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7 cool things to do in Lisbon, Portugal

Are you looking for fun and unique things to do in Lisbon? Here, we round up 7 of our favourite Lisbon experiences - some off the beaten path, some classics and a few that are even free! Our recommendations will have you setting sail on the Tagus river, enjoying tasty treats and wandering through the lovely plazas. We think these are the perfect ways to experience Lisbon and we hope you enjoy!

Sail the Tagus River

This was one of our favourite things to do in Lisbon. We booked through Airbnb experiences and can't recommend it enough. Not only was it super fun, it also gave us the chance to see some of Lisbon's top sights like the Tower of Belém and the Monument to the Discoveries from a unique and exciting perspective. We loved every minute of this experience!

Walk and get lost in Alfama

Lisbon has many cool and different neighbourhoods. Each is special and unique and we recommend checking out as many as you can, especially Alfama. This is one of the oldest and most character filled neighbourhoods in the city. A visit to Lisbon would not be complete without spending some time in this unique part of town. If you're in Lisbon during festival season it will also be one of the most fun and lively parts of town.

Try different foods at the Time Out Market

A visit to the Time Out Market is a great way to spend a few hours in Lisbon. If you like sampling different foods and are keen to try local specialties, this is the perfect place. With many vendors in one bustling, modern space you can try a wide variety of flavours in a fun and exciting way. We took ourselves on a food crawl here and had one of our favourite lunches from our trip!

Take a tour of the São Jorge castle

São Jorge is one of Lisbon's top sights - literally! High on one of the city's hills, a trip to the castle will give you a remarkable view of Lisbon below. If you're visiting the castle, which you absolutely should, we recommend going on a guided tour. This will give you access to the archaeological area where you can learn more about Lisbon's earliest settlers. And if you're into history, don't miss the castle's museum and the chance to check out the artifacts there!

Visit São Roque church

São Roque church is one of the most interestingly decorated churches we've visited and it's free to enter! From the outside the church seems simple enough, but the inside is something else. Looking up you'll see a wood panelled ceiling, uniquely painted to look like domes. The church also has a series of beautiful and ornate chapels including the Chapel of Saint John the Baptist which was first put together in Rome, blessed by the Pope, and then dismantled and transported to Lisbon. The whole church is a definite sight to see!

Visit the Santa Justa elevator

The Santa Justa elevator is one of Lisbon's most iconic sights. The elevator itself is stunning and seeing it in person for the first time is one of those exciting "oh look!" travel moments. Visitors can pay to ride the elevator, but our recommendation is to stop at the free viewing platform. A trip here won't cost you anything and the views of the city are pretty awesome. Plus, you get a chance to be on the elevator structure itself. You can access the viewing platform by walking down a small alley to the right of the Carmo Convent museum. While you're at it, visit the Carmo Convent to see some of the most haunting architectural relics of Lisbon's great earthquake.

Explore the amazing plazas

Lisbon, like many European cities, is abundant with plazas big and small. These are the places where real life in the city takes place. It's where people meet, talk, walk or simply sit and relax. If you're visiting Lisbon, we highly recommend taking time to wander through the plazas, particularly Praça do Comércio, Praça do Rossio, Praça Figueira and Largo São Domingos. You won't be disappointed!

Click here to see more from our trip to Portugal!


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