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Lisbon in October: 32 Fun Things to See, Do & Eat

Planning a visit to Lisbon in October? Find fun things to do in Lisbon in Fall with this travel guide. See if Lisbon is worth visiting in October.

Are you thinking about visiting Lisbon in October? We recently moved from Dublin to Lisbon and have been taking time to really get to know our adopted city. 

Let's explore a variety of fun things to see, do, and eat in Lisbon to help you make the most of an Autumn trip. 

What's the Weather Like in Lisbon in October

Let's start with a very important question: what is the weather like in Lisbon in October? Stated simply, the Fall weather is unpredictable. 

Mornings are typically chilly, so bring a jacket. The temperature can reach above 25 °C | 75 °F in the late afternoon so be prepared to shed layers. 

When the sun goes down, the effective temperature drops like a stone. If you plan to be out and about after dark, make sure to bring a few layers with you to keep warm. 

Oddly, even at different points in the day when Google Maps says the temperature is the same, it can feel wildly different outside. 

At its worst, the weather in Lisbon in October will throw lashing rain at you so bring an umbrella for those rainy days.

Papaya Quiosque and Autumn Foliage in Lisbon

Things to do in Lisbon in October at a Glance

Now let's take a look at things to do, see and eat in Lisbon in October at a glance. Each heading is clickable and will take you directly to the item of interest.
  1. Ride the 28E Tram
  2. Take a Walk in Jardim Guerra Junqueiro (Jardim da Estrela)
  3. Eat at Time Out Market
  4. Browse Around and Grab Dinner at LX Factory
  5. Appreciate the Views from Santo Amaro Chapel in Alcântara
  6. Eat Brunch and Explore Campo de Ourique
  7. Take an Early Morning Walk to Miradouro de São Pedro de Alcântara
  8. Visit Convento de São Pedro de Alcântara
  9. Window Shop at EmbaiXada
  10. Embark on a Day Trip to Belém
  11. Stroll Ajuda Botanical Garden 
  12. Visit Igreja de São Francisco de Paula and Jardim 9 de Abril
  13. Watch the Sunset from Parque Eduardo VII
  14. Explore the Jardim da Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian
  15. Check Out Beautiful (and Spooky!) Cemitério do Alto de São João
  16. Explore Jardim São Bento
  17. Spend the Day at Palácio Nacional e Jardins de Queluz (Queluz National Palace)
  18. Taste the Wines of Setúbal and Explore Nearby Attractions
  19. Go for Dinner at Em Alta Na Baixa
  20. Experience Restaurante Pastanaga
  21. Treat Yourself to a Michelin-starred meal at Loco
  22. Get Takeaway from a No Name Churrascaria
  23. Grab Lunch at Circle Cafe
  24. Indulge in an Italian Meal at La Mafia
  25. Eat a Thai Dinner at Siam Square
  26. Try Tapas at Rubro
  27. Dine al Fresco at Petisco Saloio
  28. Stop for No Fuss Drinks at Papaya Quiosque
  29. Indulge in Mexican Food and Margaritas at El Santo
  30. Try Tinto and Brasa Parrilla Argentina
  31. Head to L'os à Moelle for a French Steakhouse Experience
  32. Enjoy Pizza at Di Amici in Ajuda

Stairs and flowers at Jardim São Bento in Lisbon

Things to do in Lisbon in October in Detail

Now let's explore cool things to do in Lisbon in October in more detail. I've done all of these things in the past month, so they are tried and tested for this time of year.

1. Ride the 28E Tram

Riding the 28E Tram (or the old "bone rattler" as I like to call it) is one of Lisbon's most popular attractions. During the high tourist season, the 28E Tram will be absolutely packed. 

Not so in October. There are still plenty of people around, but if you ride the 28E Tram, the probability of getting a seat is much higher. 

Tram 28E in front of Estrela Cathedral in Lisbon in October

Tram 28E is scheduled to run every 15-20 minutes, but they often bunch up. If a crowded tram arrives, consider letting it pass and waiting for the next one which will have a higher probability of being less crowded.
Once you are onboard, try to get the seat up in front right behind the driver. We boarded right outside Baixa-Chiado Metro Station. 

If you nab the coveted seat right behind the driver, put your phone right up against the against the glass to record some amazing videos of the ride from Largo do Chiado to Estrela Cathedral. 

2. Take a Walk in Jardim Guerra Junqueiro (Jardim da Estrela)

Once you debark from the tram, wander into Jardim da Estrela. This is a nice activity for October when the weather is fine because it's not nearly as hot as it is over the summer.

