There are numerous reasons to enjoy holiday in Lisbon. These include its charming historic downtown, two mega-casinos, fabulous food, unique music, lively nightlife, elegant shopping boutiques, museums and art galleries galore, and lovely beaches within easy reach. During a Lisbon holiday there is literally never a dull moment.

Getting to Lisbon

Getting to Lisbon
Lisbon, Portugal's capital and largest city, is accessible via Portela Airport, one of the biggest airports in southern Europe.

The base is situated just 7km north of the city, which itself is located on Portugal's Atlantic coast.

Portela Airport serves as the main hub of national carrier TAP Portugal, which operates flights to Lisbon from London, Manchester and several other destinations across the UK and Europe.

Travellers can also reach the destination with carriers such as easyJet, British Airways and KLM, among others.

There is a choice of public transport options available to people heading to the city centre from Lisbon Portela Airport, including the Aerobus service, which offers regular daily departures to locations such as the Parque das Nacoes and Sete Rios coach terminals.

Car hire is also available, along with taxis and other bus services provided by companies such as Carris.

Explore Lisbon

Lisbon is the westernmost capital city in Europe and the only one situated on an Atlantic coastline.

More than 547,000 people live in the city proper, while some 2.8 million residents - representing more than a quarter of the Portuguese population - inhabit the wider metropolitan area.

Lisbon is one of mainland Europe's major economic centres, with finance, commerce and international trade among the city's most important sectors.

Tourism is also a significant industry for the Portuguese capital. More than 1.7 million people visited the destination in 2009, placing it alongside the likes of Rome, Barcelona, Istanbul and Athens as one of the most popular city break hotspots in southern Europe.

Lisbon is one of the oldest cities in the world and holidaymakers can visit several locations providing an insight into local history and cultural heritage.

Five must sees in Lisbon

One of the most striking aspects of the Lisbon skyline is the Castle of Sao Jorge, a Moorish fort that overlooks the city. This highly popular attraction features ramparts waiting to be explored by visitors, who can also enjoy views extending over red rooftops to the Tagus river.

The destination is home to two Unesco World Heritage sites close to one another. Belem Tower is located in the parish of Santa Maria de Belem and is notable for its distinctive architecture, which combines the Portuguese Manueline tradition with other styles.

Located just a short walk away is the Jeronimos Monastery, which dates back to the 15th century and was added to the Unesco World Heritage list in 1983. The monastery also boasts impressive architecture, with the ornate south portal one of the most prominent features.

Visitors interested in getting a taste of life in Lisbon should pay a visit to Rossio, the city's main square, which is always full of activity and excitement, and also take the opportunity to walk along the wide avenues and pedestrianised streets of the Baixa downtown area.

One of the biggest indoor attractions in Lisbon is the Oceanario, the second largest aquarium in Europe. Situated in Parque das Nacoes, the complex is home to some 16,000 marine creatures of hundreds of different species. The centrepiece is a giant central tank housing sharks, rays, eels, barracudas and more.

Direct Flights travel tip

Direct Flights travel tip
Lisbon visitors might be interested in taking a trip out of the city to do a spot of relaxing on the beach.

There are a number of scenic seafront locations along the railway line that links Lisbon to Cascais, such as Carcavelos, Tamariz and Guincho.

When to go to Lisbon

Lisbon has a Mediterranean climate offering comfortable conditions pretty much year round for travellers, with one of the warmest winters in Europe. Temperatures average in the mid teens in degrees C from December to February.

The summer season runs from May to October and temperatures regularly hit the high 20s and 30s in June, July and August.