to wander around. Thanks to the firmer rock it was built upon, it was relatively spared during the Great Earthquake and therefore retains the charm of the winding alleys and azulejo-covered crumbling walls.
- Bairro Alto - head uphill to Bairro Alto and give your legs a good workout, or take one of the elevadores (funiculars) for stunning views of the city and some wild partying in Lisbon's most popular nightclub district.
- Principe Real - the trendy district with all the fancy shops is just a 5 minutes walk from Bairro Alto
The geographic centre of Lisbon is also its economic and civic centre, with the main shopping and leisure boulevard of Avenida da Libertade, the large parks, prominent museums, and modern office towers scattered across Avenidas Novas and the hills of Campolide.
Zona Ocidental, or the western zone, extends west of the historic centre along the riverside and encompasses the following bairros, which here actually coincide with official fregusias:
- Alcântara - rapidly gentrifying former docks, dominated on the western end by the supports of the gigantic new bridge over the river
- Ajuda - the hilltop district known for the royal Palácio Nacional da Ajuda and adjacent Jardim Botânico da Ajuda
- Belém - Lisbon's westernmost district is its portal to the sea, with rich historic heritage and a sweet topping
Zona Oriental is the eastern zone, following northeastwards from the centre. Most of the area are residential districts and industrial docklands of little interest to the tourists, with the exception of the Parque de Nações - the ultra-modern district built at the easternmost end of Lisbon for the 1998 World Expo, making the most of its riverfront location.
The North of Lisbon is of precious little interest to the tourists, except perhaps for the Jardim Zoológico (zoo) and the Sete Rios long-distance coach and train station, both at the very southern tip of the zone.
1 Lisboa Ask Me Centre, Pç. do Comércio, ☎ +351 21 031-2815. open 09:00-20:00 daily. The sparkling new centre will help you find accommodation and the staff are happy to dispense advice, maps and brochures. Smaller Ask Me Lisboa kiosks are dotted about the Rossio district and airport and their multilingual staff also have maps and brochures.
The Lisboa Card, which can be purchased from tourist information outlets, offers free use of all public transport in the city and free or reduced price tickets to many museums, galleries and tourist attractions. They can be purchased in 24-hour (€17), 48-hour (€27) and 72-hour (€33) denominations. They are not very good value unless you plan to visit a lot of museums, especially so if you are a holder of a student identification card (international or national) since the student discounts to these attractions are often the same as for the Lisboa Card.
- 1 Aeroporto de Lisboa (Aeroporto Humberto Delgado / Aeroporto da Portela LIS IATA), Alameda das Comunidades Portuguesas (It's between Loures and Lisboa and just 7 km (4.3 mi) from the city centre.), ☎ +351 218 413 500, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. The airport has two terminals. All flights arrive at Terminal 1, while Terminal 2 is used for departures by low-fare carriers. The metro station, bus stops and main taxi rank are at Terminal 1. Terminal 2 is physically separate and quite distant from Terminal 1. There is a free shuttle bus between the terminals running at around 10-minute intervals. If you depart from Lisbon on a low-fare flight operated by Easyjet, Norwegian, Ryanair or Transavia, do add the extra time needed to make sure you catch the shuttle and transfer to Terminal 2 in time for your departure.
The airport is a major European hub connection for South America (especially Brazil) and is dominated by Portuguese national carrier TAP Portugal, a Star Alliance member airline that covers an extensive network throughout Europe, Africa and the Americas, usually in codeshare with local Star Alliance partners. This is complimented by SATA International, the airline of the Azores, who connect Lisbon not only to the archipelago but also the East Coast of North America. Canadian and US-based carriers also offer seasonal and year-round direct flights to Lisbon.
Other European flag carriers, especially those allied in SkyTeam and Oneworld, as well as independent, also operate direct flights from major European cities to Lisbon. Portela airport is well served by low-fare European carriers EasyJet and Ryanair, for whom Lisbon is a base, and by others such as Norwegian, Transavia and Vueling.
On balance, TAP has no Asian destinations and Lisbon Airport has few direct connections to Asia. That said, getting in from major Asian and Oceanian destinations requires just one stop in Dubai, Beijing or a major European airport.
The approach to the airport most often used for landings takes the plane on a majestic sweep over the city. Grab a window seat on the right side for a free show as you float over the Tagus and both bridges, the statue of Cristo Rei in Almada, the old aqueduct and the football stadium of Benfica; further out you'll easily be able to discern the castle, the streets of Baixa, the old quarters of Alfama and Mouraria, and right before touchdown - the Oriente train station and Parque das Nações.
Getting from/to the airport
Lisbon's efficient and dense public transportation network provides links form the Portela airport to almost every point in the city, so unless you have heavy luggage or some other reason not to, do take advantage of the public transit options. They're not only cheaper, but taxi drivers in Lisbon also have a somewhat tarnished reputation for poor service and frequent overcharging attempts, even among the locals.
- Metro - Lisbon Airport metro station opened in July 2012 and is the new final destination of the red line (Linha Vermelha) of the metro. The journey to the central Saldanha station takes about 16 minutes and less than 25 minutes are enough to get from the Airport to Baixa-Chiado with a change to the green or blue lines. A single journey can cost as little as €1.25 using the zapping functionality of the Viva Viagem card (see below).
- Aerobus is a special service by Carris with two routes to main spots of the city. Aerobus 1 running every 20 min follows Av. da Republica and Av. da Liberdade to the historic city center (Rossio, Praça do Comércio, and railway/ferry terminal at Cais do Sodré). Aerobus 2 departs every 40 or 60 minutes, depending on daytime, and goes towards the financial centre of the city in the northwest, stopping at Entrecampos, Praça de Espanha and Avenida José Malhoa. Aerobuses operate generally 08:00-23:00, check their website for particular information. Tickets start at €3.50 and are valid on all public transportation lines, such as buses and surface trams (but not for metro) for 24 or 48 hours. You can get a discount when buying the ticket online beforehand, as well as when travelling as a group.
- Bus lines 22, 44, 83, 705, 708, 744, 745, or night bus line 208. Bus 44 takes you to the Oriente railway station in about 10 minutes, where you can change for metro and continue to the city centre. Board fare is €1.80. 7 Colinas transport card (see "Get around" section) can be used which can be bought at the airport post office. Note that you are not allowed to take large pieces of luggage on these buses.
- Taxis cost about €10.00 from the airport to the city centre. Charge is according to the meter, adding €1.20 per item of luggage. Taxis are required to have working meters (it is illegal to drive without one) and fares posted to the window in the rear seat. Be sure to ask the taxi driver if he has a working meter before getting into the taxi, and be careful of drivers trying to grab your bags and usher you into the taxi before you can make these inquiries. As with many cities, watch out for dishonesty and if you think you are being charged significantly more ask for their number and a receipt, and make it clear you plan to complain.
- Bike - Due to the relative proximity of Lisbon's airport to the city centre, it is quite easy to cycle from the airport to the centre, and could be recommended if you arrive for a cycling trip. After leaving the airport and negotiating a roundabout, merge onto the long and straight dual-carriageway Av. Almirante Gago Coutinho (you should be able just to follow the "Centro" ("Downtown") signs.) After merging, the route to Baixa is simple and straight. This street later turns into Av. Almirante Reis, and then Rua de Palma, at the end of which you will be right in Baixa.
There are two main stations, 1 Santa Apolónia in the city centre and the 1 Gare do Oriente, a bit further out and used by the high-speed trains. However, if you are entering Lisbon from the south, you may want to get off at the smaller stations of Entrecampos or Sete Rios. Their metro stations are closer to the historic centre than Oriente (you need to change metro lines to get to the centre from there).
The domestic high-speed line Alfa Pendular connects Braga, Porto, Aveiro and Coimbra with Lisbon from the north and Faro from the south. Prices between the major cities starts at €40 in second class. All trains call at Oriente, only some in Apolonia. The travel times on Alfa Pendular from Lisbon are around 1hr 45min to Coimbra, 2hr 45min to Porto, 3hr 25min to Braga and 3hr sharp to Faro. Regular Intercidade trains are also available, and by stopping at intermediate stations they add 20 to 40 minutes to each route. Train tickets may be booked directly with the train company, Comboios de Portugal.
Two international services are available, the overnight Sud Express leaves Hendaye on the border between Spain and France every day at 18:35. The train calls at Oriente station at 07:20 the next morning before arriving in Santa Apolónia just ten minutes later. There is also a daily sleeper train from Madrid named Lusitania leaving Chamartin station at 21:50, arriving early next morning at 07:20 in Oriente and a few minutes later at Apolónia. Prices on both trains vary and can be heavily discounted to less than €40 for cama turista (a sleeping berth in a four berth shared compartment) if you watch the Renfe booking site a month or two in advance.
Lisbon can be accessed from six main highways. Coming from the south (A2) or east (A6 - the main route from Madrid), there are the two bridges:
From/to south: The A2 goes all the way to the 1 25 de Abril Bridge (Ponte 25 de Abril), which usually has lots of traffic getting into Lisbon, especially on weekday mornings. This is the best option if you want to go to the centre of Lisbon or to the west (A5 - Estoril, Cascais, Sintra).
To north / to east: If you branch from the A2 into the A12, you'll get to the 1 Vasco da Gama Bridge (Ponte Vasco da Gama), the longest bridge in Europe, it usually has less traffic than the older 25 de Abril Bridge (but a more expensive toll). This is the best option to go to the eastern/northern section of Lisbon (to the airport and to the Parque das Nações - the former Expo 98 site), and also to take the A1 or A8 going north.
From/to north and the airport: Coming from the north, there is the A1, that connects Lisbon to Santarém, Fátima, Leiria, Coimbra, Aveiro, Porto. The A1 ends near the airport. There's also the A8, which goes to Torres Vedras, Caldas da Rainha, Alcobaça, Leiria.
Lisbon has three ring roads: The 2ª circular, which connects the A1 to the IC19; the CRIL IC17 (still incomplete), which connects the Vasco da Gama Bridge with the A1 and A8; and the CREL A9, which connects the A1 with the A8, IC19, A5, and goes all the way to the Estoril coast.
All nearby cities and most major cities in Portugal have direct buses to Lisbon. The main bus terminal is at 1 Sete Rios (Metro: Jardim Zoológico). The main operator for long-haul buses is Rede Nacional de Expressos.
Lisbon is a major port on the Atlantic coast both for cargo and cruise traffic. Most major cruise ship operators include Lisbon in their itineraries, so it should be reasonably easy to find a cruise route that would take you there. That said, regular shuttle ferry traffic is limited to joining the banks of the Tagus river, i.e. there are no ferries to Lisbon other than the small ones from neighbouring municipalities.
The cruise terminals are at:
- 1 Estação Marítima de Alcântara (Alcantara Cruise Terminal).
- 1 Estação Marítima de Santa Apólonia (Santa Apólonia Cruise Terminal).
- 1 Novo Terminal de Cruzeiros de Lisboa (Jardim do Tabaco Quay).
For those coming in by smaller boats, the Port of Lisbon operates four marinas - Alcantara, Belem, Bom Successo and Santo Amaro. You can find all the details at the Port of Lisbon website. Alternatively, you may moor at 1 Marina Parque de Nacoes, which is operated as a separate entity.
Cycling outside Lisbon can be a challenge, as Lisbon offers far easier cycling than what you may find outside of the city. The further you get from Lisbon however, the easier the cycling gets. You may wish to take advantage of certain regional trains that take bicycles in a separate luggage carriage, allowing you to start your cycling some 50 or 100 km outside of the city.
Read more below under 'Getting around by bicycle'
By public transport
Lisbon has a very efficient public transport network that covers the entire city in addition to the surrounding areas. It consists of a bus and tram network operated by Carris, the separately-run Lisbon Metro underground rail, as well as commuter trains and ferries which connect Lisbon to its neighbouring suburbs. Additionally, Carris operates three unique funiculars and one public elevator that function as parts of the public transportation system.
Fares and tickets
The best and, in many cases, the sole way to pay for city transport is by buying the rechargeable green "Viva Viagem" smartcard (also referred to as "7 Colinas"). It's valid on the metro, trams (electricos), urban trains, most buses and ferries. The exception is buses run not by Carris—other bus companies have their own tickets. The card itself can be purchased for €0.50 (this price doesn't include any trips), and remains valid for a year. It needs to be purchased (cash only, no credit cards) from a vending machine or a ticket counter.