Consider grabbing a drink at the quiosque in the park or simply sit on a park bench. Depending on the timing of your visit, you may run into a group exercise class or people doing yoga. Jardim da Estrela is great for people watching.

Bandstand at Jardim da Estrela in Lisbon

Once a week you'll find a craft market in the park with locals selling handmade items that make great souvenirs.

3. Eat at Time Out Market

Time Out Market is one of the most popular attractions in Lisbon and one of my favorite European food halls. Time Out Market is a great thing to do in Lisbon in October because the buzz is still fantastic, but the market will not be entirely packed to the gills.

Start by exploring the small craft market outside Time Out Market. We spotted a guy making artisanal sangria in different flavors. I was also able to pick up a new cork backpack that has a beautiful pattern of tiles. 

Collage of Octopus hot dog and overview of Time Out Market in Lisbon in October

We were also delighted by the street art near Time Out Market. We spotted a beautiful knight in shining armor at the northern end of the market building. This area definitely looks like it's undergoing a regeneration or renaissance of sorts.

Inside the entrance to Time Out Market, keep an eye out for the beautiful azulejos (traditional Portuguese tiles).

Looking for other places to see beautiful tiles in Lisbon? Make sure to visit the National Tile Museum. Learn about the history of Portuguese tiles and see some amazing examples homed in a former convent.

Time Out market is a curated food experience with more than 40 stalls handpicked by a professional panel.

The food stalls are situated around the outer wall of the market. You'll find Time Out Market's curated drink experiences in the centre. 

We ate lunch at Sea Me, a seafood restaurant (not surprisingly). We tried an octopus hot dog and choco frito (fried cuttlefish) that came battered in a black squid ink crust.  

Definitely make sure you are hungry when you plan your visit to Time Out Market!

4. Browse Around and Grab Dinner at LX Factory

LX Factory is a complex of more than 50 shops and restaurants located in a 19th century factory complex in Alcântara. October is the perfect time to visit LX Factory. Why visit in October, you may ask? 

Street art behind Heineken umbrellas at LX Factory in Lisbon

There is not a ton of shade at LX Factory so it's good to go when the weather isn't too hot. It's also less crowded at this time of year. 

We cobbled together a dinner consisting of skewered meat and beers at Boqueirão, a Brasilian resaurant. Boqueirão hosts live musicians near their outdoor seating area on the weekend.

Skewers from Boqueirão at LX Factory in Lisbon

After dinner, we passed a bookstore called Ler Devagar in LX Factory and decided to go in and browse since they had a decent-sized English section of books.

Ler Devagar Bookstore at LX Factory in Lisbon

Make sure to look up. You'll find some cool modern artwork overhead. There is also an exhibit that incorporates elements of a 3-storey printing press. Unfortunately, the exhibit was closed when we visited after dinner. Visit during the day if you want the full experience.

5. Appreciate the Views from Santo Amaro Chapel in Alcântara

Alcântara is a non-touristy neighborhood in Lisbon that is worth a visit at any time of year. Make the climb to Santo Amaro Chapel (Capela de Santo Amaro). 

At Santo Amaro Chapel you'll find amazing views of Ponte 25 de Abril bridge and the giant statue of Cristo Rei (Christ the King; like the one in Rio de Janeiro) across the river. Inside, you'll find a modest chapel with an anteroom that is covered in richly colored artwork.

Mosaic sidewalk with stars and view of April the 25th Bridge from Santo Amaro Chapel in Lisbon

Why visit Santo Amaro Chapel in October? I recommend this Lisbon hidden gem in the Fall for a few reasons. 

First of all, it's less hot which makes the steep climb to reach the chapel more manageable. Second, you are less likely to encounter a wedding and not be able to go inside if you visit in the Autumn. 

Finally, the sun sets between 5:30 and 7:30 pm in Lisbon in October. This makes Santo Amaro Chapel the perfect spot to watch the sunset before heading to dinner.

6. Eat Brunch and Explore Campo de Ourique

Campo de Ourique is another Lisbon neighborhood that is popular with locals. Campo de Ourique reminds me of Noe Valley in San Francisco or Ranelagh in Dublin

Head to Campo de Ourique in October for a morning walk and brunch. Sit for a moment in the shade of the garden that anchors the neighborhood. 

Head to Amelia's for brunch. Go early and preferably during the week since this restaurant is extremely popular. 

Collage of pictures depicting brunch at Amelia's in Campo de Ourique Lisbon

Sit outside on their sunny terrace in the back if the Fall weather cooperates. We ordered some lovely, French toast with Greek yogurt, maple syrup and berries, and also had some scrambled eggs on toast with lots of bacon pieces sprinkled on top.

