Uptown Lisbon

Portugal, Lisbon Guide (A): Uptown Lisbon

Uptown Lisbon is a business and residential area located in the heart of the town. At first sight, it may seem like it's not a tourist attraction. But, if we look closer, we can find some of the city most beautiful views, parks and museums. We can also check trendy shopping malls and antique cafes.
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Walk Route

Guide Name: Uptown Lisbon
Guide Location: Portugal » Lisbon
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Article (A))
# of Attractions: 11
Tour Duration: 3.0 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 6.6 Km
Author: Sergio Sousa
Author Bio: SergioS is a well-established portuguese journalist, working for a television station. A natural-born “alfacinha” (nickname of Lisbon inhabitants) with a strong passion for his city, traveling and writing.
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • Amalia Rodrigues Garden
  • Eduardo VII Park
  • Marquês de Pombal Square
  • Anastácio Gonçalves Museum
  • Saldanha Square
  • Cafe Versailles
  • Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation
  • Campo Pequeno
  • Entrecampos Square
  • Campo Grande
  • City Museum
1
Amalia Rodrigues Garden

1) Amalia Rodrigues Garden

Beautiful 6,2 hectares garden, named Amália Rodrigues in 2000 to honour the famous portuguese fado singer. A relaxing place, with different environments, that include a big pool of water and an amphitheatre that gives you a breathtaking view over Eduardo VII Park, Liberty Avenue and the Tejo river on the horizon. There are two statues placed at the garden: “Maternity” by colombian sculptor Fernando Botero and “The Secret” from portuguese sculptor António Lagoa Henriques. A luxury restaurant (open from 12:30 to 15:00 and 19:30 to 23:00, closed at Sundays and some Holidays), a cafe with a terrace next to the pool of water (open everyday from 9:00 to 24:00) and a giant portuguese national banner complete the relaxing scenery. Don’t forget to check out the wild ducks that inhabit the park! Amália Rodrigues Garden has free entrance, 24 hours a day.
2
Eduardo VII Park

2) Eduardo VII Park

Lisbon’s central park was named after britain’s Edward VII, who visited Lisbon in 1903 to reafirm the anglo-portuguese alliance. Before that, it was called Liberty Park. It covers one of the city’s seven hills. On top, near Amália Rodrigues Garden, it has a viewpoint, where you can check out the perfectly clipped descending gardens, and the João Cutileiro’s sculpture, in memory of the 25th of April 1974 Revolution. When you walk down the park, you can find, on your right side, the cold greenhouse, Estufa Fria. It’s a well known botanical garden, an oasis inside the city, with exotic plants from all over the world, beautiful waterfalls, small lakes and statuary (open from 9:00 to 17:00, October-March, and from 9:00 from 18:00, April-September; closed January 1st, April 25th, May 1st, December 25th; paid entrance). Estufa fria is currently closed for repairs. The Eduardo VII Park also has a children’s fun zone, a sports pavillion for special events, an exclusive health club and a picnic area. It is also the place for the city’s annual book fair, held every summer for several days.
3
Marquês de Pombal Square

3) Marquês de Pombal Square

Very easy to spot. When you go down Eduardo VII Park, you’ll reach a large roundabout with a tall monument. It’s a radiating point for several avenues, including Avenida da Liberdade, that gives you access to downtown Lisbon. The statue represents Sebastião José de Carvalho e Melo, also known has Marquês de Pombal, portuguese Prime-Minister from 1750 to 1777. He was responsible for rebuilding Lisbon after the great earthquake of 1755. The monument, inaugurated in 1934, shows him looking directly to the downtown area rebuilt under his direction. Below the pedestal you can find an allegory of the earthquake, with broken blocks of stone and tidal waves from Tejo River. The bronze statue of the Marquês de Pombal is at the top of a column, with a lyon, symbol of power, by his side. The base is decorated with some images that represent agriculture and educational reforms made by the Prime-Minister. Lisbon’s coat of arms is also represented in the cobbled area in front of the statue. The square was also an important site for the events that led to the proclamation of the republic (October, 5th, 1910). There is a tourist information point located near the roundabout, just at the end of Eduardo VII Park.
4
Anastácio Gonçalves Museum

4) Anastácio Gonçalves Museum

When you go up from Marquês de Pombal roundabout to Saldanha Square, you must make a stop at this extraordinary museum. You can start by admiring the outside, an architectural prize winning building, that once belong to portuguese artist José Malhoa. It was built in the beginning of the 20th century. The big window in the middle was the artist’s workshop. In 1932, Malhoa’s House was bought by a renowned ophtalmologist, Dr. Anastácio Gonçalves. He had an outstanding appreciation for the arts and organized an extensive collection. Anastácio Gonçalves died in 1965. In 1969, the house became state’s patrimony, according to his wishes. Inside, the museum preserves the collection of paintings, 19th century furniture, woven fabrics and 379 pieces of chinese porcelain, with special attention to the Ming and Qing dinasties (open from Wednesday to Sunday, from 10:00 to 18:00, and Tuesday, from 14:00 to 18:00; closed on Mondays, January 1st, May 1st and December 25th; paid entrance).
5
Saldanha Square

