Extend your journey into Lisbon on our optional land package during your Portugal river cruises. Modern-day Lisbon is a gorgeous blend of colorful old quarters, lively squares and cafés, cobblestone streets and chic boutiques and galleries.
The Gems of Rossio Square
Rossio Square, officially known as Praça de Don Pedro IV, is the main hub of Lisbon’s cultural center and its most popular meeting place – a title it’s held as far back as the 13th century! Two baroque fountains flank the main square which has an 88-foot-tall column of Pedro IV. The prestigious National Theatre of Dona Maria II hosts some of Lisbon’s most exciting shows. Some of the cafés and boutiques date as far back as the 18th century and have their own storied history. The Art Deco-style Café Nicola was a favorite haunt of Portuguese poet Manuel Maria Barbosa du Bocage. For a cherry-flavored taste of Lisbon, head to Ginjinha, where the famed Lisbon spirit (also called Ginjinha) can be imbibed. And don’t forget to take a moment to admire the unique wave impression of Portuguese tiles throughout the square. Portuguese tiles are a unique art form in Portugal and its former colonies like Brazil.
Designated UNESCO World Heritage Sites and two of the ‘Seven Wonders of Portugal,’ both Belém Tower and the Jerónimos Monastery are must-see landmarks. The iconic Belém Tower, sometimes referred to as the Tower of St. Vincent (he is featured as a sculptured stone motif on its exterior), was built in 1515 and was the first and last glimpse many sailors had of Lisbon before departing (or arriving) for the New World. The nearby monastery was built in 1515 and is a prominent example of the Portuguese Late Gothic Manueline architectural style, with high-arched ceilings, stained glass windows and a beautiful golden limestone cloister – which some consider among the most gorgeous in the world. Ornately carved designs of animals, nautical, religious themes and even sea monsters will wow and amaze.