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The Ultimate Lisbon Guide | 3 Day Guide and Tips

AMWF Couple in Lisbon with Tram View from the Top of Castelo de Sao Jorge | Tips and Tricks


If you find yourself craving some sunshine, incredible food, culture and architecture; a trip to Lisbon may be just what you need. The capital city of Portugal, Lisbon, is one of the most lively and charming cities we have ever visited in Europe. Between the historical spots, beautiful nature, and endless amazing food there is a lot to take in. Here is our guide to exploring Lisbon in 3 days!

Day 1

Manteigaria
 On our first day in Lisbon, we checked into our hotel, the Raw Culture Arts & Lofts Bairro Alto, and beelined straight to the iconic Manteigaria to have their world famous pastel de nata (egg tart). Don't let the small interior or the out the door line intimidate you. They are incredible efficient and we never encountered a wait longer than 5 minutes. Here, they have an open kitchen where you can eat your egg tarts at the counter while watching the custards be made. They also serve espresso here so we made this our every morning stop to have us running around the city on a caffeine and sugar high. Our biggest tip: all egg tarts are not created equal. We tried a lot of different egg tart spots during our time in Portugal so you didn't have to and let us confirm that Manteigaria was by far the best! In close second was Pasteis de Belem. Stop here throughout the day as they don't close until midnight!
The Best Egg Tart in Lisbon | Manteigaria The Best Egg Tart in Lisbon | Manteigaria

Museu Arqueologico do Carmo
The Carmo Archaeological Museum is definitely worth your time when you find yourself in Barrio Alto. This was our first morning in Lisbon and here's our first tip: wear comfortable shoes that have substantial grab or you will be slipping up and down streets constantly. The ruins of the old Church of Santa Maria do Carmo, a former Catholic convent, was founded in the 1300s and used to be known as one of the most beautiful gothic temples in all the city until the earthquake of 1755. You'll read a lot about the 1755 Lisbon Earthquake which devastated the region and severely damaged many ancient sites you will visit. Admission will set you back only 4€ per adult (credit card accepted) and is a beautiful sight to take in.
Alicia Mara at The Carmo Archaeological Museum Lisbon | Tips and Tricks The Carmo Archaeological Museum Lisbon | Tips and Tricks
The Carmo Archaeological Museum Lisbon | Tips and Tricks

Elevador de Santa Justa
The Santa Justa Lift is in the city center of Lisbon and an iconic attraction. We waited about an hour to pay 5€ a person to take the elevator up (which had no view). Learn from our mistake and do something we didn't. Tip: Save yourself valuable time and money and don't take the elevator. Instead, from the convent, walk to the top of the elevator. From here you will pay less than 2€ to enter the top and take in the same beautiful view. Smile knowing you saved yourself an hour and money. Come here later in the day for a nice sunset view.
The Santa Justa Lift | Tips and Tricks View from The Santa Justa Lift | AMWF Couple | Tips and Tricks 
Leo Chan at the Santa Justa Lift | Tips and Tricks
Alicia Mara at the Santa Justa Lift | Tips and Tricks Alicia Mara and the view from the Santa Justa Lift | Tips and Tricks
View from the Santa Justa Lift | Tips and Tricks
Leo Chan at the Santa Justa Lift | Tips and Tricks

Pink Street on Rua Nova do Carvalho
Can't say we have ever seen a street painted pink before. It sure made for a cute photo spot.
Pink Street | Tips and Tricks Leo Chan wearing Off White Jordan 1 at Pink Street | Tips and Tricks
Alicia Mara at Lisbon Pink Street | Tips and Tricks

Time Out Market
You've likely heard of Time Out, but did you know the concept of the Time Out market was created here in Portugal? The Lisbon market was opened in 2014 and was the world's first food and cultural market. Here you will find the best of Lisbon restaurants, bars, and cultural experiences under one roof. It is an open food court with family-style seating and over 40 shops! Try a bit of everything. We consulted this Time Out guide here.

