8 Safest areas to stay in Lisbon for tourists (and Where to avoid)

Wondering What is the safest area to stay in Lisbon? Are there areas to avoid in Lisbon? In this post, I will help you to find the Safest areas and neighborhoods to stay in Lisbon for tourists and the best places to stay in each area, and neighborhoods to avoid.

Lisbon is the capital and largest city of Portugal, located on the western coast of the Iberian Peninsula. It is known for its rich history, stunning architecture, vibrant culture, and beautiful setting along the Tagus River. 

Lisbon has a rich history that dates back to ancient times when it was founded by the Phoenicians around 1200 BC. It has been under Roman, Moorish, and Christian rule throughout its history.

The city is known for its stunning architecture, including Belem Tower, Jeronimos Monastery, and Castle of Sao Jorge. The iconic 25 de Abril Bridge, resembling San Francisco’s Golden Gate Bridge, spans the Tagus River.

Lisbon is built on seven hills, offering numerous vantage points with breathtaking panoramic views of the city and the river. Lisbon’s iconic vintage yellow trams are a popular mode of transport and a unique way to explore the narrow and hilly streets of the city.

Additionally, the city has a vibrant nightlife scene with a wide array of bars, clubs, and live music venues, especially in Bairro Alto and Cais do Sodré.

Is Lisbon safe for tourists?

Lisbon is generally a safe city for tourists, with a relatively low crime rate compared to other European capitals. By staying aware and being cautious of petty theft and pickpockets in crowded areas and public transport, you can help ensure a safe trip to this beautiful city.

Most areas of Lisbon are safe for tourists to explore. Popular neighborhoods like Baixa, Chiado, and Alfama are generally considered safe and well-patrolled. But, it’s always a good idea to check with locals or your hotel for any specific safety concerns in certain areas.

Lisbon is generally safe at night, but it’s always wise to take precautions. Stick to well-lit areas, avoid walking alone in secluded places, and use licensed taxis when traveling late at night.

Public transportation in Lisbon, including the metro, trams, and buses, is generally safe to use. But, it’s recommended to be cautious of your belongings and be aware of your surroundings, especially during crowded times.

What are the safest neighborhoods to stay in Lisbon?

The safest areas to stay in Lisbon for tourists are Baixa, Chiado, Alfama, Avenida da Liberdade, Bairro Alto, Príncipe Real, Belém, and Lapa. It is important to always keep an eye on your belongings and use common sense, especially in touristy areas where pickpocketing can occur. 

Baixa, Chiado, and Alfama are the most popular areas for first-time visitors. Baixa is the best base for travelers seeking a central location and accessibility. 

Chiado is perfect for those looking for a trendy atmosphere and vibrant cultural scene. Alfama is the best area for visitors interested in a charming historic district with an authentic experience.

Where to avoid staying in Lisbon?

It is recommended to avoid booking accommodations in the outskirts of Lisbon, and sticking into well-known and popular areas. You should avoid Martin Moniz, Intendente (historically known for higher crime rates), and Cais do Sodré, especially at night.

Cais do Sodré is a lively area with a bustling nightlife scene. While it’s safe during the day, it can get rowdy and crowded at night, especially on weekends. Exercise caution if you’re out late, and keep an eye on your belongings.

Map of safest areas and neighborhoods in Lisbon for visitors:

Map of the safe and popular areas in Lisbon for tourists
Map of the safe and popular areas in Lisbon for tourists

8 Safest areas to stay in Lisbon for tourists

1. Baixa

Baixa, also known as Lisbon’s downtown, is often considered one of the best and safest areas to stay in Lisbon for many travelers. It is a great base for those seeking central location with easy access to major attractions and don’t mind the bustling atmosphere.

While Baixa district is generally a safe area for tourists, as with any touristy area, pickpocketing can be a concern. Keep a close eye on your belongings, especially in crowded places, on trams, and popular tourist attractions. 

Baixa is located in the heart of Lisbon, making it a great base for exploring the city’s main sights and attractions. Many popular landmarks, such as Praça do Comércio, Rossio Square, and Santa Justa Lift, are within walking distance.

The Baixa neighborhood is flat, you can easily explore on foot. It is also well-connected to public transport, including buses, trams, and metro lines, making it easy to reach other parts of the city and the airport.

The iconic Tram 28 runs through the area, taking you to many attractions in central Lisbon. Baxa’s location also offers easy access to the Baixa-Chiado metro station, Rossio and Santa Apolónia main train stations, for a trip to Porto or Sintra.

Baixa is known for its stunning neoclassical architecture, wide boulevards, and picturesque squares. The area underwent significant reconstruction after the devastating earthquake in 1755, resulting in an elegant and harmonious urban design.

