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Things to do in Lisbon

Santa Catarina – Our neighbourhood

 

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Santa Catarina’s neighbourhood is the perfect place to stay during your visit to Lisbon since it is a residential and quiet neighborhood, located in the historic heart of the city.

Santa Catarina’s neighbourhood is the perfect place to stay during your visit to Lisbon since it is a residential and quiet neighborhood, located in the historic heart of the city. Here it is still possible to live the spirit of old Lisbon, the narrow streets with the clothes stretched out the windows, which mixes with the new cosmopolitan spirit of the city

All hours of the day are a good way to get to know this lovely neighborhood, visit the traditional shops, the restaurants of typical Portuguese cuisine and have a coffee in the cozy pastries, as do the local residents every day. You can also enter the more trendy shops, which have recently opened and coexist side by side with the older ones.

One of our favorite places is the viewpoint of Santa Catarina (or Adamastor viewpoint), whose view over the Tagus river is one of the most beautiful in Lisbon. As the evening approaches, it is fascinating to watch the sun touch the river. The terraces are the ideal places to end the day or start the evening, enjoying the relaxed atmosphere that makes our city unique.

The neighborhood of Santa Catarina is located between the bohemian Bairro Alto and the elegant district of Chiado, less than 7 minutes walk from the riverside area of the Tagus. The famous tram 28, which runs through Lisbon’s historical area, crosses our neighborhood and has a stop located 100 meters from our door.

At check-in, or during your stay, our team will explain to you in detail the city map and answer all your questions to help you organize your tours. We are delighted to introduce you to the hidden charms of Lisbon.

Bairro Alto / Príncipe Real / Bica

500 meters

5 minute walk

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Less than a 5 minute walk from 54 Santa Catarina, you can find the bohemian Bairro Alto, containing some of the best restaurants, pubs and Fado houses of Lisbon.

Less than a 5 minute walk from 54 Santa Catarina, you can find the bohemian Bairro Alto, containing some of the best restaurants, pubs and Fado houses of Lisbon.

Built in the late XVI century, Bairro Alto is one of the most typical neighborhoods of the city, with narrow stone streets, secular houses and traditional market. It was once a place for sailors of bad reputation and prostitution, but since the 1980s it has become the best-known area of Lisbon nightlife.

Its diversity makes it unique. If during the day it seems like a village where all people get to know each other, at night it becomes a euphoric environment with a crowd of owls scattered throughout the streets. It contains more and more fashion stores, ateliers, galleries and alternative spaces.

Going through Calçada do Combro, you can get inside the Bica neighbourhood, known for its world famous elevator. It is yet another neighbourhood that runs downhill.

The charming Príncipe Real neighborhood is to the north of Bairro Alto and is known for its antique shops and gay bars, but it is also a residential neighborhood with gardens, beautiful squares and secular mansions. It is one of the most sought areas to live, stroll or enjoy a relaxed meal in the trendiest restaurants. Its Botanical Garden is considered one of the best scientific gardens in Europe.

Chiado

500 meters

10 minute walk

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The elegant and sophisticated district of Chiado is less than a 10-minute walk from 54 Santa Catarina. Although it has always been a noble area, the Chiado has reinvented itself in recent years and has become the center of the most cosmopolitan trends of the city. It is also the neighborhood of theaters, churches, old bookstores, centenary cafes, art galleries and shops of major international brands.

The elegant and sophisticated district of Chiado is less than a 10-minute walk from 54 Santa Catarina. Although it has always been a noble area, the Chiado has reinvented itself in recent years and has become the center of the most cosmopolitan trends of the city. It is also the neighborhood of theaters, churches, old bookstores, centenary cafes, art galleries and shops of major international brands.

The streets of this Parisian-inspired neighborhood take us on a journey through the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, the Belle Époque, when writers and intellectuals such as Fernando Pessoa and Eça de Queiroz frequented their cafes. Today, the streets and squares are animated by musicians and other artists at any time of the day. There is a wide range of restaurants in the neighborhood, some of them distinguished with Michelin stars, who have been able to reinvent traditional Portuguese gastronomy with art.