Brunch dishes were surprisingly affordable. The eggs cost around 5.50 EUR at the time of writing. The French toast cost about 7.20 EUR.

Amelia's is also great for a coffee. Try a flat white or an Americano if you want to save on calories. 

After brunch, take some time to browse the shops and admire the elegant facades of Campo de Ourique. There is also a traditional mercado at one end of the neighborhood that is worth exploring.

7. Take an Early Morning Walk to Miradouro de São Pedro de Alcântara

Another fun thing to do in Lisbon in October is take a walk to the viewpoint at São Pedro de Alcântara in Príncipe Real. An early morning visit in the Autumn is the perfect time to visit this popular Lisbon attraction. 

If you arrive before 9 am, you'll have the miradouro all to yourself. What makes Miradouro de São Pedro de Alcântara so special? This viewpoint has two levels. 

View from Miradouro de São Pedro de Alcântara in Lisbon in October

The top level is rather unassuming and features a fountain and balustrade for looking out over Avenida da Liberdade and Castelo São Jorge at the top of Alfama.

Make sure to take the staircase to the lower level where you'll find classical sculptures, coiffed gardens, and plenty of places to sit mindfully and check out the view.

8. Visit Convento de São Pedro de Alcântara

17th century Convento de São Pedro de Alcântara is hidden in plain sight just across the road from Miradouro de São Pedro de Alcântara. 

Blue tiles inside Convento de São Pedro de Alcântara in Lisbon

The convent does not look particularly noteworthy from the outside. The facade is plain white and rather nondescript. You need to head inside so you can appreciate the eye-popping traditional Portuguese tiles depicting religious scenes. 

We noted that there were several confessionals surrounding the chapel that were entirely covered in tiles.

I learned that Convento de São Pedro de Alcântara was conceived in 1665 and became a reality thanks to the initiative of the 1st Marquês of Marialva and 3rd Conde of Cantanhede. 

He made a vow to build a convent dedicated to Saint Peter of Alcântara if the Portuguese won the Battle of Montes Claros (Restoration War against the Spanish). 

The Portuguese side did indeed win a decisive victory and, true to his word, in January 1670, the convent was authorized.

Stop by for as little as 10 minutes for a quick look around. You can tour Convento de São Pedro de Alcântara for free on a self-guided visit and it's possible you'll have the place almost entirely to yourself if you visit in October. 

9. Window Shop at EmbaiXada

Príncipe Real is also home to EmbaiXada, an elegant restored mansion that is now a shopping center. In fact, EmbaiXada reminded me a little bit of Powerscourt Townhouse in Dublin.  

Why include EmbaiXada on your October in Lisbon itinerary? This is a great place to dash into if you get caught in an Autumn rain shower like we did. 

View looking down onto the central atrium at EmbaiXada in Lisbon

EmbaiXada is four stories tall with a center atrium and some boutiques around the outside. You'll find Gin Lovers Restaurant in the center. EmbaiXada is simply lovely; a piece of historical architecture in Lisbon that had been redone and given a new lease on life as an artsy shopping mall. 

Stop in to browse the shops and wait out the rain. Even if you don't buy anything, you'll find plenty of charming architecture details to delight in and photograph.

10. Embark on a Day Trip to Belém

October 5th, Republic Day, is a public holiday in Portugal. Take the bus or the tram to Belém for a perfect October in Lisbon day out. 

Unlike some of the other things to do that I've covered so far, Belém can be very crowded in October, especially the area around Mosteiro dos Jerónimos. It was a little quieter down by the Torre de Belém, Lisbon's UNESCO World Heritage rated medieval fortified tower.

UNESCO World Heritage Torre de Belém near Lisbon

Take a walk along the Tagus River and admire the Monument to the Discoveries (Padrão dos Descobrimentos) celebrating Portugal's key role in the age of exploration. 

Monument to the Discoveries (Padrão dos Descobrimentos) in Belém

We discovered 20 Blend Street Coffee operating out of a little kiosk that's close to the to the Torre de Belém and sat down for a coffee and pastel de nata. The pastry had a flaky crust and was still a little bit warm out of the oven. It certainly beat waiting in the long queue at Pasteis de Belém, the cafe where all the tourists go. 

20 Blend Street Coffee Truck in Lisbon

Grab a bite at a local cafe like Versailles like we did. We popped in just for a quick snack. We enjoyed a beef croqueta and a little folded pastry parcel filled with shrimp and sort of a cheesy sauce. Both went really well with a small glass of Sagres beer.

Portuguese shrimp parcel

Take time to walk a little bit toward Alcântara rather than hopping on the tram immediately in Belém. We noticed a bunch of really cool doors on the way to Belém. 