Baixa is a shopping paradise with a mix of traditional shops, boutique stores, and international brands. Rua Augusta, Rua da Prata, and Mercado da Baixa are some of the best places for shopping and dining in the city.

Baixa is a popular tourist destination, so it can get crowded, particularly during the peak tourist seasons. If you prefer a quieter and more tranquil environment, you might find Baixa a bit overwhelming.

Best places to stay in Lisbon in Baixa:

  • Luxury ($$$): Hotel Avenida Palace, 5-star hotel, located in a 19th-century building in central Lisbon, offering views of Restauradores Square and St. George’s Castle.
  • Mid-range ($$): Hotel Santa Justa, 4-star hotel, located within easy walk from Santa Justa Lift, and Augusta Street with many restaurants and shops.
  • Budget ($): Be Poet Baixa Hotel, 3-star hotel, located in Lisbon’s historic downtown within a short distance from Santa Justa Lift, Commerce Square, and Tagus River.

2. Chiado

Chiado is a popular and lively neighborhood known for its historical charm, upscale shops, restaurants, and cultural attractions. It is centrally located close to the popular neighborhoods of Baixa, Barrio Alto, Príncipe Real, and Cais do Sodré, offering easy access to many attractions.

Like many central neighborhoods in Lisbon, Chiado is a safe area for tourists, but it’s still essential to exercise basic safety precautions to avoid any potential issues, such as petty theft or pickpocketing, especially in crowded tourist areas.

Chiado is well-connected to other parts of Lisbon through public transportation. It is well-served by Baixa-Chiado metro station, the blue and green metro lines, offering day trips to nearby Obidos, Ericeira, and Nazaré.

The neighborhood is located on the hill so you’ll have to walk up and down hill to reach Baixa. If you don’t like walking, you can take a ride on the metro and Santa Justa Lift, which make your travel easier.

The neighborhood is home to numerous museums and art galleries to explore, including the National Museum of Contemporary Art, the Chiado Museum (Museu do Chiado), the Archeological Museum, and the Filigree Museum.

Other interesting cultural landmarks are the ruins of Convento do Carmo, São Roque Church, São Carlos National Theatre, and the historic Bertrand Bookstore, one of the oldest bookstores in the world.

Be sure to check out Café A Brasileira, a historic and iconic café located in Largo do Chiado. It is one of the oldest and most famous cafés in the city, with a rich history that dates back to the late 19th century. It is where renowned writers like Fernando Pessoa used to gather.

With its excellent central location, Chiado has a wide range of accommodations that suit all budget travelers, including many affordable options, spacious apartments, charming boutique and luxurious hotels.

Best places to stay in Lisbon in Chiado:

  • Luxury ($$$): The Ivens Autograph Collection, 5-star hotel, centrally located close to Commerce Square, Rossio, and St. George’s Castle.
  • Mid-range ($$): Palácio das Especiarias, great boutique hotel, located in a privileged location in the historic center of Lisbon.
  • Budget ($): Solar dos Poetas, great guest house, located an easy distance from Baixa-Chiado Metro Station.

3. Alfama

Alfama is one of the oldest and most charming neighborhoods in Lisbon, where you can find popular attractions such as the Castelo de São Jorge, the National Pantheon, and Lisbon Cathedral.

Alfama is a safe area both day and night, with rare violent crime, but as a popular tourist spot, it has pickpockets and scams. So always keep an eye on your belongings, especially on Tram 28 and around Martim Moniz station. Also, stick to well-lit and busy streets, especially at night. 

It is located on a hill, with narrow winding streets, and is known for its historic architecture, picturesque alleys, and stunning views over the Tagus River. Alfama offers a glimpse into the city’s rich history and traditional way of life.

Alfama boasts several Miradouros (Viewpoints) that offer breathtaking vistas of the city, such as Miradouro das Portas do Sol, Miradouro de Santa Luzia, and Miradouro da Graça. These spots are perfect for enjoying the sunset or capturing memorable photographs. 

Alfama is closely associated with Fado, the soulful and melancholic traditional music of Portugal. Many Fado houses and bars can be found throughout the neighborhood, where you can listen to talented singers perform this emotional genre.

The area hosts the famous Feira da Ladra flea market (Thieves Market), which takes place on Tuesdays and Saturdays in Alfama. It’s an excellent spot to find vintage items, antiques, handicrafts, and other unique treasures.

The iconic Tram 28 passes through Alfama, taking passengers on a nostalgic journey through some of Lisbon’s most charming streets and attractions.

Exploring Alfama on foot is the best way to experience its authentic atmosphere, discover hidden gems, and interact with the friendly locals. However, be prepared for steep hills and cobblestone streets, so comfortable walking shoes are a must.

