Christmas seems to be there as soon as the Christmas lights are turned on around the city. Together with the lights, the festive mood just floods in: there isn't any street without some Christmas baubles, Christmas songs playing all around, Christmas trees and Santa Claus just multiply...
In case you are planning to be in Lisbon this festive Season, get ready for the best things to do while you’re around.
- Lights on: Christmas decoration line the trees at the luxurious Avenida da Liberdade - Lisbon's favourable climate lets you walk down the avenue as you window-shop international designers, while the kiosks have some fantastic hot chocolate to keep you warm as you do so.
- Get in the spirit: You can really get into the spirit and visit one of Lisbon's many holiday markets boasting great gifts for your friends and family as well as tasty treats. Downtown, we recommend you to stroll around the market at Praça D. Maria I. Looking for something less festive? Check out the weekends' flea markets at Lx Factory.
- Warm up: Indulge over a hot chocolate at the Kaffeehaus. In case you are looking for a velvety hot chocolate this season, you don't have to look much hard for it. Downtown, in Chiado at the Kaffehaus, they know how to master it, otherwise, it wouldn't be the most authentic Viennese cafe in town.
- Go ice-skating, or take a ride in the Giant Wheel at Lisbon Wonderland. Along the tree alley, the 57 lined wooden stalls offer local products or, made by local suppliers. From clothes, accessories and handcrafted jewellery by local designers to homeware and local gourmandises, such as liqueurs, pastries, and jams. It is hard to resist to the tempting Christmas scents in the air...from cinnamon, chocolate waffles, hot wine, and even popcorn, the hardest will be to choose which treat to get. At Wonderland market, children will give their letters to Santa Claus, surprised by some reindeer for a selfie photo, families will head for a night of ice-skating, or couples will go for kissing under the Giant Wheel while holding some cotton candy.
- New Year’s Concert: the best way to enter to 2019 will be listening to music, good music.
- Check the classics: the Festive season is made of traditions and memories. On the playlist it’s the “Jingle bells”, “Let it snow” or the “White Christmas” songs, movies include classics such as the “Home Alone”, “Love Actually” and when it comes to plays, the Nutcracker is a must. In Lisbon, the Russian Classical Ballet will perform Tchaikovsky’s masterpiece.
- Go local shopping: Bringing back the perfect gift for Christmas is a no-brainer, as A Vida Portuguesa's traditional gifts - some even in their original wrapping - provide for a wide selection of local, unique products you can take back home; Looking for some cosy blankets to awake the hygge in you? Visit Loja do Burel, to stock up blankets, cushions, scarfs, toys…and the list goes on, in Burel wool. Burel is an artisan Portuguese fabric made entirely from wool and comes from the mountain regions of Portugal. On the other hand, why not to find a gift that fits as a glove?... Gloves! A Christmas classic gift, but not less exclusive, if from Luvaria Ulisses. The number 87a at Rua do Carmo, crusted inside Carmo’s Convent Wall, in Chiado, is home of one of the smallest luxury and historical shops in Lisbon, Luvaria Ulisses. There you will find handmade tailored gloves, with premium quality.
- Indulge over fanciness: The panoramic windows of Almada Negreiros Lounge make you feel almost as if you were at an outside terrace, with views over the Parque Eduardo VII, but with all the warmness and comfort of a Four Seasons. The Wonderland Afternoon tea is perfect to take the foodie friends and family in the afternoon. It’s Instagram worthy!
- Make a toast: The candle-lit like environment at the Ritz Bar just makes you want to curl up in one of their comfy sofas and stay there all night. Luckily, you can - all while enjoying the "Under the mistletoe cocktail", which makes the Ritz Bar one of the best atmospheres to have a drink in the city.
- Take time: Feeling stressed with all the preparations, shopping crowds all over, or just have an anti-Christmas “Grinch spirit”? In case you do, and you just need some pampering time, the Ritz Spa offers you exactly what you need: from a relaxing body treatment, a rejuvenating facial treatment, or even some final touches to take home, find your treat and enjoy the season the way you like.