From here, we took an Uber back to our hotel. We tried to structure our day so we were walking downhill and then taking an Uber back uphill. Ubers are extremely cheap in Lisbon. Use that to your advantage and take them everywhere! Many locals also warned us against taking the public trams due to the high occurrence of pickpockets.


Day 2

Lisbon Cathedral
The Lisbon Cathedral, or Sé de Lisboa, is the oldest and arguably most important church in the city. Construction on the cathedral started in the 1100s and survived many earthquakes and other disasters. Here you'll find a mix of different interesting architectural styles. Don't just pass by out front! Be sure to go inside to take in it's grandeur. If you want a nice photograph, wait for a tram car to pass by!
Leo Chan at the Lisbon Cathedral | Tips and Tricks Alicia Mara and Leo Chan at the Lisbon Cathedral | Tips and Tricks
Lisbon Cathedral | Tips and Tricks


Praça do Comércio
The Commerce Square is right alongside the Tagus River. This was previously the site of the Royal Ribeira Palace and library until it was destroyed in the 1755 Lisbon earthquake. Here you'll find restaurants, cafes, and arcades surrounding the square. Walk around and enjoy! Tip: This spot can get very hot in the middle of the afternoon because there is no shade within the square. Try to come here early or late afternoon instead.
The Commerce Square, Praça do Comércio | Tips and Tricks
The Commerce Square, Praça do Comércio | Tips and Tricks Alicia Mara Leo Chan The Commerce Square, Praça do Comércio | Tips and Tricks
Leo Chan at The Commerce Square, Praça do Comércio | Tips and Tricks
Alicia Mara at The Commerce Square, Praça do Comércio | Tips and Tricks Alicia Mara at The Commerce Square, Praça do Comércio | Tips and Tricks

São Jorge Castle
This castle dates back to the 8th century BC! It oozes history as it was the site of fortifications throughout Lisbon's long history from the Phoenicians, Romans, Moors, to the Portuguese in 1147. Since then, it has been a royal palace, military barracks, and now a national monument. At the entrance you will be able to enjoy beautiful views over the city. If you're a Game of Thrones fan you won't want to miss walking all around the castle walls. Like most places in Lisbon, we took an Uber directly up to the entrance and avoided the walk up a very steep hill. Believe us. Take an Uber. The entrance ticket was under 10€ but the lines can be quite long. We recommend double checking opening hours to make sure you will have enough time to explore. We spent just under 2 hours here.
Leo Chan and Alicia Mara at São Jorge Castle | Tips and Tricks View from São Jorge Castle | Tips and Tricks
View from São Jorge Castle | Tips and Tricks Leo Chan and Alicia Mara at São Jorge Castle | Tips and Tricks
Leo Chan and Alicia Mara at São Jorge Castle | Tips and Tricks
View from São Jorge Castle | Tips and Tricks Alicia Mara at São Jorge Castle | Tips and Tricks
Leo Chan and Alicia Mara at São Jorge Castle | Tips and Tricks

Day 3

Funicular da Bica
This was our favorite photo spot of the iconic Lisbon trams. There are two tram cars that travel simultaneously in opposite directions. Wait for the tram to pull up to the top of the hill and stand by to take photographs. Trams leave about every 10/15 minutes so you will have plenty of time. Also position yourself off a side street and wait for them to pass for a beautiful photograph.
Alicia Mara at Funicular da Bica Tram | Tips and Tricks Leo Chan and Alicia Mara at Funicular da Bica Tram | Tips and Tricks
Alicia Mara at Funicular da Bica Tram | Tips and Tricks  Funicular da Bica Tram | Tips and Tricks
Leo Chan and Alicia Mara at Funicular da Bica Tram | Tips and Tricks
Leo Chan at Funicular da Bica Tram | Tips and Tricks Leo Chan at Funicular da Bica Tram | Tips and Tricks
Leo Chan at Funicular da Bica Tram | Tips and Tricks
Funicular da Bica Tram | Tips and Tricks Leo Chan at Funicular da Bica Tram | Tips and Tricks
Leo Chan at Funicular da Bica Tram | Tips and Tricks Funicular da Bica Tram | Tips and Tricks

