Neighbourhood of Alfama
Lisbon has an unmistakable skyline if we watch it from the river. We will see the profile of the hill on which the Castelo de São Jorge stands, and down that hill towards the river, the old and traditional neighbourhood of Alfama, one of the main touristic attractions of Lisbon. It was the place where the Arabs first settled because of its strategic slope location overlooking the river.
Start Your Alfama Visit from the Baixa or Chiado neighbourhoods or choose a lighter, fun option by taking tram 28 that takes you up near to Castelo. Make sure you take time to see Sé de Lisboa on the way up to the Castle.
Alfama is a world of its own, with its crooked small streets, dainty patios, old houses and traditional cafés. Lively nights get livelier in June, with the colourful celebrations of Lisbon's patron saint, Saint Anthony or Santo António. Don't miss it for the world, it is Lisbon at its best, with street decorations, live music and dance and lots of typical food and wine.
Head for the much celebrated and Instagram absolute winner photo Wall of Flowers outside Saint Anthony's Church.
After the conquest of Lisbon in 1147, King Afonso Henriques decided to build the Royal residence on top of the hill, the Castle of São Jorge. Centuries later, in 1511, King Manuel I, one of Portugal's greatest Discoveries mentors, decided to build a more luxurious palace on the site of the current Praça do Comercio, where the vessels arrived and left from, and the Castelo de São Jorge became a mix of prison, theatre and weapons arsenal.
The earthquake of 1755 damaged the walls of the castle, and its reconstruction included landscaped areas, beautiful gardens and, of course, great viewpoints.