Beautiful views, majestic monasteries, quaint cafe's and more
Lisbon, or Lisboa in Portuguese, is a busy European capital and the largest city in Portugal by far. Though the population of Lisbon proper is about 560,000, some 2.6 million inhabitants make their home in Greater Lisbon, a Metropolitan area comprising of 9 municipalities including Cascais, Sintra, Oeiras and Setúbal. A picturesque city steeped in history, culture and a joi de vivre all its own, Lisbon has much to offer even the most discerning of travelers. Shopping and cafe culture rule in the chic Chiado district, while nightlife in Lisbon is centered in (though by no means limited to) the nearby charming district of Bairro Alto (upper quarter) with its many clubs, bars and restaurants. Museums and art galleries are plentiful in Lisbon and located throughout the greater city, as are its many parks and gardens.
Lisbon in general has gone through major developments since joining the European Union and this can be experienced in the retail shopping, construction, tourism, transportation and restaurant sectors. Though Portuguese food may still be associated with bony fish and snails, Lisbon has become somewhat of a culi-nary capital, with an exciting range of local, international, health conscious and fusion cuisine. Accommo-dation in Lisbon ranges from inexpensive backpacker hostels and pensions to luxurious 5 star hotels. Out-side of the city you will find beautiful beaches with stunning views, forests and mountains, attractive vil-lages and countless other alluring locations. The climate is mild, helping to make Lisbon a fantastic holi-day destination year round and a real hidden gem among European holiday destinations.