Planning a city break in Lisbon

planning a long weekend away

Last year myself and Laura were treated to an amazing holiday for 10 days in Sardinia both on land and sea, it was an unforgettable experience and one of my favourite holidays ever. We intended for a repeat this year but unfortunately were not able to travel the same dates and needed a summer holiday backup plan.

We both researched different destinations and flight scenarios as once again having to travel from Jersey proved not to be the most convenient or cost friendly, we decided to push back the holiday to late September/early October. This made it easier to find flight destinations at more reasonable prices.

Lisbon ended up being our number one candidate and Laura did an excellent job at researching flights and connections. The city boasts some natural advantages: perfect weather, scenic hills, and a beautiful coastal location. It doesn’t hurt either that I’m half Portuguese and knowing the lingo should help when we are there.

Planning A Trip To Lisbon

Lisbon Travel Tips


After a successful trip earlier this year in Budapest using Airbnb, we decided to do the same again. We found what we hope will be a well-suited studio apartment in the heart of the city. Located in Bairro Alto, we’re promised a lively bohemian style atmosphere.

When looking for recommendations we used various sources online and offline. Our main requirements were food/bars, shops/hangouts and the odd tourist attraction to visit, simple.

Foursquare & Instagram

Using a variety of methods including my personal favourite foursquare and Instagram myself and Laura sought out these 3 food spots which include: Ponte FinalCervejaria Ramiro & Petiscaria Ideal. We searched first by food then location and Foursquare ranks the most popular spots and then breaks them down into different types of food styles. Then we track them down via location or hashtag searches in Instagram to see more pictures of dishes and location. There are various other ways but this seems to work best for us, and the choices really are endless the more you filter. You can either create boards via Instagram to group all your finds or create lists just for say “Lisbon Food Spots” in Foursquare.

Planning a city break

Planning a city break

Photo by Sophie Winter Photography


The New York Times’ 36-hours guidebook series is one of our favourites and we found it an invaluable resource for Budapest and now our Lisbon trip. Here are our top 3 picks:

LX Factory was once a grand manufacturing complex in Alcântara is now a creative and dynamic space for everything from art, fashion and fine arts to architecture, music and food.

Sol e Pesca is a low-key, fishing-themed nook with a patio serving a vast array of canned seafood, plus beer & wine.

Atira-te ao Rio, a cozy, modest kitchen featuring classic Portuguese dishes & a waterfront patio with sweeping views.

2 other book sources to consider and equally as good are The 500 Hidden Secrets of LisbonLOST In Lisbon: A City Guide.

Lisbon City Break Planning Tips

Planning a city break

Photo by Sophie Winter Photography

Blog & Travel Sites

When planning a city break, the web can be your best friend. It’s easy to find unique spots and feel like you’re finding a really authentic recommendation. They quite often Laura’s number one resource.

Cereal Magazine doesn’t have an online guide to Lisbon but they do have some great recommendations for other cities so this is a site we always check. We also own all their printed, more in-depth guides.

Suitcase magazine’s photography is always so inspiring. Whether you’re browsing for ideas on where to book flights to next or searching a specific location, their vast expanse of resources is a great place to start.

As far as blogs go Fashion Me Now and Wish Wish Wish have the perfect combo of dairy style holiday snaps combined with carefully curated travel content. Carrie from wish wish wish has spent a lot of time in Portugal over the years with her now Portuguese husband, Miguel. She has a Lisbon guide too which has made Lisbon look so dreamy.


Photos by Ourselves and Sophie Winter Photography





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