Historic enclaves, warm temperatures and delectable cuisine – it’s no surprise that Portugal’s capital of Lisbon is considered a desirable destination year-round. With so much to explore within this European city, a central base is as paramount to frequent visitors as it to newbies roaming around for the first time. Make the most of your stay within this port city, pitching up in our pick of the most versatile holiday apartments.
Opposite the Museu de São Roque – a museum of Portuguese sacred art in a 17th-century cloister – and just five minutes’ walk from Camões Square, Chiado Arty flats is in good company. Inside, the architect-designed interiors of these self-catered apartments opt for an arty theme: abstract canvas paintings are at the head of the bed, while upcycled oil barrels are repurposed as side-tables and sinks throughout the apartments. Expect a blend of both the old and new – eclectic décor decisions, Nespresso machines and flat-screen TVs contrast rustic window shutters and idyllic views of traditional Portugese architecture.
Dare Lisbon, in the centre of Lisbon’s Old Town, retains all of its building’s original 18th-century features, including tiles, fresco walls in some of the apartments, St. André crosses, arches, stone masonry and noggin walls. But it is also progressively modern in its approach: this family-run business is eco-friendly and mindful about its carbon footprint. During the refurbishment process of the apartments, which have been designed in collaboration with local artists and outfitted with plastic-free toiletries and kitchen and dining areas, Lisbon suppliers were used while also facilitating the use of the the most energy efficient equipment. Anticipate only organic and biodegradable packaging in your apartment, and daily fresh ingredients to prepare your breakfast.
Consider yourself an architecture aficionado? Make space on your camera roll and spend the night at Raw Culture. These premises, tucked away in Lisbon’s cultural hub of Bairro Alto, were once used to house the printing facilities of Portuguese typography. Today, the building boasts 13 New York City-style, trendy loft apartments centred around industrial themes, while an Instagrammable skylight staircase takes centre stage. Enjoy your coffee with a side of culture before stepping outdoors and visit the in-house art gallery where artists are asked to create work in response to various concepts.
A stay at the Dalma Old Town suites, in Lisbon’s historic district of Alfama, is as much an educational experience as it is an enjoyable one. Each apartment in this 18th-century building, just five minutes on foot from Castle São Jorge and seven minutes from Lisbon Sé Cathedral, is centred around an important character in Portuguese history. Take your pick of commemorated notability, including Marquês de Pombal, Fernando Pessoa, Amália da Piedade Rodrigues and Vasco da Gama, and learn of their legacy through your suite. Accommodation options range from cosy doubles to studio apartments complete with equipped kitchens.
Travelling with the kids in tow? Martinhal Chiado welcomes you and your family. Luxury apartments don’t often cater to families – but this five-star hotel is the antidote to this problem, offering family-friendly apartments that don’t downsize on opulent decor or amenities. Every apartment is designed to be aesthetically pleasing for parents, as well as appropriate for the little ones. Elsewhere, an on-site Kids Club and Baby Concierge means that every member of the family can truly relax and enjoy their holiday.
Slapbang in the centre of Lisbon, just 300 meters away from the fabled Praça de Espanha square, choose from one of Real Residência’s 24 apartments if you’re after a well-connected base. The rooms are soundproof, air conditioned and feature large kitchenettes and comfortable furnishings, meaning they’re ideal options for longer stays in the city. Don’t fancy cooking dinner? The lively city is on your doorstep; head to Real Restaurante at the nearby Hotel Real Palácio, where you can enjoy traditional Portuguese cuisine.
Located on the street of its own name, Rua Áurea, and housed in a building dating back to the beginning of the 18th-century, Residentas Aurea exudes as much charm as its heritage might suggest. Yet its traditional design doesn’t feel outdated: chandeliers, rattan chairs and wooden window shutters take pride of place within the apartments, which offer views of traditional mustard, turquoise and red clay Portuguese buildings. Heading to the city with your lover? Let the hotel know in advance; for an extra fee they can organise a bottle of sparkling wine, flowers and fruits upon arrival.
Chiado in Lisbon’s historic centre, the traditional hub of artists, playwrights and intellectuals, is home to this apartment block, which is also nearby the city’s only opera house, National Theatre of São Carlos, and The National Museum of Contemporary Art. Staying here is a must if culture takes precedence – it only takes a stroll around the Chiado streets to feel this area’s artistic heritage. Meanwhile, the contemporary design of the apartments, featuring kitchenettes and dining areas, sits in stark contrast with the traditional exterior of the building – offering the best of both worlds.
The Visionaire Apartments, an ex-merchants’ house of the 16th-century, takes inspiration from its surroundings on the Praça da Figueira – a statue of King D. João I, to be precise. This king started the Portuguese navigations in the 15th-century and developed the city into a multicultural hub of trading and commerce – and the interiors, doused in hardwoods, tapestries, printed textiles, tiles and pottery of the native styles, pay due respects to this. The one- and two-bedroom apartments come complete with designer furniture and fully kitted-out kitchens, while the establishment is filled with as much history as some of the city’s museums.
Kids stay for free at this apartment complex, in close proximity to Lisbon Zoo and Lisbon Oceanarium. Choose from studios and one-bedroom apartments and enjoy city views, and soundproofed rooms with white goods, marble-tiled bathrooms and Scandi-style furnishings. Within walking distance of the city’s design district, Santos, you’ll be spoiled for choice with restaurants and cafés; if you’re unsure where to start, the Lisbon Five Star Apartments team will point you in the right direction.
Still looking for the perfect place to stay? Read our guide on the best Airbnbs and holiday apartments in Lisbon, bookable on Culture Trip.
Destinations Unlocked:Let our travel expert Stefano help you find your perfect Culture trip
Looking for an expert's perspective?Uncover my top 3 recommended places from each continent on the map.
1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
1. ItalyThe ultimate Italian experience from the vibrant streets of Naples to the breathtaking sceneries of the Amalfi Coast followed by Matera and down to Puglia with its golden beaches, intense flavours and fascinating destinations.
2. ScotlandEmbark on this great adventure starting from London all the way to Scotland with a true Scottish experience made of breathtaking sceneries, whisky tasting and ..lots of fun! Ideal for train lovers and explorers.
3. PortugalA wonderful train journey around Portugal, from the romantic city of Porto to the Douro Valley, to the beautiful Aveiro all the way to Lisbon and Sintra. The perfect trip to train, culinary and culture lovers.
1. South KoreaDiscover incredible temples, mountains and modern cities on this 10 day adventure. This trip is perfect for those seeking immersion in the cuisine, culture and natural wonders of South Korea.
2. ThailandFrom Bankgok to Angkor Wat to Ho Chi Minh City and everything in between - adventure through the heart of South-East Asia. Taste the delights, see history brought to life and unwind on a Mekong River cruise.
3. Sri LankaA fantastic adventure that showcases Sri Lanka's fantastic landscapes, wildlife and flavours. With 3 epic rail journeys, 3 UNESCO heritage sites and time to relax, this trip has loads to offer at a great price
1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
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Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.