Tuesday, June 18, 2024

21 issues to do in Lisbon with children


It’s a query I’m requested on a regular basis: the place’s your favorite place you’ve visited? By no means simple to slender down however on the subject of cities, Lisbon at all times makes the highest two – and with loads of issues to do in Lisbon with children, it’s positively one to maintain on your loved ones journey radar.

A view of the rooftops and brightly coloured buildings of the Alfama in Lisbon, Portugal - exploring the Moorish castle is one of my top things to do in Lisbon with kids
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With hilly cobbled streets, it’s finest saved till after the infant years, however with some nice sights alongside the historical past, close by seashores and even enjoyable transport, the one query is what to do in Lisbon first?

So when you’re planning a Lisbon metropolis break, listed here are a few of my high issues to do in Lisbon for youths.

Conquer the fort

Castelo de Sao Jorge sits on the hilltop within the Alfama, a commanding Moorish fort excessive above the twisting slender medieval streets.

Good for letting imaginations run wild as you wander the fort partitions and simply pretty much as good for having fun with some spectacular views over the town. You may as well get a detailed up within the Black Chamber with the digicam obscura, giving a 360 diploma have a look at the town in actual time, from the monuments to the folks.

My daughter walks along the walls of Castelo de Sao Jorge, the historic castle in Lisbon on a sunny day - one of my top things to do in Lisbon with kids

There are additionally archaeological finds from the location in a everlasting exhibition, the stays of the royal palace which as soon as stood right here earlier than being broken within the 1755 Lisbon earthquake, plus household actions with knights and archers at sure instances.

Preserve an eye fixed out for the peacocks too – get a style with my brief video of a go to to Lisbon’s fort.

Purchase skip-the-line tickets to Castelo Sao Jorge Lisbon by clicking right here.

 

Be part of a strolling tour of Lisbon

Among the finest methods to discover Lisbon is on foot, though with a number of totally different areas to find, it pays to start out with a strolling tour of Lisbon with children to get your bearings.

There are some nice family-friendly excursions to select from too. This four-hour Important Lisbon tour from Little Lisbon is a good place to start out, or the three-hour Real Lisbon household tour. is one other good introduction, as is that this non-public household tour of Lisbon from Withlocals.

My daughter walks past colourful houses up one of the cobbled hilly streets in Lisbon's Alfama district - taking a walking tour is a great start to a visit to Lisbon with kids

For those who’ve received one thing particular in thoughts, you’ll be able to even e-book a neighborhood information and tailor your personal tour. Or when you want to go at your personal tempo, do that self-guided tour of Bairro Alto and Bica, fixing a sequence of riddles as you discover the town’s slender streets and grand squares.

Take a sightseeing tour of Lisbon

Don’t fancy strolling? There’s a enjoyable 90-minute tuk tuk tour, plus this longer eco tuk tuk tour to cowl extra floor – each much more enjoyable than you’re commonplace tour.

For those who’re visiting Lisbon with older children, this Sitway tour of Belem (assume a sit-down model of a Segway) introduces you to a different facet of the town.

You’ll additionally discover hop-on hop-off bus excursions of Lisbon if these are successful along with your children (additionally nice for giving little legs a break). The Lisbon Sightseeing tour has 24h, 48h and 72h tickets, whereas Yellow Bus Excursions has a one-day and a two-day choice.

Yow will discover some enjoyable mixed tickets too, akin to this classic tram, open-top bus and River Tagus sightseeing cruise deal. Or this hop-on hop-off boat tour features a ticket for different public transportation, together with the trams and lifts.

Get pleasure from a meals tour

I at all times discover meals excursions an effective way to discover, as you study concerning the metropolis and its historical past and tradition by way of the meals – plus you get to pattern all of the specialities alongside the best way.

Whenever you’re travelling with children, it makes an enormous distinction having your personal non-public tour, particularly when you’ll be able to personalise it to swimsuit everybody’s tastebuds (significantly for pickier little ones) and stamina ranges on Lisbon’s hilly streets.

Having a neighborhood professional main it’s an added bonus too: the Withlocals web site has a really tempting Lisbon meals tour that simply deserves to be on the checklist of most enjoyable issues to do in Lisbon with children.