Most of the accommodation options in Alfama are in the form of boutique style hotels, bed and breakfast, as well as guesthouses and budget lodging.

Best places to stay in Lisbon in Alfama:

  • Luxury ($$$): Santiago de Alfama – Boutique Hotel , 5-star hotel, located an easy walk from Pombaline Downtown, São Jorge Castle and offers stunning views of the city. 
  • Mid-range ($$): Dalma Old Town Suites, located a short walk from São Jorge Castle, Lisbon Cathedral, Graça Belvedere, Senhora do Monte Belvedere, and Tuesday and Saturday Flea Market.
  • Budget ($): Hotel Convento do Salvador, 3-star hotel located in the historical Alfama district, near the Jorge Castle, Sé Cathedral, National Pantheon, and Tram 28 stop. It is surrounded by many restaurants, bars, Fado Houses, and belvederes. 

4. Avenida da Liberdade

Avenida da Liberdade is a famous avenue located in the heart of Lisbon, north of Baixa. It is one of the most prestigious and luxurious streets in the city, known for its elegance, upscale shops, historical buildings, and tree-lined boulevards.

While Avenida da Liberdade is generally considered safe for both tourists and locals, like in any urban area, it’s essential to remain vigilant and take basic safety precautions to prevent petty theft.

The avenue connects the bustling Marquês de Pombal Square to Restauradores Square, two important landmarks in Lisbon, making it a central and easily accessible location.

The avenue is adorned with stunning architecture, featuring grand buildings and mansions with intricate facades, many of which date back to the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Popular attractions in the area are the Parque Eduardo VII, Palácio Foz home to a tourist center, Casa do Alentejo, and Elevador da Glória.

Avenida da Liberdade is flanked by wide sidewalks adorned with beautiful gardens and trees, offering a pleasant and relaxing atmosphere for pedestrians.

The avenue is renowned for its high-end boutiques, designer stores, and luxury brands, making it a prime destination for shopping enthusiasts.

Avenida da Liberdade is home to several luxurious hotels, offering top-notch accommodations to tourists. The avenue also boasts numerous restaurants, cafes, and bars, providing a variety of dining options for visitors.

Throughout the year, Avenida da Liberdade hosts various public events, cultural festivals, and parades, especially during festive seasons like Christmas and New Year.

Best places to stay in Lisbon in Avenida da Liberdade:


5. Bairro Alto

Bairro Alto is a vibrant and popular neighborhood located high above Chiado. It is known for its lively atmosphere, narrow streets, and vibrant nightlife. Bairro Alto is situated on one of Lisbon’s seven hills, offering visitors stunning views of the city.

During the day, Bairro Alto is a charming and picturesque district with traditional Portuguese architecture, colorful buildings, and small shops. It’s a great place to explore on foot, getting lost in the winding streets and discovering hidden gems, such as local cafes, art galleries, and boutique stores.

However, Bairro Alto truly comes alive at night. The neighborhood transforms into a bustling hub of entertainment, with numerous bars, restaurants, live music venues, and Fado houses.

The nightlife in Bairro Alto is famous for its street parties, especially on weekends. The bars spill out onto the streets, creating a lively and festive atmosphere that lasts until the early hours of the morning. It’s a popular spot for young people and those looking for a fun night out in Lisbon.

Despite its lively nightlife reputation, Bairro Alto is generally safe, but it’s always essential to use common sense, avoid empty streets, avoid people trying to sell you drugs, and keep an eye on your belongings.

If you’re visiting Lisbon and want to experience the city’s vibrant nightlife, Bairro Alto is a must-visit destination. During the day, it’s also an excellent place to explore Lisbon’s culture, history, and local lifestyle.

Best places to stay in Lisbon in Bairro Alto:


6. Príncipe Real

Príncipe Real is a vibrant and trendy neighborhood located on a hill just north of Bairro Alto. It is known for its charming streets, historic buildings, and beautiful gardens. 

Príncipe Real is generally regarded as a safe and pleasant neighborhood to visit or stay in. But , it’s always a good idea to take standard precautions such as keeping your belongings secure, avoiding poorly-lit or isolated areas at night, and being cautious in crowded places.

It is home to the Jardim do Príncipe Real, a picturesque park featuring tall trees, exotic plants, and a central pond, where you can take a leisurely stroll or relax. On weekends, local vendors sell arts, crafts, and antiques in the garden, creating a bohemian and artistic ambiance.

The neighborhood also boasts a wide range of shops, boutiques, and concept stores, making it a favorite destination for those interested in fashion, design, and unique souvenirs.

