Lisbon, a bustling city steeped in culture, art, and history, is located in sunny Portugal’s hilly coastal region. Like any capital city, Lisbon is a beehive of activity and a hot spot for tourists from across the globe. Although famous for scuba diving, you can do tons of other activities in Lisbon. Here are three exciting things to do in Lisbon when you’re not exploring the deep waters.
Ride Tram 28 Through Alfama
Alfama lies snugly on the periphery of Lisbon. This tiny district is the oldest in the city and offers a picturesque landscape that will have you mesmerized. If the maze of cobbled streets doesn’t leave you in awe, explore Alfama’s ancient castles and get lost in the country’s rich history. Around every corner, you’ll find independent shops, trendy cafes, and delightful plazas with steep climbs that lead to panoramic views. If you get tired of trekking, take tram 28 to get to your destination. Along the way, you’ll enjoy stunning scenery of popular sites like St. George’s Martin and Campo Ourique. But the real prize is the labyrinth of traditional houses that make up Alfama. Pop into one of the trendy cafes and order an um cafe, a rich, chocolatey espresso made from the country’s finest coffee beans. Afterward, treat yourself to a late afternoon of Fado music and visit the Santa Luzia Church.
Visit the Tile Museum
Need to get your fix of museums? Then put the National Tile Museum (National Museum of the Azulejo) on your bucket list. This museum showcases the history of craft-making and decorative tiles that have become part and parcel of European culture. Inside the museum, you’ll find the same tiles that line the streets of Lisbon in all their full beauty and splendor. The best part of the exhibition is the blue-hued azulejos. This famous ceramic artwork is what gave Portugal its reputation for ceramic craftsmanship. Ceramic lovers will tell you that Portugal is the ultimate haven for interior decor enthusiasts because of all the beautiful tiles in all shapes and colors. Words may not be enough to depict how gorgeous the museum is; you’ll just have to see it for yourself.
Spend a Day at Oceanarium (Oceanario de Lisboa)
Don’t let your beginner scuba diving skills stop you from exploring Lisbon’s diverse marine life. The oceanarium is more than just an indoor aquarium; it’s an entire world. This is the place to be with more than 8,000 different species and one million gallons of water. Aside from the many sea creatures, you can also feast your eyes on the birds, mammals, and amphibians of Portugal’s coast. Tour the exhibits and learn about the country’s biodiversity and thriving ecosystem.
For an up close look at Lisbon’s aquatic fauna, your only option is to slip into your scuba diving gear and take the plunge. Newbies, however, will have to take a few scuba diving classes before they hit the water, but this only takes a few days. After these classes, you’ll be ready for the ultimate scuba diving getaway, with myriads of scuba diving adventures.