Discover Lisbon in 72 Hours: Your Essential Travel Guide


Lisbon, the captivating capital of Portugal, is a city where history and modernity harmoniously intertwine, offering travellers a journey through time and a taste of contemporary vibrancy. Imagine wandering through scenic hills that reveal breathtaking vistas at every turn, riding historic trams that clatter through charming, narrow streets, and indulging in delicious cuisine that reflects a rich tapestry of cultural influences. Each neighbourhood pulses with life, from the soulful strains of Fado music in Alfama to the trendy boutiques and cafes of Chiado.

With this HIP Hotels guide, you're well-equipped to spend an unforgettable 72 hours in Lisbon. We'll lead you through the city's must-see sights, culinary delights, and cultural treasures, as well as offer top recommendations for where to stay. From historic hotels nestled in the heart of the city to modern retreats with breathtaking views, your accommodation will be as enchanting as the city itself. Let Lisbon's magic captivate your heart, and savour every moment of your stay!

Day 1: Exploring the Historic Heart of Lisbon

Morning: Alfama and São Jorge Castle

Start your day in Alfama, Lisbon's oldest district. Wander through the narrow, winding streets and alleys, absorbing the quaint charm and the sounds of Fado music. Make your way up to São Jorge Castle for panoramic views of the city and the Tagus River. The castle's rich history and impressive architecture make it a must-visit.

Lunch: Mercado da Ribeira

Head to Mercado da Ribeira (Time Out Market) for lunch, an essential stop for any food lover visiting Lisbon. This bustling market is a vibrant hub of culinary delights, featuring a variety of food stalls that offer both traditional Portuguese dishes and international cuisine. Don't miss the chance to try the famous pastéis de nata (custard tarts) from Manteigaria, renowned for their perfectly crisp pastry and creamy filling! The market's energetic atmosphere and diverse offerings make it a perfect spot to experience Lisbon's rich culinary scene.

Afternoon: Baixa and Rossio Square

After lunch, dive into the heart of Lisbon by exploring the Baixa district, renowned for its elegant streets and vibrant atmosphere. Begin at Rossio Square, admiring the intricate wave-patterned pavement and stunning fountains amidst historic buildings. Continue to the Elevador de Santa Justa, an architectural marvel and iconic symbol of Lisbon. This Neo-Gothic iron elevator transports you from Baixa to Carmo Square. At the top, enjoy breathtaking panoramic views of red-tiled rooftops, historic landmarks, and the Tagus River.

Evening: Dinner in Bairro Alto

As night falls, head to the Bairro Alto district for dinner. This area is known for its vibrant nightlife and numerous restaurants. For a truly memorable dining experience, visit Palácio Chiado, a stunning 18th-century palace turned upscale dining venue. Here, you can savour a variety of gourmet dishes in an opulent setting, blending traditional Portuguese flavours with contemporary culinary artistry.

Day 2: Cultural and Modern Attractions

Morning: Belém

Start your second day with a trip to Belém, a district steeped in history and culture. Begin at the iconic Belém Tower, a symbol of Portugal's Age of Exploration. Nearby, the Monument to the Discoveries pays tribute to the nation's maritime heroes. Continue to the breathtaking Jerónimos Monastery, a UNESCO World Heritage site, where the intricate Manueline architecture will leave you in awe.

Lunch: Pastéis de Belém

No visit to Belém is complete without tasting the original pastéis de nata from the renowned Pastéis de Belém bakery. These delectable custard tarts, with their perfectly crisp pastry and creamy filling, are a quintessential Lisbon delicacy. Savouring a pastéis de nata here offers not just a taste of Lisbon’s culinary heritage but an unforgettable moment of pure indulgence.

Afternoon: Museu Coleção Berardo

Spend your afternoon immersed in art at the Museu Coleção Berardo, renowned for its extensive collection of modern and contemporary masterpieces. Located in the cultural hub of Belém, the museum showcases works by iconic artists including Picasso, Warhol, and Dalí, offering a profound insight into global artistic movements. Easily accessible by tram or taxi from central Lisbon, the museum's sleek, spacious galleries provide the perfect setting to appreciate innovative artworks that challenge and inspire.