The Viva Viagem card can be charged in three different modes. As of 1 January 2017:
- Single tickets for bus or metro (€1.45)
- Day pass for metro, buses and trams (€6.15 for unlimited use for 24 hours from time of purchase and can be re-charged each day).
- Zapping. It also offers flexible rates: every journey costs €1.30. The downside is that zapping in ticket machines can be done with round amounts only: €3, €5, €10, €15. If you have a bit of unused money, it is wise to go to the ticked desk and there they do zapping for any amount (uncertain if this is still possible). This way you can fully utilize your money on the card before going back to your country (but the balance can be transferred to a new card even if the card has expired).
There are ticketing machines located at the train or metro stations, which also provide instructions in English. You can also buy the ticket from the driver or machines on board (the latter only available in some new trams). Tickets purchased from a driver will not include a Viva Viagem card, and will cost more (€1.85 for bus and €2.90 for trams instead of €1.30 if you use the rechargeable card), so it makes more sense to buy the ticket before starting the trip.
When using suburban trains, your tickets are charged onto the same kind of Viva Viagem cards. You cannot have more than one kind of ticket on one card, however, so you will probably need at least two of them, one for zapping (regular bus and metro use), one for suburban travel. The TransTejo (TT) ferries can make you buy yet another Viva card with white stripe in the bottom. You can however use "zapping" for all transit and then get away with a single Viva Viagem card.
If you plan to be in Lisbon for an extended time (1 week and more), you can purchase an unlimited pass that covers buses, metro, and funiculars. It takes 10 days, or if you need it quicker you can pay an extra €5 for next-day delivery at the Carris station in Santo Amaro or at the subway stations in Marques de Pombal, Alameda and Campo Grande. The base price is €7 for a hard plastic Lisboa Viva card, plus €36.20 for a one-month unlimited pass in the urban area. Bring a photo ID (passport), passport photos (the stations also have photo vending machines that take passport photos), and cash. The plastic card can hold up to 4 different tickets at a time.
While numbering may suggest otherwise, Lisbon retains only six of the 28 tram lines it became famous for.
- line 12 – the shortest line does a loop between Praça de Comércio in Baixa and Alfama
- line 15 – the longest line connects the Centro Histórico to Belém and beyond
- line 18 – follows the route of line 15 along the coast until Santo Amaro, where it goes uphill to Ajuda
- line 24 – connects Chiado to Campolide via Príncipe Real and Rato
- line 25 – goes from Praça de Comércio through Chiado, along the foot of the Bairro Alto hill and then to Estrela
- line 28 – takes you on a veritable tour of the hills of Lisbon, starting at Campo Ourique, then going through Estrela, Bairro Alto, Chiado, Rua da Conceição in Baixa, then all the way around the hills of Alfama up north to Graça while ending in Praça Martim Moriz.
At stops and on timetables, the five tram lines are marked with an "E" for elétrico (which stands for "tram" in Portuguese) i.e. 12E, 15E, 18E, 25E and 28E to distinguish them from bus services. Buses and trams generally use the same stops.
The "Remodelado" tram cars, built in the 1930s and extensively modernised in the 90s, are used on all lines. The modern low-floor trams are only used on line 15.
Instead of paying for a ride on one of the costly tourist buses, try line 28, which winds its way through the "Old Town" of Lisbon beginning in Graça then down to the Alfama and to the Baixa then up through Chiado to Bairro Alto, and then down to Campo Ourique, taking you by many of Lisbon's most famous and interesting sites including monuments, churches and gardens. The trip is hilly, noisy and hectic but it affords many beautiful glimpses of the city. And, although the tram can sometimes be overrun with tourists, you will definitely get a flavour of the locals, as many Lisboetas commute daily on these historical trams. Tickets cost €1.30 if paid by "Viva Viagem" card and €2.90 if purchased on-board or at a vending machine (note that these machines do not accept bills, and are sometime even out of change, so make sure you have the correct change!). From start to finish the ride takes around 30 minutes. Beware of pickpockets!
Funiculars and a lift
Or ascensores e elevador as they call them. The Viva Viagem card is accepted on these routes as well. In 2002 all three funiculars and the lift were classified as National Monuments. Time tables for the lifts in pdf format can be downloaded from the website.
- 1 Ascensor da Glória (Glória Funicular), Praça dos Restauradores to S. Pedro de Alcântara (Bairro Alto). M-Th 07:15-23:55, F 07:15-00:25, Sa 08:45-00:25, Su and holidays 09:15-11:55. Inaugurated on 24 October 1885, this funicular was the second to be placed in Lisbon. It is the most visited one in the city. Lower station exactly where Avenida Liberdad connects to Restauradores.
- 1 Ascensor da Bica (Bica Funicular), Rua de São Paulo (Rua Duarte Belo) - Largo de Calhariz. M-Sa 07:00-21:00, Su and holidays 09:00-21:00. This funicular was inaugurated on 28 June 1892 and its route is known as the most typical of the city. €3.70 for a round trip.
- 1 Ascensor do Lavra (Lavra Funicular), Largo da Anunciada to Rua Câmara Pestana. M-Sa 07:50-19:55, Su and holidays 09:00-19:55. The oldest funicular of Lisbon was inaugurated on 19 April 1884 and on that day it worked for 16 consecutive hours, carrying more than 3,000 passengers free.
- 1 Elevador de Santa Justa (Santa Justa Lift), Rua Aurea and Rua de Santa Justa, ☎ +351 21 361-3054. Lift: Mar-Oct daily 07:00-23:00, Nov-Feb daily 07:00-21:00; viewpoint: Mar-Oct daily 09:00-23:00, Nov-Feb daily 09:00-21:00. Located downtown, this lift was designed by the architect Raoul Mesnier du Ponsard, a follower of French engineer Gustav Eiffel, and was constructed of cast iron enriched with filigrana details. Inaugurated on 10 July 1902, it connects downtown to Trinidade, located many metres uphill and is the only street lift in Lisbon for public service. €5 (round trip ticket purchased onboard), €1.50 (viewpoint only, not including transport); Viva Viagem cards accepted.
Lisbon's metro system is clean, quick, and efficient. While metro announcements are made only in Portuguese, signs and ticketing machines are generally bilingual in Portuguese and English. Every line shares at least one station with each of the other lines, so once you are in the system, you can go pretty much everywhere the system reaches to, which is most of the important locations in Lisbon.
- The blue line ( , azul) has perhaps the most tourist-friendly route, starting at the Santa Apólonia train station and stopping at Terreiro do Paço, Baixa/Chiado, (Praça dos) Restauradores, Avenida (da Liberdade), (Praça do) Marquês de Pombal, Parque (Eduardo VII) and Jardim Zoológico.
- The green line (Belém, Cascais and Estoril or the ferry to Almada, as well as at Rossio, from where you can take a train to Sintra , verde) stops at Baixa/Chiado as well, and goes to Cais do Sodré, from where you can take trains to
- The red line ( , vermelha) starts directly at the Lisbon Airport and stops at Oriente (for long-distance trains and the Parque das Nações). That said, one needs to change to another metro line to get to the historic centre.
- The yellow line ( , amarela) is of perhaps least use to tourists as it mostly connects the northern residential districts with the city.
Most of the metro system is a free art gallery. You'll find art by contemporary artists inspired by the stations' surrounding area. Check the subway webpage for more details on this curiosity. The red line is the newest one and has the best pieces of art.
The first metro of each line leaves the terminal stations at 6:30 daily, the last metro leaves the terminal stations at 1:00 daily. Some secondary station halls close earlier, some are closed completely on weekends.
Carris operates a dense network of buses. Bus lines operating in the day start with a "7" (save for the "400" line that runs within the Parque das Nações), and those starting with "2" operate at night (00:01-05:00) when no daytime lines operate.
On the maps and in publications, bus and tram lines are colour-coded with reference to the directions they go to. Orange lines stay within the central area, pink go to the east (Belém and Ajuda), red to the north (Parque das Nações and Portela), while blue and green to the northeast. This is more or less where each of the corresponding metro lines (red, green and blue) go. Grey-coded buses move between the outer districts and do not stop in the historic centre. Do note that the buses themselves are all in standard yellow Carris livery and do not carry such indications.
Two of the popular bus lines now offer complimentary NetBus Wi-Fi service - line 736 from Cais do Sodré via Avenida da Liberdade and Avenida da República (stops at Campo Grande, Campo Pequeno and Entrecampos), and line 783 from the Portela Airport to Amoreiras shopping and office centre via Avenida da República and Praça Marquês de Pombal. Using those two bus lines you can get to most of the important tourist attractions while enjoying Wi-Fi – simply log in to the "CARRIS-TMN" network while on the bus.
Hop-On, Hop-Off Tours are also a good option to get to know Lisbon. Carristur is operating with the brand Yellow Bus Sightseeing Tours and have tours in double-decker buses and old tramcars.
Ferries connect Lisbon to the suburbs across the Tejo river in the south. Taking a ferry to Cacilhas is a good opportunity to see Lisbon from the water. A ferry is paid for just like a metro trip; you can even use your zapping (using this system will give you a €0.05 to €0.10 discount on the single ticket) Viva viagem card.
The ferry boat takes you to Cacilhas (€1.20) (the journey takes 10 minutes) or Trafaria (Almada) (€1.15), Seixal (€2.30), Montijo (€2.70) or Barreiro (this journey takes half an hour) (€2.30). The boats are operated by Transtejo.
Cycling within the city is now much easier because of the work the municipality has been putting in with bike lanes, slowing car traffic, changing car traffic patterns and adding speed bumps etc but, of course, parts of the town will always be part of the surprisingly hilly terrain of Lisbon. If you plan to cycle, some of these streets do have tram lines, potholes and an absence of designated bicycle lanes, so visitors wishing to venture into city traffic by bicycle should be used to urban riding. Riding on the footpaths is not recommended. It is advisable to get advice at local bikeshops.
Although better than in recent years there are still bike lanes in town the newest, nice and safe stretches from Baixa to Belem along the beautiful river Tejo water front aptly known as the Poetry Bike Lane.
These days car drivers are often weekend cyclists and way more careful with cyclists, more than ever before. Good spots for anyone to cycle safe are along the flat riverfront area streching from Parque das Nacoes, to the central area of Cais Sodre, where you can rent bikes look below for bike iberia, and particularly from here to Belem. Must-do for all travellers or cycling enthusiasts: A scenic and safe bike ride on bike lane from Baixa along waterfront to the historical area of Descobertas-Belem-Jerónimos.
Just outside of Lisbon -you can take a free bike (but often in poor condition and limited offer) on trains or ferries- along the coast from Estoril towards the beautiful beach of Guincho, reach Sintra, Cascais or Costa da Caparica. If travelling from Lisbon (and back) you should consider renting a bike there as there are no restrictions, nor additional charges, on travelling with bicycles on commuting trains.
If you take a bicycle in public transportation beware of the following:
- Metro: During working days you are allowed to carry bicycles in the metro only after 20:00. On weekends, it's allowed and it's free of charge.
- Commuting trains: You are allowed to carry bicycles in the trains for free, everyday of the week just be reasonable and avoid rush hour passenger patterns.
- Ferries: Bicycles travel for free, you are allowed but there are strict limitations on the number of bikes allowed depending on ferry lines and ferry boat type, arrive early and you shall avoid disappointment.
- Bike Buses: There are 6 lines of the public bus company "Carris" in which you can put your bike inside.
Bike shops in Lisbon town center are rare. You can find a SportZone near Rossio or in major shopping malls. Ask there for specialist shops, shop assistants are usually very helpful.
Think twice before using a car in the city unless you are prepared to spend hours in traffic jams and looking for parking space. The busy traffic and narrow streets with blind corners can be overwhelming to tourists. Also, due to lack of space and overcrowding, parking is difficult and annoying, as well as potentially dangerous - check the "Stay Safe" section below, regarding potential problems with criminals and homeless people who stand near parking spaces to "help" you park your car and then attempt to extort money from you.