Pasteis de nata, Portuguese custard tarts, on a blue and white plate - one of the unmissable things to try on a city break in Lisbon with kids

Not solely do you get to strive six various kinds of meals, which might embrace the town’s well-known pasteis de nata, bifana sandwiches and alheira sausages, all the corporate’s excursions and actions are led by Lisboetas to offer an additional perception as you discover, they’re non-public so it’s simply your loved ones and the information, and you’ll even ask to have them customised to swimsuit you.

For a foodie tour with a distinction, be part of a cooking workshop from Cooking Lisbon, beginning with a market tour then whipping up your personal three-course lunch – take a look at my evaluation of the Lisbon cooking class with children.

Attempt to make time for a cease within the Mercado da Ribeira (often known as the Time Out Market) too. It’s a very good choice to seize lunch, in addition to being enjoyable to wander round, with an enormous string of meals stalls so there’ll be one thing the entire household will take pleasure in consuming.

Study Lisbon’s story

The interactive Lisbon Story Centre transports you thru the historical past of the Portuguese capital, with a 60-minute audio information speaking you thru Lisbon’s origins as much as trendy instances as you wander from room to room.

Every part is split like a chapter, from the town’s earliest days, with the audioguide routinely narrating the part you’re taking a look at (often, no less than!) as you wander by way of the historical past of Lisbon.

It’s additionally an incredible spot to study extra concerning the 1755 Lisbon earthquake which remodeled the town, with a dramatic video to look at – among the scenes could also be somewhat distressing for youthful children, though there’s nothing too graphic.

An amazing introduction to the town if it’s your first time in Lisbon as nicely.

E book your ticket prematurely to skip the traces, it’s additionally included with the Lisboa card.

Two sea otters relax on their back in the water at Lisbon's Oceanario aquarium - one of my top things to do in Lisbon with kids

Dive into the aquarium

With greater than 8,000 sea creatures and 500 totally different species, the Lisbon aquarium – or Oceanario Lisboa – is among the most spectacular and largest in Europe, and very best in case you are visiting Lisbon with toddlers or are in search of issues to do in Lisbon within the rain (not that that occurs typically).

Learn my full evaluation of a time out at Oceanario with children

Set within the Parque das Nacoes, additionally dwelling to a number of different household pleasant locations to go in Lisbon, you’ll be able to spot the one sea otters in Europe, together with sharks and coral reefs, in 4 marine habitats stuffed with a whopping 5 million litres of seawater all set spherical an enormous central tank.

To not point out a complete fascinating string of different marine life contained in the huge Lisbon Oceanarium. Enable loads of time to discover, that is simply among the finest aquariums in Europe, if not the world!

Purchase skip-the-line tickets with free cancellation or you too can get a joint ticket with the hop on hop off Lisbon tour which helps you to skip the road – it’s an incredible one to mix with a Telecabine cable automotive experience too.

Trip the trams

The trams make up a part of the general public transport system within the metropolis, so you’ll be able to simply use them to get round – purchase a go or ticket for every journey, akin to for journeys from Lisbon to Belem, or to skip the hill as much as Alfama when you have younger children.

However the 28 tram Lisbon route is somewhat totally different, appearing extra like a tour route with the added model of these conventional little yellow trams.

A shot of the yellow route 28 tram winding down one of Lisbon's hills in the Alfama district - one of my top things to do in Lisbon with kids

Heading from Martim Moniz to Campo de Ourique, the tram line passes by way of the favored vacationer districts of Graca, Alfama, Baixa and Estrela alongside the best way and it’s a incredible technique to see Lisbon.

A couple of phrases of warning: as a result of it’s so common, count on to queue if you would like a seat (or to be squished in standing if not). It’s additionally well-known, sadly, as a hang-out of pickpockets so control your luggage.

For those who purchase a ticket on board, it’ll additionally price much more than choosing it up prematurely at a metro station – a day go prices roughly double a single ticket purchased on board, and you need to use that for limitless journeys throughout 24 hours.

If you’re travelling with a mini tram fan, add in a cease on the tram museum – the Museu Carris is on a number of tram routes itself in addition to buses, and prices a couple of Euros, free for beneath sixes.

Try my full information to Portugal with children right here

Use the elevator (and funiculars)

It’s not simply trams that are a transport attraction in Lisbon – with so many steep hills, the town has needed to get artistic with its transportation, together with little funiculars and lifts. All a part of the principle transport community, they’ll work with commonplace public transport passes and it’s a enjoyable technique to give little legs a break.

