Alfama is one of the oldest quarters in Lisbon. It has maintained its Arab structure, with its labyrinthine streets, courtyards and lanes. The Sé (Cathedral) is wonderful, and the Feira da Ladra (flea market) also takes place here.
Next to Alfama are the quarters of Castelo and of Mouraria. Throughout the month of June, during the Santos Populares (Patron Saints) celebrations, these quarters are packed with music, dancing and food.
Bairro Alto dates back to the 16th century but is today one of the city’s most animated quarters, with trendy bars, restaurants and shops.
Chiado is one of the city’s most attractive quarters.
It has long been a cultural hot spot, something illustrated by its theatres, literary cafés (like A Brasileira), antique bookstores and the Museu do Chiado (Chiado Museum).
Bica, another of Lisbon’s historical quarters, has been home to the Bica lift since 1892, which passes between lines of houses situated on a street where the pavements are actually tiny, narrow stairways.
The Baixa (downtown), rebuilt by the Marquis of Pombal following the 1755 earthquake, is a commercial and financial district characterised by the geometrical layout of its streets.