5) Saldanha Square

Where shopping spree meets history. Saldanha Square has memories of the past well combined with design buildings and modern shopping malls. The monument in the middle is a tribute to the Duke of Saldanha, born in Lisbon (1790), deceased in London (1876). He was a great portuguese military leader, diplomat and politician. He influenced portuguese destiny for more than 50 years and distinguished himself in the napoleonic and liberal wars. The statue, inaugurated in 1909, faces Fontes Pereira de Melo’s Avenue. It has an allegorical figure of victory holding, on the right hand, a winning sword and, on the left hand, a glorious palm. The square is also known by it’s design shopping buildings, Monumental and Atrium Saldanha. You also have one of the eleven original Lisbon’s subway stations, called Saldanha. It opened in 1959 and has architectonic interests.
6
Cafe Versailles

6) Cafe Versailles

One of the best pastries in Lisbon, situated on the large avenues that were made in the 19th century, when Lisbon was expanding to the north. Cafe Versailles has the soul of the 1920’s, the decade of it’s inauguration. You will be transported to the past the second you walk through the door. Watch, closely, the Chá da Lapa chandeliers, mirrors, wood panels, chess-floor and, of course, the dress code of the waiters. And the best part: you can admire all of this while you are eating delicious pastry and drinking a good expresso coffee or the well-known hot chocolate. A truthful experience for all the senses. A good and elegant place to sit down and relax, preparing your feet for the rest of the walking tour. Cafe Versailles is open everyday, from 7:30 to 22:00.
7
Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation

7) Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation

Private institution with public interest, dedicated to the fields of arts, scientific research, charity and education. The large premises opened in 1969. You can start with a stroll in the gardens, admiring the statuary, lying on the grass and experiencing the peace and quiet next to the lake. After that, check out one of the world’s finest private art collections, gathered by oil magnate Calouste Gulbenkian, one of the 20th century richest men. It’s a magnificent collection of European, Egyptian, Roman, Greek, Islamic and Asian art. Pure treasures! Culture is in the air, all over this site. Gulbenkian is home for one of the major orchestras in Portugal. Music, temporary exhibitions and other cultural events take place all year. The museum is open from 10:00 to 17:45 (Tuesday to Sunday). It closes every Monday and also January 1st, Easter Sunday, May 1st and December 25th. You have to pay to enter the museum, but many temporary events are free and the gardens are open to the public.
8
Campo Pequeno

8) Campo Pequeno

Getting back at Republic’s Avenue, you can’t miss the Campo Pequeno Bullring, situated on the square with the same name. This mourish-style building was built in 1892. It is inspired by Madrid’s Las Ventas bullring. It has a circular floorplan with small cupulas at the top of it’s four octagonal towers. After an extensive renovation, Campo Pequeno reopened in 2006. It continues to host in season bullfights. Remember that, in Portugal, the bull is not killed at the end of the fight, contrary to Spanish fights. The arena is also used for concerts, circus and other national and international events. The renovation also installed an underground shopping mall, with restaurants, cinemas and a parking lot.
9
Entrecampos Square

9) Entrecampos Square

Entrecampos means “between the fields”. It’s the perfect name for this square, situated between Campo Pequeno (small field) and Campo Grande (big field). It’s a central traffic area, a direct link to long and wide avenues in uptown Lisbon. It may seem unattractive at first sight, but it’s a perfect place for orientation in the city. And you can’t miss one of the most important tourist photos hotspots: the monument of the peninsular war. It’s one of the most beautiful statues in Lisbon. It was inaugurated in 1933 as a tribute to the heroes who died during the French invasions (1807 to 1814).
10
Campo Grande

10) Campo Grande

Long and relaxing garden, situated on the old public walk from the 16th century. It used to be a place for fairs, horse races and equestrian shows. In 1945, architect Keil do Amaral elaborated a renovation of the site. Now, one of Lisbon’s biggest parks holds sports activities (including a swimming pool with inflatable cover on the winter), children’s playground, picnic area, skating ring and bicycle track with a link to Telheiras zone. The most famous area is the lake, with rowing boats for hire. You can also watch many different species of birds. Another relaxing place in uptown Lisbon, with the national library nearby, also worth a visit.
11
City Museum

11) City Museum

This is the perfect place to learn about Lisbon’s tradition, since pre-historic times until the 19th century. The big attraction is a model of the city before the destruction caused by the 1755 earthquake. Paintings, historical documents and other interesting things and facts about Lisbon can be found inside this Museum located in the 18th century Pimenta Palace, built by King Dom João V for his encounters with his lover, Madre Paula, a nun from the Odivelas Convent. There is, also, a courtyard with peacocks. Opening hours: Tuesday to Sunday, from 10:00 to 13:00, and then from 14:00 to 18:00. Closed on Mondays and Holidays. Paid entrance.

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