Cheap flights to Lisbon
As cities go you can’t get much more original than Lisbon. Portugal’s capital is an ancient city with a very modern vibe and a perfect destination for that city break you’ve been longing for.
Lisbon is full of contrasts with activities for every kind of traveller, from tourist guide wielding culture buffs, to beach bums and families. But the first thing you’ll notice about Lisbon is its outstanding architecture, which is hardly surprising given the legacy of this place – it was the capital of the once mighty Portuguese Empire after all. A surviving array of Moorish, Romanesque and Neoclassical buildings will simply blow you away. As will the city’s hills – all seven of them!
But before you start to think about packing some hiking gear, don’t worry, as Lisbon’s charming old-style trams will get you to the peaks with the minimum of effort. Make sure you take a camera though, because the panoramic view from the top will take your breath away. And the narrow, winding and cobbled streets and lanes below will do the same, so put those feet up and grab a beer at one of Lisbon’s many grand squares.
Visit the small Museu de Água Princípe Real under Praça do Água Princípe for a glimpse into the importance fresh water had for Lisbon in the past. Ask about their tours, which take you down an eerie underground tunnel way below the Bairro Alto. www.epal.pt
Lisbon's half marathon first heads across the impressive Ponte 25 Abril and continues along the Tagus riverfront before ending opposite the Jeronimos Monastery in Belém. 19 March.
The attractive Tagus-side town of Golegã shows off rural Portugal at its best during the Feira Nacional do Cavalo. This ten-day horse extravaganza features show jumping, dressage, equestrian displays, live music and a wondrous array of local characters, 4-13 November.
January often sees great waves at the nearby beaches, and the suburb of Carcavelos (train from Cais do Sodré) is the surfers' favourite: head to the east end of the beach, next to the fort, for the best breaks.
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