In case you decide to travel around Portugal by car, it makes life easier to obtain a prepaid via verde vehicle transponder device, to avoid the hassle and delays of paying for toll charges every time. The procedure to become a via verde "utilizador" is straight forward if one speaks Portuguese; if not, get a local friend to tag along. You need to bring the vehicle's papers, drivers licence and ID. Via Verde offices are in the Loja do Cidadão (Citizen Shop). Local people should be able to direct you to the nearest one; if not, try the internet. On entering the Citizen Shop, be sure to get, from the machines by the doors, a numbered next-in-line ticket for the correct service provider. Without it, you'll not be attended to. When inside with ticket in hand, find out where the Via Verde help desk is, and keep your eye on the TV monitors to see where you are in the queue. Once you are given a device, it must be attached to the interior of the windscreen. Easy-to-follow instructions and a special double sided tape are provided in the kit.
If your accommodation is in the center of the city, walking is a great alternative. Many of the attractions of the city, such as the Castelo and the Alfama and Bairro Alto districts, are within easy walking distance of the Baixa. Central Lisbon is very intimate and walking is very nice way to get around. Note however that the city is very hilly, a constant up and down everywhere, and streets/sidewalks are largely covered in cobblestone (some slippery when wet). For visitors with mobility issues, central Lisbon can be challenging.
If you become lost or cannot find the location you are looking for, try to locate the nearest Carris bus or tram stop. Most of these stops (not all) have a very good map of the city with your current location clearly marked on the map. All the prominent tourist sites in Lisbon are also shown along with an index at the bottom of the map. A quick consultation with one of these Carris maps should point you back in the right direction.
You may also use the funiculars and elevadores. Day passes for public transportation are also valid for those.
Tuk tuks are becoming a popular alternative to visit Lisbon. The hills and the narrow streets make them a good option to explore the city. They're easy to find near the points of interest but booking is advisable. Some of the operators are: Tuk Tuk Lisboa, Tuk On Me and Tejo Tourism (which also provides segway tours).
As with the rest of Portugal, Portuguese is the main language in Lisbon. However, most younger people know English, and it is possible to get by speaking only English. Spanish is widely understood, though few are fluent in it, and many locals will respond more readily to English than to Spanish. Nevertheless, any attempt to speak Portuguese is always appreciated, and even simple things like basic greetings will often draw smiles and encouragement from locals.
When asking for directions or trying to make out announcements, do note that Portuguese, while similar in writing to Spanish or Italian, has very peculiar pronunciation. In most cases, the letter "j" is pronounced as "zh", thus e.g. the river Tejo is pronounced "tezho" (and not "teho" as Spanish speakers would render it). Portuguese is also very "soft", with a peculiar accent - some linguists have described it as "windsurfing between the vowels" - and many vowel-consonant combinations are pronounced very differently from other European languages. It may be good to memorize the proper spelling and pronunciation of some destinations you intend to visit to avoid misunderstandings or misreading directions.
- 1 Ponte 25 de Abril. This sister bridge of the San Francisco – Oakland Bay Bridge was designed by the same architect in 1966 to connect Lisbon with the Setubal peninsula across the Tagus (Tejo) River. Formerly known as the Salazar Bridge, it was renamed after the Carnation Revolution which, on 25 April 1974, ended the dictatorship.
- 1 Ponte Vasco da Gama. It is the longest bridge in Europe (including viaducts), and ninth longest in the world, with a total length of 17.2 km (10.7 mi), including 0.829 km (0.5 mi) for the main bridge, 11.5 km (7.1 mi) in viaducts, and 4.8 km (3.0 mi) in dedicated access roads.
- 1 Cristo Rei Statue. This statue of Christ the King overlooking Lisbon is across the river but is clearly visible from Lisbon. The monument was inspired by the similar statue in Rio de Janeiro. See Almada for details.
- The museum ship Dom Fernando II e Gloria is an accurately restored early 19th-century 50-gun, 3-mast, fully-rigged frigate considered unique in the world. The restoration project was undertaken as part of Expo98 to show case Portuguese maritime heritage. The ship was recommissioned in 1998 by the Portuguese Navy Reserve as a working exhibit and is open to visitors either at port in the arsenal of Alfeite or Praça do Império harbour in Belém. The Navy Museum at Jerónimos will have information concerning the whereabouts.
- 1 Praça do Comércio (Take the metro to Terreiro do Paço Station). This magnificent plaza, facing the river, is the beginning of Lisboa's downtown. It is also known as 'Terreiro do Paço', meaning 'Grounds of the Palace', relating to its function before the Great Earthquake of 1755. The upper floors of the yellow buildings surrounding the square are mainly used as government offices, while the lower floors often contains cafés and restaurants. King Josef I, who ruled during the reconstruction of Lisbon, is seen as a mounted statue in the middle of the square, while the arch facing north is a tribute to the explorer Vasco da Gama.
- 1 Rossio station. Built in 1890 as the Estação Central (Central Station), it was the main railway hub until 1957. It provides a direct connection to Sintra in about 40 min. The trains access the station through a 2.6-km long tunnel. The main facade is an example of the Neo-Manueline style, a revival of Gothic style in Portugal during the mid-19th century.
- 1 Palacio Foz, Praça dos Restauradores, ☎ +351 21 322 12 00, e-mail: email@example.com. A palace constructed in the 18th and 19th centuries. Visits can be arranged in advance via email. Concerts (some of them free) are offered. Information also available on the official Facebook page.
- 1 Praca dos Restauradores.
- Museu de Sociedade de Geografia.
- 1 Casa do Alentejo, Rua Portas de Santo Antão, 58.
- 1 Praca dom Pedro IV (Rossio).
- 1 Praca da Figueira.
- 1 Nossa Senhora da Conceicao Velha.
Chiado and Bairro Alto
- 1 Igreja do Carmo, Largo do Carmo (Elevador Santa Justa or a short uphill hike from Baixa or Rossio), ☎ +351 213 460 473, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Oct-May: M-Sa 10:00-18:00; Jun-Sep: M-Sa 10:00-19:00; closed Su, 1 Jan, 1 May, 25 Dec. The hilltop church of the former convent of Carmo is a towering memorial of the 1755 earthquake, which made the roof of the church collapse, but the Gothic arches of the nave survived. The church was preserved that way and now serves as the Museu Arqueológico in the extant parts of the building. The museum houses a hodgepodge of archaeological artifacts from around Portugal and the world including mummies from South America, tombs of Portuguese rulers, and the Stations of the Cross on 18th-century painted tiles. The assorted artifacts are not well explained, but the church is a sight to see and visitors come to relax in the grassy nave of the church, and draw or photograph the spires. €4 (adults), €3 (students/seniors), €3.20 (Lisbon card), free (children under 15).
- 1 Santa Justa elevator, Largo do Carmo - Rua do Ouro. 08:30-20:30 (viewing platform). Excellent vertical view of the Baixa streets, next to Igreja do Carmo. The line can be quite long, you may want to consider walking up and riding it down instead. €1.50.
- 1 Jardim de São Pedro de Alcântara (Mirador), Rua S. Pedro de Alcântara. Excellent panorama from the lovely terrace/garden on top of Elevador da Glória and northern corner of Bairro Alto. Free.
- 1 Museu Nacional de Arte Antiga, Rua das Janelas Verdes, ☎ +351 21 391 2800. Tuesday to Sunday: 10:00-18:00; Closed Monday. Portugal's impressive national art collection, including 14-19th century European painting, artefacts of Portuguese contact with the East and Africa and a collection of ecclesiastical treasures. Highlights include Dürer's St Jerome, Hieronymus Bosch's Temptations of St Antony, Nuno Gonçalves' Adoration of St Vincent, and 16th century Japanese paintings of Portuguese traders. Normal: €6.00.
- 1 Museu da Marioneta.
- 1 Basilica da Estrela.
- 1 Jardim da Estrela.
- 1 Palacio de Sao Bento.
- 1 Cemitério dos Prazeres, Praça São João Bosco (Tram 28 to its Western terminus), ☎ +351 21 396 1511. daily 09:00–16:30. This large cemetery is packed with majestic gravestones and mausoleums, separated by wide, pedestrian, tree-lined "streets". Many graves are marked with icons telling something about the person's role in historical Lisbon. A beautiful respite from the busy city. free.
- 1 Castelo de São Jorge (St. George's Castle) (Walk up the hill from Alfama or take bus 37), ☎ +351 218 800 620. Mar-Oct 09:00-21:00; Nov-Feb 09:00-18:00. Up the hill, with a great view over the city and the river. If you have the energy, get there by walking from downtown, going through the fantastic old neighborhood of Alfama. €7 with student discount available.
Panteão Nacional (Igreja do Santa Engrácia), Campo de Santa Clara (Santa Apolonia station, hike uphill. Tram 28), ☎ +351 21 885 4820. 10:00-17:00, platform 10:00-18:00 (closed Mondays, shorter hours in winter). This is one of the most striking buildings in Lisbon. It's tall dome and white facade makes it a real landmark in Alfama/Eastern Lisbon. Excellent views from the rooftop terrace. Construction began in 1681, then halted until the dome was added in 1966 and then converted to the National Pantheon. Amalia Rodrigues, queen of fado, is buried here, and fresh roses can be seen on the tomb.
The church also has wide viewing platform on the rooftop all around its dome. Excellent panorama of the river and surroundings. No elevator. €3.
- 1 Alfama mirador, Largo Portas do Sol (walk uphill from Sé (Cathedral), tram 28). Good viewpoint in Alfama uphill from the cathedral along tram route. Lovely view over rooftops and river. Free.
- 1 Museu do Teatro Romano (Roman Theatre Museum), Rua de São Mamede, nº 3 A, ☎ +351 218 172 450. Along the way from downtown to Saint George's Castle.
This monument-packed area is a must-see place, and it contains Lisbon's two World Heritage Sites; the Belém Tower and the Jerónimos Monastery.
Take bus 28 to the west (direction Restelo), which follows the coast line and provides an express service with few stops. Or take the Cascais suburban train (line Cascais todos or Oeiras; the express trains don't stop in Belém) to Belém and walk to the attractions. Tram 15 to the west (Algés direction) follows the Junqueira residencial line. Check the route map inside the tram: it helps to find a right station for most famous of Belém attractions. The extensive bus network also serves Belém from various departure points around the city and can be less busy than the tram.
Note that to reach the waterfront attractions such as Belem Tower and Padrão dos Descobrimentos from the town centre/tram line, it is necessary to cross over the railway line by the footbridges – there is one at the railway station and another near Belem Tower.
- 1 Torre de Belém (Belem Tower), Av. Brasília, ☎ +351 21 362 0034. Oct-May: Tu-Su 10:00-17:30; May-Sep: Tu-Su 10:00-18:30; last entry 30 min before closing; closed 1 Jan, Easter, 1 May, 13 Jun, and 25 Dec. A UNESCO World Heritage site, the iconic fortified tower was built in the early 16th century in the late Gothic Manueline style. Originally built as a fortress, it was said to be the last thing Portuguese explorers saw when departing as well as the first thing they saw upon return. It was later used as a prison for political prisoners, and is today one of the most recognized symbols of Lisbon and Portugal. €6 (adults), €3 (seniors/students/youth card), free (children under 12); free admission on first Sun of the month. Combined ticket with Mosteiro dos Jerónimos €12, combined ticket with Mosteiro dos Jerónimos and Museu Nacional de Arqueologia €16, combined ticket with 5 other sites €25 (see website for details).
- 1 Mosteiro dos Jerónimos (Jerónimos Monastery), Praça do Império, ☎ +351 21 362 0034. Oct-May: Tu-Su 10:00-17:30; May-Sep: Tu-Su 10:00-18:30; last entry 30 min before closing; closed 1 Jan, Easter, 1 May, 13 Jun, and 25 Dec. Also a UNESCO World Heritage site, the monastery was built in the 16th century and is an outstanding example of the Portuguese late Gothic Manueline style. €10 (adults), €5 (seniors/students/youth card), free (children under 12); free admission to the church and on first Sun of the month.
- 1 Monument to the Discoveries (Padrão dos Descobrimentos). Climbing the monument gives you a spectacular view of Belém. €4.
- 1 Statue to Afonso de Albuquerque. In front of the former Royal Palace of Belém, now the Presidential Palace, there is a massive statue looking out to sea, representing Afonso de Albuquerque, second ruler of Portuguese India in the early 16th century.
