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Portugal Diary: Day 1 - Lisbon 🇵🇹

Lisbon is the coastal capital city of Portugal, it is one of my favourite cities and I honestly don't know why I love it so much. I visited Lisbon once before with my family but then decided to visit it again by myself. This time I decided to visit other cities in Portugal besides Lisbon, and one of the places I wanted to go to was Sintra which is a resort town near Lisbon.


​1. How to Get Your Visa for Portugal

5. Best Time to Visit Lisbon

2. Day 1 Diary

6. Accommodations in Lisbon

3. How to Get to Lisbon

7. Best Cafes & Restaurants in Lisbon

4. How to Move Around Lisbon

How to Get Your Visa for Portugal

You can get the visa by going to the embassy, or visiting the official website, or getting it with an agency like iVisa. iVisa provides 100% online travel documents such as: Visas, health declaration forms, embassy registrations, passport photos, passport renewals, tourist cards, and other travel documents. It is the simplest solution to process your travel visa.

Here’s why you should choose iVisa:

  • Speed and Simplicity - Easy, traveler-friendly application process. Simple and much less complicated than dealing with foreign governments.

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  • Secure and Safe - World-class data centres and state-of-the-art security. Your credit card information will never be exposed to any government websites!

  • Awesome support - Their customer support is ready to help 24/7. They want you to enjoy your travels and avoid the stress of getting a visa!

I arrived to Lisbon from Madrid at around 9:00 am and since I had to wait until 14:00 to check into my Airbnb; I decided to wander around the city a bit first. I was traveling in August but for some reason the weather was gloomy and it rained a few times as well. I tried to book online bus or train tickets to Sintra but couldn't find any available, but I managed to find a bus company that sells tickets physically, so I left the airport and went there, the ticket booth was near Marquês de Pombal Square so I went there. Sadly there was no tickets available for the days I wanted, I was staying in Lisbon for 3 days and couldn't find tickets for these days.

I always plan what places I want to visit or go see whenever I am traveling, but near Marquês de Pombal Square there was a hop-on hop-off bus and so I went to ask what lines are available around Lisbon, and I'm glad I asked because I found out that they do day trips to Sintra. I booked my day trip there for the next day and while at it I also booked tickets for the bus tours around Lisbon cause I found it easier with the current weather to have a transportation and a map where I found all the locations that I wanted to visit and I can simply hop off the bus and then hop back on.

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I booked a ticket for two bus lines and the ticket last for 48 hours which was suitable for the amount of time I was staying in Lisbon for. I hoped on the bus and took a tour around Lisbon until 12:30; and then I found a cafe near the bus stop to have lunch. After that I took a bus to go to the Airbnb to check in at 14:00. I did struggle a bit trying to find the bus stop cause there was a lot of lines and a lot of stops and I was confused a bit but after asking someone I managed to find the right bus stop and arrived at the Airbnb.

I checked into the Airbnb and left my backpack there and then went back to Marquês de Pombal Square to continue the tour on the hop-on hop-off bus. Whenever I'm traveling alone, I prefer going back to wherever I'm sleeping before night time, even though Lisbon is a safe city but this is just my preference. I went back to the Airbnb and found a supermarket near the place and went there to get food for dinner as well as for breakfast for the next couple of days and snacks as well. I always love to stay in Airbnbs to cook my own meals instead of eating out 3 times a days.

I cooked dinner and chilled for a bit and then I went to bed because I had to be early at Marquês de Pombal Square for my day trip to Sintra. After my day trip I planned to continue my trip around Lisbon and then the day after I would go on a day trip to another city before leaving Lisbon and going to Porto.

How to Get to Lisbon

Direct flights to Lisbon are available from all over Europe, Lisbon’s International Airport is easy to reach from all over the world, so you won’t struggle to find flights. I like to use Omio to find either buses or trains in Europe, and if I am looking for a flight I would use WayAway to find cheap flights. You can also use this promo code - TP-385219 - for WayAway Plus or you can directly visit this link! (You will get 10% off WayAway Plus subscription!)

How to Move Around Lisbon

When it comes to getting around Lisbon, public transportation such as the bus, the metro, and the train are available all over Lisbon, you can get a reusable paper VivaViagem card at a station and then top it up for every trip and it can be used through the entire city. It is also better to get a transportation when going uphill and then walk downhill to enjoy the city. Uber and Taxify are also a great option and not expensive, but public transportation is cheaper. Scooters are also available through apps such as Lime, Tier, or Wind and they are a quick way to get around the city, but you have to be 18 or older to use them.

Best Time to Visit Lisbon

The best times to travel Lisbon would be between September and November, or March and May. During these two periods the weather is nice and cool, and it is going to be less crowded compared to other times. High seasons months are July and August, which means the streets are much more crowded than usual and the accommodation prices are higher as well. If you are a fan of festival, then June is the month for you. June is the month of festivals in Lisbon so it would be a perfect time to visit.

Accommodations in Lisbon

The best neighbourhoods to stay in are Barrio Alto and Alfama when it comes to the old town, or Baixa and Chiado when it comes to the centre. The old town is quieter the entire day in comparison to the centre but is more hilly.

Best Cafes & Restaurants in Lisbon

  • Organi Chiado (Gluten-free options, vegan friendly, Mediterranean)

  • Yallah Lisboa (Vegan friendly, Middle Eastern cuisine)

  • Focaccia In Giro (Vegan friendly, Italian cuisine)

  • Scoop 'N Dough (Vegan friendly, American & International, best doughnuts & ice cream)

  • Eight The Health Lounge (Gluten-free options, vegan friendly, European)

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