My regular readers know that I am obsessed with doors and considered an expert on where to find the best Dublin doors. I am slowly finding out where to go door hunting in Lisbon too, it seems. The walk toward Alcântara enabled me to get my daily door fix. 

We also took a quick peek at the MAAT, The Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology in Lisbon. This is a very modern-looking museum with a style similar to the Opera House in Oslo. From the roof, you can admire fantastic views over the Tagus River. 

Bridge leading to MAAT in Lisbon

We are saving the visit to MAAT itself for a rainy day in winter. Stay tuned!

11. Stroll Ajuda Botanical Garden 

Ajuda Botanical Garden is an ideal destination to combine with an outing to Belém. Go here first so you can walk downhill to Belém afterward. 

In October, Lisbon hosts the Jardins Abertos, an annual festival where various parks and gardens (many of which are not open to the public or cost a significant amount to enter) provide free entry to guests. 

We used the opportunity to visit Ajuda Botanic Garden on a warm and sunny Sunday at the end of October. It takes about 30 minutes to get to Ajuda on Bus #742. You can catch the bus near El Cortes Inglés and the São Sebastião metro station. 

Geometrical hedges with view of April the 25th Bridge in Ajuda Botanical Gardens near Lisbon

Ajuda Botanical Garden normally costs 3 EUR to visit but was free during Jardins Abertos. Despite this incentive and Google Maps claiming the park was "as busy as it gets", there were very few people there. We really felt like we had this lovely garden entirely to ourselves. 

The Ajuda Botanical Gardens was commissioned in 1768 by the Marquês de Pombal making it the oldest garden in Lisbon. The garden is currently owned by the Faculdade Agronomia and features a interesting scent garden for the benefit of blind people. 

Just inside the entrance, our eye was drawn to a dragon fountain. I was delighted to find not only swimming turtles, but a rare frog sunning itself on a lily pad in the water. 

Frog in Lisbon in October at Ajuda Botanical Garden

The Ajuda Botanical Garden is a great spot to spend an hour or two on a cool Fall day. The garden is laid out in two levels. The upper area is bounded by a stone balustrade with views overlooking Belém, the Tagus River (Rio Tejo) and April 25th Bridge. 

We were also absolutely delighted to discover a number peacocks in the garden including three snowy white albino peacocks. We stood and watched them for a while. 

One of the males preened itself so we got a look at some of the ornate feathers. Unfortunately, he didn't put on a full display for us. Still, the way the light caught the preening peacocks made for some beautiful photographs.

Peacock in Ajuda Botanical Garden in Lisbon

There are a number of giant tree specimens in the upper level of the garden. One of them had sort of eaten through a stone bench which reminded me a bit of the hungry tree in Dublin

We walked through an opening in the balustrade down an elegant staircase to the lower level of the botanical garden. There was a single tree blooming on this level with bright red flowers. Turns out it's a poinsettia. It felt a little bit like Christmas in October! 

The Lower level of Ajuda Botanical Gardens features some really intricate geometric-shaped hedges which make for a beautiful foreground in pictures of the river and bridge beyond. 

12. Visit Igreja de São Francisco de Paula and Jardim 9 de Abril

When we were taking the bus out to Belém, I looked down the street in the direction that the bus was coming from. Calçada Pampulha had a really cool look about I so went in that direction for one of my morning walks.  

My curiosity paid off in that I discovered a lovely church along the road: Igreja de São Francisco de Paula. The church itself sits behind an imposing gate and looks somewhat unassuming from the outside. 

Igreja de São Francisco de Paula in Lisbon

Still, I went in and was impressed by the amazing paintings on the walls, the painted ceiling and just beautiful sculptures. The whole church had a very baroque feel. 

The church was pretty quiet when I visited on a weekday with just a couple people inside. I wasn't sure if the church was open to tourists, so I just went in, sat in a pew for a couple minutes and pretended to be pious. I quietly snapped a few pictures and moved on. 

On this same walk, I also discovered Jardim 9 de Abril. The park was about one square block and had a lovely view of some of the of the red cranes in the port and the Tagus River. Such a delightful find on my walk to find some of the best Lisbon coffee in Lapa.

View of Lisbon Port from  Jardim 9 de Abril

13. Watch the Sunset from Parque Eduardo VII

Another great thing to do in Lisbon in October is watch the sun set over Parque Eduardo VII. Head to the viewpoint at the top of the park just behind El Cortes Inglés department store. Look for the two tall towers with giant balls on top and you'll find the spot.