- 1 Museu da Marinha (Maritime Museum), Centro Cultural de Belém, ☎ +351 21 362-0019. Open 10:00-17:00 in winter, 10:00-18:00 in summer. One of the most important in Europe, evoking Portugal's domination of the seas. Its colossal 17,000 items are installed in the west wing of Jerónimos Monastery, and include model ships from the Age of Discovery onward. The oldest exhibit is a wooden figure representing the Archangel Raphael that accompanied Vasco da Gama on his voyage to India. Entry fee €4.
- 1 Museu Nacional dos Coches (National Coach Museum), Praça Afonso de Albuquerque, Belem (Tram or train to Belem). 10:00-18:00. Housed in the former riding school of the palace, don't miss the world's largest collection of horse-drawn coaches and other royal vehicles. One of Lisbon's many unusual museums. In the "Museum street", Belem. €5.
- 1 Museu Colecção Berardo, Centro Cultural de Belém. 10:00-19:00. The permanent collection of the museum consist of the Berardo Collection, which is made up of modern en contemporary art, with major art movements like abstract expressionism, Abstraction-Création, action painting, body Art, constructivism, cubism, De Stijl, digital art, experimental art, geometric abstraction, kinetic art, minimal art, neo-expressionism, neo-plasticism, neo-Realism, op art, photography, photorealism, pop art, realism, suprematism, surrealism. Includes artists like Piet Mondrian, Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Pablo Picasso and Jackson Polock. Free admission.
- 1 Museu Arte Arquitetura Tecnologia (Museum of Art Architecture and Technology), Av. de Brasília, Central Tejo, ☎ +351 210 028 130, e-mail: email@example.com. W-M 12:00-20:00. Various exhibits, including one on the topic of electricity in the building of a former power station. €5.
- 1 Ajuda Botanical Gardens (Jardim Botânico da Ajuda), Calçada da Ajuda, ☎ +351 21 362 2503, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Daily 09:00-20:00 (summer), 09:00-18:00 (winter). The botanical garden of Ajuda is one of the oldest gardens in Europe and is considered the first in Portugal. After the earthquake that occurred in 1755, the homeless Portuguese royal family decided to build a new royal residence at Ajuda but also gardens around it. This 10-acre garden was laid out in from 1858-1873. €2.
- 1 The Calouste Gulbenkian Museum, Avenida de Berna, 45A (take the metro to São Sebastião or Praça de Espanha Stations), ☎ +351 21 782-3000. W-M 10:00-17:45. Created from the personal collection of the art and artifact collector Calouste Gulbenkian. The collection include Egyptian artefacts; Islamic and oriental art; paintings by masters such as Rembrandt, Manet, Monet, Renoir, and Cassat; and a large collection of objects made by the Art Nouveau jeweler René Lalique. Gulbenkian was an Armenian born in the Ottoman Empire who, through his investments in Iraqi oil, became one of the wealthiest men of his time. During a journey he fell ill and had to seek medical attention in Lisbon. He fell in love with the city and decided live out his final days there. After his death his immense collections where organized into this museum. There is also a separate Gulbenkian Modern Art Center (MAC). The Gulbenkian Gardens which surround the museums and foundation building are worth a visit in and of themselves, as a little oasis in the middle of downtown Lisbon. €10 (permanent and temporary exhibition); half price for those aged less than 30 or more than 65. Free entry on Sundays after 14:00 and for children under 18; entrance to the garden is free.
- 1 Fundação Arpad Szenes / Vieira da Silva, Praça das Amoreiras, 56/58, ☎ +351 21 388-0044, fax: +351 21 3880039, e-mail: email@example.com. M-Sa 11:00-19:00, Su 10:00-18:00. This museum is installed in the restored 18th-century former Royal Silk Factory. Its permanent collection covers a wide time period of the works of 20th-century painters Arpad Szenes and Maria Helena Vieira da Silva, and regularly hosts exhibits by their contemporaries. Adults €2.50, students €1.25, kids under 14 free.
- 1 Aqueduto das Aguas Livres. This is a historic aqueduct in the city of Lisbon, Portugal. It is one of the most remarkable examples of 18th-century Portuguese engineering, including the largest stone arch in the world. The main course of the aqueduct covers 18 km, but the whole network of canals extends through nearly 58 km. The Mãe d'Água (Mother of the Water) reservoir of the Amoreiras, the largest of the water reservoirs, was finished in 1834. This reservoir, with a capacity of 5,500 m³ of water, was designed by Carlos Mardel. It is now deactivated and can be visited as part of the Museu da Água (Water Museum).
- 1 BES Arte & Finança, Praça Marquês de Pombal, 3, ☎ +351 21 350-8975. Business days from 09:00-19:00. Multifunctional space dedicated to contemporary art, especially Photography Free.
- 1 Jardim Zoológico, Estrada de Benfica 158-160 (Metro:Take the Blue Line to the Jardim Zoológico. Buses: A variety of buses stop here including 16, 31, 54, 58, 701 and 755), ☎ +351 21 7232-920. 21 Mar-30 Sep: 10:00-20:00; 1 Oct-20 Mar: 10:00-18:00. A zoo that is fairly pricey, but has a variety of exotic animals featuring sea-lions and dolphins. €15.
- 1 Lisbon Botanical Gardens (Jardim Botânico), Rua da Escola Politécnica, 58 (between the Avenida da Liberdade and Bairro Alto). A hidden gem. It was created several hundred years ago, by a King of Portugal at the time of the Discoveries. The story goes that this King wanted one of every type of plant in the world, and although that's unlikely, there is a huge collection dating back by three or four centuries which is worth checking out. And there's something quite eerie about seeing plants or huge trees from completely different climates growing next to each other in apparent harmony. A great place to take a picnic - this green oasis is completely surrounded by city but even the city sounds filter out. Entrance €2 adults, discounts for kids, seniors and students.
Parque das Nações
Parque das Nações ("the park of nations") is a district built from scratch for the 1998 World Expo (and hence also known as Expo to the locals) in the northeastern end of Lisbon. After the Expo, many of the impressive constructions and decorations were kept, while new residential, commercial and office buildings were added to form a thriving, mixed-use district consisting exclusively of modern architecture and making the most of its river-facing location by offering a number of leisure facilities.
Although Parque das Nações is quite removed from downtown Lisbon, it is reasonably easy to get there by metro (red line), train or bus. Look for stops and stations named "Oriente", for the spectacular Gare do Oriente train station in the middle of the district.
- 1 Oceanarium, ☎ +351 21 891-7002. One of the world's largest oceanariums. Built by American architect Norman Foster, it hosts thousends of marine species of the oceans, such as sea otters,penguins and sharks. The main tank is huge, representing the atlantic environment, with hundreds of small fishes, sharks, barracuda, snappers and a huge sunfish. Ideal for children. Adults €18, children & seniors €12.
Go out at night to the central Bairro Alto, or 'High Neighborhood'. Just up the hill from Chiado, this is the place to go out in town. In the early evening, go to a fado-themed restaurant near the Praca Camoes, and head upwards as the evening goes on. If you're in Lisbon on the night preceding a Feriado or public holiday, you have to check this out. Tiny little streets which are empty in the daytime become crammed walkways which are difficult to get through. For more of a clubbing or disco experience, try the Docas district along the marina overlooking the Ponte 25 de Abril.
The Lisbon stage events calendar is a full one all year round. The city presents good quality productions in; Ballet and Modern Dance, Chamber Music, Opera and Theatre. The Teatro Nacional de São Carlos is a magnificent Opera house in the La Scala tradition. On a light note, there's also "Teatro de Revista", a kind of social/political satire theatre that was born in Lisbon and recently, English language productions started being staged. It's one of the local culture favourite live entertainment shows to see when you visit the city but you can only find it in the Parque Mayer. Due to high demand, it's advisable to purchase tickets in advance. To do so for any of the shows, ABEP "Agência de Bilhetes para Espétaculos Públicos" (Ticket Agency) is the place to contact.
- 1 Altice Arena (MEO Arena / Pavilhão Atlântico), Rossio dos Olivais (Parque das Nações), ☎ +351 21 891 8409. Is the stage most frequently used by touring rock bands and Brazilian musicians.
- 1 Coliseu dos Recreios, R. Portas de Santo Antão 96, ☎ +351 21 324 0580. The largest arena for musical performances.
- 1 Gulbenkian Music, Avenida de Berna, 45A, ☎ +351 217 823 700. The Gulbenkian Foundation has its own symphony orchestra and ballet group. There are also two stages operated by the foundation. One major auditorium inside the main building, and an outdoors stage in the nearby Gulbenkian Gardens.
- 1 Teatro Maria Vitória, ☎ +351 21 347-5454, +351 21 347-0468.
- 1 Theatro Nacional Dona Maria II, Praça Dom Pedro IV, ☎ +351 21 325 0800. The most famous live theatre stage in Lisbon.
- Moda Lisboa, Rua do Arsenal, 25, ☎ +351 21 321 30 00, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. March. Lisbon Fashion Week.
- Piexe em Lisboa. April. A food festival, with focus on fish dishes.
- Dias da Música em Belém. End of April. A music festival held in Belém in western Lisbon.
- IndieLisboa, ☎ +351 213 158 399, e-mail: email@example.com. May. An independent film festival. In addition to screenings there is also a large number of lectures and seminars.
- Rock in Rio Lisboa. Late May or early June every other year (every even numbered year). A major rock music festival, branched from the famous Rock in Rio de Janeiro.
- Festas dos Santos. June. A number of large fiestas celebrating different catholic Saints, with parades during the day and fire work shows by night. The first and largest fiesta celebrates Saint Anthony on the 13th of June. It is followed by the celebration of Saint John the Baptist on the 23rd of June and Saint Peter on the 28th of June.
- Jazz em Augusto. August. A annual jazz festival organized by the Gulbenkian Foundation.
Lisbon is home to some famous sport clubs. Scheduled sporting events take place throughout the year with football dominating proceedings, however indoor sports like, basketball, futsal, roller hockey, handball, etc, also take place, as well as most Olympic codes.
Football ie soccer: Lisbon has three teams playing in Primeira Liga, the top tier of Portuguese football. These are:
- CF Os Belenenses play in the 25,000-seat Estádio do Restelo, 800 m north of Belém metro.
- SL Benfica play in Estádio da Luz, capacity 64,600, 3 km north of the centre, metro Luz.
- Sporting CP play in Estádio José Alvalade, capacity 50,000, 4 km north of the centre towards the airport, metro Campo Grande.
The atmosphere on match days is mostly friendly and safe. Check club websites for fixtures and tickets.
Nearby at Autódromo do Estoril, the motor racing scene is quite lively on race days. For details contact the ACP Automóvel Clube de Portugal (Portugal Auto Club).
The Estoril Open is an ATP sanctioned tennis event played every April/May.
Shops are open a little later than other places in Europe, usually around 09:30-22:00, and the lunch breaks can be quite long, usually from 13:00 to 15:00.
You can buy a Lisbon Shopping Card, which gives you 5% to 20% discounts at about 200 major stores in Baixa, Chiado and Av. Liberdade for a period of 24 hours (card costs €3.70) or 72 hours (card costs €5.70).
- Baixa: From Praça do Comércio (aka Terreiro do Paço) to the Restauradores, the Baixa is the old shopping district in the city. It includes pedestrian Rua Augusta which has the most boring and mass-visitor tourist stores, and several European chain clothing stores like Zara, H&M, Campers.
- Chiado: a number of independent shops and services and well known brands such as Hugo Boss, Vista Alegre, Tony & Guy, Benetton, Sisley, Pepe Jeans, Levi's and Colcci, which makes Chiado, together with Avenida da Liberdade, one of the Top 10 places to shop in the world. Some informal brands like Crumpler are also there. The Portuguese perfume and beauty products house Claus Porto has a shop in Rua da Misericórdia, well worth it dropping by.
- Avenida da Liberdade: Louis Vuitton, Calvin Klein, Timberland, Massimo Dutti, Armani, Burberrys and Adolfo Dominguez are just some of the shops you'll find across this avenue, which is not just one of the most beautiful and wide in the city, but also one of the fanciest with splurge hotels and restaurants.
Malls and markets
While most stores are closed on Sundays, many malls are open 7 days a week. They usually open around 09:30 and close by 23:00 or 24:00, although the film theaters within them usually run a late session starting after 24:00. Grocery stores are closed on Sundays after 13:00, except (a) those smaller than 2000 m² or (b) from November 1 to December 31.
