Lisbon is one of the best destinations for a city break in Europe due to its affordability, amazing food scene and diverse tourism offerings. The hilly narrow streets of the Portuguese capital are lined with beautiful buildings steeped in history and culture.
During our stay in Lisbon we stayed at Dream Chiado Apartments located right in the heart of Lisbon city centre. The location was perfect and the accommodation was spotlessly clean and came with everything we needed during our stay.
Day 1 – City Sightseeing Day
We spent our first morning in Lisbon strolling around the city and taking it all in. We walked from our apartment to Fauna & Flora for a delicious breakfast. Fauna & Flora is a must visit for breakfast when in Lisbon.
After an amazing breakfast we took a stroll down the waterfront and made our way to the Time Out Market. We enjoyed a coffee outside the market and soaked up the atmosphere. If you still have room for more food the Time Out Market has an abundance of choice with both local and international cuisines.
Next, we visited the famous Pink Street. Once Lisbon’s Red Light District, now arguably Lisbon most Instagramable street.
After Pink Street we made our way to Lisbon’s harbor facing plaza, Praca de Comercio. Praca de Comercio is the perfect spot to stroll around and take in the waterfront views, take some selfies and grab a coffee or beer, sit back and watch the world go by.
For lunch we highly reccommend stopping by O Trevo for their famous bifanas – thin slices of precooked pork, slapped on the griddle, served between two slices of warmed bread and mustard. This spot was made famous by the late Anthony Bourdain and its a popular restaurant for both locals and tourists alike.
After Lisbon Cathedral, the next stop is Miradouro de Santa Luzia. Miradouro de Santa Luzia is a stunning view point with views overlooking the terracotta tiles of the city and view out over the water.
After taking in the stunning views at Miradouro de Santa Luzia keep making your way up hill to Castelo de Sao Jorge. Castelo de Sao Jorge is one of Lisbon’s most visible landmarks. The imposing castle stands tall, looking down over the city. We recommending making your way to Castelo de Sao Jorge about an hour before sunset. Spend an hour walking around and learning about the history and just before the sun goes down grab a beer and watch the impressive sunset over the city.
Day 2 – Day Trip to Sintra
Early morning start, we headed straight for the train station, grabbed some coffee and pastries in the station and made our way to Sintra. When visiting Lisbon a day trip to Sintra is a must-do! Sintra is a cute village located about one hour from Lisbon. Sintra is surrounded by lush green hills and stunning fairy tale castles. When you come out of the train station you have two choices to visit the castles. The first option is to hike your way up hill or the second is purchase a hop on hop off bus ticket that will bring you to the entrance of each castle.
The most popular of the castles is Palácio Nacional da Pena (Pena Palace). This UNESCO World Heritage site is quite literally like something from a fairy tale. It costs 14 euro to enter Pena Palace and the park but it is worth the money.
Other places to visit in Sintra if you have enough time include the Moorish Castle and the National Palace of Sintra.
After a day of exploring Sintra we made our way back Lisbon. We enjoyed an amazing dinner sampling traditional Portuguese blood sausage and sheep cheese at Taberna Portuguesa.
Day 3 – Walk to Torre de Belém.
On our third and final day in Lisbon we set off early and started the 8km walk from the city centre to Torre de Belém along the coastal walkway. Of course if you are not up for the 8km walk you can always use public transport. As we made our way from the city centre to Torre de Belém we detoured off route to get some coffee and breakfast at LX Factory. LX Factory was once a factory complex, now it is a trendy spot with restaurants, markets, second hand stores, craft stores and offices.
After exploring LX Factory continue back to the water front and walking towards Torre de Belém. If you get tired of walking along the waterway there are lots of Lime scooters with you can rent by the minute. These are a fun way to give your legs a break from all the walking.
As you keep walking along the waterfront, Monument dos Descobridores will slowly appear in the distance. The 52 meter monument was designed to commemorate the Portuguese explorers. After the Monument dos Descobridores we strolled through Belém park and up to Torre de Belém where we sat on steps in front of the tower and listened to busters perform for the crowds. When we visited Lisbon in December 2021, Torre de Belém was closed due to covid so we could not enter the tower.
We then began our walk back to the city but on the way back we took another detour to try what is said to be the best Portuguese tarts at Pastéis de Belém. We enjoyed some pretty delicious custard tarts before making our way back to our apartment for a nap and a shower.
On our last evening in Lisbon we had worked up quite the appetite after a day of walking. Before dinner we had to try gimjinha, a Portuguese cherry liquor at Ginjinha Sem Rival.
For dinner we visited Lisbon’s most famous seafood restaurant thanks to Anthony Bourdain. Ramiro’s is an extremely popular spot when we arrived we took a ticket and waited our turn for our number to be called. After 1 hour and 30 minutes our number was finally called. You might be thinking is the wait really worth it for seafood… we say yes!!! The food here was amazing. We ordered the giant prawns, clams in garlic butter and crab. When visiting Ramiro’s you must order their famous desert…a steak sandwich!!!!!
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