Located on the right bank of the Tagus river, near its mouth, Lisbon is one of the oldest cities in the world and the oldest city of Western Europe. The strong presence of the river reflects a white light that is admired by everyone and is known for inspiring writers, poets, photographers and film-makers throughout its the history. Its historical centre is formed by seven hills, which you can explore by foot, in the tram or in the funicular. One of the advantages of the Portuguese capital is the Mediterranean climate, making it easier and more pleasant to visit during the whole year.
Places of interest
Parque Eduardo VII
In the northern part of the Avenida da Liberdade, right next to the Praça Marquês de Pombal, you can find the largest park in the centre of Lisbon.
Its name was given in tribute to the King of England, Edward VII, who visited Lisbon in 1903 to consolidate the alliance between the two countries. Here you can also find Estufa Fria, which features plants and flowers from the five continents. Lakes, fountains, and statues decorate this space. Stay at one of our hotels and wake up with this beautiful landscape right outside your window.
Avenida da Liberdade
Considered nowadays the 35th most expensive avenue and the 10th poshest of the world, Avenida da Liberdade is located in the heart of Lisbon. It connects Praça dos Restauradores and Praça Marquês de Pombal, where you can find the HF Fénix Lisboa and HF Fénix Garden hotels. In this avenue, it is possible to shop in stores of famous brands, like Prada, Carolina Herrera, Gucci, Louis Vuitton, among other. It was built between 1879 and 1886, similarly to the Parisian avenues. That is the reason way, many times, it is considered a Portuguese version of ?Champs-Élysées?. Avenida da Liberdade is today a fundamental point for those who visit Lisbon, namely due to the architecture of its buildings and the famous stands with terraces and gastronomic specialties.
Praça Marquês de Pombal
Located in the known Avenida da Liberdade and Parque Eduardo VII, you must visit Praça Marquês de Pombal, where the HF Fénix Lisboa hotel is. In its centre is the magnificent monument in honour of Marquês de Pombal, the man responsible for the reconstruction of the city after the 1755's earthquake. In this monument, you can see Marquês de Pombal in the top, with his hand resting on a lion (a symbol of power), looking at its masterpiece: Lisbon's downtown (Baixa).
Mosteiro dos Jerónimos
The Monastery of Jerónimos is considered the jewel of the Manueline style in the Portuguese historical heritage. Classified as World Heritage by UNESCO in 1983, it was built by order of King Manuel I in the beginning of the 16th century and its construction lasted for about one century. Also known as "Mosteiro de Santa Maria de Belém", this monument is symbolically associated with the most important moments of the national memory ? the Portuguese Discoveries. You can visit it from October to April, from 10.00 am to 5.30 pm, and from May to September, from 10.00 am to 6.30 pm.
Castelo de São Jorge
Located in the highest hill of the historical centre, the Castle of S. Jorge offers you the best views over the city of Lisbon and the Tagus estuary. Built by the Muslims in the middle of the 11th century, it was the last point of defence for those who lived in the Muslim citadel of yore. It was conquered by King Afonso Henriques in 1147, who named it "Castelo de São Jorge" to honour the patron saint of the knights and the Crusades. The castle was partially destroyed in the 1755's earthquake, being rehabilitated in the middle of the 20th century and taking on the form we know today. You can visit it from November to February, from 9.00 am to 6.00 pm, and from March to October, from 9.00 am to 9.00 pm.
Torre de Belém
The tower of Belém is one of the most famous and charismatic monuments of Lisbon. Designed by Francisco de Arruda by order of King Manuel I, it was built between 1514 and 1519 in the right bank of the Tagus river, where once was the beach of Belém. Also known as "Torre de São Vicente", its major purpose was to defend the shoal of the Tagus. This monument presents Islamic and Oriental influences, which characterise the Manueline style and mark the end of the medieval tradition of donjons, being one of the first artillery ramparts built in Portugal. You can visit the tower of Belém from October to April, from 10.00 am to 5.30 pm, and from May to September, from 10.00 am to 6.30 pm.
Its route is between Praça Martim Moniz (tourist attraction you must visit) and Campo de Ourique (a district located in the heart of the city) and goes through the most interesting places in Lisbon. More recently, this tram was considered by the Rough Guide to the World as one of the 1000 world experiences you must do. Stay in one of our hotels, go down Avenida da Liberdade and catch the tram in one of its stops (Martim Moniz). For more information, visit www.carris.pt.
Houses of Fado
It is a Portuguese music style, eternalised by Amália Rodrigues, mainly in what concerns the international recognition of this gender. It is sung by a person accompanied by two guitars (a classic and a Portuguese guitar). In 2011, fado was considered as Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO. It is said that fado is the expression of the Portuguese soul. There are several houses in Lisbon, generally located in the oldest parts of the city, where you can listen to this music genre.
It is the major expression of culture and tradition in Lisbon, and it paints the city with colour, art, fun and the smell of grilled sardines during June. This involves the popular marches, the St. Anthony's weddings and the festivities all over the most historical districts of the city. On the night from the 12th to the 13th of June, St. Anthony, the patron saint if the Lisbon Festivities, is celebrated. The dance parties, with pop music and traditional food (where you can?t miss the grilled sardines) can be found throughout the most historical districts in the city.
The best beaches in Lisbon and Oporto
Suggestions to escape the hustle of the city this time of the year
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There is always time for a city break!
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Check out our suggestions for spending 48h in Oporto and start planning your trip now.
Normal tolls: payable at the toll plazas. Take a ticket upon entrance; pay the ticket at the exit. Electronic-only tolls: EASYtoll service (bought directly at the Welcome Point terminals; A28 - service area of Viana do Castelo; A24 - 3.5 km away of the Chaves/Verin border; A25 - service area of Alto de Leomil (Vilar Formoso); A22 - Vila Real de Santo António); Toll Card (can be bought online or at CTT post offices); Toll Service (Spain - Oporto airport, via A28 or A41 (round trip)); Spain - Faro airport, via A22 (round trip)); A24 service areas; Oporto and Faro airports; Ikea Matosinhos.