- 1 Armazéns do Chiado, Rua do Carmo 2 (Metro: Baixa-Chiado Station). This upscale and trendy shopping centre was developed inside Lisbon's historic grand department store which burnt down in 1988. The food court on the top floor has a terrace with a brilliant view over Baixa and Chiado.
- 1 Centro Comercial Colombo, Av. Colegio Militar (Metro: Take the Blue Line to Colegio Militar/Luz Station), ☎ +351 21 771-3636. 09:00-24:00. One of the largest malls in Europe, this shopping and leisure complex also houses dozens of restaurants, a bowling alley, health club, multiplex cinema, funfair with rides including a roller coaster, and a go-cart track.
- 1 Centro Comercial Amoreiras, Av. Eng. Duarte Pacheco (Metro: Marquês de Pombal Station). The city's oldest mall in eye-catching post-modern towers housing international chains.
- 1 El Corte Inglés, Av. António Augusto Aguiar, 413 (Metro: Sao Sebastiao Station). The Spanish department store chain invaded Lisbon, armed with cinema and supermarket. It can be a bit pricey but with good quality items.
- 1 Dolce Vita Tejo, Avenida Cruzeiro Seixas,Amadora (Metro: Take the Blue Line to Amadora Station, and take a bus from there as the mall is beyond walking distance.). One of the biggest shopping malls in Europe.
- 1 Mercado de Campo de Ourique, Rua Coelho da Rocha (Tram 28 to its Western terminus at Prazeres). An indoor market selling wide selection of fruits, vegetables, meats, fish, and jewelry. A perfect break while Tram 28 turns around, it's calmer and less crowded than other markets listed.
Souvenirs and notable stores
Portugal is the largest producer of cork in the world, and there is a vast range of souvenir cork items for sale in Lisbon. Another typical Lisbon item is the "Azulejo" glazed tile, which dresses many local buildings to protect them from fires.
- 1 Avida Portuguesa, Rua Anchieta, 11 (Chiado), ☎ +351 21 346-5073, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Vintage and nostalgic products and brands.
- 1 Lisbon Souvenir - Handicrafts and Textiles, Rua dos Remédios 61 (In the center of Alfama, the old part of town), e-mail: email@example.com. 10:00 - 00:00. Typical tablecloths, tee towels and wool jackets, all made in Portugal. €1€-50.
- 1 Livraria Bertrand, R. Garrett 73 (Ciado), ☎ +351 21 347 6122. Founded in 1732, it is the oldest operating bookstore in the world. If you want they can stamp the books you buy, certifying that they were bought there. While most books are in Portuguese there is a full shelf of English language literature, including many notable Portuguese titles translated to English. There's a small coffee-shop/bar area at the back of the shop with very helpful staff.
- 1 Feira da Ladra, Campo de Santa clara (Take Tram 28). Tu and Sa 06:00-17:00. A lively outdoor market offering new and used products. Markets of this type have pleased bargain hunters since the 12th century in Lisbon and the Feira da Ladra name has been around since the 17th century.
Portuguese dining rituals tend to follow the Mediterranean siesta body clock. Most restaurants are very small, family-run and generally cheap. Some of them have a sheet on the door with the pratos do dia (dishes of the day) written on it – these dishes are usually cheaper and fresher than the rest of menu there, and unless you're looking for something specific, they're the right choice. During the dinner the waiter will probably bring you some unrequested starter dishes (called couvert); as those are not free, don't feel obliged to touch them and they will not be charged on your bill (but check it!).
Traditional Portuguese restaurants are in Bairro Alto, scattered abundantly through its quirky narrow streets, and for Portuguese traditional cuisine at its finest, head to the area of Chiado. Tour groups primarily feel at home in Alfama. Tourist traps with laminated menus and meal deals are mostly concentrated in the Baixa area; one exception to this is the Rua das Portas de Santo Antão, a 'seafood strip' northeast from and parallel to Praça dos Restauradores. If you feel like eating with the local people, try the Castelo neighborhood, the smaller family run places serve a fixed daily menu and are not expensive, getting up there by foot will open an appetite, or else go in the elétrico. For a familiar taste at one of the many chain eateries, head to Doca de Santo Amaro (train/tram 15 station Alcantara-Mar) and Parque das Nações (metro Oriental). All the culinary and clubbing kudos is right now concentrated in Doca de Jardim de Tabaco (piece of river waterfront right under Castelo de Sao Jorge). Quality dishes for a high price are in well-to-do Lapa.
Never ask a taxi driver about which restaurant you should go to – they will take you to an expensive tourist-oriented restaurant, where they will receive a commission.
You will find traditional meals served in small coffeeshops/restaurants, especially in the old parts of town. Some will be better than others, just check if there are a lot of locals eating there! They will be very cheap (as low as €5 for a full meal) and home-style cooking. The owners probably won't speak English and the menu will probably be in Portuguese only!
- 1 Café Buenos Aires, Calçada Escadinhas do Duque, 31, ☎ +351 21 342 0739. Daily 18:00-01:00. A good and selected combination of cheap and mid range dishes. The owners are very friendly and speak English, as well as Portuguese. It is a good restaurant if you want to eat South American grilled meat.
- Communist Party Restaurant, 170 Avenida da Liberdade. Open lunch time. Basic (not exciting, but good) food in a good location. approx €10 for a full meal (including soup, salad, main and desert), or cheaper for less. 33ml beer is 0.95€..
- 1 Faca & Garfo, R. da Condessa, 2, ☎ +351 21 346 8068. M-Sa 08:00-24:00. A cozy and affordable restaurant which offers tasty grilled Portuguese specialities of meat and fish. Mains €6-8.
- 1 Mamma Rosa Ristorante Pizzeria, Rua do Gremio Lusitano, 14 Barrio Alto, ☎ +351 21 346-5350. Great pizzas, cheap Portuguese wine and very helpful friendly staff who have given lots of tourist information to customers in the past. approx €9 a pizza.
- 1 Mestiço, Arco das Portas do Mar, 9 (near Casa dos Bicos), ☎ +351 963660756. What used to be a Nepalese curry house is now a very friendly African eatery with authentic food. In the evening musicians play for an even more atmospheric setting. €8-12.
- 1 Restaurante Santa Rita, Rua de São Mamede 24c, ☎ +351 21 808 4412, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Authentic, cheap Portuguese dishes in a very busy, shared-table restaurant. Mains €5-9.
- 1 Restaurante Tascardoso, Rua de O Século, 242 (Bairro Alto, on the corner of Rua Dom Pedro V), ☎ +351 21 342 7578. M-F 12:00-24:00. Standing-room only, this place serves simple and affordable Portuguese dishes, including grilled sardines. Toilets available. Small dishes €3.
- 1 Rosa da Rua Restaurante, Rua da Rosa, 265, Bairro Alto (Metro: Rossio), ☎ +351 21 343 2195, e-mail: email@example.com. M-F 12:00-15:30 19:30-22:30, Sa 19:30-22:30. A traditional restaurant offering an interesting mix of Portuguese, Indian, and Cape Verdean flavours. The lunch-time buffet offers excellent value for money and great quality food. Staff are patient with English speakers. €10 for buffet lunch; €25 for 3-course dinner.
- 1 Time Out Market (Mercado da Ribeira), Av. 24 de Julho 49 (Cais do Sodré, opposite the train station), ☎ +351 21 395 1274. Su-W 10:00-24:00, Th-Sa 10:00-02:00. The late 19th-century market was closed in 2000, and in 2014 the publisher Time Out Portugal transformed the space into a gourmet food court with 40 kiosks, including restaurants, bars, and shops. A number of Lisbon's top chefs have stands here, making this an ideal place to sample some of their food for lower prices than at their established restaurants.
- Mercado da Praça da Figueira.From the pavement looks like a small convenience shop, on walking in you realize the deception when confronted by the large cavernous meandering interior space, replete with everything expected from a well stocked supermarket. Although there isn't a restaurant as such, the ready to eat items on offer are tasty, fresh, inexpensive and varied. The sandwiches and hamburgers are superb.
- 1 A Tasquinha (from downtown, turn left near Igreja de Santa Luzia to Rua do Limoeiro, then turn right to Rua de Santiago, pass Camidas de Santiago), Largo Contador Mor, 6, ☎ +351 962 803 068. Great food with many outdoor tables and great red Sangria. The owner and guest singers perform fado on Friday evenings without charging extra for it. Try the bacalau with potatoes and onion in cream sauce, an excellent change from the ubiquitous 'rice/chips with grilled everything'.
- 1 DeliDelux, Av. Infante Dom Henrique, Armazém B - Loja 8 (Cais da Pedra), ☎ +351 21 886 2070, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Su-Th 10:00-23:00, F Sa 10:00-24:00. Breakfasts in a contemporary setting; pleasant views. Average bill: €20.
- 1 Farol de Santa Luzia, Largo de Santa Luzia, 5 (near 28/12 tram stops), ☎ +351 21 886 3884, fax: +351 218 885 356, e-mail: email@example.com. M-Sa 17:30-23:00. Great place to have typical Portuguese food before climbing to Castelo S. Jorge. ~ €20/person.
- 1 Malmequer Bemmequer, Rua de Sao Miguel 23-25, ☎ +351 21 887-6535. Tu 19:00-21:00, W-Su 12:00-15:00 19:00-21:00. Friendly and inexpensive; long menu of traditional Portuguese dishes.
- 1 Restaurante Chapitô à Mesa, Costa do Castelo, 7, ☎ +351 21 887 5077, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. M-F 12:00-24:00, Sa Su 19:30-24:00. Great views are the main feature if you reserve terrace seat in advance. Good atmosphere; international-menu food is tasty but nothing special.
- 1 Zambeze, Calçada Marquês de Tancos (Alfama), ☎ +351 21 887 7056, e-mail: email@example.com. A Mozambique restaurant located on a "miradouro", viewing spot, offering a great view of the river, the Baixa area, and beyond. An elevator can bring you up and down the deep slopes, making it easily reachable from the nearby Baixa area.
Baixa and Chiado
- 1 Cervejaria da Trindade, R. Nova da Trindade 20C (Chiado), ☎ +351 21 342 3506, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Su-Th 12:00-24:00, F Sa 12:00-01:00. Located in a former monastery, this excellent restaurant-brewery has several kinds of Sagres beer and also Guinness. Beware with the appetizer that is charged for each item that is consumed separately. Nice codfish plates. €15-25.
- 1 Leitaria Camponeza, Rua dos Sapateiros, 155 (Baixa, 1 min from main street), ☎ +351 923 132 488, e-mail: email@example.com. Daily 19:00-23:00. On the location of a historical café (the leitaria), this place focuses on only a short number of dishes (meats, fish and seafood) but makes up for this in quality and portion size. For an atmospheric presentation ask for one of their espetads. The wines compliment the dishes and you can end the meal with a dessert. For someone looking for great value for their buck (no compromises on quality), it's a good place to start or end an evening. €15-30.
- 1 Néctar WineBar, R. dos Douradores, 33 (Baixa Pombalina), ☎ +351 912633368. M-Sa 13:00-24:00. A place dedicated to the promotion of Portugal's wine and gastronomic culture, and featuring a daily lunch menu of Portuguese and Mediterrenean cuisine The wine list comprises – in its vast majority – a selection of Portuguese wines which best represent the country. Wine can be bought by the glass, and it is served at the appropriate temperatures and in suitable glasses. Dishes – served in portions for 2 – easily replace a main course meal. Homemade-style desserts, for which sweet wines can be suggested. A modern and cosy atmosphere. €25-35.
- 1 Os Tibetanos, Rua do Salitre, 117, ☎ +351 213 142 038. M-F 12:15-14:45 19:30-22:30, Sa 12:45-15:30 20:00-23:00, Su and holidays 19:30-22:30. Vegetarian restaurant affiliated with a Buddhist center. Vegan friendly. Juice bar. Inexpensive.
- 1 Restaurante Bonjardim, Tv. de Santo Antão 11 (Baixa – 2 bldgs on a small side street off Rua Santo Antão), ☎ +351 21 342 4389. Daily 12:00-23:00. Appropriately nicknamed Rei dos Frangos, this is home to the best greasy spit-roasted chicken this side of Louisiana.
