🇵🇹Lisbon Travel Guide 🇵🇹| Holiday Extras


Welcome to Lisbon! Lisbon is Portugal’s unassumingly cool capital
and western Europe’s oldest city that serves over 12 million tourists every year. Way back
in 1755 the city was hit by a huge earthquake that destroyed 85% of buildings. The city
had no choice but to rebuild itself and the 18th century architecture that reshaped Lisbon
is still very dominant today. In fact if you come here, don’t be surprised to spend most
of your time looking up and admiring it as you wander through the fairy tale cobbled
streets lined with iconic Portuguese tiles that have inspired artists for generations.
Each building and street really does have its own personality. What’s more, amongst
this wealth of history, is an eclectic city renowned for having colourful nightlife, tonnes
of culture, music and a cosmopolitan food scene that modestly boasts the best custard
tarts on the planet! This city break is ideal all year round, with temperatures rarely going
below 10 degrees celsius in the winter and averaging 25 in the summer. It really does
seem like Lisbon has it all, and we’re here to show you why… Coming up we’re going to take you through
our top tips for 48 hours in Lisbon. From transport, things to do, places to see, lingo,
and where to buy the best custard tarts in the city. We’ve done the research to save
you time and help you have the most amazing trip. So let’s start with how to get here. The flight from London Gatwick takes just
over 2 and a half hours straight into Lisbon’s only airport which is conveniently just 7km
from the heart of the city. The best thing about Lisbon Airport is it’s
only a 20 minute drive into the city centre. The easiest way to get in is to jump in a
taxi or take the Aerobus. There are two lines running into the main hotel areas that cost
€4 per person each way. Alternatively you could take the metro that
runs from 6am to 1am everyday or there’s always the city bus but do expect for both
these options to take a little longer. Lisbon is known as the city of seven hills
so to save your legs from all that climbing you’ll probably gonna want to use public
transport at some point. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to get around the city – from
train, tram, metro, bus and even funicular lift. The metro is good choice if you’re traveling
long distances but doesn’t cover all areas of the city. It’s one of cleanest metros
in Europe, and most stations are open from 6am to 1am every day. Trams cover areas of the city where there
is no access to the metro. There are two types of trams, the yellow “Remodelado” trams
that route round the old narrow streets and then there’s modern “Articulado” trams
that operate along the flat sections of the city connecting central Lisbon to the Belem
district. Lisbon has hundreds of buses and 88 different
routes so you’re bound to find one to take you where you need to go. The funicular lifts are used to help locals
and tourists climb all those hills. The most famous lift is the Santa Justa Lift linking
lower and upper Lisbon. Yes, it’s technically a means of public transport  but it also
doubles up a a major tourist attraction and has great a view point at the top. We noticed a lot of tourists jumping in Tuk
Tuks, and so we thought we’d give it a go. But it turns out the cobbled streets of Lisbon
don’t make for a comfy ride in a Tuk Tuk, and if I’m honest a 5 minute ride was a
bit of a rip off at €15. Working out the best way to pay for transport
in Lisbon can get confusing… so here’s our simple breakdown… The easiest way to pay for your travel is
to pick up a Viva Viagem card. It works just like an Oyster card in London – pay €0.50
for the card then top up at the machines and ticket offices at metro stations. When topping
up you have three options: the first is to cover a single journey. The second is zapping.
This allows you to load up to €40 to cover multiple trips. After three trips this option
becomes cheaper than loading singles. The last is to load a 24-hour pass. For €6.30
this will give unlimited travel across Lisbon’s public transport. Choose this option if you’re
going to take more than 5 journeys in a single day or taking the Santa Justa lift, which
usually costs €5 alone. Just remember, you’ve gotta swipe in on
buses and trams, and tap in AND out on the metro. Easy! A good tip is to pick up the transport map
from the tourist office in the Comércio Plaza. This will give you all the information you
need for timetables and prices. I’d also recommend downloading Google Maps to help
you navigate your way around without having to rely on wifi. There’s so much to see and do in Lisbon
and the chances are you’re not going to have time to do everything, so here’s our
top 5. If you want to experience local transport,
and see the city at the same time, then taking the number 28 tram kills two birds with one
stone. It takes a circular route round the city and will also save your legs from a lot
of walking. If your in the centre of the city, then jump
on the number 15 tram and head west to the Belem district to witness the Belem Tower
in all its glory. The tower was built in the 16th century as a defence system at the mouth
of the Tagus river and a gateway to the city. It’s one of the few buildings that survived
the earthquake and is now a Unesco World Heritage Site. You can find it by the harbour and it
can only be reached via a walkway across the water. Access to the tower is from 10am and
my advice is to get here early to avoid queuing. For panoramic views of Lisbon Castle make
your way up to Jardim de São Pedro de Alcântara. Fortunately, you can jump on the Elevador
da Gloria funicular lift to get there, otherwise, it’s a hefty walk. It’s worth it though because
there are so many cute market stalls and plenty of live music. That go on through the evening. Treat yourself to a Portuguese custard tart
known as a Pastel de Nata. You can find these everywhere in Lisbon but if you want to try
what I believe are the best in town you have to head to the original cafe in Belem that
