14 Quintessential Must-Do’s In Lisbon

Yellow trams, egg tarts, and sexy bars.

Yellow trams, egg tarts, and sexy bars. This list will take more than one trip to complete! So much love for Lisbon…

1. DRINK: Pensão Amor

Rua Alecrim 19, 1200-014 Lisboa, Portugal (map, website)

Probably the hottest bar in Lisbon right now is Pensão Amor, which means “Pensions of Love,” used to be a brothel and now turned into a burlesque bar that hosts live shows every month. Located in the former red light district, it was a favorite amongst sailors back in the day. The cocktails are provocative, tasty and the crowd is fun and stylish.

2. SEE: Stroll Through Alfama Neighborhood

Alfama is the oldest area in Lisbon, the name comes from the Arabic word of “baths.”Alfama is not only where Lisbon started, it’s also where the music Fado was born. The vibe is similar to the Montmartre in Paris, full of beautiful windy alleys that you can spend all day getting lost in.

3. EAT: Madame Petitsca

Rua de Santa Catarina 17 3º, 1200-128 Lisboa, Portugal (mapwebsite)

Absolutely one of my favorite meals in Lisbon with a fantastic view of the bridge. Madame Petitsca’s rooftop location is a stylish hub of innovative plates that combine Asian flavors with beautiful local seafood. Get the pork medallions and shrimp dish, they’re absolutely mouthwatering especially paired with a nice glass of wine. Ask the sommelier or General Manager for a great wine rec!

4. DRINK: BytheWine

1200 014, Rua das Flores 41, Portugal (mapwebsite)

Portugal is definitely known for its abundance of delectable wines and ports. If you’re in the mood for a tasting in a chic setting, BytheWine is IT. The bar carries wines made by José Maria da Fonseca, and whatever wine you choose, you can also pair it with gastronomical sides: bread from the Algarve, or oysters from Sado. In addition to wine tastings, they even have wine classes open to the public.

5. STAY: Dear Lisbon Guesthouse

R. de São Bento 31, 1200-815 Lisboa, Portugal (mapwebsite)

Staying at Dear Lisbon Guesthouse is such a dream, each room and suite is beautifully curated just like an art gallery. There are 4 different locations throughout Lisbon, each boutique guesthouse has a different vibe. It’s run by a family business by a father, mother and son who are passionate about providing the best Lisbon experience. What I love the most is the intimate customer service, spacious rooms, and artistic inspirations oozing every corner.

6. DO: Ride the Tram!

I think there’s no better way to see the city than riding the tram! It’s also perfect for snapping that iconic shot of the yellow cart to post on Instagram! There are currently 5 lines, and I highly recommend taking Tram #12 since it runs through the districts of Baixa and Alfama.

7. EAT: Perola de Sao Paulo

Rua de S. Paulo 58, 1200-014 Lisboa, Portugal (mapwebsite)

Some of my favorite places to eat while traveling are hole-in-the-wall, local spots with zero tourists in sight. Tasca is the kind of informal eatery that used to cater to construction workers, but now have become a trendy form of eating among locals. Don’t expect fancy tableware, what you’ll get is truly great meals served on metal plates. Come here for a casual lunch!

8. SEE: April 25 Bridge

Ponte 25 de Abril, Lisboa, Portugal (mapwebsite)

As a former San Franciscan, obviously I think of the 25 de Abril Bridge or 25th of April Bridge as Lisbon’s Golden Gate Bridge. It’s a must-see here!

9. DRINK: BOA-BAO

Ponte 25 de Abril, Lisboa, Portugal (mapwebsite)

Another trendy hotspot among locals is the Asian fusion restaurant BOA-BAO, not that you’d come to Portugal for Asian food, but the crowd is filled with locals looking to have a good time. Why not come here for a fancy cocktail to start the night?

10. STAY: Upon Lisbon Prime Residences

Ponte 25 de Abril, Lisboa, Portugal (mapwebsite)

Have you seen a more beautiful rooftop pool with the view of the Benfica Stadium? If you’re a business traveler or prefer modern amenities, then check into Upon Lisbon Prime Residences. The 129 luxury apartments feels like a contemporary way of living in the city. The apartments come with free Wi-Fi, a separate bedroom, kitchenette, 24-hour reception service and so much more. The is luxe to the max!

Walk down Rua Augusta and you’ll reach Praça do Comércio where the royal Ribeira Palace was until it was destroyed during the 1755 Lisbon earthquake. It’s Lisbon’s largest plaza and it connects the Tagus River. With the statue of King Jose I in the center, this is a tourist hub but you also can’t miss it!

R. Mal. Saldanha 1, 1200-012 Lisboa, Portugal (map, website)

After being a wanderlust through charming streets, the perfect place to rest your feet is at Pharmacia. Located at the Pharmacy Museum, Pharmacia is a fantastic place to people watch with a cup of coffee, a glass of wine, or if you’re starving like I was, feed yourself!

13. SHOP: Chiado

Chiado is the coolest place to shop in Lisbon, especially Liberty Avenue. There are tons of smaller shopping complexes and local boutiques surrounding Rua Garrett. If you’re looking to bring home any kind of Portuguese souvenir, this is where you can shop ’til you drop!

14. EAT: Pastéis de Belém

R. de Belém 84-92, 1300-085 Lisboa, Portugal (mapwebsite)

Coming to Lisbon without a stop at Pasteis de Belem is like going to London without seeing the Big Ben. Natas are the famous Portuguese egg tarts that are known around the world. For the best and warmest egg tarts in town, you’ve gotta come here! There will definitely be a line outside, but it’s worth the wait and order more than just one!

Photos: Wendy Hung

Wendy Hung

CEO, FOUNDER, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

As the founder of Jetset Times, Wendy is an avid traveler and fluent in five languages. When she's not traveling, Wendy calls Paris and Taipei home. Her favorite countries so far from her travels have been: Bhutan, Iran, and Russia because they were all so different! St. Bart's was pretty amazing too (wink)!

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