Stake out a spot behind the stone balustrade and sit with your legs hanging over the side looking down toward the status of Marquês de Pombal and the River Tagus beyond.

The setting below features a maze of well-coiffed hedges. People bring their dogs out and we watched all the dogs running around. One dog was barking a lot and seemed to be getting very agitated about something right below us. 

Sunset viewed from Parque Eduardo VII in Lisbon in October

I thought maybe it was a squirrel, chipmunk or rabbit. Apparently, the dog was actually freaking out a little bit about a red semi-deflated balloon which was kind of funny. 

When the sun set the sky burst into an amazing pinkish hue. The sun was actually setting behind us, but the reflected pink glow in the opposite direction was absolutely stunning.

October is the perfect time to watch the sunset here since there are less tourists around and you can catch the sunset before heading out to dinner. The sun sets between 5:30 and 7:30 pm in October. 

14. Explore the Jardim da Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian

The Jardim da Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian (Garden of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation) is another lovely outdoor place to explore in Lisbon in October when the weather is nice.

Walk through a small forest and stepping stones over a burbling brook. Check out the tame ducks that come out and meet people picnicking on the grass. 

Building and pond in Jardim da Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian in Lisbon

Calouste Gulbenkian was a British-Armenian businessman and philanthropist who moved to Lisbon from Paris during WWII. He amassed a great fortune tied to the Petroleum industry along with an immense art collection. 

The museum in the garden displays these treasures and we look forward to going back to the museum in the park on a cold day in winter.

I also appreciated the pillars of information posted along the trails about Gulbenkian Ciencia, the science-focused initiatives of the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation. 

Apparently the Institute funds a variety of researchers in Portuguese-speaking countries in Africa. I was very inspired to read about the climate, farming, and public health focused projects underway.

15. Check Out Beautiful (and Spooky!) Cemitério do Alto de São João

Cemitério do Alto de São João is the perfect October in Lisbon activity mainly because the cemetery is just so spooky and perfect for a Halloween visit. 

I discovered this Lisbon hidden gem by accident when I made a wrong turn on a photo walk near Alameda.

The cemetery is filled with small family crypts, know as jazigos or "graveyards". Some of the crypt doors look like they've been wrenched open and gave a sense of vampires trying to get out.

Jazigos at Cemitério do Alto de São João in Lisbon

I kept getting this sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach when I backed up to photograph one of the crypts. I keep looking over my shoulder because it seemed almost like something was going to jump out and grab me from behind.

Many of the crypts are fronted with glass panels and you can see inside. The family's coffins are above ground and many have lacy sheets yellowed with age draped over them.  

In addition to the general spookiness, you'll find tombs representing different architectural styles like Art Nouveau and Art Deco. You'll also find stunning views. 

Cemitério do Alto de São João reminded me a lot of the cemetery where Evita is buried in Buenos Aires Argentina.  

16. Explore Jardim São Bento

Serendipitous walks are my specialty. I love taking detours on the way somewhere to see what I discover. One day in October, I was heading from Saldanha to Lapa and I got off the bus a few stops early. 

Lo and behold, I walked past Jardim São Bento which is located across the street from São Bento Palace (Palacete de São Bento). The garden is about one city block square and is sunken below the street. 

Vase with winged lion motif at Jardim São Bento in Lisbon

Keep an eye out for the winged lion vases at the top of the stairs. A fountain in the center anchors the park. 

Of course, there is a quiosque that you can avail of if you are hungry, thirsty, or just want an excuse to steep in the ambiance a little longer. 

17. Spend the Day at Palácio Nacional e Jardins de Queluz (Queluz National Palace)

Queluz National Palace is another excellent place to visit in Lisbon in October. Technically, Queluz Palace is one of the famous palaces of Sintra, but in comparison to places like Pena Palace, Queluz is a well-kept secret. 

Queluz is a mid-18th century Portuguese palace done up in a Rococo style. Many members of the Portuguese Royal family called Queluz Palace home.

Ornate hall with black and white marble floor at Queluz Palace near Lisbon

If you visit in October, you'll likely have the palace nearly all to yourself. Download the audio guide and take yourself on a self-guided tour of the decadent palace rooms decorated in period furnishings.

The Jardins de Queluz were even more impressive than the palace itself. Don't miss the Tiled Canal which is lined with beautiful Portuguese azulejos and the well-coiffed Hanging Gardens and Malta Garden full of interesting vegetation, sculptures and fountains.

Queluz National Palace viewed from the Tiled Canal

18. Taste the Wines of Setúbal and Explore Nearby Attractions

One final thing that I recommend to do in Lisbon in October is to embark on a wine tasting day trip to Setúbal. If you go early in October, you might catch the harvest. If you go after the harvest, you can still enjoy the fruits of all that labor.  

