More Elevators, Lisbon
My sister and I went to Lisbon in September of 2009, and we immediately walked around the city to get a feel of this wonderful place. The first thing we looked for was the Funicular because we read on a travel book that they also lead to places where you can have great views of the city ("miradouros or belvederes), not to mention that these funiculars are "historical pieces" themselves.
Lisbon has three funicular railways: Gloria, Bica and Lavra. We looked for the Gloria Funicular which was very easy to find at the west side of the Avenida da Liberdade, in Restauradores square, just round the corner from the tourist office in Palácio Foz. This short funicular ride connects to Bairro Alto which we wanted to explore on-foot in Lisbon.
Originally opened in 1885, the Gloria Funicular which was re-opened in 2002 is considered a national monument and takes you to the Miradouro de São Pedro de Alcântara, where we took awesome pictures of the city --- spectacular views!
You will also see some very interesting graffiti, and I think it adds more character to this historical place. This is truly a "living" part of Lisbon and so the funicular is also exposed to modern idiosyncracies like graffitis. Verty artsy, I must say :)
We did not ride the other two funiculars, but there is good information about them that can be found at: FUNICULAR INFORMATION
You can buy your ticket at the base of the tower near the stairs to the Rua do Carmo. The elevator ride is an interesting one in a cabin furnished with polished wood panels and shiney brass fittings. There are two cabin lifts which hold up to 25 people each. Originally they were powered by steam but after 1907, they were operated by electricity
Like the city's trams, Lisbon's elevadors have become a tourist "thing to do" in their own right. Built in the late 19th century to cope with the city's steepest hills, there are three funicular railways. They're quite extraordinary pieces of engineering as well as very welcome ways to avoid climbing some of those steep streets when making your way from the lower city up to the Bairro Alto
Elevador da Glória runs up the almost impossibly steep São Glória near Praça dos Restauradores as far as Rua de São Pedro de Alcântara, just a few steps from the miradouro of the same name. When it was built in 1885, it was powered by water displacement. Steam replaced this but nowadays it runs on electricity. The elevador only takes about a minute - and much less puff than trudging up the adjacent footpath, the alternative way up to the top!
Closer to the river, the Elevador da Bica has been saving people's legs since 1892. It runs up the hill between Rua São Paulo and Calçada do Combro. Take the elevador up and walk down through the Bica area, an absolute maze of narrow streets lined with old shops and houses.
We didn't make it over to the Elevador do Lavra, the first (1882) of the funiculars to be built. Next time ...
If you've bought a multi-rider transport ticket (useable on buses and trams but not the metro) you can use this for the elevadors. Otherwise you can buy a single ticket for 1.20 euro from the elevador operator or a 2 ride ticket for 1.50 euro from kiosks around the city.
The city is built on steep hills and valleys below, and to facilitate movement between the two there are several 'elevadores': some are funicular trains, and some are lifts, such as the most famous one, Santa Justa (pictured here). You can use it to move between Baixa and Chiado.
Lisbon has is a hilly city, so there are several yellow elevadores to use. I can really recommend them as they are pretty old and fascinating. I never used such a transport system in the middle of a town!!!
The famous ´elevadors´ (elevators) of Lisbon. There are 4 of them, mostly in the centre.
Very old way of transport, and made of wood. Three of them are cablecars; the 4th is a real elevator, designed by Eiffel (same as the Eiffel tower in Paris).
Even if you choose not to photo this building, you must at least go up to the top top. If you invested in a Metro pass then you get up for free.
Lisbon is built on & around several hills and has one really old and famous elevator that brings you uphill and offers a great view from the cafe on top of it.