Lisbon, the starting point for the Great Discoveries

Lisbon is a charming, authentic destination. It surprises as much as it calls forth nostalgia. Yet, Portugal's capital is constantly modernizing. In fact, Lisbon is a combination of genres. The city is a learned combination of influences from North Africa and Europe. For four centuries, Lisbon was dominated by Islam. During that period, the Moors built many buildings and mosques. We still see the influence of Moorish architecture in many of the city's buildings. The 16th century was the century of the Great Discoveries, Lisbon's golden age which made a lasting mark on the Portuguese capital.
With its steep narrow streets, colourful facades and exceptional luminosity, the native city of the Vasco de Gama, the famous explorer, enchants every visitor. Calm and peaceful, Lisbon is the ideal destination for a relaxing trip sitting on a café terrace sipping a glass of ginja. With Air France, you can take one of our daily flights Paris - Lisbon at a reduced price.

Itinerary in Lisbon

You will need a week to visit every corner of Lisbon. That way, you will have time to leave the beaten path and fully enjoy the capital and its atmosphere.
If you don't have a lot of time, make sure that you don't miss the must-see buildings in the city that will allow you to soak up the city's history and culture. Lisbon, with its mild and sunny climate, is a great city to visit by foot or bike.
The neighbourhood of Alfama: Head for Alfama, the oldest and most typical neighbourhood in Lisbon. You can feel the influence from the Islamic period. You can visit the Castle of São Jorge overlooking Alfama. There are still some Roman ruins as well. Be sure to visit the Decorative Arts Museum and the belvedere of Santa Luzia, ending with the Patriarchal Cathedral of Santa Maria Major.

The neighbourhood of Belém: The city from where Vasco de Gama's caravels left for India in 1497. The Palace of Belém is also there, the former royal residence. If there is one monument to visit, it would be the superb Belém Tower that marks the entrance to the city of Lisbon. It is one of the most famous monuments in Portugal. The Belém neighbourhood also welcomes the impressive Monument to the Discoveries Padrão dos Descobrimentos and the Hieronymites Monastery.

The neighbourhood of Baixa: In the centre of Lisbon, the neighbourhood Baixa is famous for its squares. It was completely destroyed by an earthquake in 1715 and today shelters some superb monuments such as the Rossio central train station on the Praça Dom Pedro IV. The Praça do Comercio is also magnificent with its view of the Tage and the 25th of April Bridge.

The Parque das Nações (Park of Nations): Head for this new neighbourhood to discover modern Lisbon. Ride the cable car for a magnificent view of the Tage and a arrive by foot at the Vasco de Gama Bridge that crosses the estuary. Lisbon also has one of the largest aquariums in Europe, the Oceanorium.

Take the tramway to get around the city and discover the very essence of Lisbon. The itineraries allow you to discover many emblematic places in the Portuguese capital.

Enjoy life in Lisbon

Bairro Alto is the ideal neighbourhood for going out in the evening. It is known for its animated streets, like the Rua do Norte, or the Rua de la Rosa. There are many cafés, restaurants, bars and discothèques in the popular, trendy district.
For a typically Portuguese night out, head for Bairro Alto or the Alfama neighbourhood to listen to the famous Fado, a melancholy song, accompanied by stringed instruments. There are several types of Fado, depending on the region.
Don't hesitate to stroll through the streets in the evening to discover the city's many nocturnal animations.

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