3 days in Lisbon

We (2 adults, no children) are off to Lisbon for 3 days at the end of the month so I thought I might call upon the vast shared experience of this forum.

Never been before so want to explore the city, with maybe (hopefully) a culinary focus, which for me includes wine. However, it will be frowned upon if I try to go too crazy, so probably just one visit.

We’re staying in Cascais and Colares seems to be pretty close, so I’m curious to know if anyone has visited a winery there.

Otherwise please let me know if there’s anything not to be missed sightseeing or eating-wise.


Yes we’ve visited wineries in Colares and the environs of Lisbon.

In Colares the two which seemed the most approachable was the Co-op - The Adega Regional, which is in Colares village. You can walk in, look at the old barrels, try some Colares wine and buy some matured bottles of Ramisco. And nearby is Casal Santa Maria which makes Colares / Ramisco plus a small range of table wine using Arinto, and some more usual suspects. This is a nice visit in a walled estate with extensive grounds but you’ll need to book ahead. The winemaker spoke good English. If you then go a bit further to the coast you can see the Ramsico vines growing in the sand dunes, they are ungrafted and some quite ancient. And you can memo-to-self that these are the westernmost vineyards in Europe (if you discount the Azores…)

Lisbon is a beautiful city with steep hills and a quirky tram system but in the season anyway the trams always seemed to be full and if they are they do not stop so you could be waiting hours ! If you’re going into Lisbon it’s a good idea to take the train as you’ll end up at a) a beautiful tiled-decorated fin de siècle building and b) near the city centre, though there are acres of parking down by the riverside, but it’s a steep walk up into the old city. You can check out the usual travel tips of where to go in Lisbon, but for lunch I would heartily recommend the Time Out Lisboa - a converted covered market with dozens of pop-up food stalls lining the perimeter and a large communal dining area in the middle. You order your food and get a little plastic bleeper, go and sit down and the device sounds when your food is ready to collect. Endless possibilities !! Otherwise down by the river there’s the Belem Tower, the monument to the seafaring explorers, and of course the legendary Pasteis de Belem bakery. There’s a suburban train out to this quarter which is easy and cheap to navigate.

If you have time, have a look at visiting Sintra. But do not choose a weekend or public holiday as it gets absolutely mobbed. Parking is a challenge unless you use the large carpark(s) at the base of the town and take the shuttle bus.


It was about 10 years ago I was there, but had a great meal in Sea Me Peixaria and some good wines in Alfaia Garrafeira wine bar.

As Peter says it’s a beautiful city, It’s quite walkable but the hills get tiring! It can be windy on the coast. Seconding a day or half day trip to Sintra (you can get the train). I did an organised wine tour to Setubal but they just took us to the big places like Jose Maria du Foensca. There was one small producer called Quinta Alcube or something like that which was nice.


“Natural” wine bars are proliferating everywhere. I’d recommend a visit to Graça - fun Bohemian quarter - where there’s a bar run by an Italian. There’s another place (in an old cistern - worth it for the building) almost at the top of the hill going up from the left of the main drag up from Rossio.

Never did any visit near Lisbon, but there is a lot of action , and diversity, in the wine scene north of Lisbon. Ramilo would be one I’d like to visit. If you do go to Palmela/Setúbal area, the must visits are Horácio Simoes and Quinta do Piloto - I wouldn’t bother with the big guys (Bacalhoa and Fonseca).

Don’t even bother with the once-beautiful Bairro Alto. It’s sold out completely to Air B&B and stag weekends.

To take the 28 tram, go before breakfast (maybe 8.30?) and get on at the start at Martim Moniz. It’s a short trip and you can get off wherever you want breakfast :slight_smile:

Sintra is OK once you walk away from the town. Which is after all the best thing about it.


I take the point about barrio alto but we enjoyed going up the Elevador de Santa Justa for the fabulous views of the city. We were given instructions by the family whose apartment we were staying in (Airbnb, guilty as charged) to make sure we didn’t pay the ridiculous amount required to use the elevator. I can’t remember them now but Google Santa Justa for free (apart from access to platform, €1.5) and you will find advice if you are interested.

We also succumbed to the touristy pilgrimage to Pasteis de Belem. Worth it if you are a fan of these tasty treats even if you only take a photo of the shop front. Afterwards we popped into Pao Pao Queijo Queijo for a couple of delicious take away sandwiches to eat in the nearby park. And while you are down that way the Botanic Garden is a lovely haven of peace from the madding crowds.

If you like an OTT baroque church reredos then head for Igreja de Sao Roque. Stunning. And the tile work on the houses around it are fine examples of the type.

We didn’t really focus on wine while there ( :scream: we were with friends who weren’t interested and sometimes you just have to let it go).


Whatever you do this place is a must ! Do not miss it


Another vote for the Botanic Gardens, a peaceful oasis and sensibly priced.

We really enjoyed this restaurant for dinner.
Pateo - Bairro do Avillez

On one of our day trips, we parked in the Amoreiras shopping centre’s underground car park and did the usual tourist things, catching a historic tram to the Belem Pasteis shop and climbing what I always thought was called the Henry the Navigator monument, but now learn it is actually called the Padrão dos Descobrimentos. It’s a nice and relatively compact city, but hilly.

Never did find time to go up the mini Christ the Redeemer statue on the south bank of the Tagus. Something for next time.


If you get the chance, go up to Lisbon Castle. In the grounds, their is a guitar man playing Fado music, he is brilliant


Thanks for all the suggestions, all will be considered and investigated.

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If you have a bit of time, Obidos, an hour north is a beautiful old town with a few wineries close by. We had a great visit to Quinta Varzea da Pedra a few years ago. Some delicious whites in particular. And an incredibly generous welcome.


Surprised amongst all the good suggestions that no one has mentioned the Port and Douro Wine Institute.

Instituto dos Vinhos do Douro e Porto, I.P. Link is to the English version of the website

Here you can taste a range of wines. I can’t remember fine details but I do remember the Port glasses which were ISO shape on a four-sided stem with an indentation for a thumb.

The Institute only did Port wines when I visited.

Also should try a peri-peri chicken, though the one I had was rather disappointing. I visited Lisbon several times on business, and as always when on business all the sites were closed in the evening and I was too pooped to do much more than grab a meal before bed.

Last time I was in Lisbon it was part of a Viking river Cruise and with another couple we did the tourist sights and found a very nice restaurant where lunch went on and on and then we returned for late dinners


Some excellent recommendations there, which I will only add a couple to - the view from the top of the hill towards to Atlantic in the Alfama district is stunning, especially at sunset.

If you want a change from Baclao and Arroz de Marisco - try the Angolan food - it’s homey, unfussy and delicious. There’s quite a few all over the city, I think we ate in a place in Alfama, but it was 10 years ago, and I can’t remember the name.

Oh, and we had a simple but fantastic lunch at a little place called Bica e Água - best grilled sardines I’ve had, though again- it was 10 years ago, so may have changed.


When I visited Lisbon a few times my favourite restaurant was


But the last time was over 10 years ago, maybe even 15. The views were stunning and still should be even if the restaurant has changed! Looks as if it may not be too convenient for you but if you do decide to go, try to book a table by a window.

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Do I need to book Rafa?

When are you off?

Early Friday - there until Sunday night

If you want to try ( there’s no other place I would recommend more) see if you can book today. It’s always packed!

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Thanks. I’ll give it a go