Lisbon Alfama

Alfama is not only Lisbon's oldest neighborhood , but also one of its most fascinating. Situated in the hills between São Jorge Castle and the Tagus River, Alfama is a mosaic of narrow streets, historic buildings and authentic cultural experiences that offer a true reflection of Lisbon's rich history. Walking through Alfama is like traveling back in time, where every corner has a story.

The history of Alfama dates back to Moorish times. Its ancient streets and alleys have stood the test of time, survived earthquakes and conquered empires, with each layer of history adding to its charm. No visit to Alfama is complete without exploring São Jorge Castle. The castle offers not only historical information, but also some of the best views over Lisbon and the Tagus.

Alfama is a neighborhood full of history, culture and authentic experiences. Whether you stroll through the labyrinthine streets, enjoy a tram ride or enjoy the views, Alfama will never fail to enchant you.

Explore Alfama by foot

The Alfama neighborhood forms the nucleus of Lisbon's historic center. A visit is definitely worth it. Everyone will find their corner, viewpoint, shop or restaurant here. Take the time for a walking tour. You can drift without any problem. Start wherever you want, the tour is possible from several directions. Of course, many accompanied tours are offered. For visitors with limited mobility, we recommend a scooter or tram tour.

However, Alfama can be difficult to navigate due to the labyrinthine streets and steep hills. But actually it's not a problem, because when you go up you walk towards the castle, when you go down you walk towards the river. It's best to have a map or GPS handy. But these challenges are part of what makes discovering Alfama such an adventure.

Is Alfama safe?

Alfama is generally safe for tourists. As in any urban area, it is advisable to remain vigilant and take care of your valuables. The local community is welcoming and the area remains popular with travelers.

Take tram number 28 to Alfama  

The iconic tram number 28 crosses Alfama, offering a panoramic and nostalgic ride. It's a convenient way to explore the neighborhood while resting your feet. The Feira da Ladra or "Thieves' Market" is a popular flea market that takes place every Tuesday and Saturday. It's a treasure trove of vintage items, antiques and unique souvenirs. .

The best places to visit in Alfama

Explore Alfama on your own

  1. Museu do Fado
  2. Chafariz d'El Rei
  3. Palácio Vila Flor
  4. Largo de São Rafael
  5. Alfama - Santa Luzia - Fado Museum
  6. Casa dos Bicos / José Saramago Foundation
  7. Lisbon Cathedral
  8. Museu de Lisboa - Teatro Romano
  9. Penafiel Palace
  10. Escadinhas São Miguel
  11. Igreja Paroquial de São Miguel
  12. Lift Santa Luzia
  13. Miradouro de Santa Luzia
  14. Miradouro das Portas do Sol
  15. Miradouro do Recolhimento
  16. Rua das Escolas Gerais
  17. Rua São Tomé
  18. Church Menino de Deus
  19. Jardim das pichas murchas
  20. Castelo de S. Jorge
  21. Calçada de São Vicente
  22. Lisbon Army Museum
  23. Feira da Ladra
  24. National Pantheon
  25. National Pantheon
  26. Mercado de Santa Clara
  27. Church of São Vicente de Fora
  28. Rua da Voz do Operário
  29. Largo da Graça
  30. Convent of Our Mother of Grace
  31. Grace Church
  32. Miradouro da Graça
  33. Travessa Pereira
  34. Rua do Sol à Graça

Frequently asked question: Is Alfama dangerous?

No, you can stroll through the streets of Alfama without any worries. It's saving.

Tip - Be careful in crowds. For example, tram, metro in your valuables

The Lisbon Cathedral

The Sé de Lisboa, also known as Sé de Lisboa, is the oldest church in the city and a significant historical landmark. Its origins date back to the 12th century, when it was built by the Moors after the reconquest of Lisbon. The cathedral combines several architectural styles, including Romanesque, Gothic and Baroque elements, reflecting its long history. The main portal and Gothic rose window are particularly impressive. In addition to its architectural splendor, the Cathedral houses important religious relics and tombs, including that of Saint Vincent, patron saint of Lisbon. The cathedral symbolizes the city's religious and cultural identity and is a must-see for all visitors.

The pantheon

The Lisbon Pantheon, officially the National Pantheon, is located in the Alfama neighborhood and is an important national monument. Originally built as the church of Santa Engrácia in the 17th century, it was rededicated as the Pantheon in the 20th century. Some of the most important Portuguese figures are buried here, including fado singer Amália Rodrigues, writers Almeida Garrett and others. Unlike other European pantheons, it is not home to kings or famous sailors. However, the National Pantheon pays homage to Portugal's cultural heritage and offers a unique insight into its history.

