A couple of years ago, Lisbon was voted the number one cruise destination in Europe. The accolade was earned at the 2016 World Travel Awards which celebrate high achievers within the tourism industry from all over the world. With 512,000 visitors stopping here in 2015 and even more thought to have done so in the years since, the Portuguese capital is definitely becoming more and more popular with cruisers. Here are just a few reasons why we love it so much.
As you sail into Lisbon from the Atlantic Ocean, your ship will travel a short way down the River Tagus to reach the cruise terminal. This is a great time to be standing on deck as you’ll see some impressive sights along the bank and overhead. Sailing past the Belem Tower and the Monument To Discoveries (both on the port side of the ship), and underneath the stunning 25th April Bridge will create a memorable welcome. Once in dock, you can also take some time to admire the 1940s architecture of the terminal building.
The Proximity To The Action
One of the big reasons why Lisbon is so accommodating to cruise passengers is that the main city centre is in walking distance from the port area. The journey is quite flat too, so most people will have no problem making the short trip inland to see the major sights. Obviously, there is always the option to jump in a taxi if you prefer.
Whilst the main season for Mediterranean cruises is from April-October, the weather in Lisbon is usually sunny and comfortable throughout most of the year. Not only does this mean you can travel in shoulder season without having to miss out on the good weather, you can also consider cruising into the city for some winter sun.
With a cuisine that features Mediterranean staples, Piri-Piri spices made famous by Nando’s and some heart-warming dishes unique to Portugal, your taste buds are sure to fall in love with Lisbon. The city is famous for its seafood, smoked meats and cheese, which you will find featuring in a variety of different dishes. Anyone with a slight sweet tooth will also enjoy one or two Pastel de Nata - small tarts consisting of a crème brûlée-style filling inside pastry.
There is plenty to see and do during your time in port, including the chance to get a closer look at the beautiful Belem Tower if you didn’t catch a glimpse on the way in. There are also many museums, showcasing art and archaeology; the Moorish São Jorge Castle, built on a hill where fortifications have been in place since the Roman times; and the aquarium, perfect for those rare days when the sun doesn’t make an appearance.
As you can see, there are many reasons why Lisbon was named as Europe’s best cruise port. If you wish to visit the city, contact us and we’ll help you find the perfect itinerary.