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A lot has been written about Tram 28, its best picked up in the centre of Lisbon towards the water-front.
I got on the tram on a wet Sunday with a lot of other tourists looking for some where out of the rain, when the tram got to its terminus stop and everyone had to get off, the other tourist asked how they got back into town, they were told to go to a stop and wait for a tram to take them back the way they had come.
I walked around the block and quickly realised that I was at the top of the city centre, probably less than 1/2 mile from where I had picked the tram up earlier.
Tip: Get off tram 28 at its last stop and walk around the block and head south into the city centre.
One day ticket (24h) Fare € 3,70 + €0.50 for the paper ticket which you can keep and load up as needed. Ticket covers trams, underground, lifts, busses.
Tip: Sometimes the tram/bus/train Auto-swipe register would flash red instead of green, don't worry as long as you keep your initial receipt on you there will be no problem!
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The Lisbon Tram has a world wide fame. The small carriages that take some of the steepest and smallest streets are well maintained and they are a kind a living museum.
As long as there are high city quarters Lisbon will need some special public transport.
Lisbon also had modern trams serving the flatter stretches on the broader roads.
Lisbon has the following tram lines:
-12 Circle line from/to Pç. Figueira
-15 Algés (Jardim) - Pç. Figueira
-18 R. Alfândega - Cemitério Ajuda
-25 R. Alfândega - Campo Ourique (Prazeres)
-28 Mertim Moniz - Campo Ourique (Prazeres)
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The trams in Lisbon
The slim, old tram in Lisbon is nice and quite charming. The tram navigates up and down through the steep and narrow streets, only a half meter away from the buildings.
Taking a tram ride in Lisbon
- Beer Tasting
LISBON TRAM / ELECTRICO
After our wine tasting at Vin Portugal, our VT group hopped onto this real cool vintage Tram #25, pictured here. Cost was 1,40 Euro and you paid the exact fare directly to the driver.
Of course, our group filled up the Tram - what a blast! We were so noisy, that the locals couldn't help but notice us as we rode through the town. We called it our "Party" Tram. We headed for Alcantara, the Docas area, where we would have our Friday night VT dinner.
Tram#25 Route: From the heart of Lisbon - Praca do Comercio - stretching along the river, serving Alcantara (Docas) and Santos. Then going up to Estrela and Campo De Ourique-Prezeres.
Tram runs from 6:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Explore Lisbon by tram
The public transportation in Lisbon consists of trams, buses and funiculars which are operated by the company Carris. Apart from that Lisbon has an extensive metro network.
The most unique way to explore Lisbon is by its yellow traditional trams. Tram #28 is probably Lisbon's greatest ride as it runs through the narrowest and steepest streets of the Alfama district.
Line #15 is mostly served by new superfast trams. This line runs near the waterfront to places like Alcantara, Belem and Alges.
The single on-board fare is 1,20 Euro (2006), but of course other ticket types are available at kiosks as well. Please read my "Explore Lisbon by bus" and "Explore Lisbon by metro" for more information about the public transportation and the fares.
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Funky Transports - Santa Justa Elevator
Santa Justa elevator has a similar look to the Eiffel Tower in Paris. The same iron cast in a high tower hidden in the centre of Lisbon. It was actually a disciple of Eiffel (Raoul Mesnier du Ponsard) that created this connection from downtown (Rua do Ouro) to Carmo square where there is the archeological museum. The trip itself is not particularly interesting. Going up it is just a matter of 1 or 2 minutes and going around will take about 5 minutes. Anyway, if you have a one day ticket, a Lisboa card or a bunch of bus tickets that you won't spend it will be nice. If not you can go the other way around to Carmo square and visit the small coffee on top of the elevator. The view is beautiful, the coffee is totally cramped with so many tables that almost seem will overflow the small esplanade. Sometimes there are musicians singing there.
It was open in 1902 and worked with steam until 1907 when it switched to electric power. The elevator goes up 45 meters has two cabins each taking a maximum of 45 people. The style is neogothical.
It was the last of 9 elevators built in the city, 4 of them remaining. It was an ingenious way to overcome the hills in town.
It is open from 7AM to 9PM in winter and 9AM to 9PM in summer. There isn't normally a long line to go up.
- Historical Travel
Lisbon - Trams
There are still 4 tram lines operating through the narrow streets of Lisbon (in the old times they were dozens) .
# 15 - from the heart of the town, Praça da Figueira, stretching along the river serving Alcântara (Docas) and Belém area going until the outskirts of the city - Algés (from 5am – 1 am)
# 18 - from the heart of the town, Praça do Comércio, stretching along the river serving Alcântara (Docas) then going up to Santo Amaro and Ajuda (serving Ajuda Palace) (from 6am – 8 pm)
# 25 - from the heart of the town, Praça do Comércio, stretching along the river serving Alcântara (Docas) and Santos then going up to Estrela and Campo de Ourique -Prazeres (from 6:30am – 8:30 pm, not saturdays)
# 28 – the most appealing for tourists as it crosses several of the interesting tourist points: departs from the heart of the town, Praça do Martim Moniz, right up through the jumble of streets towards the heights of Graça, Largo das Portas do Sol (belvedere), and the castle area. Then starts to going down to the cathedral crosses the Baixa and go up again to Chiado area. Then proceeds to the parliament area and from there to Estrela and Campo de Ourique -Prazeres (from 6am – 11:30 pm)
To get on the trams use only the front door and validate your 7 Hills or ZAPPING card at the little yellow machine behind the driver. If you don’t have a valid ticket you can buy it directly from the driver (which will cost you much more). To stop the tram you have to press the button before.
