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Best Things To Do in Lisbon

Lisbon is probably best known for its colonialist history, ornate Manueline architecture and tradition of Fado music. But some of its best features are in the every day — spectacular hilltop vistas, pleasant year-round weather, friendly people and a true "cafe culture." To enjoy these, bring some comfortable footwear and a pocket map of the public transit system. Plan on spending a half day to a full day exploring the waterfront neighborhood of Belém, or maybe plan a day trip to Sintra, located 20 miles west of Lisbon.

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How We Rank Things to Do
#1
Tram 28
Sightseeing | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.5

Why go: Yes, it's a mode of transportation, but recent travelers say it's also an attraction in and of itself ... read more»

#2
Alfama Free attraction
Neighborhood/Area | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.5

Why go: Many tourists choose to take Tram 28 through the Alfama neighborhood because it's so hilly, but whether you choose ... read more»

#3
Belem Free attraction
Neighborhood/Area | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.5

Why go: Located about 5 miles west of Lisbon's center, Belém is a waterfront neighborhood with some of Lisbon's most ... read more»

#4
Santa Justa Elevator (Elevador de Santa Justa)
Sightseeing | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.5

Why go: For some sweeping views of Lisbon's rooftops — particularly St. George's Castle, Rossio Square and the Baixa neighborhood — you ... read more»

#5
Sintra Free attraction
Sightseeing, Neighborhood/Area | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.5

Why go: Located about 20 miles west of central Lisbon, Sintra's praises have been sung in literature by the likes of ... read more»

#6
National Tile Museum (Museu Nacional do Azulejo)
Museums | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.5

Why go: As odd as it may sound, experts say the Museu Nacional do Azulejo (yes, that translates as the National Tile ... read more»

#7
Monastery of St Jerome Free attraction
Churches/Religious Sites, Sightseeing | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.5

Why go: The Mosteiro dos Jerónimos, also known as the Monastery of St. Jerome or the Jerónimos Monastery, is a UNESCO World ... read more»

#8
St. George's Castle (Castelo de Sao Jorge)
Castles/Palaces, Sightseeing | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.5

Why go: Recent visitors were pleased with their experience at St. George's Castle, though some mention the area's (Alfama's ... read more»

#9
Cascais Free attraction
Beaches, Neighborhood/Area | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.0

Why go: The seaside town of Cascais (pronounced cash-ca-eeesh) is an about 45-minute train ride west of Lisbon's Cais do Sodré ... read more»

#10
Gulbenkian Museum (Museu Calouste Gulbenkian)
Museums | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.0

Why go: Less than 50 years old, the Gulbenkian Museum hangs a world-renowned collection of art. The late Calouste Gulbenkian amassed a ... read more»

#11
Torre de Belem and Monument to the Discoveries
Sightseeing | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.0

Why go: Built to commemorate Vasco da Gama's expedition to India, the Tower of Belém was finished in the early 1500s ... read more»

#12
Oceanarium (Oceanario de Lisboa)
Zoos and Aquariums | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.0

Why go: The Oceanário de Lisboa (Oceanarium) is not only Portugal's largest indoor aquarium — but Europe's as well. Exhibits correspond ... read more»

#13
Feira da Ladra Free attraction
Shopping | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.0

Why go: If you're searching for a unique souvenir to take back home, you might want to try your luck at ... read more»

#14
Se Cathedral Free attraction
Churches/Religious Sites, Sightseeing | Map It

Overall Rating: Rating: 4.0

Why go: The Sé de Lisboa, the Sé Cathedral or simply just the Sé, is a solemn-looking cathedral that reflects the Romanesque ... read more»

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