Lisbon/Bairro Alto

article - Lisbon/Bairro Alto

Bairro Alto is a district in Lisbon, Portugal. Beyond Bairro Alto itself, the district includes other neighbourhoods, notably Chiado and Príncipe Real. Bairro Alto is recognized for being Lisbon’s centre of trendy, youthful dining and nightlife. Many high-end international shops can be found in Chiado and along Avenida da Liberdade, a wide, tree-lined boulevard.

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Map of Lisbon/Bairro Alto

Three Lisbon Metro lines serve the district:

  •  Amarela  — Marquês de Pombal, Rato
  •  Azul  — Marquês de Pombal, Avenida, Restauradores, Baixa–Chiado
  •  Verde  — Baixa–Chiado, Cais do Sodré

Five tram routes pass through the district:  15E  18E  24E  25E  28E 

Ruins of Igreja do Carmo
Jardim de S. Pedro de Alcântara
  • 38.712-9.140571 Igreja do Carmo, Largo do Carmo (Lift stop Rua da Prata  54E  or metro station Baixa-Chiado  Azul  Verde ), +351 213 460 473, secretaria@arqueologos.pt. Oct-May: M-Sa 10:00-18:00; Jun-Sep: M-Sa 10:00-19:00; closed Su, 1 Jan, 1 May, 25 Dec. The hilltop church of the former convent of Carmo is a towering memorial of the 1755 earthquake, which made the roof of the church collapse, but the Gothic arches of the nave survived. The church was preserved that way and now serves as the Museu Arqueológico in the extant parts of the building. The museum houses a hodgepodge of archaeological artifacts from around Portugal and the world including mummies from South America, tombs of Portuguese rulers, and the Stations of the Cross on 18th-century painted tiles. The assorted artifacts are not well explained, but the church is a sight to see and visitors come to relax in the grassy nave of the church, and draw or photograph the spires. €4 (adults), €3 (students/seniors), €3.20 (Lisbon card), free (children under 15). (updated May 2017)
  • 38.71497-9.144061 Jardim de São Pedro de Alcântara (Mirador), Rua S. Pedro de Alcântara (Tram stop Elevador da Glória  24E  or funicular stop Rua Sao Pedro de Alcantara  51E ). Excellent panorama from the lovely terrace/garden on top of Elevador da Glória and northern corner of Bairro Alto. Free.  
  • 38.704167-9.1616671 Museu Nacional de Arte Antiga, Rua das Janelas Verdes, +351 21 391 2800. Tuesday to Sunday: 10:00-18:00; Closed Monday. Portugal’s impressive national art collection, including 14-19th century European painting, artefacts of Portuguese contact with the East and Africa and a collection of ecclesiastical treasures. Highlights include Dürer’s St Jerome, Hieronymus Bosch’s Temptations of St Antony, Nuno Gonçalves’ Adoration of St Vincent, and 16th century Japanese paintings of Portuguese traders. Normal: €6.00. (updated Sep 2018)
  • 38.7079-9.15611 Museu da Marioneta (Puppetry Museum), Convento das Bernardas, Rua da Esperança 146, +351 21 394 2810, museu@museudamarioneta.pt. Tu–F 10:00–18:00, Sa Su closed M. The museum covers the history of puppetry around the world, with an emphasis on Portugal. Various types of puppets are on display. Admission €5, ages 13–25 €2.50, 65+ or disabled €4.30, kids under 13 free; shows €7.50, kids, seniors 65+, and students under 25 €5. (updated Jul 2021)
  • 38.713333333333-9.16055555555561 Basílica da Estrela, Praça da Estrela, +351 21 396 0915, basilica_estrela@sapo.pt. This Neoclassical and Baroque basilica, dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, was built in the late 1700s by Queen Maria I in fulfilment of a vow. The Queen is entombed in the right transept. Among the artworks is a nativity scene made up of over 500 cork and terracotta figures by Joaquim Machado de Castro. (updated Jul 2021)
  • 38.7148-9.15931 Jardim da Estrela (Jardim Guerra Junqueiro), Praça da Estrela. Daily 07:00–00:00. A 4.6 hectares (11 acres) English-style garden with Romantic inspiration. You can find many plant and bird species here. (updated Jul 2021)
  • 38.7125-9.15361111111111 Palácio de São Bento (Saint Benedict’s Palace). Built in 1598, the palace has served as the home of Portugal’s parliament since 1834. The adjoining São Bento Mansion serves as the prime minister’s residence. (updated Jul 2021)
  • 38.714016-9.1699851 Cemitério dos Prazeres, Praça São João Bosco (Tram 28 to its Western terminus), +351 21 396 1511. daily 09:00–16:30. This large cemetery is packed with majestic gravestones and mausoleums, separated by wide, pedestrian, tree-lined “streets”. Many graves are marked with icons telling something about the person’s role in historical Lisbon. A beautiful respite from the busy city. free. (updated Apr 2016)
  • 38.72223-9.155761 Fundação Arpad Szenes / Vieira da Silva, Praça das Amoreiras, 56/58, +351 21 388-0044, fax: +351 21 3880039, fasvs@fasvs.pt. M-Sa 11:00-19:00, Su 10:00-18:00. This museum is installed in the restored 18th-century former Royal Silk Factory. Its permanent collection covers a wide time period of the works of 20th-century painters Arpad Szenes and Maria Helena Vieira da Silva, and regularly hosts exhibits by their contemporaries. Adults €2.50, students €1.25, kids under 14 free. 
  • 38.7223-9.15911 Aqueduto das Aguas Livres (Tram stop Campolide  24E ). This is a historic aqueduct in the city of Lisbon, Portugal. It is one of the most remarkable examples of 18th-century Portuguese engineering, including the largest stone arch in the world. The main course of the aqueduct covers 18 km, but the whole network of canals extends through nearly 58 km. The Mãe d’Água (Mother of the Water) reservoir of the Amoreiras, the largest of the water reservoirs, was finished in 1834. This reservoir, with a capacity of 5,500 m³ of water, was designed by Carlos Mardel. It is now deactivated and can be visited as part of the Museu da Água (Water Museum).  
  • 38.72449-9.150761 Espaço Novo Banco, Praça Marquês de Pombal, 3A (Marquês de Pombal  Amarela  Azul ), +351 21 350-8975, nbcultura@novobanco.pt. M–F 09:00-15:00. Multifunctional space dedicated to contemporary art, especially photography. Free. (updated Dec 2020)
  • 38.7181-9.148951 Lisbon Botanical Gardens (Jardim Botânico), Rua da Escola Politécnica, 58 (between the Avenida da Liberdade and Bairro Alto). A hidden gem. It was created several hundred years ago, by a King of Portugal at the time of the Discoveries. The story goes that this King wanted one of every type of plant in the world, and although that’s unlikely, there is a huge collection dating back by three or four centuries which is worth checking out. And there’s something quite eerie about seeing plants or huge trees from completely different climates growing next to each other in apparent harmony. A great place to take a picnic – this green oasis is completely surrounded by city but even the city sounds filter out. Entrance €2 adults, discounts for kids, seniors and students.  

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