As all seasoned travellers know, there’s nothing worse than finding yourself squished into a coachload of sweaty, sunburnt tourists. And while Lisbon’s many monuments and historical sights are well worth seeing, it’s often the local haunts that really reveal the essence of a city. From culinary meanderings on a range of authentic, local food tours and musical quests for soulful Fado sounds, to searching out the best of the city by foot or even on an exhilarating bike tour, these are some of the more adventurous Lisbon tours on offer across the city.
Living by the mantra, “stop being a tourist and start travelling”, We Hate Tourism Tours offer a range of unconventional, insider Lisbon food tours for true travellers. Ditching the big bus tours in favour of convertible jeeps and sailing boats, this lot introduce the very best of local Lisbon, from backstreet restaurants to hidden bars and neighbourhood cafes. They also promise plenty of local port, which can only be a good thing.
Prefer to be active in your sightseeing? Pancho Tours explore Lisbon by foot with free walking tours of Lisbon’s most creative corners. Offering a Portuguese perspective on the ever-evolving street art trend, travellers are guided through central Lisbon in search of the city’s best graffiti artists. And if you’ve over indulged somewhat on delectable Portuguese delicacies then Lisbon City Runners are perfect for active types looking to see the city while sticking to their fitness regimes – a great opportunity to see some of Lisbon’s most attractive areas while burning off the obligatory custard tarts.
For music fans looking to uncover Lisbon’s best Fado bars, Lisboa Autêntica offers dedicated tours of Fado in Lisbon. Join a local Fadista on a tour of the city’s most intriguing Fado sights, from local taverns and traditional bars to alleyways and leafy plazas, where you can expect an a capella song or two – probably not ideal for those looking to blend in. The tour also includes a taster of some typical Portuguese cuisine, including Caldo Verde (a soup made with potatoes and kale) and spicy barbequed chouriço (chorizo).
As the two-wheeled trend continues to spread across urban centres around the world, a Lisbon bike tour offers a scenic and energetic way to see the city. Bikes & Company offer a variety of guided bike tours including rides along the River Tagus, night-time excursions and culinary explorations of the city for foodies. If a cycling tour of the “City of Seven Hills” sounds like too much of a challenge, Lisbon Scooter offers a welcome alternative. Or, for unashamed tourists, pick up one of GoCar’s GPS-guided, canary yellow, talking go-karts. What was that about blending in?
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