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ERASMUS Around Lisbon

Around Lisbon

Portugal and the City of Lisbon

Portugal is located on the western side of the Iberian Peninsula (Península Ibérica), with 832 km of Atlantic coast and 1,215 km of land border with Spain. The country includes  Madeira and the  Azores, two groups of islands in the Atlantic. It is one of the twenty-seven European Union Member States and joined the EU in.

The country has a surface area of 92,100 sq km within the Iberian Peninsula, and about 10 million inhabitants. The population is largely concentrated in the capital,  Lisbon (about two million people including periphery) and in other coastal cities on the Atlantic, mainly  Oporto.


Lisbon is located on the right side of the  Tejo Rriver, in the center of Portugal. It is the westernmost city in continental Europe and lies more or less in the center of the country, approximately 300 km from the  Algarve in the south and 400 km from the northern border with Spain. It has an area of 84 sq. km. and a population of 556 797 inhabitants. The area known as Greater Lisbon has a population of 2,1 million in an area of 2750 sq. km.

The capital city of Portugal is built on seven hills overlooking the Tejo River, the very soul of the city. This is from where the nickname of Lisbon origins: cidade das sete colinas -city of the seven hills.


In the beginning of this Century, Lisbon is still a city of many contrasts, a combination of modern and ancient that fascinates those who visit it.

Either in or near Lisbon you will find beaches, countryside, mountains and many areas of historical interest.


Tradition, romance, culture, entertainment, modernity and emotions are just a small taste of what you can find in the Lisbon region.

Just a few kilometers from the city of Lisbon, the horizon opens out into the sea and hills of the  Estoril Coast , a traditional summer resort with fine sandy beaches and calm sea, ideal for nautical sports. The long and sunny river front of  Oeiras links the Tejo and the Atlantic Ocean, with various interesting spots. The former fishing village of  Cascais nowadays is a cosmopolitan suburb and one of the richest municiplaities of Portugal, with several small sand beaches in and around town. Among the shady woods of the hills and the Atlantic, nestles the town of  Sintra, where nature and architectural heritage exist in perfect harmony. When you need a break from the city the nearby mountain village of Sintra makes for an excellent excursion, with its famous castles.

Lisbon is one of the most picturesque capitals of Europe. It has strong links to the past, reflected in the old buildings and narrow cobblestone streets.  Alfama is the oldest district of Lisbon, with traces back to the Moors. It contains many important historical attractions, with many  Fado-Portuguese typical melancholy music- bars and restaurants.  Castelo de São Jorge occupies an impressive location overlooking the city of Lisbon.

Sé de Lisboa (Lisbon Cathedral) after surviving earthquakes and hardships, nowadays is a mix of different architectural styles.

Go to the commercial area of  Baixa to see one of Europe's oldest examples of planned neighborhoods. Baixa is the heart of Lisbon with a big variety of attractions: elegant squares, old tramcars, street performers, narrow streets, cafes, and shops presenting the Lisbon atmosphere. The main avenue of the downtown,  Avenida de Liberdade drives you to the middle of Lisbon,  Marquês de Pombal Square. The Baixa's  Rua Augusta leads from  Rossio to Lisbon's famous square,  Praça do Comércio, situated right next to the  Tagus RiverBairro Alto is a perfect choice for nightlife with a personal touch. Bairro Alto area is a multicultural mix of people and entertainment. On the many small streets of Bairro Alto you can find a big variety of specialized bars and clubs.

Head out to  Belém to see grand architecture from the time of the discoveries. Probably the most known attraction is  Torre de Belém, which is classified as a UNESCO World Heritage along with  Mosteiro dos Jerónimos. The monastery is situated just a few minutes walk from Torre de Belém. Belém's most notable modern feature is the  Padrão dos Descobrimentos, commemorates the great times of the discoveries. If you are in Belém, do not miss the Centro Cultural de Belém, which is largest building with cultural facilities in Portugal. The tradicional dessert of the area is  Pastel de Belém, which is still made following the ancient recepie.


  • Entry fees and Transportation: - Torre de Belém: Fees: 3€
  • Transportation: Bus nr 27,28,29,43,49,51 and 112 ; boat: Trafaria and Porto Brandão or Belém's Fluvial station.
  • Padrão dos Descobrimentos: Fees: 2.50€  
  • Transportation: Bus nr 27,28,29,43,49,51 and 112 ; boat: Trafaria and Porto Brandão or Belém's Fluvial station.
  • Mosteiro dos Jerónimos: Fees: 2.25€  
  • Transportation: Bus nr 27,28,29,43,49,51 and 112 ; boat: Trafaria and Porto Brandão or Belém's Fluvial station.
  • Centro Cultural de Belém: Fees: Depends on the show  
  • Transportation: Bus nr 27,28,29,43,49,51 and 112 ; boat: Trafaria and Porto Brandão or Belém's Fluvial station.
  • Source:

As far as visitors go to the other side of  Tagus, the Blue Cost is found along the Sado estuary, with 50 thousand hectares of protected nature reserve and an extraordinarily rich flora and fauna, including dolphins.


The  Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian in Avenida de Berna, (near Praça de Espanha metro station) standing in picturesque gardens, is worth special mention for its excellent permanent art collection, temporary exhibitions and wide range of classical music and jazz concerts attracting international artis ts. It also boasts an excellent and modestly priced self-service restaurant at lunchtimes serving hot meals and an enormous range of salads.


At   Parque das Nações , or   Expo , (Oriente metro station) there are a whole range of facilities and entertainment available, including: exhibitions, concert venues, riverside cafes, bars and restaurants and ten-pin bowling. Other worthwhile attractions are Europe's largest indoor    Oceanarium , cable-car rides overlooking the river and bicycle hire. There is also a huge, award-winning shopping centre complete with a multi-screen cinema.