Private Tour: Best of Bairro Alto & Chiado: Santa Justa Rooftop, Carmo Convent & São Roque Church

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3 hours

Max varies

Why take this private tour?

To understand the distinct allure of neighborhoods like Bairro Alto and Chiado, a cultural, historical and architectural deep-dive is an absolute must. Luckily, that’s exactly what we do! A multi-sensorial experience of two of Lisbon’s more popular districts, this tour goes beyond the best of Bairro Alto and Chiado, taking you inside two of the city’s most iconic monuments and introducing you to the people, places - and pastries! - that makes these bohemian neighborhoods so unique. This tour is a private experience with the added benefit of being for your group only, led by a private local guide. These private experiences enjoy a more intimate setting along with the ability to tour at your desired pace.

Highlights

  • Created with Sketch.Bypass crowds with a ‘secret’ locals-only entrance to the rooftop viewing terrace of the Santa Justa Lift
  • Created with Sketch.Get a feel for the local with a visit to the area’s oldest (and still active!) metalwork atelier (weekday visit)
  • Created with Sketch.See the Livraria Bertrand - officially the world’s oldest operating bookshop
  • Created with Sketch.Explore the Carmo Convent (Convento do Carmo) and its Archaeological Museum
  • Created with Sketch.Discover a hidden gem inside the Church of São Roque
  • Created with Sketch.Take in spectacular views at the São Pedro Alcantara Viewpoint (Miradouro de São Pedro Alcantara)
  • Created with Sketch.Indulge your sweet tooth with a pastel de nata from a neighborhood bakery
  • Created with Sketch.Relax knowing your tour runs in English only - so no need to wait while your guide translates into several different languages

Health & Safety Standards

At Walks we take your health and the health of our community seriously. To accomplish this, we have set a series of standards that will be implemented across every tour;

  • Walks has been certified by SanseeShield.com
  • We use and offer hand sanitizer before, during, and after all tours
  • Walks Guides have received health & safety training, are self-monitoring temperatures daily, and trained in group social distancing practices
  • Masks will be worn and are available if you do not have one
  • If headsets are needed, they are disinfected at the beginning and end of your experience
  • All Walks tours are always small groups to give you the maximum comfort and safety

Travel to the heart of Bairro Alto and Chiado; experience them as a local

Many might think they have a measure of Bairro Alto and Chiado, but until you explore their cultural, historical and architectural landscapes with someone who knows their every characteristic, you’ll never truly know these lively districts!

On this tour, those very characteristics will take centre stage, and whether you’re marvelling at the views over Lisbon, admiring the architectural aesthetic, sinking your teeth into a traditional pastry or chatting with a local artisan, your appreciation will intensify with every step you take over these districts’ cobbled streets.

Your afternoon starts as every afternoon should (but rarely does!)...

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Many might think they have a measure of Bairro Alto and Chiado, but until you explore their cultural, historical and architectural landscapes with someone who knows their every characteristic, you’ll never truly know these lively districts!

On this tour, those very characteristics will take centre stage, and whether you’re marvelling at the views over Lisbon, admiring the architectural aesthetic, sinking your teeth into a traditional pastry or chatting with a local artisan, your appreciation will intensify with every step you take over these districts’ cobbled streets.

Your afternoon starts as every afternoon should (but rarely does!)- with a view guaranteed to take your breath away. The views from the Sao Pedro Alcantara viewpoint allows you to consider Lisbon’s landscape, including the São Jorge Castle and the network of neighborhoods nestled within - two of which you’ll be getting particularly acquainted with!

From here, you will enjoy a leisurely walk through Bairro Alto’s charming streets to a local bakery - where you’ll be treated to a Portuguese pastry (known as a pastel de nata), loved by locals and visitors alike.

You’ll then chat with a local metal artisan, whose family has been in the trade for more than seven generations! Learn the history behind the tradition, marvel as skilled artisans create lanterns by hand, and take home more than just a memory of your visit with a small souvenir on us!*

If you haven’t heard of the Livraria Betrand, you’re in for a treat! A highlight for book lovers, the Livraria Betrand in Chiado holds the official title of the world’s oldest bookshop! Opened in 1732, the store is steeped in history and a must-see among anyone who regularly passes many contented hours browsing bookstores.

Make your way to the Church of São Roque, which is comprised of nine chapels all built in the 17th and 18th century. While its exterior might be deemed relatively unremarkable, only well-informed insiders will know that the interior of the church of São Roque hides a true gem - the Chapel of St. John the Baptist which was commissioned by King John V in 1740. Constructed by hundreds of exceptionally skilled artists and craftsmen, the chapel was - upon its completion - the most expensive and ornate in Europe. With the help of your dedicated guide you will be introduced, no doubt leaving with a greater appreciation of the Church of São Roque than you anticipated!

Few who visit the Convento do Carmo - which happens to be your next port of call - fail to be moved by this spectacular gothic structure which withstood the natural disaster that was Lisbon’s earthquake of 1755. Remarkable in stature and magnificent in appearance despite its destruction, the Convento do Carmo remains home to awe-inspiring architecture, imposing arches and enticing alcoves. The roofless former convent, which is situated in the Chiado district of Lisbon, also boasts a small museum of archaeology - The Carmo Archaeological Museum, which among various other captivating exhibits, is famously home to mummies of Peruvian and Egyptian descent.

If you thought the eagle-eye view you enjoyed at the beginning of the tour would be the only birds-eye view you’d get of the Portuguese capital, we’ve got good news for you! From the Convento do Carmo, you’ll make your way to the iconic Santa Justa Lift. Here you’ll bypass the queues for the much-loved viewpoint and with the help of a lesser-known entrance point, you’ll gain access to its rooftop terrace and enjoy yet another beautiful view of Lisbon before moving onto the final part of your tour!

After meandering the streets of Chiado, your tour ends at the Luis de Camoes Square and the Cafe Brasileira - one of the oldest and perhaps best known cafes in the city! A favorite among Portugal’s writers and poets, Cafe Brasileira is a veritable touchstone in Lisbon’s cultural heritage - a fact which is celebrated with the help of the bronze statue of Portuguese poet, Fernando Pessoa, which sits outside its doors to this very day.

And there you have it; a cultural deep dive into the countless elements that helps to set Bairro Alto and Chiado apart from all the rest!

*Please note that on weekends the artisan shop closes, so we will go INSIDE the Livraria Betrand instead. On weekdays we will walk by the bookstore and you can choose to return later.

  • Sites Visited
  • Bairro Alto & Chiado neighborhoods
  • São Pedro Alcântara Viewpoint
  • Local metal artisan atelier (weekday)
  • Livraria Betrand (inside on weekend or national holiday)
  • Church of Sao Roque
  • Convento do Carmo
  • Santa Justa Lift Rooftop
  • Cafe Brasileira
  • Tour Includes
  • Convento do Carmo skip-the-line tickets
  • Lift Santa Justa Miradouro tickets
  • Traditional pastel de nata
  • Church of Sao Roque tour
  • Artisanal souvenir
  • Mono language tour (English only)

FAQ

Is this tour accessible for wheelchairs, strollers or for those with mobility impairments?
Unfortunately due to the nature of this tour it is not suitable for guests with mobility impairments, or for wheelchairs or strollers.
Do we always visit the metal artisan and/or the bookshop?
As above, if your tour takes place on a weekend or a national holiday, the artisan metalwork visit will be replaced by a visit INSIDE Livraria Bertrand; the world's oldest bookshop. On weekday tours we will walk by the Livraria Bertrand and speak a little about it. As with all tours, itinerary is subject to change.

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