Luís de Camões Square, located between Chiado and Bairro Alto, has a bronze statue of the poet Luis de Camões in the center and is one of the city’s favorite meeting places, especially at night, and one of the main stop of 28 Tram. Next to this square, in the Largo do Chiado, mythical café “A Brasileira“, which was frequented by the poet Fernando Pessoa, is a must for those who visit Lisbon.

Largo do Carmo (Carmo Square) is another of the most emblematic places in this neighborhood. Its terraces, in the shade of jacarandas, invite you to take a short pause in your walk. In this square is the famous Convent of the Carmo, of gothic architecture, destroyed by the 1755 earthquake.

In this square you will also find the Santa Justa elevator, from which you can see St. Jorge castle, the Tagus river and all downtown. This iron elevator, has more than a hundred years old, was designed by Ponsard, a disciple of Master Gustave Eiffel.

Cais do Sodré

1 Km

10 minute walk

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Cais do Sodré, located in the renovated riverside area, has lost its reputation as the red light district of Lisbon to become a modern and young area with original restaurants and lots of nightlife.

Cais do Sodré, located in the renovated riverside area, has lost its reputation as the red light district of Lisbon to become a modern and young area with original restaurants and lots of nightlife.

The symbol of this renovation is a street with pink painted asphalt, Rua Nova do Carvalho, which is today known as Pink Street and became the meeting point of many Lisbon people until dawn.

In one of the buildings of this street once operated a brothel called Pensão Amor. Today it is an intimate and seductive bar, considered one of the area’s avant-garde icons.

Ribeira Market (also known as Mercado 24 de Julho) has been the main fish, fruit and vegetable market in Lisbon since 1892. When it opened, the structure of the building was iron and had a large dome, something unusual in this kind of buildings. In 2014 the management of space was acquired by Time Out magazine, which developed a new concept, opening about 30 restaurants where you can find a wide variety of traditional and local dishes and products.

The so-called Ribeira das Naus, located between Praça do Comércio and Cais do Sodré, where the ships that took Portuguese navigators to the four corners of the world were built, is now a large garden walk with a staircase leading down to the Tagus River.

Baixa (Praça do Comércio)

1.5 Km

15 minute tram

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Lisbon Downtown (Baixa de Lisboa) was completely rebuilt after the earthquake of 1755, in an innovative urban model that rises from Rossio Square to the river, delimited by Cais das Colunas. It is formed by a set of straight and perpendicular streets, having the central axis in the Street Augusta.

Lisbon Downtown (Baixa de Lisboa) was completely rebuilt after the earthquake of 1755, in an innovative urban model that rises from Rossio Square to the river, delimited by Cais das Colunas. It is formed by a set of straight and perpendicular streets, having the central axis in the Street Augusta.

Many of the streets are pedestrian and connect a set of monumental squares. The Triumphal Arch of Augusta Street makes the passage to the commercial area of the city. In recent years downtown has been reborn as a commercial and tourist center.

Praça do Comércio (Commerce Square) is one of the largest squares in Europe. In recent years it has become an important leisure area, housing cafés, restaurants and terraces, such as Martinho da Arcada, famous for preserving the table where the poet Fernando Pessoa sat. This square is an ex-libris of the city and there is hope of coming to be recognized as World Heritage.

Rossio Square is the oldest square, being known by the Dona Maria Theater, its fountains, shoe shineers, shops and cafes. It is here that you can taste the famous ginjinha, in the small centenary cellar with the same name. On the way to Restauradores Square, you will find the Rossio train station, a remarkable building in neomanueline style. The station serves as a stop-off for those who live in Sintra.

Around downtown, you will find the typical and bohemian neighborhoods of Alfama and Bairro Alto, where in the middle of the 19th century fado was born – the musical expression of Lisbon.

Costa do Castelo / Sé

2.4 Km

15 minute tram

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The Castle neighborhood is considered the cradle of the city of Lisbon, because it was from there that the city grew. Located north of the streets of Santiago and São Tomé, in this small neighborhood you can find houses with medieval characteristics, displaying coats of arms on the doorsteps.

The Castle neighborhood is considered the cradle of the city of Lisbon, because it was from there that the city grew. Located north of the streets of Santiago and São Tomé, in this small neighborhood you can find houses with medieval characteristics, displaying coats of arms on the doorsteps.

