I recently visited Lisbon last week for a City Break and got so many mails about where to go and what to do so I thought I would jot it all down for you. Lisbon is such a cool city from it's quirky streets decorated with graffiti, cool bars and amazing brunch spots it kind of gave me a Melbourne feel and not to forgot their bright coloured buildings that gave me life, like why can't we have pink & yellow coloured buildings in Dublin, would it be too much to ask for LOL!
There is so much to do from sight seeing, to dining out, to getting a tram up to a view point you will be spoiled for choice. If you even had enough time you could spend the day in Porto and do some wine tasting.
THINGS TO DO..
Surprisingly we got loads done on my list (I know I am a avid list maker and planner) and you could get a lot done in three days.
Take a stroll around the city
And walk down towards the river front and you will be in the Praça do Comércio square. There is a few restaurants along the front but just nice to walk along or make a pit stop to even get yourself a ice cream or cheeky Aperol Spritz which is my fav!
Time Out Food Market
Is such a cool indoor food hall based inside a wholesale food market. It has lots to choose from and is only a 5 minute walk from the centre. We ended up having lunch there one of the days and got an amazing pizza from Zero pizza.
Is an industrial complex which used to be an old fabric production plant which is filled with walls of art murals along with cafes, restaurants and clothing & interior shops.
It is about 15 mins on a tram or 5/10mins by car from the city. We ended up getting a tuk tuk here after we did the Belem tower and making a pit stop to the pastry shop ''Pasteis de Belem'' (there is always a queue outside the shop but moves pretty quick so you will know which shop this is for sure) to try the pasteis de nata which are little custard tarts. Not going to lie I wasn't a fan of them as I actually don't like custard but least I tried them.
My favourite place was definitely Sintra which we got the train to and purchased a hop on/hop off bus ticket for €20.00 each for the day (bring cash as they don't take card) and visited Pena Palace & Quinta De Reguilera (which are these amazing gardens). Sintra is like County Wicklow and is a region with lots of historic buildings and gardens within the region, so there is no way you would make your way around on foot. Other options you have besides the hop on/hop off is hiring a car or tuk tuk driver for the day to bring you around. Might be worth while pricing at 2x tickets for the bus is €40.00 and a tuk tuk could be cheaper.
Is the most magnificent place I have ever seen, from the colours to the tiles it is like something from a fairy-tale.
Quinta da Regaleira
These are gardens with amazing waterfalls and little castles/look out towers jotted around the grounds. Again it is like something from a movie and so untouched I loved it!
Is the old town of Lisbon and has some mighty hills to hike so bring them walking shoes or opt for getting the tram up. But the look out point and amazing art murals, coloured & tiled walls make it worth while. There is some lovely little cafes and shops along the way. I stumbled upon a little gift shop with loads of cute straw bags and ended up buying one of the elderly couple who owned it they were so cute.
Other things to do that we didn't get around to do;
Rent a segway or electric scooter
Castle de Jorge
Tagus river cruise
Eating & drinking walking tour - one of my friends did this and said it was amazing and lasted around 3 hours.
Wine tasting (I think there is one just outside of Lisbon you can do)
WHERE TO EAT & DRINK...
There are so many cool places to eat & drink in Lisbon. From indoor food markets to speak easy bars you won't be stuck for choice. The main area to eat & drink in Lisbon is Bairro Alto there is lots of restaurants and bars to choose from if you want to wander around. You can also head up to Alfama which is the Lisbon old town with an amazing view point at the top. You can get the tram up here (from the Praca da Figuera square, have a drink / dinner and stroll down after.
I came across this restaurant on Retro Flames Lisbon highlights and well I wasn't disappointed. The décor, service and food where amazing and of the course the wine was too. This place is situated in a high end fashion mall so it has a real chic vibe to it and not to mention the Laudree dessert tray you are presented to choose from for dessert.
I came across this restaurant when I was googling my life away, researching where to eat for dinner as I am such a sucker for ambience and décor and well it didn't fail to disappoint.
Other places I had on my list for dinner were;
Mini bar ( which I got recommended a lot, does dinner & small bites)
Maria Catitia - Sea food
Club de Jornalistas - Mediterranean
A Cevicheria - South American / offers a tasting menu
Prado - Latin American
Sea me - Sea food
Patron - Mexican
Chutnify - Indian
So many cool bars around Pink street area as this does be quite lively at night especially the weekends.
Used to be an old brothel and still has a lot of its original artwork on the walls. It nearly feels your in Paris somewhere. We went for drink before dinner on Friday night and headed back after dinner and there was a burlesque dancer on which was pretty cool and not to mention I tasted the most amazing espresso martini's there.
By the wine - wine bar
Red frog - speakeasy bar
Pharmacia - cool bar decked out like a Pharmacy with a waiting area and cocktail quirky cocktail menu
Park bar - really cool bar on top of a car park we went to. You wouldn't even know this existed as you have to take the lift to the fifth floor and walk up a ramp and your in a little haven sipping on cocktail taking in the rooftop views. This was the only rooftop bar besides our hotel which was open this time of year.
Sky Bar at the Tivoli Hotel
The Memmo - Alfama
** Most of these bars only open in the summer months from May.
OF COURSE BRUNCH...
This needed a section of its own as we all know I love a good brunch. Lisbon is full of instragrammable cafe's . The decor is too die for and you just want to stay there for the day and have a photo shoot ha-ha. So here is a list of some of the cafes I came across and visited.
This mint coloured café is so cute and is a sister café to Amelia Café. If you have ever been to London and visited Elan or Freya this is right up your street.
If it is pink and they do coconut flat whites I am sold! This is such a gorgeous spot and the menu is quite big so you have loads to choose from.
Dear Breakfast (lots of people mentioned this to me)
Chia juice bar
Bowls & bar
WHERE TO STAY...
We stayed in the Atlis Grande just beside Avenue da Liberdade which is about 10-15 minutes walk from the city centre. It is a nice area as most of the high end boutiques are around here and some nice restaurants. It was quite a business district area and if i was staying again stay in The Tivoli Hotel which looked amazing (little pricey but you get what you pay for). Personally I wouldn't rate the hotel I stayed in for a 5 star and the staff weren't that helpful and was quite dated. I would stay in the Atlis Avenida which was closer to the city and looked nicer.
Other areas to stay in Lisbon is the city centre, old town or Biarro Alto.
Other hotels I looked into whilst I was booking my stay;
Turim - there is a few hotels of this branch
Hotel Real Palacio
Well I think I have covered it all in a nutshell :)
Happy reading / travelling
Lots of love