2020. The year of the big changes for Tourism and everything activity related, with a lot of restrictions being passed worldwide that limit what we can do in each city and country we visit. Regardless of that, there are still many people who want to continue traveling and discovering new places while still remaining safe and conscious about the complicated times we are going through. If you are one of them, we have good news! We have put together a list of the top five things you can do in various places, while still remaining perfectly safe and in compliance with local legislation!
In this post we will talk about Lisbon, the capital of Portugal. As such, this city has always been known as one of the hidden gems of Europe, with a buzzing nightlife and a huge cultural offer for anyone visiting to enjoy. World-famous for its viewpoints and increasingly famous gastronomy, there are a lot of things that visitors coming after lockdown can still do to enjoy it.
Let’s explore the top five activities in Lisbon to do during the times of Covid:
1. Watch the sunset at one of Lisbon’s famous viewpoints
Being a city riddled with hills, Lisbon has a huge amount of viewpoints (the “miradouros”) where you can sit down, grab a drink and listen to some street music that accompanies the sunset (beware of the temperatures at night though!). Enjoying the views is a perfectly safe activity that anyone visiting Lisbon simply cannot miss.
Our most recommended viewpoints are: Graça, Portas do Sol, Nossa Senhora do Monte, São Pedro de Alcântara and Monte Agudo. As you can see, there’s plenty of them for you to choose from.
2. Take a small trip to the beach
Lisbon has a great weather all year round, and in the past few years it has become increasingly famous for its beaches and stunning locations, becoming a great competitor to the Algarve and the Azores. As such, if you’re visiting the city, think twice before taking the trip all the way away from lovely Lisbon and give some of it’s nearby beaches a try! We recommend Cascais and Estoril as the completely unmissable ones. Stay safe and work on your tan enjoying one of the best sights in Portugal!
Photo by Liam Spradlin
3. Rent a bike and discover Lisbon’s riverside
For those of you that even during your vacation don’t want to renounce to some exercise during your time away, riding a bicycle is not only a great way to cover a lot more ground that you would do on foot, but it also embodies one of the safest activities when it comes to enjoying your holidays despite having restrictions in place!
The best option would be following the riverside of the city, which has two compulsory stops: firstly, you can visit the neighborhood of Belém (that is if you haven’t already walked through it with us) or if you want to cover more ground, you can continue and end up on one of the beaches Lisbon has to offer (although that would take a bit more effort!).
4. Enjoy the city from a boat
As you are aware, Lisbon is a city that is seamlessly tied to the river, which dominates not only the views but also life in Lisbon, so we cannot recommend it enough. One of the activities that we believe should be on your list when you come over is to take a boat ride along the river. Not only is this a perfect opportunity to see a different angle of the city, it’s also a cool trip to take with your travel partners! As well as being outdoors, this activity is risk-free to embark on as it is easy to guarantee social distancing on boats. Some companies, like our friends over at Lisboat, have taken the measures a step forward and, like us, have obtained the “Clean & Safe” official stamp guaranteeing the safety of this experience.
Photo via Lisboat
5. Take a Free Tour of Lisbon!
In another of our posts we already explained the usefulness and convenience of discovering a new city using a Free Tour, but even during the uncertain times we are living through, this is reinforced. Free Tours are probably the most convenient way to travel during the times of the Covid restrictions, mainly due to the following reasons:
a) It takes place outdoors: Following the advice of one of the key government agencies dealing with the coronavirus pandemic, the Robert Koch institute, activities that take place outdoors in groups of a controlled size and with an ensured safety distance are a great way to minimise the potential spread of the disease. As such, SANDEMANs NEW Europe’s Free Tour is the best way to discover any new city, even during these times.
b) Safety measures: Us at SANDEMANs NEW Europe have always kept your safety at the top of our priority list and, as such, we have adopted a series of measures to ensure that taking part of any of our Tours is not only fun, but also perfectly safe. We have reduced the sizes of our groups, we have sanitizer gel available at all times, and we have made sure that, wherever required, all our staff members and guide partners are wearing all safety gear approved by law.
c) All the measures mentioned above have made us eligible for the official “Clean and Safe” stamp that the Portuguese authorities are granting, which guarantees the safety of all our tours and activities.
d) A Free Tour is a great option for those cities where some of the key attractions are closed down to the public due to the restrictions, as we can ensure that you still get all the information without being exposed to any risk and also regardless of whether or not that attraction is open to the public.
e) Information: Finally, taking a Free Tour at the beginning of your holiday is a great way to stay up to speed with the latest developments in terms of restrictions and reopenings, and plan your stay according to the latest regulations passed about Covid-19 taking advantage of the great tips our fantastic guides will offer for you to responsibly enjoy your holidays. As we all know, the situation changes really quickly, and sometimes it’s very difficult to keep up with the latest news, especially if you’re traveling. So if you’re on holidays and want to know if you can visit your favorite museum or park, but are hesitant due to the restrictions, ask your guide, they’d be happy to help!
As we have seen, these times we are going through do mean that we need to take as many precautions as possible to stop the spread of this virus, but they don’t necessarily mean that we cannot enjoy our holidays in Lisbon. As such, from SANDEMANs NEW Europe we want to invite you to come visit Lisbon, but do so responsibly. As you see, there are many options available!