Apart from being the capital of Portugal, Lisbon is also the largest city, and ironically it is gaining a lot of popularity among tourists who would love to visit this place back and fourth. A fun fact about this city is that it is one of the oldest cities in the world and the oldest in Western Europe. Build on a series of hills this city is captivating and picturesque, having monuments and attractions as well as culture and variety when it comes to exploring, Lisbon.
So get packing and book your next holiday to one of the most historical cities which has characteristic, beautiful settings and a mild climate all year round which makes Lisbon even more of a desirable place.
Don’t miss out on the best few attractions being –
Jeronimos Monastery – This vast monastery is the resting place of the famous Vasco Da Gama. It is one of the most exquisite and grand places in Lisbon and also UNESCO world heritage site. Today this monastery is an example of stunning architecture, artwork and ornate stonework which is seen in their collection of 40 odd statues. This place also consists of the Cloisters which is a sightseeing treat and the view from the second floor is the best way to remember your visit here. So head to Belem and check out yourself the glory this place holds.
Belém Tower – This fortress was an entry point to Lisbon’s harbour, back in 1515, today it is UNESCO world heritage monument and Lisbon’s most beloved historical symbol. Build in the 16th century the style of the tower reflects on the Age of Discoveries and the exterior is sculpted with fine limestone and represents the sophisticated Gothic style prevalent at that time during Northern Europe. Back in the days, this tower was completely surrounded by the river Tagus, but in the recent few years the water has diminished, and one of the sections has silted up.
On Sundays, there is free entry, but a good idea would be to purchase the Lisboa Card which would give you a good discount on a lot of tourists attractions in the city.
•Palace of Ajuda – Filled with grand furniture, statues, tapestries and awestruck artwork this Palace is a not only impressive but also gives you the insight into the lives of the kings and queens who resided here. There is a lot to explore in this palace like the Throne room, Dining Room, The Ballroom and a gorgeous Queen Room. There are two floors in this building so make sure to take your time while you witness the luxury enjoyed by the royal family back in the days.
Today this palace is open for visitors and holds large amounts of pieces which also makes this place an important Museum of Decorative Arts.
Carmo Convent – This roofless church is an example of the 1755 earthquake which took place in Lisbon. At that time it was the largest church, but today it stands as an impressive ruin and an archaeological museum, You can find collection ranging from prehistoric to medieval artefacts. Just a short walk away from the Santa Justa Lift, this church despite the dramatic earthquake is still a beautiful sight and unique place to visit.
After one of the deadliest earthquakes which was later followed by a series of tragedy including a tsunami and raging fires, life in Lisbon still moved on and this church today was left roofless as a reminder of the disaster.
Sao Jorge Castle – For the glorious view of the city head to this hillside Sao Jorge Castle. The walk to the castle is a little tiring, but it’s worth the effort and time. This castle was made to house the military troops in case of a siege. The archaeological ruins show the three significant phases of history, Starting from the 7th Century settlement, the Moorish era and the terrible destruction caused by the earthquake in 1755.
Most of the castle was destroyed during the earthquake, but you can still witness the long extension of walls and 18 towers.
Rossio Square – One of the most touristy squares in Lisbon, most the buildings around this area have been reconstructed especially after the 1755 earthquake. You can also access the Rossio Train Station from here, it is beautiful and is an important addition to the square. Some of the restaurants and cafes are pretty popular and have been running since the 18th century. Here you can also find two ornate fountains including a monument measuring 27 meters high.
Praca Do Comercio – In the olden days this use to be a traditional marketplace for traders where they would sell their foreign goods. For visitors, this square is appealing as well an important transport hub. With marvellous painted buildings, Praca Do Comercio is one of the finest sections of the capital which showcases the dominance and power which Portugal once commanded.
With this helpful list, I hope your trip to Lisbon is as beautiful and memorable as mine was, go ahead send in your suggestions and the little tips and tricks which make your holiday more wonderful.
Disclaimer – Portugal Tourism Board sponsored this trip, but my opinion remains unbiased.