I used to think that Trip Advisor was the best way to research things to do on a city break, but nowadays I find myself using Instagram as my primary research tool because if something’s worth doing or seeing, you’re bound to find it all over Instagram right?
There’s one city break destination that’s super popular on my feed right now and that’s the lovely Lisbon! The coastal capital of Portugal is known for its cafe culture and gothic glamour. The pretty city is relatively cheap compared to some of the other capital city destinations, which is probably why it’s become so popular in recent years.
With a Lisbon trip coming up in July, I thought I’d put together a short list of things to do in Lisbon based on what I’ve seen on Instagram, as well as some Lisbon travel and accommodation tips. Enjoy!
1. Explore Alfama
Delve into the cobbled streets of the old town of Alfama and discover the eye-catching boutiques, patio restaurants and lamp-lit old quarters.
If you want to capture some beautiful shots of the area like the one below from David Oliveira, make sure you head out early enough to beat the crowds and capture the real rustic charm of Alfama, washing lines and all!
2. Snap all the tiles…
Lisbon is swamped with beautiful tiles so be prepared to take quite a few #shoeselfies (get those toenails holiday ready!). You will even find tile-covered buildings with windows and doors that complement them fabulously as seen below by the lovely Emma of @lyla_and_co. Emma proves you can also enjoy Lisbon as a family as she experiences the city with toddler Lyla and a 7-month baby bump!
3. Ride Tram 28
This post wouldn’t be complete without mentioning the iconic yellow tram 28. This shot from Catherine Frawley (@catherine_frawley), perfectly captures the bright 1930s beauty against a baby blue backdrop. I can’t wait to ride the route for the first time in July! The enjoyable ride will take you to many of Lisbon’s finest districts, including Baixa, Graça, Alfama and Estrela, but it’s mostly used for climbing the steep hill from Baixa to the castle and Alfama. For great value for money, make sure you purchase a 24 hour-travel pass for €6.00 which covers the tram, buses and metro.
4. Cocktails with a View
There are some incredible views to be seen in Lisbon, so why not enjoy them while sipping a cocktail at one of their incredible rooftop bars! There are so many to choose from but this is the one I’m most excited to visit. TOPO, located 6 floors up in the commercial area of Martim Moniz will wow you with its views from São Jorge Castle, to the viewpoints of Graça and Senhora do Monte. Enjoy the sights while perched on multi-level wooden seating spaces, sipping on delicious cocktails and nibbling on a snack or light meal from TOPO’s enticing menu. I love this snap taken from TOPO’s rooftop by Rita (@rarariita).
5. Stroll the Long Sandy Beaches…
On the outskirts of Lisbon, you will find a string of sandy Atlantic beaches, from Cascais to Estoril as well as enchanting forests and seaside villages. You can easily access these by taking the suburban train that runs out of Lisbon along the scenic coastline. Costa da Caparicha is also worth a visit which is just a 20-minute drive from the centre of Lisbon. It looks stunning here in this shot by Sandra Moreira (@sandrocas).
6. Experience Pastéis de Belém
A trip to Lisbon wouldn’t be complete without a trip to the famous Pastéis de Belém. With a recipe dating back to 1837, the bakery in Belém has perfected the most delicious Nata pastries (known to most of us as those custard tarts from Nandos!). This picture by @yumm3i captures everything I’d expect from a Lisbon Nata, a squidgy, buttery and crispy lump of deliciousness.
If you’re not in Lisbon for long and Belem is a little out of the way, check out Manteigaria in central Lisbon. The Natas are almost as good as the ones from Belém.
Do you have any Lisbon favourites? I’d love to hear all about them in the comments below!
How Do I Get to Lisbon?
Where to stay in Lisbon?
If hotels are more suited to you, here’s a couple of recommendations:
Budget – VIP Executive Eden Aparthotel – From £74/night
The Eden Aparthotel is located in Baixa Pombalina, in the old town of Lisbon, complete with roof terrace and pool!
Luxury – Memmo Alfama – From £128/night
A refurbished 19th century Alfama design hotel with fabulous views!
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