sold them way back in 1837. So yummy! So good! I’m gonna carry on eating these, so don’t
mind me. Pastéis de Belém has queues outside everyday
due to their secret recipe only known to 6 people in the whole world. I was lucky enough
to be invited on a tour of the factory located directly behind the shop. So of course I jumped
at the opportunity to fashion a rather dashing hair net, and find out a little more about
what makes these tasty treats so special… These ones you only find at the shops, so
this only place in the world where the Pastéis de Belém is made and sold. How many do you make a day? We now make about 20,000 of these per day
but it’s a very old recipe, it was invented in the monastery beside us, the Jeronimos
Monastery. It was invented by the monks and the recipe came out of the monastery around
1834; that’s when the recipe was passed on or sold to a local business man and he
started selling them at a smaller trading, typical shop at the time, that existed where
our front counter is today. So this was back in 1837, a lot has changed but one thing remained
exactly the same, which is the recipe and the way that they’re made, they’re handmade,
so that we kept exactly the same. And are we allowed to know anything about
the recipe, or are you keeping that one secret? Well the recipe has been kept a secret for
180 years so there’s not a lot I can say about it, except showing you the steps that
are made after the chefs do the pastry and the custard. And what I can show you is what
we make with both of those ingredients after the chefs do their magic. And whilst you’re in the area, it’s worth
heading next-door to the Jeronimos Monastery itself, to simply look up and witness some
pretty spectacular architecture. End your evening with a drink in the Barrio
Alto area. The bars flood the streets with locals and tourists drinking Portuguese beer,
mojitos and caprinis until the early hours of the morning. Lisbon is a cosmopolitan city so you’re going
to be able to find every type of cuisine here. You’ll probably stumble across many ‘Tasca’
style restaurants along the back cobbled streets near the Bairro Alto area, and these will
serve rustic Portuguese dishes like stews, steaks, and fish. It’s worth noting that
restaurants don’t tend to fill up until after 9pm so if you are wanting to avoid the
crowds, then head for dinner a little earlier. But for something a little more quick and
fun I recommend checking out Mercado de Ribeira. This place has been Lisbon’s main food market
since 1892. A few years ago it was taken over by the Time Out Lisboa magazine, who added
canteen style dining, selling anything from burgers to sushi and of course traditional
Portuguese cuisine like croquettes. I learnt that these are one of the most popular and
widely known Portuguese food dishes and can be filled with any type of meat, fish, veg
and cheese combination but the most traditional are Croquettes de Carne, or Portuguese beef
croquettes. We chose to take a free walking tour with
a company called Hi Lisbon, to find out a little bit more about the city, and learn
some key Portuguese phrases to help us get by. Ok, so let’s start with the easiest word
(hopefully): hello. Hello, in Portuguese we say olá. Olá, I like that one! Easy one, yeah! How are you? How are you, we say como vai você. Como vai você, ok. Or you can say tudo bem. Tudo bem, tudo bem, tudo bem! Quite casual. Thank you? Obrigado. Obrigado. For men, as a girl, you say obrigada. So men is obrigado, women is obrigada. Very good, yeah! Yeah, that’s the one word that’s stuck
in my head a little bit, and I keep remembering to say that, but I didn’t know there was
a male and female version. Yeah. What’s your name? What’s your name in Portuguese, we say como
você se chama which is the hardest! como você se chama? Very good! Or you can say qual é o seu nome? qual é o seu nome! That’s easier. Yeah it’s that sssshh sound I’m struggling
with it a little bit, actually. It’s quite strong! How do you count from one to five? In Portuguese we say um, dois, três, quatro,
cinqo. It’s kind of similar to Spanish. Many words are even the same. Sometimes somethings
are the way you pronounce a bit different, many words like por favor, casa, amigo, it’s
the same. Can I have the bill please? A conta, por favor. A conta, por favor. Very good. Good morning? Bom dia. Bom dia, and that’s one you use a lot, isn’t
it? Yeah, it’s very common, yeah. Bom dia you
have to use a lot here. It’s welcoming! Yeah, you can arrive anywhere and you say
bom dia instead of saying good morning, it’s a good way… people will be more welcoming. Ok! Goodbye? In Portuguese? Adeus. Adeus. Yeah. Yeah that’s an easy one. Perfect! Oh thank you very much, it’s been
useful! Thank you! The Portuguese currency is Euros. There are
plenty of cash points around and you can pay with debit and credit cards in most places.
Here’s a look back at our costs to give you a rough idea of what you might expect
to pay when you’re here: A return flight to Lisbon costs £246 per
person. Our apartment for 2 nights cost £248. And, the travel insurance with Holiday Extras
cost £15 for the premium package. And this coffee (or what’s left of it) cost
€3. This Pastéis de Belém cost €1. Entry to the Belem Tower was €6. This cocktail cost €4. Tipping is a thing in Portugal. Service charge
is not usually added to bills but double check first, especially if you are in the more touristy
areas. And just so you know, it’s custom to give about a 10% tip at a restaurant. For up to date exchange rates visit xe.com
or download their app. And as our time in Lisbon comes to an end, don’t forget to
subscribe for loads more exciting travel guides. I can safely say, that Lisbon is one of my
favourite cities of all of Europe. I’ve had such a great time just wandering around
the little cobbled side streets, looking up at the mustard-coloured buildings, and of
course eating as many custard tarts as possible. So if you’re looking for a city break, I
highly recommend Lisbon; this is my third time here and I can’t wait to come back.

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