- 1 Restaurante Brasuca, Rua João Pereira da Rosa, 7, ☎ +351 21 322 0740. Tu-Su 12:00-15:00 19:00-23:00. Great Brazilian food served by friendly staff.
- 1 Restaurante Calcutá 2, Rua da Atalaia, 28, ☎ +351 21 346 8165. Daily 18:30-23:30. The second of two restaurants operated by the same owners. Decent Indian food, but far from the best. The location is great though for starting a night out on the town. Ask for the shoot drinks! €25 (two courses with house wine).
- 1 Restaurante Lisboa À Noite, Rua as Gaveas, 69, ☎ +351 21 346 8557, fax: +351 21 346 0222, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. M-Th 19:30-24:00, F Sa and holidays 19:30-01:00. A restaurant with a variety of traditional Portuguese dishes very appreciated by the tourists. Friendly environment, great service. Make sure you try the appetizers.
- 1 Restaurante Sacramento do Chiado, Calçada Sacramento, 44, ☎ +351 21 342 0572, e-mail: email@example.com. M-F 12:30-15:00 19:30-24:00, Sa Su 19:30-24:00. A popular locals' place located in palace stables from the 18th-century . The atmosphere and the food are excellent. Service is very good and the receommendations by the staff are outstanding. The writing on the menu is very small and difficult to read in the subdued lighting. €40 (appetizer, main, wine and desert).
- 1 Restaurante Sinal Vermelho, R. das Gáveas, 89, ☎ +351 21 346 1252. M 19:00-00:30, Tu-F 12:30-00:30, Sa 19:00-00:30. Good traditional Portuguese at reasonable prices. Mains €8-12.
- 1 Restaurante Terra, Rua da Palmeira, 15 (near Jardim do Príncipe Real), ☎ +351 707 108 108. Tu-Su 12:30-15:30 19:30-24:00. Probably the best vegetarian restaurant in Lisbon and also the nicest in terms of ambience and service. They have a menu in English and will help with vegan choices or people with other dietary restrictions. Reservations are recommended, especially on weekends but you will always be served even if you arrive with the place full and have to wait for a while. Weather permitting try to get a table outside, which means a wonderful and secluded back terrace. €15-20 (buffet plus drink and/or dessert).
- Arroz Maria, Doca de Sto Amaro (take train from Cais do Sodre, ride to Alcântara-Mar station), ☎ +351 21 395-4677. Spanish food restaurant with fabulous seafood with a great view of the Tejo river and the Ponte de 25 Abril. Excellent service and really fresh food. Don't miss the tamboril (monkfish) with the tomato and asparagus sauce. Really worth the effort to get there, the Docas area is fairly newly developed, and the railway line makes it hard to find a way across the main road, but with determination it's a great spot to go to. It's one of a number of restaurants of varying types along this stretch of the quayside, but it stands out for quality and value. Check it out before it gets 'trendy'. €25 (two courses with wine and port).
- 1 Come Prima, Rua do Olival, 258 (near the Museu de Arte Antiga, between the Madragoa neighbourhood and the docks), ☎ +351 213 902 457, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. M-F 12:00-15:00 19:00-23:00, F Sa 19:00-24:00. Traditional Italian fresh pasta dishes, various starters, risottos, meats and wood-oven pizzas are produced from a wide selection of prime quality fresh ingredients. Extensive wine list procured from both national and Italian producers and a delightful choice of desserts carefully picked from the Italian classics. €18.
- 1 Eleven, Rua Marquês da Fronteira, ☎ +351 21 386-211. If you really feel like splurging, this is the place. The restaurant was recently awarded a Michelin Star, although the basis on which the award was made is disputable.
- 1 Il Gattopardo, Av. Eng. Duarte Pacheco, 24 (3rd floor of the Dom Pedro Palace Hotel), ☎ +351 21 389 6622. Restaurant: daily 12:30-15:00 20:00-23:00; bar: daily 12:00-24:00. An elegant restaurant serving fashionable gourmet Italian with a big price tag.
- 1 Panorama Restaurante & Bar, Rua Latino Coelho, 1 (in the Sheraton Lisboa Hotel), ☎ +351 21 312 0000, e-mail: email@example.com. Restaurant: daily 19:30-23:30; bar: daily 15:00-02:00. Superb views over Lisbon and food with a good quality/price ratio.
- 1 Bica do Sapato, Avenida Infante Dom Henrique Armazém B, Cais da Pedra à Bica do Sapato, ☎ +351 21 881-0320. Superb views over Lisbon and food with a good quality/price ratio.
- 1 Restaurante Gambrinus, Rua das Portas de Santo Antao, 23 (Four Seasons Hotel Ritz), ☎ +351 21 342 1466, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Daily 12:00-01:30. A restaurant-bar which is one of the most chic places in the city. Highly recognized in Lisbon as something of an institution, it attracts an eclectic crowd where the appeal is food and a great selection of beers, wines and spirits. Features smoking room, private parking with a doorman.
Lisbon is known for its lively nightlife. For going out, stroll around the old neighborhood of Bairro Alto for an after-dinner caipirinha or ginjinha and people-watching. Its small streets, full of people, are packed with a high variety of bars. On weeknights bars close at 02:00, weekends at 03:00. The party continues in a night-club after that. Just follow the hordes of people down the hill - people have been doing that for hundreds of years.
Alcântara, Santos, Parque das Nações, and the castle area are all neighborhoods with a thriving nightlife. The whole area near the river/Atlantic, known as the docas, is a huge hub for nightlife, as Lisbon has never lost its ties to the sea.
Try the magnificent pastéis de nata at any pastry shop.
- 1 Café A Brasileira, R. Garrett, 120, ☎ +351 21 346 9541. Daily 08:00-02:00. One of Lisbon's remaining classic cafés, with a restaurant in the basement; despite renovation, not much has changed since the 1920s. The café was Fernando Pessoa's favourite place, and a statue of the poet/philosopher stands outside the main entrance on the terrace. Prices are in three levels, depending on where you choose to drink: cheapest standing at the counter, and most expensive sitting outside on the terrace.
- 1 Café Martinho da Arcada, Praça do Comércio, 3, ☎ +351 218 879 259, e-mail: email@example.com. M-Sa 12:00-15:00 19:00-22:00. Established in 1782, this is the oldest continuously-operating café in Lisbon and throughout its history has been associated with important politicians, writers, and intellectuals. Writer Fernando Pessoa had a permanent table reservation, as did the late Nobel laureate José Saramago.
- 1 Pastéis de Belém (Antiga Confeitaria de Belém), Rua de Belém 84 (take eléctrico #15E from Praça do Comércio, or the Cascais suburban train line from Cais do Sodré station, to Belém stop), ☎ +351 21 363 74 23. Daily 08:00-23:00. The most famous of pastelarias, and justly so. They are served right out of the oven there, with the side of confectioner's sugar and cinnamon. As you navigate through the tile-covered labyrinthine passages of the expansive shop, stop to look at the workers behind glass panels turning the endless stream of these delicacies, just baked, each in its own little ramekin, over onto the waiting trays. These are absolutely a must-eat and you can't possibly regret it.
- 1 Pois Café, Rua S. João da Praça, 93-95 (on the side street of cathedral Sé), ☎ +351 21 886 2497, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Tu-Su 10:30-23:00, M 12:00-23:00. It's a place to relax, read a book, drink a coffee and plan you way around Lisbon. Also offers toasts, pastas, quiches and salads; features late breakfasts.
- 1 Portas do Sol, Largo das Portas do Sol (Alfama), ☎ +351 218 851 299, e-mail: email@example.com. A cafe and bar located on a "Miradouro", viewing spot, and thus offer a spectacular view over the Alfama rooftops down to the river.
- 1 Bar Trobadores, Rua de São Julião, 27, ☎ +351 21 885-0329. Medieval bar in downtown with a cozy atmosphere and a diverse range of traditional Portuguese delicacies. National and international beers.
- 1 Chafariz do Vinho, Rua da Mae d'Agua, ☎ +351 21 342-2079. Perfect place to linger over a glass of wine at this wine bar that is under the arches of the city's former acquaducts. With a great selection of appetizers that are matched perfectly with the wine, it's a pleasant way to spend an evening.
- 1 Garrafeira Alfaia, Rua Diário de Notícias, 125, ☎ +351 21 343-3079, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Nice wine bar with an impressive selection of good wines and appetizers. Good place to spend the late afternoon, before going out to dinner.
- 1 Lux Fragil, Av. Infante D. Henrique, Armazém A, ☎ +351 21 882 08 90, fax: +351 21 882 08 99, e-mail: email@example.com. Th-Su 23:00-06:00. Located in a former warehouse and part owned by American actor John Malkovich.
- 1 Ritz Bar, Rua Rodrigo da Fonseca, 88 (Four Seasons Hotel), ☎ +351 21 381-1400. Designed by Pierre Yves-Rochon, you'll enjoy deep, sumptous sofas and an impressive collection of contemporary art displayed on the walls. And with decorated bartender Paulo Costa serving you drinks, its a great place to peruse a crowd of sophisticated clientele.
Fado (fate) is a type of folk music which developed in Lisbon during the 19th century. The music is often melancholic, capturing the nostalgic feeling of "Saudade". In 2011 fado was added to UNESCO's list of Intangible Cultural Heritages. It's usually sung by a woman in a black dress, accompanied by mandolin and guitar. However, it is not uncommon with male singers or additional instruments. There are plenty of fado bars around Lisbon, offering foods and drinks. They are especially common in the Bairro Alto and Alfama districts, and in Alfama you can also find a Fado museum. Beware that you'll pay more than in normal restaurants, and the food and drink quality may not be up to the price, you're paying for the music experience.
- 1 Canto do Camões, Tv. da Espera 38 (Bairro Alto), ☎ +351 21 346 5464. 20:00-02:00.
- 1 Fado In Chiado, Rua da Misericórdia nº 14, 2º, ☎ +351 961 717 778, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Fado In Chiado - Daily show (except on Sundays) at 19:00, with a duration of 50 minutes. Voices that sing the Fado to the sound of Portuguese guitar.
- 1 Tasca do Chido, R. do Diário de Notícias 39 (Bairro Alto), ☎ +351 965 059 670. A cramped but authentic Fado bar.
Finding a decent sleeping place in the centre should not be a big problem. There is a tourist service centre in the airport, where a room can be booked for you. Expect to pay between €45 and €60 for a double room. If you are in Lisbon for sightseeing (especially for your first visit), the best location is along the route of tram #28 (see official map of the route ). This especially works if you are with a baby stroller, as it will save from huge part of hill-climbing.
Lisbon sets high standards for budget accommodation, with numerous clean and active hostels around the city. Prices in the historical center start around €15-22, and can get cheaper farther out.
Chiado (Old Town)
- 1 Lisbon Old Town Hostel, Rua do Ataíde, 26A (5 minutes from Bairro Alto. Metro: Baixa/Chiado or Cais do Sobre), ☎ +351 21 346-5248, fax: +351 21 346-5248, e-mail: email@example.com. A hostel, opened in 2007, catering to the young hip crowd with event listings on their website, free computer and internet access in the lobby and WiFi through out the hostel. €15-22.
- 1 Shiado Hostel, Rua Anchieta 5 - 3º (2 mins walking from Baixa-Chiado Metro station), ☎ +351 21 342-9227, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. 24h. Check-in: 14, check-out: 12. Chiado area, hostel opened in March 2009. €13-30.
- 1 Poets Hostel, Rua Nova da Trindade, 2 - 5º (30 seconds walk from Baixa-Chiado Metro station), ☎ +351 21 346-1058, e-mail: email@example.com. 24h. Check-in: 14, check-out: 11. The building is just next the Chiado exit of the Baixa-Chiado metro station. Very helpful staff, clean rooms, dinners and activities are organized by the hostel. Big common room with TV and free internet. Dorms and privates available.
- 1 InSuites Chiado Apartments I, Rua Nova do Almada, 92 (In the center of the Chiado, 200 meters from Baixa/Chiado subway station.), ☎ +351 21 324-0920, fax: +351 21 324-0929, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 15, check-out: 11. In the center of the Chiado, these apartments have 1 and 2 bedrooms. from €65(2 pax).