We embarked in a Portugal by Wine Arrábida Wine Tour for 79 EUR per person at the time of writing. The tour van accommodates a maximum of eight people. 

Mahogany wine barrels in Setúbal

A day trip from Lisbon to the Peninsula de Setúbal is an easy and low stress day out. Get a chance to taste some local wines while making time to visit historic towns, scenic viewpoints, and beautiful natural areas for a well-rounded one day adventure.

The garden at José Maria de Fonseca Winery in Azeitão near Lisbon

Dining Ideas in Lisbon in October

No trip to Lisbon is complete (at any time of year) without considering some great places to eat. Now I'll share some restaurant ideas (places I've personally tried) to add to your October in Lisbon itinerary.

19. Go for Dinner at Em Alta Na Baixa

Em Alta Na Baixa is situated on a pedestrianized street with lots of restaurants lined with outside tables. We were originally seated outside, but the musician was playing just a little too loud so we moved inside. 

The owner of Em Alta Na Baixa is originally from Mozambique. He was very friendly and complimented my pronounciation of Boa Noite.

Collage of dishes from Em Alta Na Baixa in Lisbon

We tried squid with garlic and tomatoes plus shrimp to start. The octopus simply prepared over a bed of garlicky spinach was delicious. I was dining with a former colleague who happened to be visiting Lisbon and he tried Moqueca, a fish and rice dish served with coconut milk. Moqueca originated in Africa and has ties to Brazil.

The meal paired well with Grainha white wine which had a buttery Chardonnay character. For dessert, we had a 20 year old tawny port instead of a proper sobremesa.

I absolutely loved the vibe at Em Alta Na Baixa. It was crowded when we arrived, but we were the last ones to leave.

20. Experience Restaurante Pastanaga

Another colleague and his partner came visited Lisbon in October and we used the opportunity to try another local restaurant: Restaurante Pastanaga. 

Restaurante Pastanaga opened in July 2020 (it used to be solely a catering business).  The restaurant is run by an older couple. She is the chef and the dishes on the menu are all family recipes. He serves and entertains the guests. Yer man was a real character, cracking lots of jokes throughout the evening.

Somehow he was oddly familiar. I realized later that he reminded me of one of the characters in Waking Ned Devine.

Highlights of our dinner experience included 3 kinds of chorizo served flaming at the table. We got to taste about 5 white wines before picking the one we wanted. We chose Mar do Inferno, a white wine with lots of salinity.

Collage of dishes from Restaurante Pastanaga in Lisbon

I had what was essentially a turducken (turkey stuffed with chicken stuffed with duck) served with salad. My partner had cod with shrimp papillote. 

My colleague really wanted to try a digestif with dessert. Our host brought out three different liqueurs to taste. We chose the Poejo, a minty herbal liqueur from the Algarve.

All the sobremesas (desserts) at Pastanaga are made to order. We tried the chocolate souffle with prunes and Armagnac plus a chocolate tart served with ginginha. 

21. Treat Yourself to a Michelin-starred meal at Loco

We decided to book ourselves into Michelin-starred Loco in Estrela just behind the cathedral. We love celebrating special occasions with good food and moving to Lisbon was certainly a special occasion for us. 

Collage of dishes from Michelin-starred Loco in Lisbon

Loco serves a 17 course tasting menu with wine pairings. Each dish is a little more than a mouthful, so don't worry about getting over-full.

Collage of dishes from Michelin-starred Loco in Lisbon

The whole experience is carefully choreographed. You even have to give a one course notice if you want to get up to go to the bathroom.

22. Get Takeaway from a No Name Churrascaria

Piri-piri chicken is almost a religion in Portugal and you'll find churrasqueiras all over Lisbon. We tried a nameless chicken place located in Estrela a couple of blocks from where we were staying when we first moved to Lisbon.

According to a local, this was one of the best roasted chicken places in all of Lisbon. I was able to ask someone in the queue in front of us how it all works?

Piri Piri Chicken in Lisbon

This mom and pop churrasqueira charges 13 euros for a kilogram of chicken. You need to specify if you want the chicken piri-piri (spicy). 

Our new friend from the queue told us that we must order a bag of chips (batatas fritas). We also ordered a couple of beers to go with it at the recommendation of the local who we enlisted to help us in this whole process. 