Located on this hill, at the highest point of Lisbon, the St. George Castle dominates the city. The impressive fortress that surrounds it was built in the 11th century, during the Moorish occupation, and was conquered the Moors by D. Afonso Henriques, 1st king of Portugal. Today it is one of the Viewpoints of Lisbon, where you can enjoy an impressive view of the city and the Tagus river.

On the southern slope of the castle hill, there are the Roman Theater ruins, only discovered in 1798 during the reconstruction of the city after the earthquake of 1755.

Sé de Lisboa (Mother church of Lisbon) is a mandatory stop on the way to the castle. After taking the city, D. Afonso Henriques ordered to destroy an existing mosque to build on it a mother church. Sé de Lisboa is the largest symbol of romantic architecture in the city and gives its name to the small district where it is located.

Alfama

2 Km

20 minutes tram

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This medieval neighbourhood, founded by Arabs, who survived the great earthquake of 1755, is the second oldest neighbourhood in Europe. Its architecture features peculiar features of old and colorful buildings with sloping roofs.

This medieval neighbourhood, founded by Arabs, who survived the great earthquake of 1755, is the second oldest neighbourhood in Europe. Its architecture features peculiar features of old and colorful buildings with sloping roofs. Strolling through Alfama is an invitation to get lost in its labyrinth of alleys and narrow streets, with clothes drying at the windows and witness the conversations between neighbors. In this unique place you can hear fado that echoes in the streets. You can also enter inside a typical restaurant, lined with tile panels, to taste traditional dishes.

Going down to the river you enter again into the 21st century, with old warehouses that have been converted into trendy spaces, such as DeliDelux, place to stop for brunch, Bica do Sapato restaurant and Lux, considered by the New York Times as one of the best nightclubs in the World.

Every year, in June, the neighborhood attracts thousands of people to the popular parties of Santo António. During the festivities the streets are adorned with colorful ribbons and balloons, outdoor stalls are set up where you can taste sangria and sardines. The atmosphere is animated with music and popular marches.

Av. Liberdade

1 Km

15 minute walk

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Avenida da Liberdade (Freedom Avenue), between Restauradores square and Marquês de Pombal, is one of the main avenues of the city. It was thought to be the Lisbon version of the Parisian Champs-Elysées.

Avenida da Liberdade (Freedom Avenue), between Restauradores square and Marquês de Pombal, is one of the main avenues of the city. It was thought to be the Lisbon version of the Parisian Champs-Elysées. It is a leafy avenue, with beautiful old buildings, with wide walks covered with Portuguese sidewalk, gardens, statues, kiosks and terraces.

This is also a place with theaters and commerce, where top class international brands show their products.

Belém

7.5 Km

25 minutes tram

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Belém is the historical neighbourhood of Descobrimentos (Discovery period), where 500 years ago Portuguese navigators travellled in their caravels onto their epic voyages. It is a neighborhood filled with monuments, museums, gardens, cafes and restaurants.

Belém is the historical neighbourhood of Descobrimentos (Discovery period), where 500 years ago Portuguese navigators travellled in their caravels onto their epic voyages. It is a neighborhood filled with monuments, museums, gardens, cafes and restaurants.

Belém Tower and Jerónimos Monastery are two jewels of Portuguese architecture, classified by UNESCO as World Heritage. They represent the celebration of the discovery of the sea route to India and the opening of trading commerce amongst the portuguese colonies.

Located at the Tejo riverside, the Padrão dos Descobrimentos is a more recent monument that also brings back the epic of the Portuguese maritime discoveries through colossal sculptures of the heroes back then.

Other places to visit are the new Museu dos Coches (old carriages museum), which houses a unique collection in the world, and the Cultural Center of Belém, where you can see a collection of modern art of world-wide level.

However, the space that receives the largest number of visits is the Old Confectionery of Belém where the famous “Pastéis de Belém” are made, which, according to legend, continue to be made following a old secret recipe.

The beautiful botanical garden and the Ajuda Royal Palace, at the top of the hill, are other places of interest.

Lisbon Viewpoints

 

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Lisbon is known as the city of seven hills. At the top of the hills there are viewpoints that provide quiet surroundings and breathtaking views of the city and the river.

