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Planning to visit Lisbon in 2 days?

Wonder what to see in Lisbon and how much you can do in Portugal’s capital in that short amount of time?  

This comprehensive guide has got you covered!

The following Lisbon itinerary covers the best of the city and what to see in Lisbon in 2 days and for a 3rd or more. To help you make the most of your time in this vibrant city you’ll find the best attractions and day trips from Lisbon included.

Even though you can now fly directly to Porto, Lisbon remains the most popular gateway into Portugal and is definitely one of the top cities to visit in the country.  Apart from its elegant flair, wooden trams, interesting history and architecture, solo and couple travellers alike will find interesting activities to enjoy in Lisbon.

From getting lost in the maze of narrow streets, catching a glorious sunset at the many miradors or feasting on fabulous Portuguese seafood and its many decadent pastries, Lisboa, Portugal’s capital is a fantastic destination to explore.

It goes without saying that it would be preferable to have more than 2 days in Lisboa to cover most of the things to do. I was short on time when I visited Lisbon, and while I managed to visit many of the must-sees and do, I’ve put together this 2-day plan to help you make the best of your precious time and make sure you don’t miss out on what is to see and visit in Lisboa.  

Here’s what you will get from this post

Table of contents

  • Day One Plan 

    – Lisboa Story Centre
    – Arco de Rue Augusta 

    – Ride Tram 28 or Don’t 
    – Castelo de São Jorge
    – Get Lost in Alfama
    – Lunch & Shopping Baixa Chaido
    – Catch a Sunset at a Mirador
    – Finish with a Fado Show

  • Day Two Plan 

    – Pastéis de Nata at Confeitaria De Belém
    – View atop the Padro dos Descobrimento

    – Visit the Torre de Belèm
    – Lunch at Time Out Market
    – Option: LX Factory in Alcantara
    – Drink in the streets of Lisbon

Insider tip: Get a Lisboa Card! I’m not usually a fan of these city cards but consider the following. The Lisboa Card includes unlimited use of public transport. We’re talking buses, the Metro –including transit from and to the airport – the trams  (even the famous E28) and the train rides to seaside Cascais and Sintra and also free access to the Lisboa Story Center (€7.00), the Torre de Belem (€6.00) and the Arco Monumental da Rua Augusta (€3.00). A great value for all the inclusions.

Moreover, if you’re in the city for a very short time – and it’s probably the case if you’re reading this guide – how much is it worth to you to avoid waiting in lines and waste time at ticket machines figuring out tariff systems while on your vacation?  

Get your Lisboa Card Now 

Disclosure: This page may contain affiliate links for products and services that I use and recommend. If you purchase anything through these links, the price will stay the same to you and I get a small percentage as a commission. Full Disclosure Policy Here 

Start by heading to the largest square of the city, the Praca de Comércio, close to the waterfront edge with the Arco de rue Augusta right in its centre, lined with many outdoor cafes and boutiques.

Lisboa Story Centre (€7.00 / Free with Lisboa Card) – Allow 1 hr

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Located Right in Terreiro do Paço Square on the waterfront, what better way to begin your discovery of Lisbon than by acquiring knowledge about its history in this interactive multimedia centre. You’ll learn about the devastating 1755 earthquake that reshaped the whole city, its heritage and stories.

Insider Tip: Grab breakfast at one of the cafes in the Comèrcio plaza, enjoy the view and, if the weather permits it, sit at one of the many patios and take in the sea breeze.

Arco de Rue Augusta (€3.00/ Free with a Lisboa card)- Allow 30 minutes 
  

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A few metres away from the Lisboa Story Center, head up to get access to a phenomenal viewing spot offering a panoramic 360 view of the city.
  

Ride Tram 28 or Don’t –Ride Time 40 min.
Waiting time may vary according to line up plan for 30 min to 1 hour

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Lured by all those dreamy pictures from tourism campaigns, it’d be hard to resist riding the infamous Tram 28 up the extremely narrow and curvy streets through districts of Graca, Estrala, Baixa up to Alfama, the old district. A word of advice, the lines to get on can be long and the tram will probably be packed, an ideal situation for pickpockets, so keep your valuables in check if you decide to go for it.

Otherwise, grab that perfect Instagram shot and hop on another wooden tram during your stay such as the 12, 15e, 18, 24 or 25. 

Explore Castelo de São Jorge – Allow 1 to 2 hr 

Given that you haven’t made it on the Tram 28 to get you to the Castelo de São Jorge, a direct walking route of a mere 10 minutes will get you there. Sitting atop one of the many hills of Lisbon, the castle is a top attraction of what to visit in Lisbon. The 11th-century archeological site has gardens, belvederes and a cafe, you might even spot some peacocks on the grounds.

