A WALK ON THE SEVEN HILLS
Lisbon is a historical city with one of the most beautiful landscapes in Europe. In fact, it is the oldest city in Western Europe predating Rome and is also known as the “city of the seven hills”. Lisbon is the sister city of San Francisco, complete with hills, cable cars, nice people and a golden suspension bridge. From the hilltops, you also get to admire some of the most spectacular views of Lisbon. The viewpoints, also known as Miradouros, are large terraces offering stunning views and they're scattered all over the city. These carefully crafted sights are Portugal's greatest feature as they stand on Lisbon's highest points. Here are some of the miradouros we were fortunate to see and a few more to look out for:
Miradouro de São Pedro de Alcântara
If you’re prepared to witness some exceptional views, you should begin your trip with a visit here. It has established itself as the most romantic point in all of Lisbon. There's a double-tiered (upper and lower) terrace which is the largest miradouro in Lisbon. Located in the city center, many people gather here for drinks. In addition, a lovely garden can be found below with benches to admire the city, the castle and a beautiful sunset.
Castelo de São Jorge
This magnificent castle stands on the highest point in Lisbon and has been present for at least 2 millenniums. It includes the largest hilltop offering the most complete view of the city covered in red terracotta roof tiles. The castle itself is Lisbon's most popular tourist attraction and is quite hard to miss. Although you're required to climb a few stairs, you will be relieved once you reach the castle walls to capture some of the city's most stunning views. Also ,when you plan to visit the castle, arrive in the afternoon to capture the most spectacular sunset. The cobblestone terrace also features a statue of Afonso Henriques, the founder of Portugal.
Another tip: If you look across the River Tagus, you can spot the Cristo Rei statue at the end of the 25th of April bridge which resembles the Golden Gate bridge in San Francisco.
Passeio das Tágides
Take a stroll, jog or cycle on the long boardwalk that takes you from the marina to the Vasco da Gama Tower. Located in the city’s most modern district, take the large beautiful elevated pathway and discover the contemporary area covered in wonderful white colors. Be sure to take the telecabine (aerial lift) that passes over the Tagus River. It offers a great view of the Vasco da Gama bridge, Europe's longest bridge!
Parque Eduardo VII
We actually stumbled upon this beautiful lookout point and it completely took our breath away. Lisbon's large green landscaped central park offers spectacular views over the hills all the way to the river. The Parque Edouardo was definitely our favourite miradouro during our trip. The enjoyable walk to the Marquess of Pombal Square at the bottom can be compared to no other.
Miradouro da Graça
This viewpoint probably has the closest and nicest view of the São Jorge Castle and "Golden Gate" Bridge (25th of April Bridge). It includes a snack bar and a beautiful church nearby. This is another beautiful city experience while having a nice cold drink.
Miradouro da Santa Catarina
If you happen to come across the statue of Adamastor (a mythical monster from the sea), then you should know that you've reached the popular Santa Catarina hilltop. Essentially, this viewpoint can get crowded, but it's still very worth the visit. The locals come here to gaze at the lovely sunrise or sunset as the scenic view overlooks the Tagus River, the 25 of April Bridge and Cristo de Rei Statue. There's a small bar/café on the terrace to chill and relax as well.
Miradouro das Portas do Sol
We left the best for last as this viewpoint offers spectacular views out over the Alfama, Lisbon's oldest district. Take the tram through the narrow streets and reach the large balcony gazing over Alfama's rooftops. Next to a small café stands the statue of St. Vincent as well. In addition, you can find the Miradouro de Santa Luzia located nearby.
You really cannot miss out visiting some of these wonderful viewpoints that accentuate Lisbon's character. Although pictures can say a thousand words, in person these viewpoints are indescribable and unforgettable. You will surely be captivated!