Although Lisbon is the largest city in Portugal and is also the capital of Portugal, it is relatively small when it is compared to other capital cities in Western Europe. In all honesty, if you wanted to take a break and visit Lisbon, with your trusty Lisbon city guide in your hand, you could actually visit all of the major landmarks and attractions in about two days.
For example, you could tour with Electrico 28 and be absolutely amazed at the Belem monastery, or you could visit the Castelo. However, there is much more to Lisbon than these two attractions.
Even if you do not have several weeks to explore this cosmopolitan city, you can still grasp the air of Lisbon by implementing this tips during your break.
Take a Little Time to Treat Yourself
If you have a sweet tooth, you will find your sweet spot whilst in Lisbon. The city is known worldwide for its pastries, and it can take you weeks to try all of them. During holidays like Christmas, the city is stretched to its limits with sweets. This means that you will have to try as many sweet treats as you can whilst in Lisbon. Some of the local favourites are the custard tart and the little apple tart.
Visitors who want something a little heartier whilst sightseeing can sit down at any of the cafes and order the soup of the day. Even though sweets may be the locals’ favourite indulgence, soup comes in at a close second. In fact, soup is served year-round, even during the summer months. The soups are affordable, delicious and primarily vegetarian.
Hit the Clubs and Pubs
It is no secret that Lisbon is truly a party city. You can dance at the clubs whilst viewing the Ponte de 25 Abril until the sun comes up.
Most party animals begin their night in Barrio Alto. This is a quaint 18th century neighbourhood that seems desolate during the day, but comes alive at night. Almost every home in the neighbourhood has a club or pub in the basement. These tiny bars serve an uncountable number of drinks to patrons during the night.
No trip to Lisbon would be complete without visiting one or two of the food markets. These are the best places to be if you want to mingle alongside the locals and get a real feel of the city.
There is a daily food market, Mercado de Alvalade Norte, that is open from Monday through Saturday. You can purchase fruits and vegetables directly from local farmers. It has become even more popular ever since Anthony Bourdain stopped at the farmer’s market whilst filming his television show.
One of the best ways to get to know a location is to get lost, and Lisbon is the perfect city to ‘go off of the radar’ for a while. There are many little streets where you can watch mums doing the family laundry, or elderly men sitting on the pavement, peeling fruit whilst they people watch. Wander around aimlessly and make sure your eyes stay open.
Some of the best neighbourhoods to explore are Bica, Lapa and medieval Alfama.
Just stroll around Lisbon during your break and find out what beauty awaits you. You will truly have one of the best and most genuine experiences whilst you are visiting Lisbon.