Things to do in Lisbon: A Complete City Guide

things to do in Lisbon

Lisbon is one of the most popular destinations in Europe for good reason. There is so much to explore and experience in this amazing city! Lisbon is an easy trans-Atlantic flight from the East coast of the United States and is known for its unique charm, architecture and vibrant nightlife. Lisbon is also a gateway to experience more of what Portugal has to offer.

How to get to Lisbon:

Lisbon is accessible by plane, train or bus depending where you are coming from.

Getting to Lisbon by plane

Lisbon Portela Airport is the closest and easiest airport to access the city. There are numerous flights to Lisbon from various cities around the world daily. Once you arrive at the airport, you can take a taxi, bus, or metro to your destination. Uber is available in Lisbon as well as FreeNow, a popular ride transportation app used across Europe.

Getting to Lisbon by train

You can also get to Lisbon by train depending on your city of origin. Lisbon is connected to other major cities in Portugal and Spain including Porto, Coimbra and Madrid. Lisbon Oriente Station is located just a few miles outside of the city center and you can take a taxi, ride app or public transportation to your destination.

Getting to Lisbon by bus

There are a variety of bus companies which run daily to Lisbon. This is a convenient and budget-friendly way to get to the city. There are regular buses from various cities in Portugal and Spain, as well as other international destinations.

Pro-tip: Always use Rome2Rio to see all of your transportation options!

Currency and Tipping in Lisbon:

The currency in Lisbon is the Euro (EUR). It’s a good idea to have some cash on hand for small purchases, but most places in Lisbon also accept credit and debit cards.

When looking for an ATM in Europe, we highly recommend using an ATM machine that is associated with a bank. Bonus points if you can find one that is located in the main entrance to a bank as this will not only have the best conversion rate but also elevated security to prevent any card scanners from being installed.

Tipping is not required in Lisbon, but it is common to leave a small tip at restaurants, cafes and bars if you received good service. A tip of 10% is generally considered sufficient. As always, feel free to leave more if you feel as though you received excellent service. It is also common to round up the bill to the nearest Euro at bars and cafes.

Where to stay in Lisbon

Where to stay in Lisbon

Lisbon has a wide range of accommodation options to suit different budgets and preferences. If you’re looking for a traditional Portuguese experience, you may want to consider staying in a guesthouse or an Airbnb in one of the city’s historic neighborhoods, such as the Alfama or Bairro Alto. If you prefer a more modern experience, there are also plenty of high-end hotels and serviced apartments located in the city center and surrounding areas.

Boutique stay in Lisbon

Casa das Janelas com Vista

Memmo Alfama – Design Hotels

Mid-range stay in Lisbon

Hotel Riverside Alfama

Where to stay in Lisbon on a budget

Lookout Lisbon! Hostel

Inn Bairro Alto B&B

Traveling on a budget? Read 40 ways to travel cheaper!

Famous foods to try in Lisbon

Lisbon is known for its delicious cuisine, which is influenced by a mix of Portuguese, Mediterranean, and African flavors. Some of the city’s famous foods include:

Pastéis de nata

These small, flaky pastries are filled with a creamy egg custard and dusted with cinnamon. They are a popular snack in Lisbon and can be found at bakeries and cafes throughout the city.


This is a traditional Portuguese sandwich made with marinated pork and served on a bun. It is typically served with mustard and piri-piri sauce.


Lisbon is known for its fresh seafood, and sardines are a popular choice. They are often grilled and served with potatoes and vegetables.

where to eat in Lisbon

Where to eat in Lisbon

Lisbon is home to a wide variety of restaurants, ranging from traditional Portuguese tavernas to modern bistros and fusion restaurants. Here are some recommendations for local restaurants in Lisbon:

Time Out Market

This is the most popular place to experience local dishes in Lisbon. You can browse a multitude of options here and there is truly something for everyone in Time Out Market!

O Mercado

This popular restaurant serves traditional Portuguese cuisine with a modern twist. Located in the Mercado da Ribeira market, it’s a great place to try a variety of Portuguese dishes.

A Cevicheria

As the name suggests, this restaurant specializes in ceviche, a Peruvian dish made with raw fish marinated in citrus juice. They also serve a variety of other seafood dishes.

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100 Maneiras

This Michelin-starred restaurant serves creative, modern Portuguese cuisine using locally-sourced ingredients.

A Travessa

This restaurant is located in the historic Chiado neighborhood and serves traditional Portuguese cuisine in a charming, rustic setting.

Taberna da Rua das Flores

Located in the trendy Bairro Alto neighborhood, this restaurant serves traditional Portuguese dishes in a cozy atmosphere.

O Faia

This cozy bar and restaurant located in the Alfama neighborhood serves delicious seafood dishes.

Solar dos Presuntos

This restaurant serves traditional Portuguese cuisine and is known for its delicious cured meats.

