The Alfama neighborhood is one of the most emblematic and important neighborhoods in Lisbon. It is located to the east of the Baixa. People already lived in this neighborhood in the Visigoth period.
The Romans left their mark with the Roman Theatre, now in ruins, located on Rua de Saudade and inside the cathedral. In this neighborhood there were also many churches that were collapsed due to the famous earthquake that also destroyed important buildings and devastated the great city of Lisbon.
To discover the Alfama neighborhood in depth, we recommend this guided tour of Alfama.
What to see in the Alfama neighborhood
The neighborhood was a residence area for the aristocracy until the earthquake of 1755.
After the fateful natural disaster, sailors and fishermen settled in the neighborhood.
The steep streets of the Barrio de Alfama, cobbled and narrow, make the neighborhood a labyrinth destined to lose you, and therein lies its splendor.
We will also see the great influence that fado has with the magical neighborhood of Alfama.
To be able to visit it well, you need to get lost and have good shoes.
What to do in the Alfama neighborhood
What can we do in this neighborhood? Easy, if you go by train you will stop at the Santa Apolonia station, an old station built in 1865 with a very simple aesthetic that, to start the trip through the neighborhood, is simply perfect.
Every Tuesday and every Saturday we will find the Feira da Ladra, that is, the Fair of the thief; in which several citizens take out of their houses objects that they no longer need and sell them in various markets.
This fair is curious, given that originally the Thief’s Fair was where all the stolen objects of the city and illegal trade were concentrated.
The Se Cathedral and the Castle of San Jorge
In the neighborhood we can find the Sé Cathedral or even the São Jorge Castle.
We can access the upper part of the neighborhood with tram 28, an option to take into account because it is a short trip through the neighborhood and we will have a completely different perspective and once we are at the top, near the Castle of San Jorge, we will be able to enjoy of a panoramic view of the entire Alfama.
We can also visit the Azurara Palace, the curious Casa dos Bicos and museums such as the Casa do Fado.
If you prefer a quiet and cozy place, we have the special Mr. Fado restaurant, on Rua dos Remedios, where we can enjoy a quiet evening away from the hustle and bustle. As well as excellent food.
Also in the same neighborhood we will find the Memmo Alfama hotel, declared by Wallpaper magazine as one of the 48 best urban hotels in 2014.
Also, very close to the Alfama, is the Alfama Patio Hostel that from its views we can observe the characteristic red facades of the famous neighborhood and incredible views of the Tagus River.
In short, to visit the heart of the city you have to get lost in the streets of the Alfama neighborhood and delve into ancient times.