From the roof of the Pantheon you can enjoy an impressive view over Lisbon and the historic area of ​​Alfama.

The Castle of São Jorge

Lisbon's São Jorge Castle sits majestically on a hill in the historic Alfama neighborhood and offers impressive views over the city and the Tagus River. The first fortifications date back to the 2nd century BC and were built by the Romans. The castle acquired its current form in the 11th century under the Moors. In 1147 it was conquered by D. Afonso I and served for a long time as a royal residence. Today the castle is an important landmark and a popular destination for tourists. In addition to visiting the well-preserved walls and towers, the palace complex also offers archaeological sites and a small museum that impressively documents its eventful history.

The best viewpoints in Alfama

Some of the best viewpoints in Lisbon are in Alfama. Miradouro de Santa Luzia and Miradouro das Portas do Sol offer stunning panoramic views over the neighborhood and the Tagus River, perfect for photography enthusiasts. Although quieter compared to other parts of Lisbon, Alfama comes alive at night with fado venues. The melancholic melodies of fado are an integral part of Portuguese culture and it is essential to see a live performance.

Arrival and departure to Alfama

The nearest metro station is Terreiro do Paco or Santa Apolónia. (Here you can find the Lisabona metro map).

The best way to explore Alfama is on foot. However, it is constantly going up (towards the castle) or down towards the Tagus River.

Let yourself go, don't be afraid of getting lost, you will always come back.

For visitors with reduced mobility, we recommend an organized tour or tuk tuks.

Tuk Tuk in der Alfama- Lissabon
Tuk Tuk in der Alfama- Lissabon

With the tram through Alfama

With tram number 12 or number 28 you can explore the picturesque streets of Alfama. Here are some tips for your trip:

  • Boarding time: Go early in the morning or later to avoid crowds. There are often long queues at departure stations such as Martim Moniz
  • Hop-on-hop-off: Use the tram as a hop-on hop-off service to get off at interesting stations and explore the surrounding area.
  • Tickets: Buy your tickets in advance, for example at kiosks or metro stations, to save time and money.
  • Take care of your valuables

 Day trip to Alfama  

A day trip to Alfama can be quite affordable. Budget for transportation, basic meals at local restaurants, and entrance fees to historic sites. In general, it's easy to survive on a moderate budget and still enjoy everything Alfama has to offer. For those who want to fully immerse themselves in the city, a stay in Alfama is highly recommended. There are countless charming guesthouses and boutique hotels that offer a warm and authentic Portuguese experience.

Restaurants in Alfama


Alfama is not the place where you have a wide variety of luxury restaurants. Here you will find small, picturesque family restaurants serving traditional Portuguese cuisine.

On the map you will find a selection of recommended restaurants

Fado in Alfama 

Fado, the Portuguese musical form full of longing and melancholy, has deep connections with Alfama, Lisbon's oldest neighborhood. Alfama is one of the historic centers of Fado, where this moving music found its origins in narrow streets and taverns. The local population used Fado to musically express their life stories, joys and sufferings. Today, visitors to Alfama's many fado houses and taverns can experience authentic live performances that keep the traditional and emotional depth of this musical form alive. Alfama and Fado are, therefore, inextricably linked and reflect the cultural soul of Lisbon.

Visit to the Fado Museum in Alfama

The Fado Museum in Lisbon is dedicated to the traditional Portuguese musical form Fado. It offers a comprehensive overview of the history and culture of Fado, supported by exhibitions, interactive displays and audiovisual presentations. The museum displays rare instruments, historical records and costumes, and also offers live performances that allow you to authentically experience the emotional depth and beauty of Fado.

Where can you listen to Fado in Alfama?

If you are looking for authentic Fado in Alfama, here is a list of our recommendations where you can enjoy this unique musical experience.

> Adega dos Fadistas  - Rua dos remedios 102 rota

> Alfama Grill-  Rua da Regeueira 26 -  rota

> Casa de Linhares -  Arco de Jesus 7 - rota

> Coração de Alfama - Travess terreiro do trigo 8 - rota

> Coração da Sé - Travessa do Almargem 4 - rota

> Esquina de Alfama -     R. de São Pedro 4, - rota

The Graça neighborhood

The Graça neighborhood borders directly on Alfama and is home to Lisbon's most famous flea market, Feira da Ladra, as well as other places of interest.