Bolstered by the seven hills looming in the background, the luminant Tagus River, and the Monsanto Forest Park, Lisbon is a city blessed on all four sides. At its cultural heart, old districts harbor intriguing stories of the city’s poignant but triumphal past. The prosperous capital that travelers cherish today has survived a devastating earthquake in the mid-18th century. It rose from its ashes almost as fast, and became a chief global metropolis recognized all over the world. Today, Lisbon offers visitors a glimpse into the unique culture nested in the region for centuries.
The Monastery of Jeronimos is an immediate eye-catcher adorning the Belém district with its Gothic magnetism. This UNESCO-listed landmark is a must-visit, especially if you are interested in the religious and imperial history of Lisbon. A few minutes to the south, Belém tower anchors the seafront promenade and poses a site for silky sunsets. Relax here and take in the boundless scenery before you hit the inner streets of the famous quarters. Alfama is the most traditional, hosting a cozy village-vibe and impressive Visigothic remnants.
Nights are frisky and long in the legendary Bairro Alto. There Lisbon’s world-class bars and clubs concentrate in a hive of endless entertainment. Celebration often overflows into the streets. And, the entire neighborhood turns into a buzzing open-air hangout as early as midnight. Ringing with Portuguese folk tunes and joy from dusk till dawn, the city of Lisbon is never dull.