Best 9 Things To Do In Lisbon In 3 Days
The plan was to surprise my wife for her birthday and not tell her where we were going until we got to the airport but I accidently gave the game away when she caught me reading a book about places in Europe and saw that I was on the Lisbon page! I still don’t understand how she managed to see what I was reading!
So together we put a plan of day trips, sightseeing, tours and things we wanted to pack into Lisbon during our 3 day stay.
Lisbon is full of culture, history and cobbled streets that relies on tourism for its economy.
Here are our best 9 things to do in Lisbon.
(1) Libson 7 Hills Electric Bike Tour
On our 2nd day we managed to see most of Lisbon’s panoramic observation points whilst on the 7 hills of Lisbon electric bike tour with Boost Portugal.
The E-bikes took a few minutes to get use to but they were great fun to ride and you really appreciated the boost of power on some of the big hills.
Our tour guide Peter was incredibly knowledgable about the history of Lisbon and explained at every stop about each area as you explored the hidden sights of Alfama, Mouraria and Graça, some of the most historic neighborhoods in Lisbon.
This is probably one of the best city tours we have done and was a fantastic way to see parts of Lisbon that you would not of seen on a conventional sightseeing tour.
I was really impressed with the company and if we had more time in Lisbon I would of booked their Quickie Ride in a convertable VW Beetle.
We booked via Viator but you can book via the Boost Portugal website for a better deal.
(2) Time Out Market
We went here the day we arrived in Lisbon after reading several reviews about how good it was online.
The Time Out Market has 24 restaurants, 8 bars, a dozen shops, a cooking school and a high-end music venue, with just the very best in Lisbon allowed to operate there. The other side of the market is home to some of the city’s more traditional (and longest-running) market vendors of meat, fish, fruit and flowers.
After much deliberating I decided to try the 5 snacks lead by the chef from Marlene Viera for 18 euros. It included Mussels and tomato sauce, mini beef burgers, stuffed mushrooms with quail egg, Portugese Octupus salad and Codfish salad with chickpeas. I wasn’t left dissapointed, full of flavour and texture. My wife opted for the beef burger from Honurata for 10 euros, famous for their double beefy patty burgers and really enjoyed it.
When your sitting enjoying your food or walking around your hear a bell being rung. This is your heads up that the Portugese egg tarts by Manteigaria are fresh out of the oven and you need to go grab one quickly as they are AMAZING warm!
Time Up Market is located at Mercado da Ribeira opposite the Cais do Sodre metro station. When you first get to a new city these things always look further away on a map than you think. It cost us 10 euros to get there from the Cathedral by Tuk Tuk but you could probably walk it in 10-15 minutes.
If you like your food you need to visit the Time Out Market. Its vibrant, full of energy and can get really busy late into the evenings. Being typical Brits we wanted to eat around 6pm-7pm but many of the locals don’t eat untill much later in the evening.
Be warned, it can be quite over whelming with all the choices on offer. Grab a drink and choose wisely!
(3) Iconic Tram 28
Our original plan was to go on a food and drink tour using the famous Tram 28 that we booked via Viator. Unfortunatly the tour was cancelled the day before we flew to Lisbon.
However, when we got to Lisbon quite a few of the tour guides from other trips we went on recommended to us to take the Red tourist tram instead.
Whilst Lisbon is one of the safest cities in the world, like many other cities it is rife with opportunistic pick pocketers, who don’t tend to go on the Red trams due to the cost of the 15 euros day ticket.
You still get to travel across the city whilst being able to get on and off throughout the day but also learning about all the major attractions through the audio-guides.
Whilst the tourists love the trams, the locals can’t stand them as they often brake down and/or cause traffic jams!
(4) Food & Drink Tour
In every city we travel to we always do a food and drink tour as we feel it is one of the best ways to learn about the local culture and find out about local restaurants we probably would never of known about.
We managed to book on to the Lisbon Small-Group Gourmet Portuguese Food & Wine Tour via Viator.
After meeting our guide Tiago at the Praça de D. Pedro IV in central Lisbon you cover quite a wide area of downtown Lisbon and you sample many of the foods and wines.
The tour was almost 5 hours, but Tiago really makes this tour fun and informative.
(5) São Jorge Castle
Having grown up in the oldest recorded town in the UK that also has a Castle I have come to appreciate a good castle when I see one.
Nothing annoys me more when you visit a castle and it is essentially pretending to be a castle with 4 large walls protecting what was a small town inside.
I expect to see a good bridge as a entrance, some good look out points, some sort of moat and ideally some cells!
I am pleased to report the São Jorge Castle in Lisbon is one of those traditional castles.
But what São Jorge Castle is particualar good for is incredible views across the city of Lisbon.
(6) Take A Tuk Tuk
We found the Tuk Tuks really useful to get around Lisbon and great to get tips from the locals.
All the journeys we took cost 10 Euros but make sure you agree a fee BEFORE you leave as their was one chancer who tried to charge us double.
Don’t let this put you off though.
(7) Lisbon Cathedral
During our trip to Lisbon, we stayed at the Memmo Alfama hotel and were lucky enough to have this amazing Cathedral just around the corner.
Take a peek inside to some beautiful artwork and make a small donation to the Cathedral to light a candle.
(8) Confeitaria Nacional
Since 1829, Confeitaria Nacional is one of Lisbon’s most famous, oldest and traditional Confectionery shops.
It is located in Lisbon’s downtown (the “Baixa Pombalina”, or simply “Baixa”).
On the ground floor your find typical Portuguese pastries, great coffee, and a busy atmosphere.
If you venture upstairs, the restaurant dishes up traditional quiches, soups and daily lunch specials.
Well worth a visit!
(9) The Sexiest Toilet On Earth!
I had to put this in here purely for shits and giggles.
You can find it on the Terreiro do Paço square, the beautiful piazza open towards the Tagus river.
It is a unique public toilet that is also a gallery, gift shop, and plays creative music ambiance.
It costs 1 Euro to enter, which might seem extreme and it feels weird writing this, but it is worth paying especially when most of the public toilets in Lisbon cost 50 cents to enter and are no where near as nice as this toilet.
You are invited to select the colour of your toilet roll from the wall display at the access corridor before entering your own unique toilet cubicle to do your thing.
After you have finished your business, you can wash your hands in the artistic social wash basin.
Whilst I didn’t find this toilet in any way sexy, I did appreciate the clean posh toilets for a unique toilet experience!
If you have any questions you would like to ask me about things to do in Lisbon, please ask below in the comments.
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