The Ascensor da Glória takes you to Bairro Alto or strive the picturesque Ascensor da Bica, though the best-known is the Elevador de Santa Justa, or Santa Justa raise. Sure it’s touristy and you could possibly simply stroll up the hill, however there’s one thing very enjoyable about hopping into the ornamental 19th century raise.

View up towards the wrought iron Santa Justa lift in Lisbon against a clear blue sky - one of the fun forms of public transport to try in Lisbon with kids

Head there early or late to keep away from the worst queues as it’s a common vacationer attraction, and make time to cease and benefit from the views from the small viewing platform too.

The 24h public transport ticket covers this too (though not the higher viewing platform) and prices quite a bit lower than shopping for a single from the ticket workplace. Journey and the viewing platform are additionally included within the Lisboa card.

The higher viewing platform is at present closed, though you’ll be able to nonetheless see the views as you exit the raise. 

Fly over the Tagus river within the cable automotive

Soar over the water within the Lisbon Cable Automotive, or Telecabine Lisboa, which was constructed for the World Expo within the 90s and runs for round a mile alongside the river at Parque das Nações.

View of the cable car and the sea beyond in Lisbon - the Telecabine in the Parque das Nacoes is one of the fun things to do with kids in Lisbon

You possibly can decide it up close to the Oceanario aquarium and there are some nice views of the Vasco Da Gama bridge as you cruise alongside for the ten minute journey.

Youngsters aged two and beneath journey free, in any other case from 5,50 Euros, whereas a spherical journey will set adults again 9,50 Euros, with a reduction for Lisboa card holders. The cable automotive doesn’t actually take you wherever (besides the opposite finish of the Park of Nations) but it surely’s nonetheless price doing for the distinctive view of Lisbon.

You may as well purchase joint tickets for the Telecabine and Oceánario de Lisboa.

Get a style with this brief video of a spherical journey in Lisbon’s cable automotive

Go to Belem

That is my very own private should do in Lisbon – and never simply because it’s the spot the place the unique pasteis de nata custard tarts had been made (and are nonetheless made, so do cease by and seize a field).

It’s additionally full of historic websites, together with the Monument to the Discoveries (Padrão dos Descobrimentos) paying tribute to 33 of Portugal’s most vital explorers, which you see as you wander alongside the waterfront.

View of the white Torre de Belem, or Belem Tower, seen from the water of the River Tagus in Lisbon during our Hippotrip boat and bus tour - one of the top things to see during a visit to Lisbon with kids

A bit of additional alongside is the Torre de Belem, designed to defend the coast though it at all times seems extra like a moderately intricate large chess piece to me. Look out for the stays of the carved stone rhino, together with gargoyles and the dungeons inside – you’ll be able to climb to the highest of this Unesco World Heritage web site too.

The world can also be dwelling to the astonishingly intricate Jerónimos Monastery: when you have a Lisboa card, Lisbon’s metropolis go, you may get in without cost or you should purchase tickets to skip the road, in addition to for the Belém Tower.

With youthful children, I’d head to the shade of the gardens by the river as a substitute. It’s a tram experience from the centre, on route 15 – there’s a mixture of the smaller conventional trams (enjoyable however they’ll get crowded) and extra trendy trams. Anticipate lengthy traces throughout the summer time months specifically.

For concepts of extra issues to do in Belem with children, take a look at my high picks

Get pleasure from a Hippotrip

For those who’ve come throughout Duck excursions earlier than, you’ll have already got an thought of what Lisbon’s Hippotrip amphibious car entails – after a tour on land within the metropolis centre, you trundle out to Belem and drive straight into the River Tagus.

The excursions final round 90 minutes and a couple of third of that’s cruising alongside within the water.

Alongside the best way you’ll see among the metropolis’s key areas together with Praca do Comercio and Avenida da Liberdade, in addition to the Belem Tower and Monument to the Discoveries.

Try my Hippotrip evaluation and purchase your ticket prematurely right here.

Carved figures on the white Monument to the Discoveries in Belem on the riverfront in Lisbon one of my top things to do in Lisbon with kids

Meet Lisbon’s seafarers on the Maritime Museum

If the explorers on the Monument to the Discoveries have whetted your urge for food, be sure you go to the Museu de Marinha, or Maritime Museum, additionally in Belem.

