If youâ€™ll be in Lisbon this summer (that means until October) and are looking to cool off and relax, here is what you should do:
DIVE INTO A ROOFTOP POOL
Find yourself walking in the heat in the middle of the city and wish to dive into the ocean or pool? Head to the NH Liberdade Hotel right on Avenida da Liberdade and youâ€™ll have a rooftop pool available to cool off. It charges 20 euros and in addition to the pleasure of the refreshing waters you have a wonderful city view. You may also order a salad or sandwich for a light poolside meal.
HAVE A CUSTARD TART AT A NEW BACKYARD CAFÃ‰
Although the originals still made using a secret recipe are found in BelÃ©m, Lisbonâ€™s famous custard tarts can be sampled at any cafÃ© or pastry shop in the city. And thereâ€™s a brand new one specializing in just that — the custard tarts. Itâ€™s found on a wonderful backyard of a gallery and bookshop in the Principe Real district, itâ€™s called â€œNata Lisboaâ€ and in addition to the tarts it serves refreshing drinks as you sit in the sun or shade on the grass.
HAVE A PICNIC AT A RESTAURANT
You can have a picnic at any of the cityâ€™s parks and gardens, but youâ€™ll have to pack the food yourself. So if you want to lay on the grass for a full worry-free meal, head to Cantina da Estrela, a restaurant not far from Estrela Basilica (on Rua Saraiva de Carvalho, 35). Every day (except Sundays and Mondays) itâ€™s offering picnic lunches for 17.50 per person, which includes a basket filled with foods that are easy to eat with your hands but not exactly the typical finger food. Only the drinks are not included in the price.
HAVE A â€œLUXINIâ€
Although Lux is Lisbonâ€™s coolest club at any time of the year, itâ€™s even better in the summer because of its terrace. This year itâ€™s offering something new and special, the “Luxini” cocktail. It uses ice cream of the beloved local Santini brand and makes interesting blends of flavors with Grey Goose vodka. Choose your favorites at 10 euros each and enjoy them on the moonlit terrace as others crowd the dancefloor below.
JOIN THE SEA TURTLES
The big sea creatures have been living in Lisbonâ€™s Oceanarium since 1998, but only recently have the fascinating sea turtles arrived, in a new annexed building. Not only is this a memorable learning experience itâ€™s also cooling and relaxing as you escape into the underwater world.
STAND ON TOP OF THE CITY
Silk is Lisbonâ€™s most exclusive club and youâ€™ll understand why if you can actually make it inside. It has one of the most fantastic city views, and this summer itâ€™s opening at 6PM and offering light meals in addition to the usual drinks. But if you canâ€™t it make there, youâ€™ll make it elsewhere, at the more recent Rooftop Bar of the Mundial Hotel. Relax as you watch the afternoon glow turn into night over Lisbon.
GET SOME â€œLIQUIDâ€
Lisbonâ€™s favorite lemonade is found at the tiny hole-in-the-wall â€œLiquidâ€ but youâ€™ll want to go for something extra special this summer. Grab a refreshing all-natural drink of exotic fruits and other healthy ingredients and take it with you as you walk up through the trendy shops of Chiado.
STEP INTO THE GREENHOUSE
One of Lisbonâ€™s most underrated, often-forgotten attractions is Edward VII Park right in the center of the city. Youâ€™ll be surprised by how peaceful and uncrowded it is, even in the summer, and will be captivated by the wonderful greenhouse which will invite you to stay longer than you anticipated, cooling off in this little-known oasis.
VISIT BUTTERFLIES IN THE BOTANICAL GARDEN
If the greenhouse is a little-known oasis, the botanical garden is a secret forest. Youâ€™ll never guess from the entrance gate how big it is, and this summer itâ€™s presenting new pavements and cleaned-up tracks, although it retains its charmingly wild somewhat-neglected feel. Best of all is its small butterfly greenhouse, the only one in Europe open to the public where you can step into a habitat of the colorful insects growing and spreading their wings around.
TRAVEL THE WORLD THROUGH ICE CREAM
The Fragoleto ice cream shop downtown (on number 61 of Rua da Prata) is offering special flavors this summer, using traditions and ingredients from around the world. Thereâ€™s a dozen of them, ranging from Morroccan tea to American lemon cheesecake to Italian cappuccino. But since youâ€™re in Portugal, why not go for the Portuguese rice pudding (â€œArroz Doceâ€) flavor? But hurry because theyâ€™re only available in July.