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A weekend in Lisbon in Spring

Written on : 29 October 2019
By : Colombe Taddei

Spring often rhymes with the Spring bank holidays for those who work. Why not take advantage of these small breaks to enjoy a short getaway to Lisbon, the capital of Portugal, just a 2h50 flight from London. This city, whose rhythm of life is surprisingly gentle and dynamic, is spread over 7 hills overlooking the Tagus River, and is pleasant due to the minimal number of tourists compared to other European capitals, its sunny and mild climate, not to mention its rich cultural and historical heritage.
 

Lose yourself in the narrow streets of old neighbourhoods

Lose yourself in the narrow streets of old neighbourhoods

Start your visit in the Alfama district, the oldest and most picturesque area of Lisbon. The latter, which extends from the Tagus estuary to the Castelo São Jorge, was once associated with poverty because of its proximity to the harbour, but has now become a traditional and trendy area that enhances its heritage. Take a famous tuk-tuk to Portas do Sol, an exceptional viewpoint. 
 
To make sure you don't miss out on this labyrinth of cobbled, colourful and narrow streets with azulejos facades, why not take the mythical tramway 28E? This little train is the best way to get to know Lisbon, as it passes through the old districts of Graça, Alfama and Baixa and lets you discover the local lifestyle and the rhythm of life.
 

Discover its impressive cultural and historical heritage

Discover its impressive cultural and historical heritage

It would not be appropriate not to stop in front of some monuments in Lisbon that are incomparable to what you can imagine. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Belém Tower, a 16th century fortified tower with a Manueline limestone architecture, is a must-see.
 
To continue your historical visit, head to Castelo São Jorge, located on a hill in the Alfama district. This Moorish castle, which dates back to medieval times, has shaded terraces called "miradouro", where it is possible to admire an incredible view of the city.
 
To finish this historic day, walk to the Santa Justa elevator, a 50-metre-high architectural masterpiece from Baixa to the top of Bairro Alto. This amazing monument with a slightly airy look to the Eiffel Tower was built in 1902 and is one of the most popular tourist attractions in the Baixa district thanks to its breathtaking view of the city's rooftops and hills.
 

Our spots to taste the local gastronomy

Our spots to taste the local gastronomy

Lisbon implies Pastéis de Nata. This Portuguese pastry made with vanilla flavored caramel custard is a pastry that can be eaten without hunger because it is so delicious. For a gourmet snack, Villanovo recommends that you visit the Pastéis de Belém bakery, renowned for its exquisite pastries. The secret of the recipe is carefully preserved by the company and the cooking method used is the one used by the monks who lived in Mosteiro dos Jeronimos, which is what makes it so charming! 
 
It is mandatory to go through the Time Out Market, formerly known as the old Ribeira Market. This market full of surprises is a kind of showroom for the finest Portuguese gastronomy. Whether your visit is simply for a drink, for a taste of local specialities or to buy products to take home, you will not be disappointed by this must-see market. 
 
At nightfall, we advise you to head to Bairro Alto, a trendy and dynamic district of Lisbon, filled with cozy bars to have a drink with friends. For those looking for a sophisticated and luxurious place to enjoy a fresh cocktail or an exquisite glass of wine, visit Silk Club Rooftop Bar, located in Chiado district, a chic and trendy part of Lisbon. You will have the opportunity to watch a surprising sunset and admire 270° views of Lisbon and the ocean.