O Talho

Located in the Mercado da Ribeira market, this restaurant serves traditional Portuguese dishes made with fresh, locally-sourced ingredients.

O Faia

This is located in the Alfama neighborhood and has a traditional Portuguese atmosphere and Fado music daily.

Lisbon City guide cover

Where to Drink in Lisbon

Lisbon is known for its vibrant nightlife and there are plenty of great bars to choose from. Here are some recommendations for the best bars in Lisbon!

Pavilhão Chinês

Located in the trendy Bairro Alto neighborhood, this bar is known for its sophisticated atmosphere and creative cocktails.

Lux Club

This downtown rooftop bar offers panoramic views of the city and serves a variety of cocktails and light snacks. Lux is also one of the most popular nightclubs in Lisbon.

A Ginjinha

This quaint bar is known for its cheap and delicious ginjinha, a cherry liqueur that is a popular drink in Lisbon.

The Decadent

Located in the Bairro Alto neighborhood, this trendy bar is a great place for cocktails and snacks.


Also located in the Bairro Alto neighborhood, this bar has a cozy atmosphere and serves a variety of cocktails and snacks.

Botequim da Esquina

Located in the trendy Principe Real neighborhood, this bar has an extensive list of drinks and snacks. There is also live music played regularly here.

The Insólito

This bar has a chic atmosphere known for delicious cocktails in the Lapa neighborhood.

best day trips from Lisbon

Things to do in Lisbon

Lisbon is a city with a rich history and culture, and there are plenty of things to do and see during your visit. Here are some recommendations for things to do in Lisbon!

Visit the historic Belem Tower

Located along the waterfront, this iconic tower is a UNESCO World Heritage site and a popular tourist attraction.

Explore the winding streets of the Alfama neighborhood

This historic neighborhood is known for its narrow streets, colorful houses, and lively atmosphere.

Do a free walking tour of the city

Lisbon has a rich history and culture, and there are several tours available that will take you to some of the city’s top attractions. This is the easiest way to learn the history of the city!

Visit the Jeronimos Monastery

Located in the Belem neighborhood, this beautiful monastery is a UNESCO World Heritage site and a must-see for anyone visiting Lisbon.

Visit the Rossio Square

Located in the heart of the city, this square is a popular gathering place and a great place to people-watch.

Walk along the Pink Street

This popular pedestrian street is painted pink and is lined with enjoyable bars and restaurants.

Visit the Gulbenkian Museum

Located in the city center, this museum features a collection of art, artifacts, and other treasures from around the world.

Take a stroll along the waterfront

Lisbon has a beautiful waterfront area with a promenade that is perfect for a leisurely walk.

Explore the city’s parks and gardens

Lisbon has several beautiful parks and gardens, including the Jardim da Estrela and the Jardim da Praca do Imperio.

transportation in Lisbon

Best day trips from Lisbon

Lisbon is surrounded by a number of interesting and picturesque towns and cities that make for great day trips from the city. Here are some recommendations for the best day trips from Lisbon.

Sintra and Cascais

Located just a short distance from Lisbon, Sintra is a charming town known for its beautiful castles and palaces, including the Pena Palace and the Moorish Castle.

Cascais is located along the Atlantic coast and is known for its beautiful beaches, historic center and lively atmosphere.

Book this day trip here!

Fátima, Nazaré, and Óbidos

Experience all that the countryside of Portugal has to offer with this day trip to these three charming cities.

Book this trip here!

Arrábida Natural Park

Located just south of Lisbon, this beautiful natural park is known for its stunning coastline and hiking trails.

Book a day trip to this park here.

How to get around Lisbon

Lisbon is a relatively small city and is easy to navigate. Be warned though, Lisbon is a very hilly city. There are steep streets so use caution when walking or biking.


Lisbon is a fairly walkable city, and many of the city’s top attractions are located within the city center. Walking is a great way to explore the city’s narrow streets and charming neighborhoods.

Public transportation

Lisbon has an extensive network of buses, trams, and metro lines that make it easy to get around the city. The city’s metro system is relatively easy to use and covers most of the city, although it can get crowded during peak hours.


Taxis are readily available in Lisbon and are a convenient way to get around the city. It is recommended to use a licensed taxi, which can be identified by the “Taxi” sign on the roof and the meter inside the vehicle.

Rideshare apps

Rideshare services such as Uber and FreeNow are also available in Lisbon, making it easy to get around the city.


Lisbon has an extensive network of bike lanes and is a relatively bike-friendly city. You can rent bikes from several companies around the city or use one of the city’s bike-sharing programs.

Safety in Lisbon

Lisbon is known to be a relatively safe city. As with any city in Europe, use caution in heavily tourist areas to ensure that your personal items are zipped safely on your body.

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We hope this complete city guide on the best things to do in Lisbon helps plan your trip to this amazing city! Let us know in the comments which thing to do is your favorite. Happy traveling!

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