Situated along the Atlantic cost, Portugal’s capital city is a wonderful place to spend a holiday. So when is the best time to visit Lisbon? Is there a specific period of the year which is best? The thing is, actually there isn’t a specific time to visit but I’ll tell you what you’ll enjoy the most if you visit Lisbon during the warm season or the cool season.
A lot depends on what you want to do with your time away from everyday life. In order to identify the best time of year to visit Lisbon, it pays to consider what setting you prefer to get all the rest and recreation that you desire (and deserve!). Here are some useful tips that will help you choose the time of year that’s right for you.
Visiting Lisbon During the Warmer Seasons
One of the factors that makes Lisbon such a good choice is the moderate climate. The warmer times of the year are not so hot that you feel the need to remain in your hotel or make your way from one air-conditioned place to the next.
Summers tend to be warm rather than hot. You can also expect lower humidity levels and mostly clear weather.
During a typical year, warmer weather averages around 83°F (28 Degrees Celsius). Even when things get a little hotter, it’s highly unusual for the temperature to exceed 94°F (35 Degrees Celsius). Factor in the low humidity and it’s easy to see how you can enjoy plenty of open air shopping, people watching at an outdoor cafe, or spend a little time sunbathing along the coast.
During the summer months, there are plenty of open-air events to enjoy. Some of them are more intimate affairs while others are major blowouts that locals and tourists can both enjoy. If you book your holiday through an agency, they’ll be happy to point out events based on your interests.
Plan a Trip To Lisbon During the Cooler Seasons
Choosing to visit Lisbon during the cooler seasons also holds its own particular charms.
The temperature during winter averages 47°F( 8 Degrees Celsius), although it has been known to dip down to around 40°F (4/5 Degrees Celsius). That’s actually quite good weather for people who prefer to spend their holidays enjoying the cool after spending most of the year dealing with hot weather.
Cooler weather does mean some days when things get a bit overcast. Those are excellent times to look around some of the city’s historic sites or participate in some type of indoor festival. You’ll find all sorts of clubs and other places that will dish up great hot beverages to keep the chill at bay on those days.
The sun doesn’t go away during winter in Lisbon. In fact, there will be days when you look out the hotel window and can’t wait to bundle up and take in some sun while walking around the city.
Lisbon main Attractions for Tourists
Some people love to visit a destination and take in all of the sites that normally attract tourists. Lisbon is obviously packed with things to do and there are plenty of guided tour packages that will ensure there’s always an interesting itinerary or activity ready for you every day of your trip. Even if you visit Lisbon in one day, you’ll have plenty of activities to try and things to discover!
This is true no matter which season you plan on making your way to Lisbon, although it’s more common for tourist season to occur during the summer and possibly the spring.
If you’re the type who likes things to be more or less planned out in advance, it does make sense to go during the summer. That’s when you’ll find quite a few events and activities in Lisbon that are geared more toward visitors to the city. If your idea of relaxing is to take in as much of the local sites as possible, going during warmer weather is definitely for you.
Would You Prefer to See Lisbon like a local?
Not everyone likes to go the touristy route. People who prefer holidays that allow them to blend in more and see Lisbon like the locals do may want to plan a holiday outside the seasons where tourists tend to be everywhere. That’s often the cooler seasons, like the autumn and the winter.
Perhaps you’re the type who would rather explore the out of the way places that are generally not included in the guided tours or tourist packages. This could include venues like restaurants that cater more to residents, art houses, and other places that tend not to attract as much attention.
You don’t really need a guide to find these places, although there are services that are happy to clue you in on what to see and experience. Hotel concierges, cab drivers, and locals are often happy to recommend things to see and do in Lisbon and its surroundings that are a little off the beaten path.
Try the Local Cuisine in Lisbon
Finding something new to try is easy in the city and the food and restaurants in Lisbon are one of these (delicious) things! In many restaurants Some dishes are available year round while others are more popular during certain times of the year. When you’re planning to spend your holiday in Lisbon, it never hurts to know which dishes are more plentiful during a given season.
Seafood is something that you can enjoy all year long. There are dishes that you’re more likely to encounter during the summer. One example is known as caracóis or caracoletas. These are snails that are prepared in a tasty broth made with garlic and butter.
You can either suck the snails right out of the shell, or you can use toothpicks to fish them out one by one. Either way, they are a great casual food that pairs wonderfully with any type of beer, including a stout ale. Generally, you will have an easier time finding this dish from around May through September.
There are also cool weather dishes to enjoy. Caldo Verde soup is a prime example. While it’s available year round, it’s especially popular during the winter months. A creamy soup that’s usually made with kale or other greens, sausage, and potatoes, it’s a great way to warm up on a chilly day or evening.
Keep in mind that many meals in Lisbon include three to four courses. If you’re not sure what to get and don’t speak Portuguese all that well, don’t worry. Along with travel agencies and tour guides, it’s not unusual for those in the food service industry to speak English. They can help you find things on the menu that are sure to please.