Located in Belem , the Museu dos Coches houses the world's finest collection of historic horse-drawn vehicles. It is the most visited museum due to the splendour of its displays which date back many centuries. Many of the coaches housed in the museum have royal heritage and the museum itself is actually attached to the Palace at Belem , the current residence of the Portuguese President.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Belem Tower was built in the early 1500's to commemorate the expeditions of Vasco da Gama. It is one of the true symbols of the city and stands as a lasting legacy to Portugal 's proud naval tradition during the great age of discovery.
A survivor of the earthquake that struck in 1755, The Alfama is the oldest district of historic Lisbon and is a real step back in time for the visitor to this great city. The best way to truly discover what this district has to offer is to get lost there – a feat which befalls even the most experienced travellers. The Alfama offers great photo opportunities due to its location on a hill and of course for the abundance of historic architecture.
Built in 1502 during the reign of King Manuel I, the Jeronimos Monastery is a fantastic example of Manueline architecture. The monastery was built on the site of the hermitage where Vasco da Gama and his crew spent their last night in prayer before travelling to India . The cloisters have been called the most beautiful in Europe and contain the tomb of the great Vasco da Gama himself.
With parts of the construction dating from the 6 th century, the Castelo de São Jorge (St. George's Castle) is a true landmark of the city and can be seen from just about wherever you are. Originally a Moorish royal residence, it was captured by Portugal 's first king Afonso Henriques in 1147. Packed with history and exciting exhibits, the castle is also an island of tranquillity away from the hustle and bustle of modern day Lisbon .
An impressively grand structure, the Discoveries Monument was built in 1960 to commemorate the 500 th anniversary of Prince Henry the Navigator. It depicts various figures from Portuguese history and is so large that it houses a fascinating exhibition space and even an elevator which takes visitors to the top for fantastic photo opportunities of Belem and its many monuments.
The oldest surviving complete building in Lisbon, the cathedral dates from 1150 when it was built for Gilbert of Hastings, an English crusader and the first bishop of Lisbon. Built on site of a Moorish mosque, it is an imposing structure, looking more like a medieval castle than a place of worship. Inside it is far more ornate, with both Romanesque and Gothic features.
The Gulbenkian Museum is widely renowned for being one of the world's truly great museums. Housing works from ancient Egypt through to the present day and everything in between, this is a must see – and not only for lovers of art. If by chance you manage to view all the works on display, you can escape the galleries to the tranquillity of the wonderful gardens which connect the Gulbenkian to the neighbouring Modern Art Centre.
Situated in the Parque Eduardo VII, the Estufa Fria is without doubt an intriguing place and offers something different from the traditional sites of Lisbon . The name Estufa Fría itself means "cold greenhouse" which for the visitor from the UK may seem to be a contradiction in terms. However, the greenhouses themselves house plants from cooler temperate climates and provide welcome respite on a hot summer's day as well as the opportunity for a leisurely stroll.
The Museu do Azulejo (tile museum to you and I), is housed in the magnificent Madre de Deus Convent and contains a fabulous collection of tiles dating back five centuries. The collection is the only one of its kind in the world and the highlight must be the 23m cityscape of blue and white tiles completed in 1738 and thus giving a glimpse of Lisbon 's skyline prior to the great earthquake of 1755.