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Tower of Belém located on the Tagus River, Portugal

Scenic cruising Tagus River

Lisbon presents a lively symphony of sound and color—soft light, red-tiled rooftops, building facades of patterned tiles, creaking yellow streetcars, narrow streets that open into grand sunny praças (squares) at the edge of the formidable Tagus River. It’s easy to see why the Portuguese capital of Lisbon is one of Europe’s favorite cities.

Lisbon is understandably proud of its beaches, public art, singular modern architecture and 300 days of sunshine a year. The city manages to juggle the relaxed vibe of Southern Europe while recognizing the gravity of its history and heritage. 

What makes Lisbon unique is that it managed to preserve layers of all the empires that conquered this land: the Romans, Visigoths, Moors and all the Portuguese Christian kings. Most recently, Lisbon has been stormed by a young generation of artists, cultural entrepreneurs and restaurateurs who are taking back the city and converting it into an oceanside playground.