Lisbon, the vibrant capital of Portugal, is known for its colourful streets, historical landmarks, and delicious cuisine attracting people from all over the world. In 2022 Lisbon was the most visited Portuguese region by international travelers with over 5.4 million overnight visitors – a sharp increase from 2019 when the city welcomed over 4.2 million tourists.
And there is more to that.
According to a survey by Eurostat, Lisbon is considered one of the safest capitals across Europe, with a relatively low crime rate compared to other major cities. The homicide rate in Lisbon is one of the lowest in Europe, and the city is considered one of the safest places for tourists to visit.
If you’re planning a trip to Lisbon, you’ll want to make sure you don’t miss out on the city’s top attractions. Here are ten must-visit places in Lisbon that worth stopping by while in the capital.
The National Azulejo Museum
Entry fee: €5
Located in the Madre de Deus Convent, a 16th-century building that was converted into a museum in 1980, the National Azulejo Museum is a unique museum dedicated to the history and culture of azulejos, the traditional ceramic tiles that adorn many buildings in Portugal. The museum’s collection includes thousands of tiles from the 15th century to the present day, with intricate designs that showcase the rich history and craftsmanship of this important art form. The National Azulejo Museum is a must-visit attraction for anyone interested in Portuguese art and culture, and it is particularly popular with architecture and design enthusiasts. The museum is open from Tuesday to Sunday, from 10am to 6pm, and tickets cost €5 per person.
Entry fee: €12
The Jeronimos Monastery, located in the Belem district of Lisbon, is one of the most impressive examples of Portuguese Gothic architecture in the world. Built in the 16th century, the monastery is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and an important part of Portugal’s cultural heritage. Visitors can explore the monastery’s many halls, cloisters, and chapels, and admire the intricate carvings and decorations that adorn the walls and ceilings. The monastery is also home to the tomb of the famous Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama. The Jeronimos Monastery is open every day from 10am to 6:30pm, and admission costs €12 per person.
Entry fee: €19
One of the largest indoor aquarium in Europe, The Lisbon Oceanarium is located in the Parque das Nações district, and houses over 15,000 animals and 450 different species from all over the world, including penguins, sharks, and rays. Visitors can walk through the aquarium’s different exhibits, which are designed to replicate the natural habitats of the animals, and learn about marine life and conservation efforts. The venue is open every day from 10am to 8pm.
To find out more: www.oceanario.pt
Entry fee: €6
The Belem Tower, also known as the Tower of St Vincent, is a historic monument located in the Belem district of Lisbon. Built in the 16th century as a defensive structure, the tower is one of the most recognizable landmarks in Lisbon and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visitors can climb the tower’s spiral staircase to the top, where they can enjoy panoramic views of the Tagus River and the surrounding area. The tower also houses a small museum, where visitors can learn about the tower’s history and significance. The Belem Tower is open every day from 10am to 6:30pm, and admission costs €6 per person.
You can find out more and purchase tickets to visit the Torre de Belem in Lisbon, Portugal, here.
Castelo de São Jorge (São Jorge Castle)
Entry fees: €10 for adults, €5 for children aged 6-17.
This medieval castle is located on a hilltop in the historic Alfama neighbourhood and offers stunning views of the city.
Visitors can explore the castle’s ramparts and towers, learn about the history of Lisbon, and enjoy panoramic views of the city and the Tagus River. The castle is open daily from 10am to 6pm (November to February) and from 9am to 9pm (March to October).
To find out more about visits and special events taking place at the Castelo de São Jorge, in Lisbon, vist: www.castelodesaojorge.pt/en/
São Carlos National Theater
Entry fee: Varies depending on what is on.
Located in the heart of Lisbon, the São Carlos National Theater is a historic venue that has been entertaining audiences for over two centuries. Originally opened in 1793, the theater underwent extensive renovations in the 20th and nowadays the São Carlos National Theater is home to the Portuguese National Opera, and it regularly hosts performances of opera, ballet, and classical music. Ticket prices can vary a lot, as it depends on the show, and the theater is typically open during performance times.
Check the current programme and activities of the Teatro Nacional de São Carlos here.
Santa Justa Lift
Entry fee: €5
Located in the trendy neighborhood of Principe Real, Just Lift is a unique attraction that offers visitors the chance to ride one of Lisbon’s historic elevators. The elevator, which dates back to the early 20th century, offers stunning views of the city as it climbs the steep hills of Lisbon and it is the fastest way to get from the Baixa neighborhood to the Bairro Alto district.. Once at the top, visitors can enjoy panoramic views of the city from the terrace of the Justa Hotel, which is housed in a converted 19th-century palace. Just Lift is a great way to experience Lisbon’s unique charm and history, and it is particularly popular with photographers and Instagrammers looking for the perfect shot.
The elevator is open daily from 8am to 8pm, and tickets cost €5 per person.
Casa dos Bicos
Entry fee: €5
Located in the Alfama district, Casa dos Bicos is a 16th-century mansion that is one of the most unique buildings in Lisbon. The mansion’s facade is covered in diamond-shaped stones that give it a distinct appearance, and inside, visitors can explore a museum dedicated to the works of Portuguese author Jose Saramago. Casa dos Bicos is a must-visit attraction for anyone interested in architecture and literature, and it is particularly popular with fans of Saramago’s work. The museum is open from Tuesday to Sunday, from 10am to 6pm, and tickets cost €5 per person.
To find out more and plan your visit to the Fundação José Saramago (Casa dos Bicos), check out: www.josesaramago.org/
Calouste Gulbenkian Museum
Entry fee: €10
The Calouste Gulbenkian Museum features a vast collection of works from around the world. The museum’s collection includes everything from ancient Egyptian artifacts to 20th-century art, with an emphasis on European and Asian art. Visitors can also explore the museum’s beautiful gardens, which are home to a variety of sculptures and other works of art. If you are interested in art and culture in one place, you will like Calouste Gulbenkian Museum, which is open from Tuesday to Sunday, from 10am to 6pm, and tickets cost €10 per person.
Find you more and plan your visit here.
Entry fee: €6
Pilar 7 is a unique viewpoint attraction located in the Alcântara district of Lisbon. The attraction offers visitors the opportunity to experience stunning panoramic views of the city from a height of 80 meters, and to learn about the construction of the 25th of April Bridge, one of Lisbon’s most iconic landmarks. Visitors can take an elevator to the top of a former water tower, where they will find an observation deck with breathtaking views of the city and the Tagus River. In addition to the views, Pilar 7 also features an interactive exhibition about the history and construction of the bridge, complete with multimedia installations and exhibits. The attraction is open from Monday to Sunday, from 10am to 8pm, and tickets cost €6 per person.
To find out more about your visit to Pilar 7, in Lisbon, here.
Get your camera ready because, as you can see, Lisbon is a city that has something for everyone. Whether you’re interested in history, culture, or just want to relax and soak up the local atmosphere, Lisbon has it all. Make sure you leave plenty of time to explore the city and don’t forget to charge your mobile phone, as you are likely to take lots of pictures on the go with it, too.