Top Tips for Lisbon, Portugal
Lisbon is the perfect city for foodies, winos, and architecture lovers who are more or less on a “budget”. You won’t have to choose between a seafood dinner or nice bottle of wine ’cause you can have it all here since everything is so reasonably priced. On top of that, there’s beautiful colors everywhere intricately laced into their tiles on the floor, walls, and even on the ceilings! Enjoy my top tips for Lisbon!
1. Eat at Taberna da Rua das Flores.
You can’t go wrong with any dish here. For real, everything is good here. They always have a long wait so go there an hour to hour and a half before you want to eat, put your name down, then walk a minute uphill to the square nearby. Grab wine from the kiosk, and enjoy people watching and Lisbon’s colorfully tiled buildings. There may be a pair of couples fantastically dancing kizomba/salsa/?? that’ll make you sigh, “Hmmm… wish I could dance.” After daydreaming, go back to the restaurant about 15 minutes before the time they said a table would be available for you, and wait in excitement until you get to order and eat!
2. Use Uber
Ubers in Lisbon were the cheapest I’ve ever experienced! Because Lisbon is quite hilly, and I can’t walk easily with my fibromyaglia, I took Ubers often and found most of my rides to be between €2-6.
It definitely made sense to take the Uber to the monastery or the beach because there were four people in my travel group. To the monastery, public transportation would’ve cost €4 a person and take about 30-40 minutes with walking. The Uber costs the same amount per person and took half the time. As for the beach, because we didn’t take public transportation, we were able to go to a beach that wasn’t directly off a train stop. Instead we asked our driver if he could take us to a less crowded one and brought us to a nice one where locals hang.
Side note: I loved that the beach provided these red plastic cones that you could stick into the ground next to your towel. They’re cigarette butt holders! Then after you’re done chilling on the beach, you dump the out into the garbage, and put the cone back. I LOVE this method of preventing people just throwing out their cigarette butt into the sand. If you’re a cigarette smoker, that’s cool, but cigarette butts are still litter. You may want to consider carrying around one of these cigarette butt holders my friend uses!
Ok got off track there… back to Lisbon tips.
3. Eat as much seafood as possible.
The octopus, fish, and everything seafood related, are so fresh and cooked well. This city seems like it can do no wrong when it comes to seafood.
4. Get the anchovy sushi from Sea Me in Time Out Market.
Then go freak out a little bit because of the variety of delicious food you can have.
5. Go with a group of foodies.
Some places are good for solo trips, but Lisbon is definitely not one of them because you’ll want to have a group of foodie friends who’ll want to order and share everything. Four is a good number ’cause it works best with Ubers, and Taberna da Rua das Flores is a small restaurant that probably can’t accommodate large groups. Yes, make your decision based on this one’s restaurant capacity.
6. Check out Pink Street.
There’s a street called the Pink Street because the street is literally painted pink. I don’t know the name of the real street, and I could Google it for you and put it here, but I like just knowing it as the Pink Street. It’s near the Time Out Market. If you ask anyone around there to point you to the Pink Street, they’ll know.
Anyways, there’s a few bars and clubs on that street to hang out in. The whole street feels more intimate and fun to be in than Bairro Alto. With its cheap, sugar “cocktails” and crowds of loud, explicitly drunk people, it reminds me a bit of Mardi Gras; not an environment I want to be in when in Lisbon. On the flip side, locals think that the Pink Street isn’t cozy anymore, but for a tourist like me, it’s sure cozier than Bairro Alto.
7. Listen to Jazz at Tabernáculo Wine Bar
Tabernáculo Wine Bar, also known as Tabernáculo by Hernani, is a great place for music lovers. On some nights, there’s live music, and on all nights, they’re playing tunes by famous jazz artists. The whole place is practically a homage to late and great jazz musicians like Miles Davis, Nat King Cole, Nina Simone, and more.
The night I went, it was quiet and there was no one there, but that’s the kind of place I like– someplace comfy where I can have a good conversation with my friends, and every so often, play pinball on the Stars War pinball machine!
8. Wear sneakers.
This is a tip I normally tell everyone for most of Europe, but for Lisbon, it’s especially true because of all the hills. It is VERY hilly so sneakers (or Uber) all the way.
Dress like me –> I personally love my black and white Nike sneakers because they match everything, and of course, are so comfy!
I loved Lisbon so much I’ll be heading back there next year for a girls’ trip! So if you have any tips for me, share away!
Thanks for stopping by! xo.