Lisbon is known as the city of seven hills. At the top of the hills there are viewpoints that provide quiet surroundings and breathtaking views of the city and the river.

The most famous are the viewpint of São Pedro de Alcântara, of Santa Catarina (Adamastor) and the one of the St. Jorge Castle.

Trams and Elevators

 

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To get to the highest places in town, with breathtaking views, you have several trams at your disposal. The elevators and trams are a common way of transportation for the Lisbon people, and one of the most romantic ways to travel through historic neighbourhoods.

To get to the highest places in town, with breathtaking views, you have several trams at your disposal. The elevators and trams are a common way of transportation for the Lisbon people, and one of the most romantic ways to travel through historic neighbourhoods. Tram 28 (elétrico 28), located 2 minutes walking from our door, crosses the whole historical center. It is the most famous and best tram to take us up and down hill.

Tram 15 connects the historical center of the city to the Belém area. Its nearest stop is less than 5 minutes walking from the door of 54 Santa Catarina.

Sintra

30 km

1 hour train

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The romantic Sintra village is less than an hour’s journey by train from Rossio Station in Lisbon.

The romantic Sintra village is less than an hour’s journey by train from Rossio Station in Lisbon.

It is a charming little town, surrounded by lush vegetation. Its mild climate attracted the nobility and the elite of Portugal, who built there exquisite palaces, extravagant residences and decorative gardens. The variety of monuments and historic buildings have made Sintra recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.

The extensive sections of the walls of the Moorish Castle crown the peaks of the Sintra’s Mountain. The Park and the Pena Palace, also located at the top of the mountain range, are the ultimate exponent of 19th century Romanticism in Portugal.

The 54 Santa Catarina through its partnership with the company Eixos & Milhas organizes personalized tours for his guests. Tell us where you want to go and we will have at your disposal a car and a driver to transport you in an exclusive and personalized way.

Cascais

30 km

1 hour train

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Cascais is located in a beautiful white sand bay bathed by the Atlantic. In the last century, the proximity of Lisbon and the mild climate have turned this small fishing village into a place used by the European aristocracy for its summer holidays. Today, it is an important seaside resort and one of the most sophisticated destinations in Portugal.

Cascais is located in a beautiful white sand bay bathed by the Atlantic. In the last century, the proximity of Lisbon and the mild climate have turned this small fishing village into a place used by the European aristocracy for its summer holidays. Today, it is an important seaside resort and one of the most sophisticated destinations in Portugal.

The city center still holds the charms of yesteryear, with its squares, museums, shops and restaurants that attract visitors all year. The nightlife is lively with many trendy bars, restaurants and nightclubs. The city also hosts an extensive program of concerts and cultural events.

Do not forget to visit the marina, the old lighthouses, the fortresses and the Citadel of the seventeenth century. On the coast, about 3 km from the center, we find Boca do Inferno (Inferno Mouth), where you can enjoy the spectacle of the indomitable sea against the rocks. Continuing the walk along the sea you will find Guincho beach, a beach of choice for surfing.

In the opposite direction you can walk near the sea to Estoril, where it stays one of the largest and oldest casinos in Europe, along with stunning luxury villas facing the sea. The film festivals and the legendary Estoril jazz concerts are an international attraction. There are many sports events in the area including Estoril Golf and Estoril Open, an international tennis court.

Cascais is less than an hour’s journey by train from Lisbon’s Cais do Sodré station. If you prefer, 54 Santa Catarina, through its partnership with the company Eixos & Milhas, organizes personalized tours for his guests. We are pleased to offer you a car and driver to transport you in an exclusive way and personalize it.

Santa Catarina
Bairro Alto
Príncipe Real
Bica
Baixa
Costa do Castelo
Alfama Lisboa
Av. Liberdade
Belém
Miradouro lisboa
Miradouro de São Pedro de Alcântara
Miradouro De Nsa. Senhora Do Monte
Miradouro do Monte Agudo
Miradouro da Graça
Miradouro do Castelo de São Jorge
Miradouro de Santa Catarina
Miradouro das Portas do Sol
54 Santa Catarina boutique Aparthotel