More and more people are combining a few days of sightseeing in Lisbon, the beautiful capital of Portugal, with all the nighttime frivolity that can be found in the many bars, clubs and music venues dotted around the city.
In addition to its temperate climate, one of the main reasons for this is that the city's beautiful surroundings are filled with ideas for leisurely road trips and fun day excursions to unwind after a hectic time spent on one of the world's great nights out. hubs.
For car hire, look no further than Auto Europe , the company that not only offers great service and the best rates in over 180 different destinations (including Lisbon), but also allows you to change or cancel your booking for free up to 48 hours before the proposed pick-up time.
Founded in 1954, Auto Europe offers its many regular customers around the world the widest choice of vehicles available on the market, whether it's a small and handy car from their popular low-cost Mini category or a sumptuous SUV for serious sunbathing on one of the long sandy beaches of the Lisbon coast.
The Grand Tour
There is plenty to see and do in and around Lisbon with your own set of wheels, both north and south of the city. Just to the west is the ancient medieval village of Sintra , once the summer residence of the Portuguese royal family and now one of the capital's top tourist attractions.
With an Auto Europe car hire in Lisbon you'll also have the chance to visit Óbidos , one of southern Europe's most enchanting fortified settlements which was given to the Portuguese queen as a wedding present in the 13th century.
A short drive south of the capital brings you to the Serra da Arrábida Natural Park , a delightful mountainous area known for its fine wines and soft, creamy Azeitão cheese. It is also famous for its golden sandy beaches, especially that of Portinho da Arrábida, one of the most idyllic seaside spots in all of Portugal.
And few visitors can resist a chance to see the mega waves in Nazaré , a bustling seaside town with a long beach about an hour north of Lisbon by highway. Here the record for the biggest wave in the world (over 26 meters – almost 90 feet) was set by brave German big wave surfer, Sebastian Steudner, in 2020.
The warm nights of the city
Lisbon's famed clubbing scene gives this magnificent Atlantic city an exuberant extension to its vibrant nightlife portfolio, with a comprehensive and somewhat eclectic choice of venues on offer that cater to every musical persuasion.
One of the most famous (and oldest) neighborhoods in the city is Bairro Alto , which has the liveliest and most varied nightlife of all. Having survived much of the destruction from the great earthquake of 1755, it is one of the more bohemian parts of the capital and is well worth visiting both day and night.
In addition to its many clubs, people also go to Bairro Alto to enjoy the live fado music (the national song of Portugal) which is performed in dedicated venues along its narrow cobbled streets.
Described as destiny or fate translated into music, a fado concert is an event many visitors want to see and is best enjoyed with a mouthwatering meal accompanied by a bottle or two of Portuguese wine in the company of close friends or family.
Another area for nightlife is Santos , where some of the most important nightclubs in the city are located, especially along Avenida 24 de Julho. Nearby, the lively Cais de Sodré neighborhood has been extensively restored as part of Lisbon's citywide urban restoration programme, with many new pubs and clubs opening their doors for the first time in recent years.
In the Pink
Nowadays, Lisbon's Rua Nova do Carvalho (known internationally as Pink Street ) has become one of the trendiest spots in the heart of Lisbon, particularly with Instagrammers flocking there by the thousands to snap a selfie prized, a prerequisite for modern clubbers to visit the Portuguese capital.
Some of the most dynamic music clubs and bars in Lisbon are those that feature African, especially Cape Verdean, music that blends Latin American beats with a pulsating African beat. Several samba clubs in and around the Pink Street area also cater to the city's sizable Brazilian community with live bands and DJs specializing in this spectacular musical genre that originated in Rio de Janeiro's Afro-Brazilian communities over 100 years ago .
Plus, there's plenty of nightlife in the breezy resort towns of Cascais and Estoril , about a half-hour drive west of the Portuguese capital. Much of the action revolves around the region's glitzy casino, which is one of the best in Europe and has been at the center of the Lisbon coast's nightlife for many decades.
Safe travels, but whatever you do, don't drink and drive!