Following Portugal’s seafaring historical past from the Age of Discoveries within the 1500s by way of to the current, you’ll be able to see gadgets belonging to Vasco Da Gama himself in addition to royal barges and entire armadas of mannequin boats amongst round 2,500 gadgets within the everlasting exhibition.

Set in a wing of the Jeronimos Monastery in Belem, you’ll want a separate ticket to get in.

See stars in Lisbon’s Planetarium

Lisbon’s Planetarium – the Calouste Gulbenkian Planetarium, often known as the Navy Planetarium – can also be situated in Belem, subsequent to the Maritime Museum, designed to challenge greater than 9,000 stars onto its dome throughout exhibits taking you thru the universe.

There are performances in English and it’s very best when you’re visiting Lisbon with youngsters aged 4 or older. One other nice choice for a wet day in Lisbon too.

You should buy tickets for the Planetarium alone, or mixed tickets for the Maritime Museum and Planetarium.

Increase your data on the Science Museum

The Pavilion of Information is Lisbon’s science museum, the Pavilhao do Conhecimento, not removed from the Oceanario aquarium within the Parque das Nacoes.

Removed from a dry dusty museum, it’s dwelling to the Circus of Science Expertise with experiments and video games, together with how excessive you’ll be able to climb up a sticky frog tongue.

There’s additionally an exhibition on pets and artwork designed to encourage exploration – excellent for a time out with children in Lisbon, particularly if you end up visiting Lisbon within the rain.

View of the Vasco Da Gama bridge stretching across the water from Lisbon against a blue sky one of my top things to do in Lisbon with kids

Go gorilla recognizing at Lisbon zoo

Getting the prospect to see animals is certain to be successful for youths in Lisbon, particularly with uncommon white tigers and majestic mountain gorillas on the Jardim Zoologico.

A part of a world conservation challenge, the Lisbon Zoo is an ideal technique to see the world through its animals, from the rainforest to the African Savannah, lemurs from Madagascar, South American birdlife and dolphins, in addition to smaller cattle that are nice when you’re visiting Lisbon with a child.

There are often exhibits all through the day plus a cable automotive by way of the forest cover and zoo practice which takes you previous the reptile home.

Get a reduction on tickets to Lisbon Zoo when you purchase utilizing my hyperlink and code MUMMYTRAVELS6

 

Hit the seaside

Lower than half an hour away from the town, you will discover among the finest seashores close to Lisbon so as to add a twist to your metropolis break.

Each Cascais and Estoril are a straightforward journey, and you’ll take the brief practice experience alongside the seafront – the previous is dwelling to Gelados Santini, one of the crucial well-known locations to purchase ice cream in Portugal.

Minnie opted for chocolate and mango after we visited, and even managed to eat a lot of the large scoops earlier than it melted – there’s additionally a department in Lisbon itself, not removed from Rossio Sq., so that you don’t must miss out although!

One of the beaches on the coast near Lisbon with crashing waves, flat sand and huge rocks in the surf - there's a choice of beaches near Lisbon for a family day out

There are quieter sections of coast and even surf too, so that you gained’t be in need of lovely seashores to tempt you out of the town. For those who’ve received a protracted weekend, it’s very tempting to benefit from the solar and spend one among your three days in Lisbon lounging by the seafront.

For extra locations to benefit from the sand close to the town, take a look at One Tiny Leap’s information to the finest seashores in Lisbon.

Go dolphin recognizing on a ship tour

A ship journey to identify dolphins may not be the very first thing you’d affiliate with a European metropolis break, however Lisbon’s place on the River Tagus means you’ll be able to simply head out onto the water to strive your luck.

This dolphin-spotting tour from Belem guarantees a 95% likelihood of seeing wild dolphins, whereas this three-hour boat tour takes you on a sightseeing tour alongside the coast, with a marine biologist on board as nicely for any dolphin sightings.

There may be additionally a swim cease in-built, however except you’re travelling in peak summer time or a mini heatwave, keep in mind the Atlantic can get fairly chilly!

For those who’re after a extra stress-free expertise, there’s additionally this two-hour sundown cruise on the River Tagus (plus a daytime choice) in addition to a boat cruise on the River Tagus with brunch – you may not get to see dolphins except you’re fortunate, however you do get to take pleasure in views of the town from the water.

