East of the Baixa, climb past Lisbon’s ancient cathedral, discover the remains of the city’s medieval São Jorge Castle and enjoy panoramic views.
Explore the old Lisbon in the historic neighbourhoods around the castle. Wander through the narrow and maze-like streets of Alfama, edging north to Graça for a distinctive outlook over the castle and the city.
Follow our guide, and use the map below to locate the attractions. By night, search for the soul of fado in one of the best fado restaurants in Alfama. If you visit in June, don’t miss the arraiais (street parties) during the Feast of St Anthony.
1. The Sé
Halfway up a long, steep hill heading to the castle, the Sé is Lisbon’s ancient cathedral. It’s a large and impressive Romanesque structure dated from the foundation of Portugal in the 12th century. Read More
2. Miradouro de Santa LuziaConsidered one of the most beautiful viewpoints in Lisbon, the Miradouro de Santa Luzia offers amazing views over the Alfama neighbourhood and the River Tejo. Don’t miss the blue-and-white azulejos (hand-painted tile panels), depicting Terreiro do Paço before the great earthquake of 1755.
3. Miradouro das Portas do Sol
The adjacent Miradouro das Portas do Sol is one of Lisbon’s most photographed viewpoints. It offers wide open vistas over the coloured buildings, the Panteão (Pantheon), the river, and the cruise ship terminal. With a convenient kiosk serving drinks and snacks, here’s a great place to chill out and watch the sunset in Lisbon.
4. Castelo de São Jorge
Overseeing Lisbon, the medieval castle is set on the highest of the city’s seven hills. It is the most visited tourist site, and perhaps the most impressive one, if not for the castle itself at least for its position offering the best views of Lisbon. Read More
5. Igreja de São Vicente de Fora
The Renaissance Church of São Vicente de Fora is well worth a visit, but perhaps even more interesting is the adjoining monastery with its beautiful cloisters and azulejos (tile panels).
6. Feira da Ladra
With the beautiful Pantheon next to it, Lisbon’s main flea market has all sorts of stuff, including touristy items, crafts, clothing, antiques, pottery, and also an area for a car boot style second-hand selling. Read More
7. Panteão Nacional
With a white dome rising above Alfama, the Panteão Nacional (National Pantheon) houses the tombs of distinguished Portuguese figures. From its terrace, enjoy stunning views over the River Tejo and the city. Read More
8. Streets of Alfama
Ditch the maps and wander through the medieval streets that run from Rua de São Pedro, Rua de São Miguel and Rua dos Remédios. You are bound to get lost in the maze of narrow streets and alleys, but that’s the fun of it. Don’t worry if you get tired or really get lost – there’s always a café, a restaurant or a bus/tram stop just around the corner.
9. Museu do Fado
Sample some of the best fado voices at the Fado Museum. Learn about the history and the instruments used in this performance genre, inscribed on UNESCO’s list of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. Read More
10. Museu do Azulejo
The Tile Museum boasts a unique collection of azulejos (hand-painted tiles). Check out Portugal’s longest azulejo featuring a 40-metre long panorama of Lisbon. Read More