Visiting the city of 7 hills for only 48 hours? With so many things to do and see, it’s not easy to make a choice that’s a perfect mix of must-see sights as well as hidden, alternative places.
From the best viewing points (miradouros) of Lisbon to the top foodie spots, we’ve got you covered! Here’s day 1 of our 48-hour itinerary. Day 2 of our route is great too! Start today’s route at Basílica da Estrela and finish in the Chiado neighbourhood. Your budget for the entire day (10 hours of discoveries!) including lunch and dinner is approximately 40€ per person.
9:30am: Start your day in Estrela
Start your day bright and early and enjoy Lisbon at its best, before it gets crowded with tourists. Let’s begin in Estrela’s garden with a typical Portuguese coffee. This is most definitely one of Lisbon’s best gardens. Across the street you will find the Estrela Basilica, one of the most beautiful churches in Lisbon. If you don’t have a vertigo, you can take the curly staircase all the way to its roof for an incredible view. Near the Basilica you can catch the classic 28 tram toward Martim Moniz. The tram itself is an institution and it will go through all the popular districts. It tends to be quite packed, but if it’s not – just hop on and enjoy the ride through Lisbon’s famous narrow streets. Otherwise you can take a nice walk following the tram’s route and see all the views just the same. Feeling playful this morning? Follow in the footsteps of locals and play our game across Estrela and Prazeres.
10:45am: Enjoy the view from the Miradouro de Santa Luzia
Hop off the tram once you get to the Miradouro of Santa Luzia. You will soon realise Lisbon is the city of the viewing points – or as we say in Portuguese, “miradouros”. In 48 hours we’ll show you some of Lisbon’s best viewing points. So, let’s start with one of our favourites, Santa Luzia. Admire the view of the red-tiled roofs of the old neighbourhood of Alfama as well as the river, while enjoying music from one of the street performers. Tip: this is a great spot to add to your Instagram feed. And if you’re feeling adventurous, try our Alfama & Baixa or Historic Neighbourhoods Game to find Lisbon’s hidden treasures.
11:15am: More vistas from Portas do Sol
A short stroll up the street, you’ll find yet another miradouro, Portas do Sol (or “Doors of the Sun”, roughly translated). This is indeed a great spot to enjoy the sun while you grab something to drink and take in the view. If you’re an urban adventurer who loves to explore cities from up above, you might like our blog about Lisbon’s best viewpoints.
12:00pm (noon): Head the local neighbourhood of Graça
If you continue to go up – yes, welcome to Lisbon where nothing is flat (on the upside – pun intended – walking around is a workout in itself!) – you will find the Graça district. It is one of the oldest districts in Lisbon and still very traditional. We love walking around here. On top of the hill you’ll find Graça’s church, where you can enjoy exhibitions and cool down after the hike up. And of course, Graca has its own miradouro. Here you can sit, sip a fresh beer, and chill in the shade, while taking in the beautiful view.
12:45pm: Join the locals for lunch at Estrela da Graça or O Pitéu
The best local restaurants in Lisbon? For an affordable meal, we suggest O Pitéu or Estrela da Graça. Both have a very typical Portuguese menu (the actual typical, not the touristy typical) which also means reasonable prices. You can have the lunch menu for around 10€ in both. Bom apetite!
2pm: Admire the beauty of the Panteão Nacional
Ahhh yes, now we can start going down! Take in the vibe of this traditional neighbourhood – maybe pass by the beautiful Vila Bertha and make your way to the Panteão Nacional (or National Pantheon). Here, some of Portugal’s most important personalities are buried. You might know Eusébio (the famous football player) or have heard of Amália (the amazing Fado singer – or Fadista as we call it). Former presidents, writers, and poets are also buried here. But, the real reason to visit the Pantheon is the architecture.
Pro-tip: check out the roof, it has the most amazing view!
3pm: Visit the flea market of Feira da Ladra
If you’re feeling thrifty after leaving the Pantheon, check out Feira da Ladra (Thieves Market) on Tuesdays & Saturdays. It is one of the best markets in Lisbon. You will find everything here! Of course, there’s more roads that lead to the Pantheon. Play our Graça & Alfama game you enjoy a completely different path through these neighbourhoods.
4pm: Visit the famous Castelo de S. Jorge
Time to start heading towards the city centre. We still have some famous spots to cover today! One of them is Castelo de S. Jorge, the hilltop castle. It is of the oldest monuments in Lisbon. Although the queues to enter the actual castle might be too long, it is definitely worth going there, wandering inside the old “city walls” and admiring the old buildings.
5pm: On your way down, pass by Sé and Antonio
Finally we can start going down again (and this time for good). Pass by the Sé de Lisboa, a church from the 4th century AD. It is beautiful and worth checking out. Further down, you find the church of Santo António – you might have noticed Lisbon has a lot (a lot!) of churches. But this one has a cute story. Santo António, the patron saint of the city, is also known as the “matchmaking saint” (santo casamenteiro). As such, he is often asked for help in finding love. On Saint Anthony’s day several young couples, with underprivileged backgrounds, are offered a wedding ceremony on this very search.
6:30pm: Enjoy an aperitivo on the beautiful Praça do Comércio
Praça do Comércio, one of the most impressive plazas in Lisbon, is our final stop for the day. Rebuilt after the 1755 earthquake (slash fires slash tsunami – yes it was a dark year for the city), it is the symbol of the architecture at the time. Find a nice cafe to sit in and watch the sunset over the river. On your way there, enjoy the nice river-side walk, pass by the unique Santa Apolonia train station or admire the famous Casa dos Bicos (House of Spikes) a museum dedicated to the Portuguese writer who won the Nobel Prize for literature!
8pm: Eat some more Portuguese food at Palácio Chiado
You must be hungry after this long day up and down the hills. One of the best places to eat in Lisbon – and you deserve it after burning so many calories – is Palácio Chiado, a restaurant located in a gorgeous palace, with beautiful murals. Inside, you have different restaurants so no need to argue about going for burgers, Italian, or poké, everyone can choose what they want. Even better, you can choose the starters from one restaurant, the entrée from another, desserts from a third and the drinks from the bar. Pro-tip: check the rooms upstairs, they’re great for Instagram snaps!