Atlantic spotted dolphins leaping through the water - you can spot dolphins on a boat tour from Lisbon with kids

Uncover inexperienced Lisbon

For those who’re in search of outside actions in Lisbon, it’s exhausting to beat the Jardim da Estrela, one among Lisbon’s greatest parks in entrance of the Basilica da Estrela. In addition to a playground and duck ponds, there’s a café – internet hosting child-friendly actions throughout the summer time – and also you’ll typically discover reside music or different occasions happening.

Or head to the Estufa Fria, Lisbon’s Greenhouse in Edward VII Park, round a 10-minute stroll from the Marques de Pombal metro.

The backyard is split up into a chilly home, tropical crops within the hothouse and the cacti and succulents of the ‘candy home’, the park is a beautiful inexperienced house in addition to an incredible choice on a wet day in Lisbon. There’s a small entrance cost.

You may as well discover Lisbon’s official Botanical Backyard, the Jardim Botanico, by the Pure Historical past Museum and never removed from Avenida da Liberdade.

Palm trees and flowering plants at the Botanical Garden of Lisbon, one of the best places to get outdoors in Lisbon with kids

Have an journey on the Journey Park

If the town’s hills haven’t burned off all of your youngsters’s power, right here’s one other enjoyable technique to strive in Lisbon for households. The Journey Park on the Jamor Nationwide Sports activities Centre, simply past Belem, options an impediment route within the timber designed for youths.

Clamber alongside rope bridges, whizz down a 200m slide and crawl by way of tunnels as you discover your manner between wood platforms within the treetops.

You may as well discover a playground for youthful youngsters and mini golf close by when you’re in search of one thing rather less adrenaline-fuelled.

Expertise an earthquake at Quake

Lisbon has a number of quirky little museums to think about throughout your go to, particularly if it’s not your first time within the Portuguese capital. And whereas Quake: Lisbon Earthquake Centre gained’t attraction to everybody, it’s a singular technique to be transported again to the disastrous 1755 earthquake.

In addition to info on the science behind earthquakes, there are a string of interactive reveals that can assist you to think about what the medieval metropolis will need to have been like and the way the earthquake remodeled the face of Lisbon.

Together with 10 themed rooms and 4D immersive expertise, essentially the most memorable half is the 2 earthquake simulators.

Unsurprisingly it’s not appropriate for youths beneath the age of 6 – youngsters aged 4-5 can enter however can’t go on the earthquake simulators, however because it’s a 90-minute expertise that you simply comply with from begin to end (there’s no technique to depart early), it’s not one for youthful children.

The brightly coloured towers of Pena Palace in Sintra - one of the best day trips from Lisbon with kids

Time out from Lisbon: Go to Sintra

For an additional day journey from Lisbon with children, don’t miss Sintra, which is simply over an hour away by practice – catch it on the station close to Rossio Sq., the Estação de Rossio.

For those who’ve solely received sooner or later in Sintra with children throughout your loved ones vacation, you’ll be able to nonetheless match lots in though households will wrestle to see every part in sooner or later.

The Pena Palace is the largest attraction in Sintra, and this fairytale palace is unmissable with its vibrant towers and complex ornament.

One among my very own favourites is the Castelo dos Mouros, the ruined Moorish Citadel which as soon as defended the realm and nonetheless clings to the hillside – excellent for sparking the creativeness.

The identical goes for Quinta da Regaleira: constructed at first of the twentieth century, its gardens are filled with grottos, caves, ruins and twisting paths, to not point out the well-known Initiation Effectively. However you could possibly additionally go to the Palacio Nacional amongst different sights – take a look at my ideas for every part it is advisable to now about visiting Sintra with children.

In search of the perfect locations to remain in Lisbon with children? Try my Plum Information evaluation of our nice self-catering residence close to Praca do Comercio and the Arco da Rua Augusta

*first printed 2019, up to date 2023*

PIN FOR LATER: THINGS TO DO IN LISBON WITH KIDS

My top things to do in Lisbon with kids - the best family-friendly attractions and activities in the capital of Portugal. Perfect for a family city break, with museums, quirky transport, custard tarts and castles

Disclosure: This submit comprises affiliate hyperlinks – any purchases you make are unaffected however I could obtain a small fee

Citadel/Alfama road/Santa Justa raise/cable automotive/Belem Tower/seaside copyright MummyTravels, all different pictures courtesy Depositphotos

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