Food enthusiasts will not be disappointed either, as the neighborhood is home to numerous excellent restaurants and cafés, offering both Portuguese and international cuisine.

In addition to its shopping and dining scene, Príncipe Real is also known for its vibrant nightlife. The area comes to life after dark, with bars, clubs, and live music venues offering entertainment for visitors and locals alike.

The neighborhood is also well-connected to public transportation. It is a short walk from Rato and Baixa/Chiado metro stations, with yellow, blue, and green metro lines. 

The downside of staying in Príncipe Real is its location up on the hillside requires lots of uphill walking. Otherwise, it offers stunning views over the city and is home to numerous luxury and boutique hotels.

Best places to stay in Lisbon in Príncipe Real:


7. Belém

Belém is a district located in the western part of Lisbon, along the banks of the Tagus River. It is one of the most historically significant areas of Lisbon and is known for its rich cultural heritage, impressive landmarks, and picturesque views.

Belém, like most areas of Lisbon, is safe for tourists and residents. But, safety can vary depending on various factors, including the time of day, specific locations, and individual behaviors. As with any travel destination, it’s essential to stay vigilant and use common sense to ensure a safe experience.

Some of the notable attractions in Belém include:

Belém Tower (Torre de Belém), the UNESCO World Heritage site and a symbol of Portugal’s maritime history. It was built in the 16th century to defend the city and served as a ceremonial gateway to Lisbon.

Jerónimos Monastery (Mosteiro dos Jerónimos), the UNESCO World Heritage site, is a stunning example of Manueline architecture and is closely linked to Portugal’s Age of Discovery. It houses the tomb of Vasco da Gama and other prominent historical figures.

Padrão dos Descobrimentos (Monument to the Discoveries), celebrates the Portuguese Age of Discovery and honors the pioneers, explorers, and navigators who played significant roles during that time.

Museu Nacional dos Coches (National Coach Museum), displays an extensive collection of royal carriages, providing a fascinating insight into the history of transportation in Portugal.

MAAT – Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology, hosts various exhibitions and cultural events related to art, architecture, and technology.

Pastéis de Belém, a famous bakery known for its delicious custard tarts called “pastéis de nata.” It’s a must-visit spot to enjoy this iconic Portuguese pastry.

LX Factory, though not strictly part of Belém but in its vicinity, it is a trendy creative hub that offers a mix of shops, restaurants, art spaces, and cultural events.

Belém is easily accessible from central Lisbon by taking the E15 tram routes. It’s an area that combines history, culture, and stunning riverfront scenery, making it a rewarding destination for both tourists and locals alike.

Best places to stay in Lisbon in Belém:


8. Lapa

Lapa is a historic neighborhood that is known for its elegant architecture, charming streets, and upscale residential areas.  

Lapa is one of the city’s more upscale and affluent neighborhoods, which often correlates with lower crime rates. However, like any urban area, it is essential to take standard safety precautions to ensure your well-being.

Lapa is characterized by its beautiful old mansions, many of which have been converted into embassies, museums, or luxury residences. The streets are lined with trees and offer a tranquil and pleasant atmosphere, making it an attractive place for both locals and visitors.

In addition to its residential charm, Lapa also has some notable attractions, such as the Basilica da Estrela, a stunning 18th-century basilica with a magnificent dome and beautiful gardens. 

The National Museum of Ancient Art (Museu Nacional de Arte Antiga) is also located in the neighborhood, housing an extensive collection of art and historical artifacts.

Lapa offers a mix of traditional and contemporary dining options, boutique shops, and cafes, making it a delightful area to explore. It’s well-connected to the rest of the city, making it easy to reach other popular places in Lisbon.

Best places to stay in Lisbon in Lapa:


See more:

In conclusion, Baixa, Chiado, Alfama, Avenida da Liberdade, Bairro Alto, Príncipe Real, Belém, and Lapa, are the best and safest places to stay in Lisbon for tourists. Always keeping an eye on your belongings, and being aware of your surroundings, regardless of the neighborhood you are in.

Baixa, Chiado, Alfama are the most popular areas for first-timers due to their central location and proximity to tourist attractions and amenities.

Avenida da Liberdade caters to luxury lovers, while Bairro Alto suits nightlife enthusiasts. Príncipe Real offers a trendy vibe, while Belém and Lapa provide a peaceful escape. Whatever your preference, Lisbon has a neighborhood to suit every traveler’s taste and interests.

About Author: Linda Smith

I'm Linda Smith, the Hotel Expert, an experienced travel blogger who passionate about traveling. I'm here to share with you all my travel experiences and tips. I cover a wide range of travel topics, specializing in sharing information about the best areas, neighborhoods, and hotels in each city. I hope all these things will make your travel easier.

Leave a Comment