Lisbon has its own airport and is the main airport people fly into when visiting Portugal. If traveling through Portugal or from Spain, one can also leverage the train or drive in if on a road trip.
Lisbon is a beautiful city, and many parts of it are walkable. However, the city is quite hilly and may deter you from walking everywhere. Many of the main areas in Lisbon are close together, but one commonly visited area, Belem, is further away and it is recommended to use the tram to travel between areas.
Try to stay in Baixa District, which is very centrally located and always busy. It is one of the liveliest neighborhoods in Lisbon and will make it easy to explore all Lisbon has to offer.
Central plaza of Lisbon
Grandest of Lisbon’s plazas. It’s very pretty, right on the water and you can see the 25th of April Bridge and the monument called Christ the King across the water
Arc by Praco do Comercio
This just takes you up to avoid hills
Actually a museum, but inside you can see the remains of a church where the roof fell in during an earthquake. Doesn’t take long and is cool to see!
Castelo de Sao Jorge
Really nice viewpoint – we walked to get to all of this but I think Tram 28 can also take you this direction
This is West Lisbon and is a hike if you choose to walk so I would recommend using tram #15. Catch it at Praca da Figuiera (first stop so it is not really busy yet) and then take it to Mosteiro does Jeronimos or nearby
Pretty monument on the water
Original home of the cake
I would highly recommend this! It was such a cute and cool town and it’s not too far from Lisbon. Here’s how to do it:
Catch the train at the Lisbon Rossio Train Station. Depending on the day and time of year will affect how many trains run per day. I was there in late November and they ran every hour. The train takes 40 minutes and you get off at the last stop, Sintra. Once you get off the train and leave the area, go right and find the tourist information point. Here you can buy tickets for the sights you want to see to avoid lines later. The attendant can also point you to the bus you will want to take.
Catch the bus, #434, outside the tourist office (DO NOT try to walk up to the Pena Palace) and take it up to the Pena National Palace. This Palace was so cool, it looked like it should be right out of a fairytale with all of its colors and it had some gorgeous views over the water and the country. We spent about an hour and a half in this palace between the inside and outside of it.
Then walk down to the Castelo dos Mouros and walk along the wall for some other views. You can see both the Pena Palace and the National Palace of Sintra among other things when you walk along the wall.
Catch the 434 bus down and get off at the National Palace of Sintra stop. We did not go into this palace, but instead walked around the town and found lunch. It’s a very touristy town so we didn’t want to walk around long, just wanted some lunch.
Then if you continue down the road, you can check out the Quinta da Regaleira, which is just another interesting thing in this town.
In total, we spent about 5 hours in this town and felt like we saw everything we wanted to. It was definitely worth the trip and very cool so I would highly recommend making this day trip!
Barrio Alto is a great area to get food. It is also a huge bar area and then there are clubs around the city. Lisbon is like Barcelona so the nightlife starts very late and goes until the early hours of the morning. Be AWARE that in Portugal, it is traditional for restaurants to bring out various appetizers for you (bread, cheese, sometimes even more) and these are NOT free. If you want them, indulge, but know that you will be billed for them
Delicious and affordable Portuguese meal (it is a small place so you likely need reservations and is cash only)
Authentic Portuguese food
Tapas restaurant in Barrio Alto
This is a really cute city. It’s a decent size, but I don’t think you need more than a day or day and a half in the city. However, there are day trips out of Lisbon that would be worth it. We covered everything we wanted to see in Lisbon in a day and did not feel rushed. The city is very hilly and lots of cobblestone. It’s right on the water and very pretty and colorful. We went in November and we had great weather, mid 60s and sunny so it can only be nicer in the summer! If you go when it’s warm, I’m sure a beach day would also be really fun. We found Lisbon to be very affordable, if not cheaper than some other European cities and there are student discounts everywhere it seemed!