Greater Lisbon - TurtleBu
Belém is without any doubt a must-see during any Lisbon trip. Located southwestern of Lisbon, it is only a 7-minute train ride from Cais do Sodré station in central Lisbon. Belém had been a major port and a strategic point of interest for centuries. From here the Portuguese Royal Family fled to Brazil during Napoleon’s invasion, also many explorers started their world wide adventures such as expeditions to India or Brazil. Therefore, important monuments have been erected here over the centuries. The historical and social activity that has been taking place in this western part of Greater Lisbon is undeniable. Symbol is the most famous national sweet that was born and first commercialized in Belém: the mouth watering Pastel de Nata. Check more on our favorite local foods in our section Portuguelishes!
Places like Torre de Belém (Belém Tower), Mosteiro dos Jerónimos (Jerónimos Monestry) or Museu dos Coches (Coach Museum) can all be found here make you breathe history and legendary stories.
For all sights around Belém check Lisbon… 40 things to do and places to go.
30 kilometers west of Lisbon, Cascais once was an old and simple fisherman town until King Luis I decided to make the town the Portuguese Royal Family’s summer residence. In fact, the king fell so in love for this place that he ordered to install the country’s first electrical light installation in its citadel. This hasn’t been an exclusivity for the Portuguese Royal family but rather several European royal families. Specially during WWII many found refuge and exile here, e.g. the House of Bourbon (Spain) and the House of Savoy (Italy). Nowadays, Cascais is home to the international jet set and local celebrities such as TV stars, football players or writers.
For more about Cascais see Lisbon… 40 things to do and places to go.
Sintra, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is our favorite Portuguese town! Once described by Lord Byron as a “Glorious Eden”, it was a refuge and summer house for Portuguese Royals during many years. This tiny village is almost made out of one single street only and embedded in stunning landscapes. Sintra features magnificent houses, chalets, farmyards, and a romantic atmosphere that seems to have inspired Disney’s fairy tales. From castles to palaces, Baroque to Renaissance, gardens to forests – Sintra has it all!
Check for more on our post Lisbon… 40 things to do and places to go.