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Castelo de São Jorge
NileGuide Expert Says:
A must-see for any visitor if only for the staggering views from the ramparts.
Porta de São Jorge, Rua do Chão da Feira
1100-129 Lisbon, Portugal
351 21 120 5050 (Tourist information)
NileGuide Expert tip:
Save yourself a few steps of backtracking. Pick up your tickets at the office on the right of the path leading to the castle, (before the souvenir shop). Tickets aren't sold at the main entrance.
This most ubiquitous of Lisbon tourist attractions welcomes a steady stream of visitors throughout the year. Commanding a strategic hilltop position on the edge of the city's historic Alfama neighbourhood, much of the castle has been completely renovated and few vestiges remain of its 12th-century origins. The heavy-set outer ramparts enclose the narrow, pretty streets of Santa Cruz. Facilities inside the castle grounds include gardens where summer cultural events and festivities often take place, a multimedia centre and a noted restaurant, Casa do Leão. It's possible to walk the entire length of the castle battlements that surround the inner courtyard and to climb some of the lookout towers. The unobstructed views enjoyed from this location are truly captivating and take in a huge swathe of downtown Lisbon, the river and distant Belém. The panorama alone is worth the relatively steep entrance fee and the faux medieval atmosphere reason enough to linger. © NileGuide2011