Getting around in Lisboa

Finding your way through Lisboa, Portugal using public transport is easy but involves a wild mix of vehicles and systems. We bought a Lisboa Card and were therefore able to use most of them free of charge – simply by holding the card in front of a validation system. Always remember: enter in front, exit in the rear.

First choice for longer distances is the Metro – a good subway system with four lines (named after colors and marked with specific icons). Sometimes the entrances to the stations are a bit hidden but it is very easy to use. As an alternative you can use railway trains starting in different stations – for example if you want to go from Belém in the west to the Parque das Nações in the east.

As the metro stops are pretty far from each other you’ll find numerous busses and tramways (old and new) on the streets. If you learned a bit about the city map and check the routes at the stops you’ll easily find the right one. Sometimes we only had to guess where to find the stop at central places. The old tramways are lovely but pretty small – especially on the route 28 through Alfama they are most often really crowded.

Then you will find some special vehicles caused by the seven hills on which Lisboa is built: vertical elevators like the Elevador de Santa Justa and cable cars going straight up the hill like the Ascensor da Glória. Some people like those electric tuk tuks imported to Portugal but I found them rather annoying. Maybe it is a necessity during hot summer times.

The way from and to our hotel we made by taxi – it is rather cheap here: 20 Euros from the airport to Alfama and 15 Euros on the way back. The tourist info at the airport offers a flatrate voucher for 23 Euros – but that seems only to make sense in times of massive traffic jams. In addition you can go to the airport with the metro and the YellowBus who drops you off at different hotels throughout the city.

In the end it was my smartphone that made navigating so easy – and the free roaming enforced by the European Union in the summer of last year.


Loading map...


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.