LX Factory
One of the top spots in Lisbon, the LX Factory is just a 15 minute Uber ride away from the city center and is filled with restaurants, bars, and street art. Previously the site of an old 1900s manufacturing complex, the area has been rejuvenated as a hub of art and culture. Tip: This market is a great spot to pick up unique souvenirs! Don't skip the shopping here and also don't miss the epic bookstore, Ler Devagar! Our second tip? Eat lunch here. Our next stop this day was Belem, which had extremely long lines (we're talking an hour) for just okay food.
Alicia Mara at Ler Devagar LX Factory | Tips and Tricks Alicia Mara at Ler Devagar LX Factory | Tips and Tricks
Leo Chan at Ler Devagar LX Factory | Tips and Tricks

Pasteis de Belém
This was the second best egg tart we had while in Lisbon and we recommend trying it to compare and see which you prefer. These egg tarts are made using their original 200 year old recipe. Tip: The line always looks incredibly long, but that is the take out line for people who don't know you can just walk in through the door, sit at a table, and get your order taken. Shout out to our local Uber driver for that amazing tip, otherwise we would have wasted valuable time!

Jerónimos Monastery
This monastery is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and an incredibly beautiful place to visit. The main chapel is free to enter, but you will need to purchase a 7€ ticket next door to enter the monastery. This was built in the 1500s and was inspired by explorer Casco da Gama who is buried there. Fun fact: because of the unique engineering design that went into the design of the small column layout to support the roof of the church, it was able to withstand the 1755 earthquake and destroyed many of Lisbon's important sites. After the chapel, enjoy a leisurely stroll around the cloisters and take in the beauty. When you explore the second floor, you can also get a view of the church from the top.
Jerónimos Monastery | Tips and Tricks Jerónimos Monastery | Tips and Tricks
Jerónimos Monastery | Tips and Tricks
 Alicia Mara at Jerónimos Monastery | Tips and Tricks   Jerónimos Monastery | Tips and Tricks
Leo Chan at Jerónimos Monastery | Tips and Tricks
Jerónimos Monastery | Tips and Tricks Alicia Mara at Jerónimos Monastery | Tips and Tricks
Leo Chan Alicia Mara at Jerónimos Monastery | Tips and Tricks
Leo Chan Jerónimos Monastery | Tips and Tricks

Belem Tower
This tower was built in the 16th century as a fort to protect the city from attacks and is an important reminder of Portugal's vital role in the Age of Discoveries. We weren't able to go inside the tower unfortunately because we had only looked up the closing hours and not the last admission hours. Make sure to double check! 
Leo Chan at Belem Tower | Tips and Tricks Leo Chan at Belem Tower | Lisbon Guide
 Belem Tower | Lisbon Guide Leo Chan at Belem Tower | Tips and Tricks
Leo Chan at Belem Tower | Tips and Tricks
Alicia Mara at Belem Tower | Tips and Tricks Leo Chan at Belem Tower | Tips and Tricks

Padrão dos Descobrimentos
From Belem Tower we walked 15 minutes to the Monument to the Discoveries. This was built in 1960 to pay tribute to 33 prominent figures of Portugal's Age of Discoveries. A beautiful place to catch the sunset!
Monument to the Discoveries| Tips and Tricks Monument to the Discoveries| Tips and Tricks
Alicia Mara at Monument to the Discoveries| Lisbon Guide Tips and Tricks Alicia Mara at Monument to the Discoveries| Lisbon Guide Tips and Tricks


Stay tuned for our next travel blog post all about Sintra!


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