Evening: Dinner and Fado in Alfama

Return to Alfama for dinner at one of the traditional Fado restaurants, such as Clube de Fado or A Baiuca, renowned for their intimate settings and authentic performances. Immerse yourself in the soul-stirring melodies of Fado, Portugal's iconic music genre, as you savour delightful Portuguese cuisine. This unique blend of heartfelt music and delectable dishes promises an unforgettable evening, offering a genuine taste of Lisbon's cultural heritage. Alfama's winding streets and historic ambience provide the perfect backdrop for a memorable night out in one of the city's oldest and most charming neighbourhoods.

Day 3: Parks, Shopping, and Relaxation

Morning: Parque das Nações

Begin your final day at Parque das Nações, a vibrant district born from the revitalization efforts of Expo 98 World's Fair. Explore the awe-inspiring Oceanário de Lisboa, one of the world's largest aquariums, where diverse marine life thrives in immersive habitats. Wander along the picturesque waterfront, lined with futuristic architecture and tranquil promenades overlooking the Tagus River.

Lunch: LX Factory

Head to LX Factory for a lunch experience that combines creativity and culture. Nestled in a revitalized industrial complex, LX Factory offers a vibrant mix of trendy restaurants, cafes, and eclectic shops. Indulge in delicious cuisine at one of the hip eateries, where innovative dishes and stylish surroundings set the scene for a memorable meal. Afterwards, explore the labyrinthine lanes adorned with street art and pop-up galleries, or browse the unique boutiques showcasing everything from local crafts to contemporary design.

Afternoon: Shopping on Avenida da Liberdade

Spend your afternoon indulging in luxury and leisure along Avenida da Liberdade, Lisbon's renowned boulevard of elegance and charm. This prestigious avenue is adorned with high-end boutiques, designer stores, and inviting cafes, creating an idyllic atmosphere for both shopping and relaxation. Discover exquisite souvenirs or treat yourself to a dose of luxury shopping amidst the grandeur of historic architecture and leafy boulevards.

Evening: Sunset at Miradouro da Senhora do Monte

End your enriching 72-hour Lisbon adventure with a visit to Miradouro da Senhora do Monte, renowned for offering one of the city's most captivating viewpoints. As the sun sets over Lisbon, casting a golden glow across its rooftops and the Tagus River, take a moment to reflect on the unforgettable experiences of the past three days. This serene hilltop spot not only provides a panoramic vista but also invites you to linger with a sense of tranquillity and contemplation. Consider ending your journey with a nearby meal at Chapitô à Mesa, known for its eclectic cuisine and lively atmosphere, creating a perfect finale for your Lisbon escapade.

Where to Stay

As Janelas Verdes

As Janelas Verdes invites you to indulge in historic splendour within a 17th-century mansion overlooking the Tagus River. Adorned with beautifully decorated rooms, a tranquil garden, and a rooftop terrace, this intimate hotel exudes old-world charm and sophistication. Its proximity to the National Museum of Ancient Art enhances its allure, promising a cultural and picturesque retreat in Lisbon that seamlessly blends past and present.

Solar do Castelo

Immerse yourself in history with a stay at Solar do Castelo, nestled within the walls of São Jorge Castle. This unique hotel blends centuries-old architecture with modern comforts, offering a serene courtyard and an enchanting atmosphere. Experience the charm of Lisbon's ancient heart, where every corner tells a story, making your stay a journey through time amidst the city's captivating allure.

Heritage Avenida Liberdade

Heritage Avenida Liberdade exudes luxury in a beautifully restored 18th-century building on Lisbon's prestigious main avenue. Indulge in spacious rooms, a serene library, and a cosy indoor pool, blending traditional elegance with modern comforts. Perfect for discerning travellers seeking a refined escape, this boutique hotel embodies Lisbon's rich history and contemporary sophistication, promising an unforgettable stay in the heart of the city's cultural and architectural splendour.

Hotel Lisboa Plaza

Nestled near Avenida da Liberdade, Hotel Lisboa Plaza combines timeless charm with contemporary luxury. Discover elegant rooms, a welcoming library bar, and a serene rooftop terrace boasting sweeping views of Lisbon. This heritage boutique hotel promises a tranquil retreat in the heart of the city, perfect for immersing yourself in Lisbon's rich culture and vibrant atmosphere.

Hotel Britania

Hotel Britania, a striking Art Deco gem nestled near Avenida da Liberdade, promises a timeless experience. Discover stylish rooms, a charming bar, and a welcoming ambience steeped in history. Renowned for its meticulous attention to detail and personalised service, this historic hotel offers a retreat where classic elegance meets modern comfort, ensuring a memorable stay in the heart of Lisbon's vibrant cultural district.

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