Beware of pickpockets as they know that this will be full of potential targets.
Looking for Tram 28
If you're staying in Estoril, getting into proper Lisbon is easy: take the electric train from Estoril station all the way to Cais do Sodre, the last stop which puts you right into central Lisbon. From here it's an easy 5-10 minute walk following the main street from Cais do Sodre to the Praca do Comercio (also referred to as Tereiro do Paco), enter thru the massive triumphal arch on Rua Augusta which is the pedestrianized aspect of this part of the shopping district of Lisbon. Two or three blocks into the center of the city on a street (sorry can't remember the street name off hand) traversing Rua Agusta, you'll find several stops on your right for Tram 28 which will take you up to the Alfama district. Just asks around and you'll find it in no time.
The Alfama is a short walk actually from Rua Agusta. I'd just walk it if I were you, far more interesting and fun doing this stopping by several wonderful churches (the Se catedral and Igreja de Santo Antonio 'St. Anthony's church') as well as quaint little shops and antique stores) - this way you avoid the usually interminable long wait for Tram 28 to come around and then also almost always usually packed already to the gills where as other VT members have previously suggested is where and when the danger of pickpocket does tend to occur. I've never had any problems as far as being victimized in all the many many years I've visited Lisbon but it's sometimes a matter of bad luck, I suppose. Be forever cautious would be a good rule and do make sure to sling your pocketbook over and across your chest making sure your pocketbook is at your front always; better yet, remove your wallet from your pocketbook or backpocket and into the safer front pocket.
Happy trails and enjoy fantastic Lisbon.
There are quite a number of tram lines in Lisbon, the most famous one is Tram 28 which begins at Praca Luis de Camoes and ends downtown. This is quite a good sightseeing tram which takes you through the Alfama district and passes the Bascilica da Estrela and through the Bairro Alto and the Baixa districts. The trams were built during the early 19th century.
There is also Tram 12 which is just a short route which takes you on a circular ride south and then east. Tram 15 wanders through the Belem district to the museums and monuments. Tram 25 which takes a Western route and Tram 18 travels through the Alcantara district and close to the Ajuda Palace. Tickets can be purchased from the tram driver.
- Historical Travel
Historical Red Tramcar tour around Lisbon
If you are coming to Lisbon for a short trip and would like to see the most picturesque neighbourhoods with their narrow and steep streets, don't miss to take one of the historical red trams leaving from Praça do Comércio. Thus you can avoid the crowded tram n.28 and enjoy the views, feel the smells and tastes of Lisbon while listening to the commentary available in several languages. Moreover, one of two different tours allow you to taste the typical specialities of this charming city and country. You can either admire seven hills of Lisbon or let you guide to Belém, testimony of the Golden Era of Portuguese discoveries. Each of the tours costs 17€. If you want to taste Portuguese cuisine and drink fabulous wine, prepare extra 39€. All the information about the schedules is available at the fixed red tram located at the Praça do Comércio where you can also buy the tickets. After these tours you will certainly fall in love with Lisbon and sooner or later you will come back as it happened to me :-)
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Old-fashioned mean of transport
The best way to move around Lisboa are trams.
You can reach almost every corner of the city and feel like living in old times!
Just drop on a tram and see where it leads you. With a 2€ ticket you can travel all day long!
Take the trolley
When you can do it, try to take the trolly. Its cheap compared to the trains and is even cheaper than the buses. Only thing is it can get crowded. Use caution as well as people have fallen off before, people not paying attention.
Lots of choice
Although you may not get a chance to ride on of these segways, excellent public transport makes getting around Lisbon a breeze. The city centre is small enough to walk between many sights, but the steep hills can play havoc with the legs which is when the trams and elevadores really come into their own. They may not be the speediest method of getting around, but they do cope with the hills and narrow, twisting streets very well. They're also a lot of fun.
As well as the trams and elevadores, an efficient Metro system and extensive bus network means there's really nowhere you can't get to by public transport. It's also very good value.
We bought a 3 day Bilhete Turtistico (available for other durations) at our local metro station and good for use on the metro, trams, elevadores and buses. They cost 11 euro each and, especially as we were staying a short metro ride out of the centre, we really got our money's worth out of them. Remember to tag on when you go through the barrier or get on the tram or bus.
The metro runs from 0630-0100. Trams and buses stop running at midnight and the elevadores at 2100.
If lots of museum visiting on your itinerary, the Cartão Lisboa will give you all the public transport options and either free or discounted entry to most museums. It's available as a 1,2 and 3 day option. Buy it at any tourist information office.
Tram 28, there's no easier way to explore Lisbon
An easy way to explore Lisbon is to take tram 28. It passes all highlights of the city, besides it brings you where other cars can't come. The narrow streets in Alfama are a must to travel with this tram. It drives from Basílica da Estrala to Graça.
Tram No 28
Tram no 28 is the one most popular with tourists. Not only does it go to the Barrio Alto in the west, but runs past the cathedral and the castle to the east. There are up to ten trams an hour in each direction, so you won’t have to wait long, but even in early October they were pretty crowded, so you might have trouble squeezing on. It is well worth taking the round trip from one end of the line to the other to get your bearings, and a feel for the different areas.
Do note that at the end of the line, you will have to get off the tram, even if you are returning straight away. You then walk a few yards forward to the stop, queue up, and then get on again. One of my pictures shows the terminus at Campo Ourique.
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Lisbon Travel Guide
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