How to Spend a Rainy Day in Lisbon

People with umbrellas in the rain

Weather in Lisbon is usually sunny and warm.  However, the fact is that the weather can be unpredictable.  And chances are, if you travel enough, you will run into a rainy day or two.

This happened to me on my recent trip to Lisbon so I thought I’d share a few ideas with you, just in case!

Starting with one of my favorite spots here are a few ideas on how to spend a rainy day (or two) in Lisbon.

1) Jeronimos Monastery

Jeronimos Monastery Lisbon Portugal

Across the street from Jeronimos Monastery.

The Jeronimos Monastery was amazing!  I wasn’t sure what to expect and since I had seen a lot of churches across Europe I didn’t know whether it would be more of the same or something different.  It was beautiful!

Limestone archway with carvings in monastery

The limestone carvings are so intricate and are everywhere!

You can easily spend an hour or more depending on your interests.  I found it to be architecturally beautiful and inside the cloister, you can walk around under the covered area and still get to view all the beautiful carvings.  The details that have been carved into every part of this building were so beautiful and intricate.

Cloister at Jeronimos Monastery Lisbon

The cloister is the one uncovered area, but easily viewed without getting wet.

You are also able to go into the upper balcony area of the church, which was a really nice change.  Most cathedrals I’ve toured only allow you to come in on the floor level, so it was really nice to be able to come in and see it from above.

large room with painted tiles in Jeronimos Monastery Lisbon

This room had a couple of paintings as well as some pretty tile work along the walls.

You can then also walk around below – to do this you have to actually exit the monastery and go back out to where you entered, don’t go get back in the line, but just exit and then make a quick left into the entrance for the church.

Jeronimos Monastery cathedral ceiling in Lisbon

Down on the cathedral floor if you look at the far back you can see the balcony area that is also open to tourists.


2) Eat Pasteis at Pasteis de Belem

Pasteis from Pasteis de Belem in Lisbon

Oh what a beautiful sight! A wonderful plate of pasteis all for me! (Okay, I shared a couple)

No matter what the weather in Lisbon is like, you have to eat pasteis while you’re here! We tried pastel de nata at 4 different places during our visit to Lisbon.  However, the pasteis (plural form of pastel de nata) at Pasteis de Belem were hands down the winners!  This is in large part due to the fact that they are making them fresh, so when they come to you they are still hot, fresh out of the oven.

They have a yummy vanilla flavor and when topped with the cinnamon (cinnamon is a must) and some powdered sugar this seemingly simple treat transforms into something so delicious, that you may find yourself eating say 6 in one setting! (Not that I would know anything about that.)

Pasteis de Belem napkin holder

They started making these in 1837!

Girl eating Portuguese custard in Lisbon

These make me happy!!

Freshly baked trays of pasteis de nata in Lisbon

Freshly baked trays of pasteis de nata.

3) LX Factory

An outdoor art piece that looks like a bee in Lisbon's LX Factory

This was some art we passed in the LX Factory area.

This is an old warehouse district that has been turned into an area of art shops, bookstores, cafes and such.  Ler Devagar is a really cool bookstore at the LX Factory that has lots of seats for reading and its own cafe!  They sell both new and used books and have a fairly large selection of English books to choose from as well.

It’s fun to roam the different levels and flip through the books.  Find a cozy spot by a window and just watch the rain while sipping a nice hot coffee.  You might even find yourself a little happy that the weather in Lisbon is rainy.

Artsy bookstore in Lisbon Portgual

Looking down from the second floor area.

4) Time Out Food Market

I didn’t end up making it here.  I really wanted to, but with the weather and how our day went we ended up eating at a great cafe in the LX Factory district and never made it here.  However, I did ride by it on the bus and it is fully enclosed inside a huge warehouse building, so it would be a great place to go roam the various food vendors, sit at a cafe stand or even take a cooking class.  It would make a great choice for a rainy day destination.  So next time I’m in Lisbon and it’s raining, I’ll check it out.
People with umbrellas in the rain

Make sure to grab a window seat and enjoy the view from someplace warm and dry!

Other Ideas:

The mall. Yes, I know it’s not the most exciting destination, but trust me, you can have a lot of fun window shopping, trying on clothes and if you want even take in a movie.  The movies in Portugal are played in their original languages, so if it is an English speaking movie, it will be played in its original English format with Portuguese subtitles.  Our airport driver really liked this as he said it helped him learn English faster.

So there you go, here are a few ideas on how to spend a rainy day in Lisbon.  Sometimes when you see the forecast of rain, you get discouraged and you don’t know what to do, but trust me as long as you keep a sunny outlook (sorry had to go there) a rainy day need never ruin your vacation fun.


Getting Around Lisbon, Portugal:

Purchase 24 hour transit passes or single-use passes from any metro station (including at the Lisbon airport). There are also some local stores that sell it as we purchased ours from the newspaper store by our hotel.  There is also a Lisboa Card which is a sightseeing pass, we didn’t use these on our trip, however, you can check it out and see whether or not it makes sense for your visit.

Uber in Lisbon:

Uber was incredibly affordable and often cheaper and more efficient than using public transportation.

Jeronimos Monastery, Praça do Império 1400-206 Lisboa, Portugal


LX Factory, R. Rodrigues de Faria 103, 1300-501 Lisboa, Portugal


Time Out Market, Av. 24 de Julho 49, 1200-479 Lisboa, Portugal

For further details on my time at Jeronimos Monastery, the LX Factory and my visit to Lisbon and Sintra, check out Things to Do in Lisbon & Day Trip from Lisbon to Sintra.

Planning a trip there soon? Check out the Lisbon weather forecast.
Keep Looking on the Sunny Side!

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  • Paty at Reply

    Where can we watch traditional folk dances in Lisbon?

    • Charity at Reply

      Hi Paty, Unfortunately I do not know where you can see traditonal folk dances in Lisbon, I know you can listen to Fado, one of their traditional music styles. If that interests you, look into visiting A Baiuca you can eat there and enjoy some traditional music.

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