What to see and do in and around Lisbon in 3 days

its surroundings in 3 days

Lisbon is a city full of charm, with a rich history and culture that make it a must-see destination in Europe. In this post we will present you with a complete guide of what to see and do in and around Lisbon in 3 days. From stunning historical monuments to delicious gastronomy, Lisbon has something for everyone. In addition, we will explore the nearby towns and cities that you can’t miss during your visit to Portugal. If you want to visit Lisbon and don’t know where to stay, from Booking Hotels Lisbon we offer you the best deals and the best hotels in Lisbon.

Day 1: Exploring the historic center of Lisbon

If you are planning a trip to Lisbon, you cannot miss the historical center of the city. On this first day of exploration, we propose a route to get to know some of the most iconic and picturesque places of the Portuguese capital.

Visit to the Alfama district and St. George’s Castle

  • Alfama district and St. George’s Castle: To start your adventure in Lisbon, we recommend a visit to the Alfama district, the oldest neighborhood in the city. Stroll through its cobblestone streets and admire its historic buildings.
  • From there, go up to St. George’s Castle, where you can enjoy a breathtaking panoramic view of the city. Entrance to the castle costs 10€ and it is open from 9:00 am to 9:00 pm.

Stroll through the Commerce Square and Ribeira das Naus

Praça do Comércio and Ribeira das Naus: Continue your tour through Praça do Comércio, one of the largest and most emblematic squares in Lisbon, with impressive architecture. Then, head to Ribeira das Naus, a waterfront area where you can walk and appreciate the architecture of the city. Admission is free and it is always open.

Tasting the local gastronomy at the Mercado da Ribeira

  • Mercado da Ribeira: To end the day, head to Mercado da Ribeira, one of the most popular markets in Lisbon, where you can taste delicious local gastronomy and buy fresh produce. The market is open Monday to Thursday from 10:00 am to 00:00 am, Friday and Saturday from 10:00 am to 02:00 am and Sunday from 10:00 am to 00:00 am.

Mercado da Ribeira

The Mercado da Ribeira is an ideal place to try some of the most popular dishes of Lisbon’s gastronomy. Here are some of them:

  1. Bacalhau: Cod is one of the most popular fish in Portugal, and it is prepared in various ways. At the Mercado da Ribeira you can try the famous “bacalhau à brás”, which consists of desalted cod, onion, fried potatoes in thin strips and scrambled eggs. It is a delicious dish and very typical of Lisbon’s gastronomy.
  2. Grilled sardines: Sardines are another typical Lisbon dish, and can be found in many restaurants and food stalls in the city. At the Mercado da Ribeira, you can try them fresh and grilled with a little lemon and olive oil.
  3. Pasteles de nata: Pasteles de nata are a typical dessert in Portugal, and particularly in Lisbon. They are small puff pastry tartlets filled with pastry cream, sprinkled with cinnamon and powdered sugar. In the Mercado da Ribeira you can try them fresh and freshly baked.
  4. Green wine: Green wine is a typical wine of the northern region of Portugal, but can be found in many places in Lisbon. At the Mercado da Ribeira you can taste some of the best green wines in the country, which are characterized by being fresh and light.

Day 2: Discovering Lisbon’s most emblematic monuments

Tour of the Belém Tower and the Jerónimos Monastery

 

  • Belém Tower: Start the day visiting the Belém Tower, one of the most emblematic monuments of Lisbon. It was built in the 16th century to protect the city and was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1983. The entrance fee is 6€ and it is open from 10:00 to 18:30 (October to April) and from 10:00 to 20:00 (May to September).

 

Torre de Belém Lisboa

  • Jerónimos Monastery: Next, head to the Jerónimos Monastery, one of the most visited places in Lisbon, famous for its Manueline architecture and history. It was declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1983. The entrance fee is 12€ and it is open from 10:00 am to 6:30 pm (October to April) and from 10:00 am to 7:00 pm (May to September).
  • National Museum of Ancient Art: If you like art, you cannot miss the National Museum of Ancient Art, where you can find a wide collection of art and historical objects, including paintings, sculptures and ceramics. The entrance fee is 6€ and visiting hours are from Tuesday to Sunday from 10:00 to 18:00 hours, although it is closed on Mondays.

Enjoy a pastel de nata at the famous Belém pastry shop.

After the visit to the museum, you can’t miss the opportunity to try the famous pastel de nata (cream cakes) at the Pastelería de Belém. This place is renowned for its delicious cream cakes, a typical Portuguese sweet that you can’t miss.

These small cakes are a delicious mixture of pastry cream and puff pastry, and have become an integral part of Portuguese culinary culture. The original recipe for Belém pastries is a well-kept secret and is only known to a small group of people who work in the pastry shop.

Although the pastry shop can be a bit crowded, it’s worth waiting in line to try these fresh, warm pastries, served with a sprinkling of cinnamon and powdered sugar. Plus, the pastry shop is a quintessential tourist spot and has a cozy, traditional atmosphere that will make you feel right at home. So, after a morning full of culture and art, take some time to enjoy the cream cakes at the Pastelería de Belém and savor a taste of authentic Lisbon.

Day 3: Exploring Lisbon’s surroundings

The third day of your itinerary is the ideal time to explore Lisbon’s surroundings and discover magical and breathtaking places.

Excursion to the town of Sintra and the Pena Palace.

One of them is the town of Sintra, located about 30 minutes by train from Lisbon. Sintra is known for its palaces, gardens and castles and the Pena Palace is one of the most impressive places in this town. With extravagant and colorful architecture, this palace is a must-see. The entrance fee to the Pena Palace is 14€ for adults and 12,50€ for students and seniors. Opening hours are from 9:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. in summer and from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. in winter.

Ciudad Sintra

From Sintra, you can also visit other interesting places such as the Moorish Castle and the National Palace of Sintra, both declared World Heritage Sites by UNESCO. The Moorish Castle is a 9th century fortress located on a hill that offers breathtaking views of the region. Admission is €8 for adults and €6.50 for students and seniors. The Sintra National Palace, meanwhile, is a mixture of architectural styles dating from the Middle Ages to the 19th century. Admission costs €10 for adults and €8.50 for students and seniors.

Another option for this day is to visit the coastal town of Cascais, located about 30 minutes by train from Sintra. Cascais is known for its stunning coastline and beaches, as well as having a wide range of bars and restaurants. On the beach of Cascais you can practice water sports such as surfing or windsurfing and enjoy a relaxed and friendly atmosphere.

In short, in this 3-day itinerary through Lisbon you will get to know the most emblematic places of the city, taste its delicious gastronomy and explore the surroundings of the city in search of magical and breathtaking places. You can’t miss it!