I felt like we really got a local taste of Lisbon that day. We took our food to go as is typical and ate it back at home. Our roast chicken was pretty well priced. The whole chicken, two beers, and a bag of chips cost 13.65 EUR 

23. Grab Lunch at Circle Cafe

Circle Cafe is a great option for a healthy lunch, especially if you happen to be near El Cortes Inglés. I ordered a lovely Circle Bowl which was basically a chicken salad served with beetroot, apple, sweet potatoes, mushrooms and more. 

Healthy bowls from Circle Cafe in Lisbon

We also ordered a chili con carne bowl. The dish was chicken chili with a really impressive chili pepper sitting on top. I was very, very excited to see that Portugal is not shy about kicking it up a notch in terms of the heat. 

24. Indulge in an Italian Meal at La Mafia

You'll find great Italian food all over Lisbon. La Mafia in Saldanha on Avenida Duque D'Avila is a small chain that's largely based in Spain. 

We split a starter, a salad that had rocket, parmesan cheese, some smoked scamorzi, and peaches. Quite the interesting flavor combo!

Collage of dishes from La Mafia in Lisbon

We also split a homemade pasta dish with beef cheek ragu which had a rich meaty flavor. We finished the meal with an Iberian port tenderloin. 

The pork cutlets were perfectly prepared and came with a little side salad and some pickled pearl onions. Of course, we enjoyed our Italian meal with a bottle of Portuguese red wine from Alentejo. 

We couldn't resist sharing an impeccable tiramisu for dessert.  

25. Eat a Thai Dinner at Siam Square

If you are looking for Southeast Asian cuisine and find yourself in Picoas, give Siam Square a try. I love the fact that they actually had a decent amount of chili in the dishes. I ordered something that was designated as having three chili peppers worth of spice on the menu and it was really, really good. 

My basil chili chicken was super spicy. We also tried a ginger pork dish. A small beer was essential to moderate the heat from the dishes. 

26. Try Tapas at Rubro

There are a few locations of Rubro in Lisbon. We tried the location just off of Avenida da Liberdade. 

We started with gazpacho served with do-it-yourself accompaniments. The gazpacho came with a little bit of hardboiled egg, some raw onions, and some croutons. 

Gazpacho at Rubro in Lisbon

Rubro is a tapas bar, so we had padron peppers, one of my tapa 'go tos'. We also had some batatas bravas, chunks of potatoes deep fried and served with a garlic mayonnaise and a spicy picante sauce. 

We finished our meal with some Iberian black pork plumas. We learned that plumas are basically neck meat. The dish came with a squeeze of lemon to bring out the flavor of the meat. 

We paired our dinner with a bottle of white wine from the Douro Valley for just 12 EUR.

27. Dine al Fresco at Petisco Saloio

As we get settled into Lisbon, we are trying to make some new friends. We had the opportunity to go out to eat with someone a mutual friend introduced us to. She had an insider tip that Petisco Saloio in Saldanha had really excellent food and so we met up there for dinner. 

Petisco Soloio had a really simple and short menu focused on sharing plates. We had some lovely grilled squid with salad followed by crunchy cuttlefish (choco frito). 

Collage of dishes from Petisco Saloio in Lisbon

We switched from fish to meat and tried pica pau, a dish of tender cubes of veal. We finished with an oxtail pie which was the dish of the day.

We combined our food with a glass of white wine to accompany the fish dishes and a bottle of red wine shared among us to go with the meat dishes. 

We finished our culinary experience at Petisco Saloio with chocolate cake served with a delicious mint ice cream for dessert. 

28. Stop for No Fuss Drinks at Papaya Quiosque

Quiosques are a great idea for a drink and a snack in Lisbon in October. Quiosques are usually located in parks and in the Autumn you'll be surrounded by colorful leaves. 

Papaya Quiosque in Saldanha has a great vibe with nice music playing. Order an Imperial (200 mL beer) or a glass of wine while you sit and enjoy the atmosphere. 

Papaya kiosk is always buzzing. If you are feeling adventurous, try the crazy looking custard trifles served in a bee jar that some of the other patrons were eating. This place is ideal if you have a sweet tooth.

29. Indulge in Mexican Food and Margaritas at El Santo

El Santo is a Mexican restaurant in Príncipe Real. We were seated a small table looking out onto the street through an open door. 

We ordered a margarita which was quite acceptable and a plate of tacos. I tried octopus tacos with bacon and cream. We also sampled El Santo pork tacos which were very good. 

Collage of Mexican dishes from El Santo in Lisbon

El Santo had a really great atmosphere. I do think it's more of an evening place, but we enjoyed our lunchtime visit when it wasn't too crowded. 

The dishes on the menu were in the 10 to 13 EUR range, but considering the upscale neighborhood the prices were not terrible. 

