Ah, Lisbon. The Portuguese Pearl that has been stealing hearts for centuries with its undeniable charm, enchanting atmosphere, and incredible culture. From the delectable restaurants to the glorious architecture, Lisbon is known for its electrically cinematic feel, topping the favourites list of many a traveller. Infatuation, adoration, and fascination are all emotions you’ll experience in the city, so why not explore the places and activities that will heighten your love affair? Whether you’re visiting with friends, family, a significant other or simply going solo, one thing is for sure — your love for Lisbon will truly conquer all.

Be serenaded by the Lisbon Blues in Alfama 

While wearing sensible shoes doesn’t sound particularly romantic, you’re guaranteed to spend hours wandering around the labyrinth-like cobbled alleyways of Alfama in south-east Lisbon – so fitting footwear is a must. Intriguing bars, shops and cafés are yours to discover, winding through the streets until you reach the top where you can access the Miradouro de Santa Luzia and be greeted by stellar views of the Tagus River, Lisbon, and beyond. All of your senses are catered for in Alfama, but nothing compares to the sweet sounds of traditional Portuguese folk music that float through the air, wafting through the doors and windows of quaint bars. Known as Fado music, it comprises of melancholic, mournful singing accompanied by a classical 12-stringed Portuguese guitar. The musical style’s humble origins began in Alfama as the folk music of sailors and fishermen who once populated the area. Head into a bar, grab a drink, listen to the soulful sounds, and join in with the locals as they sing along – the hours will fly by before you know it. 

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Have a decadent dinner at the Michelin-starred Loco

Nothing quite says romance like dining on the stars… Michelin stars to be exact. As of 2022, Lisbon has a staggering 37 restaurants in the exclusive Michelin guide, spanning an array of cuisines from traditional Portuguese and contemporary French to international fare and unbeatable seafood. It goes without saying that you’ll be spoilt for choice. One of our favourites? Loco, a charming yet atmospheric restaurant with one Michelin star. Translating directly to crazy’, the eatery is small at just 22 seats, offering a tasting menu of 17 dishes that showcases Portugal’s diversity and micro seasonal ingredients. Head chef Alexandre Silva promises to provide a dining experience that’s full of unpredictable and surprising moments” from start to finish, so if your love language is food, you’re in for a heavenly affair that will certainly be difficult to forget. 

Toast the good times over drinks at Bairro Alto 

If there was ever an area that lived a double life, it’s Bairro Alto. Almost deserted by day but teeming with excitement by night, Bairro Alto is the place to go for an unforgettable experience, full of plenty of options if you want to eat, drink, dance and be merry. Bar hopping is a popular activity when the sun goes down, with bustling crowds taking to the many watering holes that line to neighbourhood, often spilling out on to the streets with glasses in hand. The likes of Park Bar and The Insólito are brilliant rooftop options if you want to escape the hubbub down below, head to Páginas Tantas for a cosy, contemporary atmosphere with live jazz, or visit Jamaica Bar for some self-explanatory chill vibes and mellow reggae music. The options are endless! 

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Take a romantic stroll through Monsanto Forest Park 

There’s nothing more cinematic than a main character moment as you walk through a breathtaking scenic location, and a walk in Monsanto Forest Park provides you with just that. Three times the size of New York’s massive Central Park, this municipal protected area is nothing short of a natural wonder and is the perfect place to enjoy endless activities. Walk or run, cycle, strap on some roller skates, have a picnic, or simply sunbathe under the Portuguese sunshine. However you choose to pass the time, we guarantee that the breathtaking settings will be more than enough to make you fall further in love with Lisbon. 

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Admire the glorious views over the Tagus River 

There’s little that gives you that warm and fuzzy feeling more than a sunset view over a body of water, and nowhere does it quite like Lisbon. The Tagus River spans the entire coastline surrounding the Portuguese capital, so incredibly vast that it’s often mistaken for the ocean, giving the illusion of a beachside city. There are plenty of places to admire the views from up above or up close and personal, and in summer months, you can even take a dip. For an aerial shot, head to any rooftop bar in the city centre at sunset, or even strategically time your visit to the Tower of Belém (also known as the Tower of St. Vincent), an iconic landmark right on the river’s edge. One of the most popular spots from which to enjoy the Tagus is Ribeira das Naus Avenue, a beautiful boardwalk with a lengthy beach area and steps that extend down to the river itself, perfect for sunbathing when the weather permits.

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Experience ecstasy with a visit to Pastéis de Belém

If there’s anything that Lisbon is famous for, it’s the original Portuguese tarts (pastéis de natas) that can only be described as little morsels of heaven. The original (and secret) recipe originates from Lisbon’s Pastéis de Belém back in 1837 using strictly traditional methods and is recreated each day in the bakery to delight locals and tourists alike. Warm, flaky, buttery, and delicious, these sweet treats are filled with a vibrant yellow custard encased in puff pastry and dusted with your choice of powdered sugar or cinnamon. The tarts are available individually and by the boxful, but if you have some time – and if you can find a seat – tuck into your goodies in one of the bakery’s large tea rooms covered with blue and white azulejos.