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Get Lost in Alfama’s District – Allow 1hr

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I love walking around neighbourhoods, always finding it’s the perfect opportunity for feeling the real pulse of a city. Head down to the picturesque Alfama district, walk its many romantic streets like Rua de Adiça, filled with typical and authentic Lisbon soul, it will give you a glimpse of the daily life of its inhabitants. From hanging laundry on balconies lined with pretty flower pots to fountains adorning little squares, Alfama is not to be missed.

Insider Tip: Lisbon is called the city of the seven hills for a reason. Bring good walking shoes to go exploring and download the Uber app for when you’ve had enough of climbing.

Lunch & Shopping in Baixa Chiado – Allow 2-3 hr

Time for a well-deserved break. Weather permitting it, relax at one of the many patios lining the cobblestone streets of Baixa-Chiado, such as Garrett where International brand stores stand right alongside boutiques dating back to the turn of the century.

Catch a Sunset at Mirador Santa Catarina – Allow as much time as your heart desires

View from Mirador S.Pedro de Alcantara

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Lisbon has many awesome places to catch the view of the sun setting down.  Mirador Portas del Sol and S.Pedro de Alcantara in Principe Real or S. Pedro de Graça are a few to consider but the top recommendation for a spectacular sunset is bar none Mirador Santa Catarina

Finish Your First Day with a Soulful Fado Show 

As Sara Pereira, the director at Lisbon’s Museum of Fado puts it “It’s (fado) a mirror of our identity, culture, and history, and you won’t hear it anywhere else.

Fado, soulful and melancholic music is unique to Portugal and Lisbon is said to be the birthplace of it. With over 40 fado venues, the choice is yours, settle down for a few hours taking in this one-of-a-kind blues that will melt your heart away.  

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Insider Tip: Love walking and don’t mind the hills? Grab these 3 self-guided itineraries from Intentional travellers 

Have Extra Time on Your Hand on Day 1?

Here are some extra things to do in Lisbon on your first day.

Take a ride on the famous tram Ascensor Santa Justa or skip the line and see the view for free: the top deck of the Santa Justa elevator can be accessed by walking on the Largo do Carmo, walking to the right of the Carmo ruins and then going past the Bellalisa Elevador restaurant. (Cheers to Happy to Wander for this precious tip

Check out the Carmo Convent and then head to the patterned waved cobblestoned Rossio Square.

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DAY 2 – Best of Lisbon in 2 days

Time to head out to the riverside district of Belèm and visit some of the sights Lisboa is most famous for. 

Get there by taking the modern Tram 15 (or bus 728) to Belèm – Allow 20 min.
 

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Enjoy Legendary Pastéis de Nata at the Famous Confeitaria De Belém. – Allow 30-40 min
May vary according to the lineup

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Your ride will drop you almost in front of the bakery but plan to arrive early, before the massive crowds do,  in order to grab a table and coffee. In fact, you should indulge in as many of these Portuguese delights while in the city, why not make it a comparison goal 🙂

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Insider Tip:  Looking to hit the beaches? Grab this guide to the Best Lisbon Beaches 

Tour the Jerónimos Monastery (€10) – Allow 1hr
Closed on Mondays

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The monastery construction dates back to 1500 and took over 100 years to complete. Even if simply viewing it from the outside this massive building, a UNESCOWorld Heritage Site will leave you breathless.

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Catch a view from atop the Padro dos Descobrimento’s /Monument to the Discoveries (€6.00 ) – Allow 30 min -1hr

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Head up to the 3rd floor to see de Rose Compass depicting all of the many places Portuguese explorers discovered. The monument built in 1940 also is a splendid sculpture rendering the many adventurers of Portugal.

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Visit the Torre de Belèm (€6.00 – Free with Lisboa Card) – Allow 2hrs
May vary according to the lineup

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 A short walk along the riverside will get you at the renowned landmark. The tower, built to protect the harbour from invading fleets is built on a little rocky outcrop it is accessible via a wooden walkway and provides nice views of the river.

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Eat lunch at Lisboa’s Time Out Market in Mercado da Ribeira – Allow 1.5 hours 

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Jump on bus 728 heading back to Lisboa’s downtown and stop in at this unique and modern concept food hall with over 40 restaurants/shops from famous local chefs and eateries. Sample tapas of seafood, cured meats and other delicacies including Portuguese wine and beer. A fun and relaxed ambiance to indulge in the country’s best of the best.

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Option: LX Factory in Alcantara

An old factory renovated into an hip and urban complex filled with quaint shops, lots of really nice cafes and restaurants, you can also catch a roof-top view of the Ponte 25 de Abril and Cristo Rei.

Grab a Drink in the Streets of Lisbon

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Lisbon is legendary for its bar scene and easy to see why with the following opportunities to have a good time. One is to head over (after 11pm of course) to rue Nova do Carvalho, aka Pink Street in Cais do Sodré district.Most commonly known as the Rua Cor-de-Rosa, nowadays one of the most popular streets in Lisbon to party!