30. Try Tinto and Brasa Parrilla Argentina

Tinto and Brasa is tucked away on a backstreet not far from the Rato metro station.

Tinto and Brasa is an Argentinian steakhouse serving juicy cuts of meat and Argentinian wines. We had a Malbec from Salta for 24 EUR which was a splurge, but the wine was quite good. You can also order Portuguese wines for a lower price.

We started our meal with a couple of starters including a meat empanada filled with carnde de Creole. We also sampled Morcila sausage (blood sausage). 

The sausage had a good flavor but a surprisingly soft texture. We ended up putting some of the blood sausage onto the bread we were served and that worked really well. 

Collage of steaks and other dishes from Tinto and Brasa Parrilla Argentina in Lisbon

For our mains, we had a ribeye and a sirloin steak. We chose two of the five different cuts of meat on offer.  The two that we chose were most highly recommended by the waitstaff. The meat was sliced and served with sweet potatoes and roasted vegetables. 

We had fun communicating with our Uruguayan waitress in a mix of English, Spanish and Portuguese. It seems like it's not just Americans moving to Lisbon these days. We've met a ton of interesting people from all over the world so far.

31. Head to L'os à Moelle for a French Steakhouse Experience

Sticking with the steakhouse theme, we also tried L'os à Moelle which is run by a French chef and his wife who moved to Portugal during the pandemic. The restaurant is (uphill!) walking distance from Marquês de Pombal metro station. 

We got a front row seat with a view into the kitchen where we were able to watch Chef Eric make his delicious dishes.

Cuts of meat at L'os à Moelle in Lisbon

We started with an octopus millefeuille to share which included pieces of octopus, buckwheat crepes, some nice smoky flavors and some chickpeas thrown in. My partner got a veal dish, one of the specialties on the menu, which was tender and delicious. 

I decided to try the dry-aged beef. They actually bring out the meats for you to inspect and then cut your steak right there in front of you.  

The dry aged beef is priced at nine euros for 100 grams with a minimum portion of 300 grams. My steak (including the bone) weighed 365 grams. 32 euros for a steak is a bit steep, but it was it was quite good and worth it for the experience. I ate my steak with a sauce made with various herbs and chilies served with olive oil and vinegar. 

My steak came with two sides so I ordered sweet potato fries and roasted vegetables. Other choices included French fries, steakhouse french fries, and ratatouille. 

Collage of dishes at L'os à Moelle in Lisbon

Somehow we managed to save room for dessert, a tarte tatin. The dessert was delicious and it was mostly fruit. The dish was essentially sugary, caramelized fruit with just a tiny bit of pastry on the bottom. 

We were delighted to receive a small shot of ginginha (Portuguese cherry liqueur) on the house with our bill. It was the perfect nightcap to complete our indulgent meal. 

32. Enjoy Pizza at Di Amici in Ajuda

If you find yourself in Ajuda (at the Ajuda Botanical Garden, perhaps?), make sure to drop into Di Amici for pizza. You can sit outside on the sidewalk or inside in the modern interior with elegant black and white tiles on the walls. 

The pizzas are delicious and comforting. We shared a Portuguese pizza that had ham and hardboiled eggs on it and a Diablo pizza that had some delicious spicy sausage. In both cases, the pizzas were supposed to come with olives on them, but we managed to communicate our wishes: sem azeitonas

2 pizzas at Di Amici in Ajuda near Lisbon

I appreciated that the staff let us practice our Portuguese even though it was clear that we're not native speakers and they could probably speak English. They spoke to us in Portuguese when others would have switched to English, so that was pretty cool. 

Map of Things to Do, See, and Eat in Lisbon in October

Click on the image of the map below to open up an interactive version in Google Maps to help you connect the dots and plan your own Autumn itinerary in Lisbon.

Map of things to do in Lisbon in October

Should You Visit Lisbon in October?

I hope you'll agree that October is a good time to visit Lisbon. The weather is still relatively warm but not too hot. It can rain a bit in October, but you'll also likely get plenty of sunny days. 

Many of the more popular places and activities in Lisbon are less crowded now that the summer tourists have departed. October is an ideal month to experience all the Lisbon has to offer.

Are you trying to decide what time of year to visit Lisbon? Check out month-by-month ideas based on my personal experience living in Portugal:

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Sidewalk Safari | Part-time Travel Blog: Lisbon in October: 32 Fun Things to See, Do & Eat
Lisbon in October: 32 Fun Things to See, Do & Eat
Planning a visit to Lisbon in October? Find fun things to do in Lisbon in Fall with this travel guide. See if Lisbon is worth visiting in October.
Sidewalk Safari | Part-time Travel Blog