- 1 InSuites Chiado Apartments II, Rua da Misericórdia, 36 (At 2 minutes away from Bairro Alto and Camões, and 5 minutes from Baixa/chiado subway station.), ☎ +351 21 324-0920, fax: +351 21 324-0929, e-mail: email@example.com. Check-in: 15, check-out: 11. Luxury apartments in the historical Chiado, Lisbon center, with 3 bedrooms. from €176(2 pax).
Alfama (Old Town)
- Sé Guesthouse, Rua de Sao Joao da Praca, 97, ☎ +351 21 886-4400. Check-in: 14:00, check-out: 12:00. 5-room guesthouse with a picturesque location, river views, and eclectic décor. Some rooms are bathrooms en suite, while others share the two, clean hall bathrooms. $49 - $87.
- 1 Alfama Patio Hostel, Escolas Gerais, 3, Patio dos Quintalinhos 1, ☎ +351 21 888-3127. Check-in: 15:00, check-out: 11:00. Out-of-the-way location (but it's directly on the Tram line 28). Full amenities from fast WiFi to free crepe breakfast only compliment the fun staff, who sometimes even go out with you at night. €12 - 25.
- Lisbon Oasis, Beco da Bicha, Rua da Oliveirinha - all in old town., e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 14:00, check-out: 11:00. Historical but completely refurbished flats with free wifi in old Lisbon; Alfama, Sao Vicente and Mouraria. All nine flats have been refurbished in the last few years, keeping original traits and with low-energy features such as LED lighting and double-glazing. Flats starting at €39 a night. €39 - 79.
Anjos (Old workers town)
- 1 GoHostel Lisbon, Rua Maria da Fonte, nº55 (Metro station Intendente is nearby, and tram line 28 stops literally outside the front door (Stop: Rua Maria de fonte)), ☎ +351 21 822-9816. A relatively new hostel in a beautiful old house, on top of a coffee roasting facility. Somewhat out of the city centre, but it's only a 10 minute walk. Friendly staff, (very lovely) open courtyard and attached bar. St. Jorges Castle is nearby. The neighbourhood is okay, but not very interesting.
Bairro Alto (Old Town)
- 1 Bed&Breakfast Lisboa, Travessa do Alcaide, nº7 (atached at Adamastor), ☎ +351 9 1830 7572, e-mail: email@example.com. Good rooms in a very central bed-and-breakfast with views all over Lisbon and the river. €30-40.
- 1 Camões, Travessa do Poço da Cidade 38 1E, ☎ +351 21 346-4048. Basic, clean and affordable. Single €20, Triple €60.
- 1 Oasis Backpackers' Mansion, Rua de Santa Catarina 24, ☎ +351 21 347-8044, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. 24h. Backpackers rave about this hotel, often noting the friendly staff, large clean rooms, fun atmosphere and great dinners. It is a great place for a budget traveler to meet up with other travelers and feel safe when they go to bed at night - if they go to bed.
Baixa (Old Town)
- 1 Bom Conforto Casa de Hospedes, Rua Dos Douradores, 83, 3.º DTO., ☎ +351 21 887-8328, e-mail: email@example.com. Very clean, quiet, and comfortable. Helpful and sweet English-speaking staff. €20 singles.
- 1 Goodnight Backpackers Hostel, Rua dos Correeiros 113, 2nd, ☎ +351 21 343-0139, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. 24. The interior design looks a bit like IKEA show-room, the staff know where the good places to go out dancing and drinking are and the location works for a budget traveler. €18-20.
- 1 Lisbon Story Guesthouse, Largo S. Domingos, 18 S/L (on the right hand-side of Teatro Nacional D. Maria II), ☎ +351 21 152-9313, e-mail: email@example.com. A cozy Guesthouse with welcoming common areas and well-decorated small rooms at a budget price. Rooms Starting at €50.
- 1 Pensão Alegria, Praça de Alegria 12, ☎ +351 21 322-0670. Small cosy pension on a beautiful small square. €43,00 (Doubles).
- Pensão Norte, Rua dos Douradores, 159, ☎ +351 21 887-8941. B&B style pension with friendly and accommodating staff in a quiet area.
- Pensão Residencial Portuense, Rua das Portas de Santo Antao, 149-157 (near Restauradores behind the Hard Rock Cafe), ☎ +351 21 346-4197, fax: +351 21 342-4239, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Open 24 hours. Varies from €35 to 85.
- Restauradores, Praça dos Restauradores, 13, ☎ +351 21 347-5660.
- Suiço Atlântico, Rua da Gloria 3-19, ☎ +351 21 346-1713. Check-in: 2PM, check-out: 12PM. A comfortable, non-smoking, hotel on Restauradores Square with WiFi available in public areas. Starting at €40.
- Travellers House, Rua Augusta, 89, ☎ +351 21 011-5922, e-mail: email@example.com. Nice hostel with lots of extras. Friendly staff and easy to meet people with their nightly activities. Free WiFi, breakfast, coffee and tea, maps and city advice, lots of guide books to look at and a book exchange for travelers who are tired of reading the same book over and over again. Beds starting at €15.
- Yes Hostel, Rua de São Julião 148, ☎ +351 21 342-7171, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Relaxed and comfortable hostel with an excellent location. One of the largest hostels in Lisbon; opened in July 2009. Comfortable beds in large dorms, key operated lockers, free computer access as well as WiFi in every room, free breakfast, complimentary coffee and tea, 24 hour bar, access to their professional kitchen. Very friendly and accommodating staff. 3-course Portuguese dinners for €8 by their in-house chef. 4 person dorms starting at €15.
- Next Hostel, Avenida Almirante Reis n.4 - 5, ☎ +351 21 192-7746, e-mail: email@example.com. Comfortable hostel with an central location. Comfortable beds in large dorms, key lockers, free computer access as well as WiFi, free breakfast, 24 hour reception, well equipped kitchen. Very friendly and helpful staff. Opened in July 2009. 4 person dorms starting at €12, can also go as low as €9 if booked early..
City Center (Marques Pombal to Campo Pequeno)
- 1 Ibis Lisboa Saldanha, Avenida Casal Ribeiro 23, ☎ +351 21 319-1690. Travelers give this Ibis so-so reviews noting on the plus side the location only 5 min walk to the metro, and a good breakfast and on the minus side small rooms. €59 - €69.
- Lisboa Central Hostel, Rua Rodrigues Sampaio nº160 (On parallel street behind Av. da Liberdade), ☎ +351 309 881-038, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. A fun, fresh and friendly place to stay. Located in the heart of city in Marques de Pombal and Avenida da Liberdade this international hostel provides a good base for sight-seeing by day and partying by night. All of Lisbon’s major night spots are easily accessible on foot. Dorms starting at €16.
- 1 My Rainbow Rooms GAY Bed & Breakfast, Saldanha, 1 - 1000-007, ☎ +351 21 842-1122, e-mail: email@example.com. Lisbon's only exclusively gay Bed & Breakfast is housed in a luxurious 6 bedroom, 3 bathroom apartment in a beautifully restored 1920's neo-art deco building. With three meter ceilings, rich hardwood floors, modern baths, elegant furnishing and sophisticated amenities, this gay hotel is centrally located in a quiet residential area in the heart of the capital, only two minutes walk from the Saldanha metro station. Breakfast and free wireless internet are included. $45 – $69.
- Pensão Londrina, Rua Castilho, 61 First Floor (5 minutes walk from Marquês de Pombal underground station), ☎ +351 21 386-3624.
- Pousada da Juventude - Youth Hostel, R. Andrade Corvo, 46, ☎ +351 21 353-2696, fax: +351 21 353-7541, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Hotel Borges, Rua Garret, 108, ☎ +351 21 346-1951. Spacious rooms with satellite TV. Very central, but somewhat expensive for the service. Rooms starting at €84.
- NH Liberdade, Avenida da Liberdade, 180 B, ☎ +351 21 351-4060, fax: +351 21 314-3674. Nice hotel located right in the center of the city.
- Travelpark hotel, Avenida Almirante Reis nº 64, ☎ +351 21 810-2100, e-mail: email@example.com. A hotel that sits in the heart of Av. Almirante Reis. Just five minutes away from Lisbon International Airport and with underground station at doorstep. Online booking.
- Vila Galé Ópera, Tvª Conde da Ponte, 1300-141, ☎ +351 21 360-5400, fax: +351 21 360-5450, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. The hotel basically stands right by the Tagus River. Adjoins Lisbon’s Congress Centre and the lively nightlife of Lisbon’s Docas area. Online booking
- America Diamond's Hotel, Rua Tomás Ribeiro 47, ☎ +351 21 352-1177, fax: +351 21 353-1476, e-mail: email@example.com. Was totally reconstructed in 2006 on a historical building, keeping only its original façade, contrasting with its modern interior, equipped with 60 comfortable rooms of different typologies. Rooms starting at €50.
- 1 Hotel Avenida Palace, Rua 1º de Dezembro, 123, ☎ +351 21 321-8100, fax: +351 21 342-2884, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Located in the emblematic Restauradores Square in a neoclassical building.
- Lapa Palace, Rua do Pau de Bandeira, 4, ☎ +351 21 394-9494, fax: +351 21 395-0665, e-mail: email@example.com. Property of Orient-Express Hotels, Trains & Cruises. A luxury palace hotel in one of Lisbon's seven hills, with gardens and pools, heated all year long. Member of The Leading Hotels of the World. With one of the best spas in Lisbon, gourmet food (its restaurant is considered by the Zagat Guide as one of the best in Lisbon) and one of best Concierge services in the country.
- 1 Pestana Palace, Rua Jau, nº 54, ☎ +351 21 361-5600, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Located in an old Palace, has a wonderful garden and luxury spa. Extremely comfortable, and well worth the €220 per night if you book in advance and online.
- 1 Eurostars Das Letras, Rua Castilho, 6-12 (Five minutes walk from Avenida metro station, ten minutes walk from the AirportBus stop at Marques de Pombal), ☎ +351 21 357-3094, e-mail: email@example.com. Check-in: 10:00H, check-out: 12:00H. A new, modern hotel situated in the central Rato district. The hotel offers free wireless internet for guests along with two laptops with internet access.
- 1 Sheraton Lisboa, Rua Latino Coelho 1, ☎ +351 21 312-0000. Check-in: 15:00H. Panoramic bar on 26th floor. Spa available. Near Picoas metro station. €100-500.
- 1 Sofitel Lisbon Liberdade. Perhaps not particularly outstanding in standards or appointments among other Sofitels in Europe (meaning though that the standards are very high), the Lisbon Sofitel boasts a very central location on the Avenida da Liberdade, smack right at the entrance to the namesake metro station.
- 1 Tivoli Lisboa. The five-star flagship of the Portuguese Tivoli hotel chain is most known for its rooftop terrace bar with splendid views.
- 1 Altis Grand Hotel (A Luxury Collection Hotel). Starwood's prime property in Lisbon is in the upmarket Rua Castilho
- 1 Fontecruz Lisboa (Autograph Collection). Striking postmodern architecture and interior appointments are on the menu throughout this Marriott's luxury boutique hotel.
- 1 Torel Palace, Rua Camara Pestana 23, 1150-199 Lisbon (on top of Elevador do Lavra), ☎ +351 2189 290 810, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 15:00, check-out: 12:00. Torel Palace is a boutique hotel on top of Sant´ana hill. From the carefully renovated two palaces and the outside gardens, terraces and the pool, visitors enjoy a stunning view over the city. Named after Portuguese Queens and Kings, each of the 28 rooms is unique and offers an elegant home. Owned by a Portuguese and two Austrians. Offers breakfast all day long.
Lisbon is generally safe, but use common sense precautions, especially at train stations and on public transport.
Some areas are best avoided late at night because of the risk of mugging: Bairro Alto, the alleys, Cais do Sodre. Some night clubs in Lisboa have a poor reputation.
The most common crime against tourists is pickpocketing and theft from rental cars or on public transport. The metro carriages can become crowded and opportune for pickpockets but simple precautions are enough to maintain your safety while travelling on them.