It is definitely a highlight of what to see in Lisbon when it comes to the city’s nightlife. The Rua Nova do Carvalho is a vibrant spot where people, locals included, go to have a drink and unwind. Another fabulous option is Bairro Alto, where you can enjoy a few cocktails in the streets, also famous for bar hopping.

What a perfect and delightful way to finish your 2 days in Lisbon…

…taking in all of the joie de vivre Lisboa is so eager to share with its many visitors. There are many more things to see and do in Lisbon but this guide covers many of the top highlights before you can come back to enjoy more. I know I cannot wait to go back and do exactly that.

If you have more time on the agenda and would like to explore some of the nearby sights, I’ve put together a list of the top reviewed and best day trips from Lisbon right here for youThe following packaged tours are a great and relaxed way to pack in even more things to visit in a short time by handing over the planning and coordination to local experts. A superb value of your time and money.

 

Explore Top Rated Day trips from Lisbon

Sintra, Cabo da Roca and Cascais Full-Day Tour (Certified Tour)

Visit medieval Sintra, a World Heritage Site and one of the most beautiful places in the world. This tour includes Pena Palace and a tour of mystical Quinta da Regaleira.  See Roca Cape, the westernmost point in Europe and a stop in Cascais. 

– Duration 8 hours
– Skip the line
– Tour guide available in English, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese
– Pick-up service Free at your Lisbon accommodation
– Full refund and hassle-free cancellation up to 24 hours in advance 

Book Here

Fátima, Nazaré, Óbidos & São Martinho do Porto Full-Day Tour

Visit the holy Sanctuary of Fátima, an utmost important pilgrimage site. Admire the giant waves of Nazaré and explore the medieval village of Óbidos.

– Duration 8 hours
– Skip the line
Tour guide available in English, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese
– Pick-up service Free at your Lisbon accommodation
– Full refund and hassle-free cancellation up to 24 hours in advance 

Book Here

 Fátima, Óbidos and the Atlantic Coast Day Tour from Lisbon

From Lisbon you will visit Óbidos, Nazaré, Batalha, and Fátima in a VIP 8-passenger van. The full-day tour includes a journey into the Portuguese countryside and a visit the Batalha Monastery and the famous Sanctuary of Fatima 

– Duration 9 hours
– Skip the line
– Tour guide available in Spanish, English, French, Portuguese
– Full refund and hassle-free cancellation up to 24 hours in advance 

Book Here

Best of Sintra and Cascais Full-Day Tour from Lisbon (Certified Tour)

Explore the romantic palaces and gardens of Sintra on an 8-hour scenic tour from Lisbon. Drive along the Atlantic Coast to Cabo da Roca, marvel at the breathtaking beaches of Cascais, and follow in the footsteps of poets, exiled kings and more.

– Duration 8 hours
– Skip the line
– Tour guide available in English, French, Portuguese
Pick-up service from your hotel in Lisbon

Book Here

Where to Stay in Lisbon

Lisbon has many fabulous neighbourhood, each with its own charm and appeal. Here are 4 of the best ones depending on what you’re looking during your stay.

– Barrio Alto – Nightlife & Bar Hopping Scene

– Alfama Graca – Cultural & Picturesque, Fado Shows

– Chiado – Shopping  & Upscale

– Avenida de Liberdade & Baxia- Downtown & Central

SOLO TRAVELLER RECOMMENDATION

I personally stayed at the Yes Lisbon Hostel and can vouch for it for a central, clean and pleasant stay.

I love the Yes Hostels group having used them in Porto and in Lisbon. With communal kitchen and family style suppers, excursions tours and fun ambiance for all age groups, I can recommend them for an excellent value with clean modern dorms and private rooms available. Centrally located at the corner or rue Àurea and S. de Juliao, adjacent the Praca de Comercio in the downtown area.

Insider Tip: Looking for  calmer and quieter, with more green space and a residential feel, choose Principe Real or Campo de Ourique sector. Lisbon is also a fantastic city where AirBnB rentals abounds. Click here to grab your Airbnb 45$ discount code.

Browse Lisbon’s Accommodations

Booking.com

 

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2 days in Lisbon | Lisbon in 2 days | Lisbon tour | Day trips from Lisbon | What to visit in Lisbon | What to see in Lisbon #2daysinLisbon #Lisbonin2days #Lisbontour #DaytripsfromLisbon #WhattovisitinLisbon #WhattoseeinLisbon
2 days in Lisbon | Lisbon in 2 days | Lisbon tour | Day trips from Lisbon | What to visit in Lisbon | What to see in Lisbon #2daysinLisbon #Lisbonin2days #Lisbontour #DaytripsfromLisbon #WhattovisitinLisbon #WhattoseeinLisbon