Exploring Portugal was the experience of a lifetime. We truly fell in love with the culture, atmosphere, architecture, food, locals and everything it had to offer! For the country being so small, it has an endless variety of things you can do! From exploring castles, to watching “football” (soccer) games, to having the best port wine in the world; We promise you Portugal, and specifically the places around Lisbon will not disappoint! After reading this, if you’re looking for a more in-depth itinerary, you can read our 7 Day Portugal Itinerary post!
Take the Famous Tram 28 to Alfama (Oldest district in Lisbon)
You’ve definitely seen photos of the trams in Portugal – the classic yellow trams. It is one of their main modes of transportation, and even the locals use it! Specifically, Tram 28 is a tourist attraction as it takes you all around the city, almost giving you a tour of most of it. We recommend getting off at Alfama, which is the oldest district in Lisbon, and doing a walking tour in this area if you can! You’ll have amazing views of the city from here, and you’ll end up right beside the entry to the Castelo de Sao Jorge which is the next tip below!
Note: Be careful & aware of pickpocketers on the trams – since locals are on them, they are sometimes known for this unfortunately!
Visit the Castelo de Sao Jorge for Sunset
The views from this Castle look over the entire city, with all it’s red-rooftop gorgeousness! This is a MUST and we highly recommend watching the sunset atop the castle. It was one of those, “We’ll never forget this moment” type of memory! Breathtaking! Go a couple of hours before sunset to walk all the way to the top and explore the grounds.
Note: There is a 10 Euro entrance fee
Attend a Benfica Football Game
If you’ve ever been to a sporting event in North America, it really is nothing in comparison to this. We decided to go to a Benfica game, as they were playing when we were in Lisbon and we do love soccer! We went a bit early to the game and bought tickets at the ticket booth for around 40 Euros each. This was surprisingly easy to do, even though the stadium was PACKED. We had so much fun! This was just a regular-season game, but we couldn’t believe how much energy was in that stadium! The chanting blew us away, and those fans seem to LIVE for this team haha! Amazing experience.
Note: No alcohol is sold/allowed inside this stadium, sooo have a few drinks before hand!
Rua Augusta Arch in Praca de Comércio (Main Square)
You may have seen this archway in photos or the yellow arches that surround it, but you should definitely check out this area in Lisbon that is on the waterfront. Rua Augusta is the main street in Lisbon for shopping and cafes/restaurants! There are endless streets to walk up and down, as well as the cutest places to grab a bite to eat! The square is stunning, and a great place for taking photos!
Ponte 25 de Abril (Golden Gate Bridge Look-a-like)
This bridge looks identical to the Golden Gate bridge in San Fran! It’s a suspension bridge connecting Lisbon to Almada, which is a nearby town. You can get great views of the bridge from many different areas as it’s so large. Our favourite viewpoints were from LxFactory (see below), as you are directly underneath it, or Belem as you get a view of the whole bridge!
Ler Devagar Bookstore & LxFactory Area
LxFactory is a very artsy & trendy area of Lisbon with shops and restaurants. Ler Devagar is a famous bookstore with a unique interior and a great atmosphere. We definitely recommend checking out the LxFactory area on your way to Belem as it’s not too far away!
Note: All stores in the LxFactory area close on Sundays, but stalls open in front selling antiques.
Belém Tower & Padrão dos Descobrimentos
Both of these are famous landmarks on the waterfront, and are worth seeing if you’re in the Belém area. The Tower is medieval and so stunning. We didn’t have time, but you can even do a tour on the inside that people say is worth it. The Padrão dos Descobrimentos is a 10 minute walk along the water from the tour and is a popular monument and statue.
Pastéis de Belém
Guyssss, just thinking about this place makes us drool! Seriously! Don’t think we’ve ever in our entire lives tasted a dessert this good. If you have a sweet tooth like us, you HAVE TO check out Pasteis de Belem, which was the first ever location to open and hold the original ancient recipe for Porutgal’s famous “Pastéis de Nata.” They basically are an custard tart dusted with cinnamon. They sell these all over Lisbon and Portugal, and I think we had one every single day, but there was something special about this place being the first, that we just fell in love with the history!
Note: Even if there are lines out the front door, you can walk in past it to be seated. There is SO much seating. Most people are just grabbing a tart to go, but definitely walk in and stay a while!
Also located in Belem (We did a day trip to Belem), is the beautiful Monastery. We didn’t really know about this spot ahead of time, but our Uber driver told us we must go see it, and we’re glad we did. The inside and outside are breathtaking and just filled with so much history.
The Pink Street
This street is famous for being well, PINK! The actual address of the street is R. Nova do Carvalho. There isn’t too much to do here during the day other than check out the street, but it definitely is filled with bars and gets pretty lively at night!
Time Out Market Lisbon
A huge hall where you can taste different types of Portuguese and International foods. The Time Out Market is a huge chain with locations in other places like New York, Montreal, London, Chicago, etc. Grab some lunch or dinner here and try something new! Try a typical Portuguese beer called Super Bock or Sagres!
We personally decided to rent an Airbnb in this area and absolutely loved it! It was the perfect walking distance to most things, especially the train station! It also is a very large square filled with cute cafes, shops, restaurants, street food, street performers and locals! We loved this area so much and would stay in it if we visited again. Ps. There are a bunch of Sangria stands on this square! Have some!!
Santa Justa Lift
This is a cast-iron elevator and monument that takes you from the lower to upper streets. It is architectually stunning and cool to see, but I would definitely say it’s optional if you don’t have time. We saw it but didn’t go up it. It’s a 1 minute ride for 6 euros and didn’t seem worth it to us, but apparently has great views of the city!
Bairro Alto Area for Nightlife
Lastly, if you’re wanting to hit up any bars or clubs, or see what the night life is like in Lisbon, the Bairro Alto area is where to go! The streets are filled with people at all hours of the night, and they have some sophisticated places as well as “dive bars” so you can find any type of style in this area. We didn’t get a chance to go here, but some bars that were recommended to us were The Old Pharmacy & Groove Bar.
Pin or Save the image above to check each of these main attractions off your bucket list! These were our favourite places in Lisbon, and we highly recommend seeing as many as you can! We’ll be releasing our 7 Day Portugal Itinerary soon. In the meantime, if you’re loving the Europe vibe, you can check out our post on
If you go to any of the places we suggested, we would love to know! @thethompsontrotters
Or if you have any questions don’t hesitate to ask!
S & S