There are some episodes of violent crimes (eg robberies) and some drug related crimes in places such as Bairro Alto and Santos, especially at night. Chances are you'll be approached at least a few times by certain types offering 'hash' or 'chocolate', especially in the downtown area on and around Rua Augusta. If you are of fair complexion or obviously a tourist you are more likely to be approached. Also, due to soaring house prices, the Baixa area is not inhabited by a lot of people - as soon as the shops and offices close at night, the area sometimes becomes fair ground for muggers - caution is needed in back streets, and walking alone is not advised unless you know the area well.
It's also encouraged to be wary of the Intendente-Martim Moniz area. Intendente is a well known area for prostitution and drug trafficking, and even though the situation has changed in the past couple of years (police now regularly patrol the area), it is still problematic. Martim Moniz is also notorious, at night the area occupied by shifty crowds that more often than not will cause some trouble. During the day, however, Martim-Moniz is quite safe and pleasant.
Also be careful with bank machines in the city center. Groups of adolescents occasionally stay close to the multibanco and wait until you have entered your pin. They then force you away from the machine and withdraw the maximum amount from the machine (€200 maximum per withdrawal; however, two withdrawals of €200 per day per bank card are allowed). Try to withdraw money earlier in the day and try to avoid some of the train stations late at night, especially Cais do Sodre station.
Criminals in Lisbon are very quick and witty and think of scams about how to get money from you (like pretending that they need to "borrow" money from you promising to pay you back in a few hours). In cases they might work in pairs, one offers drugs, while a second approaches you and the first pretending to be a cop, and asking you to pay a "fine" if you don't want to go to jail. Just walk away and avoid any interaction from the first moment, if you are approached. Young tourists should be advised as they will likely be approached by many people especially near the Chiado Plaza. A firm 'no thank-you' ("não, obrigado" - if you're a male / "não, obrigada", if you're female) should be enough to deter them.
Also, if you are driving a car, you should be on the lookout for one of Lisbon's greatest plagues: "arrumadores" ("ushers"). These are drug addicts, petty thiefs or homeless people who stand near vacant car parking spaces and "help" you to park your car even though no help is obviously needed. As soon as you step out of the vehicle, the "arrumador" will try to extort money from you as payment for the "service". They might also pretend to be "official" parking space guards or security and promise to keep an eye on your car - obviously they will leave as soon as you give them money and walk away. If you ignore them or don't pay them, there is a slight risk of having your car robbed or damaged (scratched, windows broken, etc.).
Although "arrumadores" are not excessively dangerous, caution is always needed: many have been known to use this scam to attack or rob people, and instances of car jacking have been reported, specially when unescorted female drivers are concerned. Generally, you should always avoid "arrumadores" and simply look for another parking space (preferably in an area where more people are around) or just park in a private parking lot, which is a bit more expensive but a sure way to avoid this hassle.
Walking and driving
Lisbon has one of the highest rates of car accidents in the European Union, so be extra careful when crossing the streets. Drivers don't usually respect pedestrian crossings unless there is a red light for them to stop.
Driving can be tricky without a GPS system as there is poor signalling in the streets. Drivers overall are not too aggressive compared to other European capitals, although this is disputed by (mostly Spanish) tourists.
In case of emergency
Ambulance, fire brigade, police: call 112.
Same number is used with both land line and mobile phone. The number works on any mobile phone, whether it is keylocked or not and with or without SIM card.
Portugal has two main police forces - the Republican National Guard (GNR) and the Public Security Police (PSP). Both can be contacted, but the PSP is the main urban police force.
Private international call centers and public telephone booths are common throughout Lisbon. Be warned, however, public phones can be less generous than slot machines: many times they'll swallow your change and give you no credit. You're better off purchasing a Portugal Telecom pre-paid card you can insert into the phone, or even a discount calling card which connects you via a toll-free number. These can be purchased from street kiosks and convenience stores. Most payphones also allow you to pay by credit card, although support for this feature is somewhat expensive.
Internet cafes are also abundant in the Rossio and Restauradores districts as well as in the Bairro Alto (opening late there). Expect to pay between €2-3 per hour.
Australia, Avenida da Liberdade, 198-200 2F, ☎ +351 21 310-1500, fax: +351 21 310-1555, e-mail: email@example.com. M-F 08:30-12:30 and 13:30-17. Brazil, Estrada das Laranjeiras, 144, ☎ +351 21 724-8510, fax: +351 21 726-7623, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. M-F 09:30-13:00 and 15:00-18:30 (internal functions only). Canada, Avenida da Liberdade, 198-200 3F, ☎ +351 21 316-4600, fax: +351 21 316-4693, e-mail: email@example.com. M-F 08:30-12:30 and 13:30-17:00. China, Ruapau de Bandeira, 11-13(A LAPA), ☎ +351 21 392-8438, fax: +351 21 397-5632, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Egypt, 8 Avenida Vasco Da Gama, ☎ +351 21 301-8301, fax: +351 21 301-7909, e-mail: email@example.com. 09:00 - 16:30. Finland, Rua do Possolo 76, 1st floor, 1350-251 Lisboa, ☎ +351 21 393 3040, fax: +351 21 390-4758, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. M-F 09:00-12:00. France, Rua Santos-o-Velho,5, 1249-079 Lisboa, ☎ +351 21 393 91 00, fax: +351 21 393 92 22. M-F 08:30-12:00. Greece, Rua Alto Do Duque 13, Restelo, 1449-026, ☎ +351 21 303-1260, fax: +351 21 301-1205, e-mail: email@example.com. 09:00-15:30. Holy See, Avenida Luís Bivar, 18, 1069-147, ☎ +351 21 317-1130, fax: +351 21 317-1149. India, Rua Pero da Covilhã - Restelo 16, 1400-297, ☎ +351 21 304-1090, fax: +351 21 301-6576, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Indonesia, Rua Miguel Lupi 12, 1º - D, 1200-725, ☎ +351 21 393-2070, fax: +351 21 393-2079, e-mail: email@example.com. Iraq, Rua da Arriaga, 9 (à Lapa), 1200-608, ☎ +351 21 393-3310, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Ireland, Rua da Imprensa à Estrela 1-4, ☎ +351 21 392-9440, fax: +351 21 397-7363, e-mail: email@example.com. Israel, Rua António Enes, 16, 4º, 1050-025, ☎ +351 21 355-3640, fax: +351 21 355-3658, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Italy, Calçada Conde Pombeiro, 6, 1150-100, ☎ +351213515320, fax: +351213154926. Japan, Avenida da Liberdade, 245 6F, ☎ +351 21 311-0560, fax: +351 21 353-7600, e-mail: email@example.com. M-F 09:30-12:30 and 14:00-17:30. Macau (Cultural Representation and Consular Information Bureau), Av. 5 de Outubro, 115 R/C, 1069-204, ☎ +351 21 793-6542, fax: +351 21 796-0956, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Monaco, Rua da Junqueira, 136, 1300, ☎ +351 21 363-8284, fax: +351 21 363-2171. Morocco, Rua Alto do Duque, 21 (Ao Restelo), 1400-009, ☎ +351 21 300-8080, fax: +351 21 302-0935, e-mail: email@example.com. Netherlands, Avenida Infante Santo, 43-5 1399-011, ☎ +351 21 391 4900, fax: +351 21 391 4950, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. M-F 08:30-12:30. New Zealand, Rua da Vista Alegre 10, Cascais, ☎ +351 21 370-5788, +351 21 370-5787, fax: +351 21 370-5870, e-mail: email@example.com. Pakistan, Rua António Saldanha 46, 1400-021, ☎ +351 21 300-9070, fax: +351 21 301-3514, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Palestinian Authority, Rua Pêro Alenquer, 25, 1400-293, ☎ +351 21 362-1098, fax: +351 21 362-1095. (General Delegation of Palestine) Russia, Rua Visconde de Santarém, 57, 1000-286, ☎ +351 21 846-2423, +351 21 846-2424, fax: +351 21 846-3008, e-mail: email@example.com. M W-F 09:45-12:45. San Marino, Av. de Montevideu, 760, 4150, Porto, ☎ +351 22 617-6356, fax: +351 22 617-6356. Saudi Arabia, Avenida do Restelo, Nº 42, 1400-315, ☎ +351 21 301-0317, fax: +351 21 301-4209. Serbia, Rua de Alcolena 11, 1400–004, ☎ +351 21 301-5311, +351 21 301-5312, fax: +351 21 301-5313, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. South Africa, Avenida Luis Bivar, 10, ☎ +351 21 319-2200, fax: +351 21 353-5713 (Political), +351 21 255-5931 (Consular), e-mail: email@example.com. South Korea, Av. Miguel Bombarda, No. 36, 7˚, 1051-802, ☎ +351 21 793-7200, fax: +351 21 797-7176, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. 09:00-12:30, 14:00-17:30. Taiwan, Rua Castilho. 32-1, 1250-070, ☎ +351 21 315-1279, fax: +351 21 315-1288. Economic and cultural representation. Thailand, Rua de Alcolena, 12, Restelo, ☎ +351 21 301-4848, fax: +351 21 301-8181, e-mail: email@example.com. 09:00-12:30; 13:30-17:00. Timor Leste, Largo dos Jerónimos, Nº 3, 1º Andar, 1400-209, ☎ +351 21 393-3730, fax: +351 21 3933-739, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Turkey, Avenida Descobertas, 22, 1400-092, (São Francisco Xavier), ☎ +351 21 300-3110 (General), +351 21 300-3122 (Consular), fax: +351 21 301-7934, e-mail: email@example.com. 09:00-12:30; 13:30-17:00. United Arab Emirates, Praça do Príncipe Real, 15/7, 1250-184, ☎ +351 21 311-0000, fax: +351 21 323-0000. United Kingdom, Rua de São Bernardo 33, ☎ +351 21 392-4000, fax: +351 21 392-4153, e-mail: Lisbon.Consulate@fco.gov.uk. United States, Avenida das Forças Armadas 1600-081, ☎ +351 21 727-3300, fax: +351 21 726-9109, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. M-F 08:00-17:00. Western Sahara, ☎ +351 21 983-5004, fax: +351 21 354-2199, +351 21 983-5004, e-mail: email@example.comfirstname.lastname@example.org. (Representative Office)
- Fátima — the city and the Marian shrine of the worldwide famous apparitions of the Virgin Mary
- Nazaré — a lovely village that became an internationally surf spot and entered in the Guinness Book of Records by its gigantic sea waves.
- Tomar — the city of the Knights Templar: it is highly recommended to visit the medieval castle and the Convent of Christ
- Óbidos — a beautiful village dominated by an old medieval castle
- Mafra — A charming town with a monastery.
- Ericeira — A gorgeous seaside resort near Mafra, well-known to surfers worldwide.
- Sintra — A beautiful UNESCO World Heritage site town 40 minutes by car/train from Lisbon.
- Praia das Maçãs — A small and surprisingly calm seaside resort about 30 km to the west of Lisbon, near the towns of Colares & Sintra.
- Almada — A city connected to/from Lisbon via ferry boats at Cacilhas and connected by train at Pragal and roadway via 25 Abril bridge/ponte 25 de Abril. The monument of Christ-King (Cristo-Rei) is located in Pragal, Almada.
- Costa da Caparica — beautiful beaches, easily reachable by bus
- Setúbal — Capital of the district, and starting point for visits to Arrabida mountain, Troia, and the Sado river. Dolphins can be spotted on the bay.
- Palmela — A hill town with a castle, with amazing views, near the city of Setúbal.
- Sesimbra — A fisherman's village near the Arrábida mountain, good for scuba diving and fresh seafood, and starting point to visit the Espichel cape and sancturary.
- Azeitão — near Setubal, some 30 km South of Lisbon, this small region consists of a series of lovely villages, of which Vila Nogueira de Azeitão and Vila Fresca de Azeitão are the most well known. Azeitão stands between the Arrábida Nature Park and the coast. In the park you'll meet the last remains of the original Mediterranean flora. Also, there is the famous Convent of Arrábida to visit and the stunning views from its hills and at its peak.
- Vila Nogueira de Azeitão — Visit the beautiful Winery and palace "Quinta da Bacalhoa". Also check out the grand estate and winery of "José Maria da Fonseca". Igreja de São Lorenço with hand painted tile panels, gilded wood chapels and a Lucca Della Robbia medallion. Convent of S. Domingos.
- Tróia — A lovely peninsula gifted with kilometres of wild unexplored beaches, and with a tourist resort being developed on one of its edges.