Best museums in Lisbon that are worth your time

For history, art, and culture, the famous museums in Lisbon offer hours of educational sightseeing. This guide offers 15 of the best museums in Lisbon.

Lisbon has had enough names for the most fastidious scholars. The city has centuries of history behind it, so the best museums in Lisbon have fascinating tales to tell.

Whether you’re interested in ceramics, art, or sports, you’ll find plenty in Lisbon. Immerse yourself in the lives of history’s most important artists and roam the grand palaces of the 19th century’s Romantic period. Some of the most famous museums in Lisbon have  open-air attractions, allowing you to discover its natural heritage along the way. The Metropolitan area has just as many delights to explore.

Best history museums in Lisbon

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1. Discover Portugal’s maritime miracles

The Belem Day Trip will take you to the site where ancient world travelers set off on their journeys. You’ll wander away from the tower and into Belem’s hidden alleyways on your own private tour. Once you’ve worked up an appetite, you’ll discover Lisbon’s gastronomic heritage over a traditional Portuguese lunch.

Highlights:

Discover the sprawling Monastery of Sau Jerónimo and the famous Tile Museum.

Address and opening hours:

Meet your guide at A Padaria Portuguesa Bakery. Tour times vary.

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2. Step into the shoes of sporting greats

Luz Stadium was originally built in the Fifties and quickly became prized terrain for the Portuguese club, S.S. Benfica. This two-hour Luz Stadium and Guided Museum Tour will take you to both the club itself and its on-site museum. You’ll even gain access to the press and locker rooms.

Highlights:

Get your picture snapped in front of the Benfica eagle and learn what Portuguese culture brings to football.

Address:

Meet at Gate 17 of the stadium. Various tour times.

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3. Search for apparitions at the Sanctuary of Fatima

Lady Fatima is a beloved symbol of hope and protection in Portugal, so she has an important role in Lisbon’s history. The Sanctuary of Fatima tour will teach you about the three shepherds who saw her apparitions in 1917. You’ll explore the surrounding parts of the sanctuary and visit the Shepherds museum.

Highlights:

See the Apparitions Chapel and visit the village that was once home to the three shepherds.

Address and opening hours:

Your guide will fetch you from your hotel. Various tour times.

Best art museums in Lisbon

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4. Delve into Frida Kahlo’s glorious brain

The Frida Kahlo, The Life of an Icon exhibit is a masterpiece of production. It tells you the artist’s story through immersive exhibits, films, and virtual reality. The exhibition doesn’t display Kahlo’s art, but each installation draws heavily from it.

Highlights:

Build your own personalized Frida Kahlo model as you learn about one of history’s most important artists.

Address and opening hours:

Praca das Amoreiras 10. Open 4:30 PM-8:30 PM, Tuesday-Sunday.

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5. Discover ceramics through history

Tiles have an important role to play in Portugal’s history, and many of the finest works came from the 15th century. A National Tile Museum entry ticket allows you to see art from the 16th, 18th, and 20th centuries. The museum has a respectable paintings collection with a large selection of André Gonçalves’ work.

Highlights:

Explore the Convent of Madre Deus and learn how tile production methods have changed over the centuries.

Address and opening hours:

The main entrance is at R. Me. Deus 4. Open 10:00 AM-6:00 PM, Tuesday-Sunday. Closed Mondays.

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6. Discover the Impressionists as you’ve never seen them before

Immersive Show Tickets for the Immersivus Gallery Lisboa give you access to one of the most immersive Impressionism exhibits of the modern age. The museum has reinterpreted many of the artworks, helping viewers to experience painters like Klimt and Monet in a fresh, new way.

Highlights:

Experience exciting audiovisual exhibits and artifacts from Egyptian culture to Misterioso Egito.

Address and opening hours:

Praça das Amoreiras 10-1250-020. Varied hours afternoon-evening. Closed Mondays.

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7. Immerse yourself in the world of the masters

The Calouste Gulbenkian Museum Entry Ticket offers works by Rembrandt, Degas, and Rubens. You’ll experience Rodin’s emotive sculptures as they were always intended to be enjoyed: up close. The museum also owns an impressive collection of Lalique masterpieces.

Highlights:

View artwork spanning several schools, including Mesopotamian, Egyptian, and Classical art.

Address and opening hours:

Galeria de Exposições Temporárias, 1050-078 Lisboa, Portugal. Open 10:00-6:00 PM, Wednesday-Monday. Closed Tuesdays.

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8. Enter the world of street art through the reigning leader

Lisbon has earned a reputation as an open-air gallery with some of the finest street art in the world. Celebrate the best with a Banksy Museum, Permanent Exhibition Ticket. This important exhibit displays famous pieces like Girl with Balloon alongside his more obscure reproductions.

Highlights:

Explore murals, private collection items, and canvases in a beautifully-curated environment.

Address and opening hours:

Museu Banksy at R. Viriato, 1050-234. Open Monday-Friday 1:00-8:00 PM and 11:00 AM-8:00 PM on weekends.

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9. Wander around an open-air museum

Lisbon’s urban artists exhibit their craft throughout the city. The Urban Art Tour will take you to every unmissable artwork with the help of a live tour guide. You’ll also explore the LX Factory industrial complex, which is home to some of the city’s trendiest gastronomic spots.

Highlights:

Listen to the stories behind each street artist as you discover the many creative ways they’ve reinvented the city.

Address and opening hours:

Meet your guide at Foz Palace, Praça dos Restauradores, 1250-187 Lisboa, Portugal. Open daily 10:00 AM-7:00 PM.

Alternative museums in Lisbon

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10. Stargazing with the Iberian Peninsula Dome

A Planetário de Marinha Entry Ticket allows you to enjoy one of the biggest planetariums in the world, so it can achieve that better than most. It hosts several exhibitions in partnership with the Live Science Center, so once you’ve explored the stars, you can find out how explorers of the past navigated by the sky.

Highlights:

Learn about the solar system through expert lectures and exquisite multimedia displays.

Address and opening hours:

Praça do Império, 1400-206 Lisboa, Portugal. Open 10:00 AM-12:00 PM and 1:30-4:00 PM on Tuesday and Wednesday and 10:00 AM-12:00 PM and 1:30-5:00 PM Thursday-Sunday. Closed Mondays.

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11. Rub shoulders with royals from the past

Mafra National Palace offers a unique opportunity to see Baroque and Neoclassical architecture in its own historical environment. It acted as a royal home in the 1700s, and today you can experience it on a Coastal Villages Guided Tour. While you’re in the area, you’ll explore the villages along the coast and enjoy captivating Atlantic vistas.

Highlights:

Spend time at the open-air museum of Jose Franco and explore 1,200 Baroque rooms.

Address and opening hours:

Meet your guide at Foz Palace, Praça dos Restauradores, 1250-187 Lisboa, Portugal. Various start times.

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12. Enter a world of visual wonderlands and optical illusions

The 3D Fun Art Museum will give you a day of rip-roaring fun. This unique space is crammed with infinity mirrors, optical illusions, and photographic opportunities. It’s the perfect destination for children and the young at heart. It’s a playground for the imagination.

Highlights:

Snap photographs in adventurous scenarios for a truly unique Instagram entry.

Address and opening hours:

Meet your guide at Av. Miguel Bombarda, 1050-162. Open daily 10:00 AM-6:00 PM.

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13. Pedal to the Medieval times

If you enjoy a little pedal power, the Christ is King Electric Bike Tour will give you some time to enjoy the tarmac. You’ll bike to Almada e Cristo Rei — one of Lisbon’s most iconic monuments. Once you’ve caught your breath, you’ll head to the Medieval Museum, which explores Islamic life in the Middle Ages.

Highlights:

Climb Christ is King as you explore Lisbon’s mercantile history. Cycle to Praça da Figueira and see the Santa Justa Elevator ironwork lift.

Address and opening hours:

Meet your guide at the Lisboa Autêntica headquarters. Various start times.

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14. Cozy up to royal treasures

A The Royal Treasure Museum entry ticket will take you to the halls of the Ajuda National Palace, where you can discover both sites at your leisure. The museum exhibits the Crown Jewels and a world-famous Germain silverware collection. It also boasts enough gold and diamonds to thrill any self-respecting royalist. Once you’ve feasted your eyes on the glittering marvels, don’t forget to pick up some thematic gifts at the souvenir shop.

Highlights:

View coins and diplomatic gifts from Brazil and The Portuguese Crown.

Address and opening hours:

Ajuda National Palace. Open daily. Hours depend on the season.

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15. Do everything at once

If you’re only in Lisbon for a weekend, the Lisbon in One Day Tour will carry you to the most important museums and monuments before the sun sets. You’ll discover Lisbon’s oldest archaeological sites, visit the famous Ceramics Museum, and explore the S Roque Church’s exhibits. Then you’ll relax over a glass of lemonade and yummy pastel de Belem.

Highlights:

Head into the Castle to see panoramic views of the city. Then visit the Lisbon Belvederes and Tagus River.

Address and opening hours:

Meet your guide at Castelo de S. Jorge. Various start times.

FAQs

What are the must-visit museums in Lisbon?

Museu do Chiado is a work of art in itself. It was redesigned by Jean-Michel Wilmotte and displays Portuguese art from the 19th and 20th centuries. If your interests are less eclectic, the Museu do Aljube exhibits Lisbon’s past through its prisons. The site was once an ecclesiastical prison, but a dictatorial regime began using it to further its causes.

Are there any free museums in Lisbon?

The Money Museum is, ironically, free. Its interactive exhibits cover money’s history and evolution. The Archaeological Nucleus is another option for penny pinchers. It’s famous for its Roman ruins, ceramics, and 18th-century bread oven.

Are there any museums in Lisbon that are suitable for children and families?

Children are always delighted by the 3D Art Museum, where interactive exhibits and optical illusions keep tiny tourists occupied for hours. Museu das Criancas was built specifically for children, so it offers a gamified way to learn. This fun spot has a view of the crocodiles in the zoo next door.

For which museums in Lisbon are guided tours recommended?

The Belem district is teaming with museums and heritage sites. If you want to explore the hidden gems, a formal tour will add nuance to your trip. You’ll extract the most value out of Luz stadium and museum if you have a guide to show you all the nooks and crannies of the best museums in Lisbon.

Are there any museum passes or discount cards available for visiting multiple museums in Lisbon?

The Lisboa Card gives you free access to no less than 26 museums. A Lisbon city card  will give you free public transport trips and admission to the city’s finest attractions. You can choose from a 24, 48, or 72-hour option.