Everything You Need To Know About Shopping In Lisbon6 December, 2021by Bounce
Situated in the western Iberian Peninsula on the Atlantic Ocean is the city of Lisbon, which is Portugal’s capital and biggest city. Because of its status as a hub for finance, entertainment, politics, education, culture and tourism, Lisbon is designated as an alpha-level global city (one of two in Portugal, including the city of Porto). Additionally, Lisbon is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Europe, welcoming over 3 million tourists every year.
If you are looking to take in some retail therapy while on vacation, you’re in luck; Lisbon is one of the cheapest places in Europe and an ideal destination for a shopping trip! In the Portuguese capital, you can find everything from luxury shops, vintage items, fashion stores, independently-owned boutiques and so much more. From vibrant shopping streets to one-of-a-kind traditional markets, here are some of the best places to shop in Lisbon.
Pro tip: To keep your hands free for all the shopping bags you will be carrying, look for a luggage locker in Lisbon where you can store your bags, suitcases and other personal belongings.
Best Shopping Streets in Lisbon
The city of Lisbon is a treasure trove of shopping destinations, particularly dedicated streets that boast a wide collection of shops – from international chains and upscale shops to family run businesses and independent boutiques. Below are our picks of the best streets for shopping in Lisbon. And to learn how to make your way about the city, take a look at our guide on getting around Lisbon – from trams to taxis, the journey can be fun.
Rua du Carmo
Located in downtown Lisbon, right in the heart of the city, is the vibrant shopping street known as Rua du Carmo. After the Chiado Fire in 1988, the area was left through a period of degeneration before being reinvented into what it is today – a lively area of great commercial importance. Halfway up the Rua du Carmo is a vintage green truck that plays Fado music all day long and has become sort of a landmark in the area.
At Rua du Carmo, you will find a good mix of traditional boutiques and small Portuguese souvenir shops as well as international chains and world-renowned brands. This shopping area is also home to the Armazens do Chiado, which is one of the most modern shopping centers in the city.
Arguably the most popular (and touristy) shopping street in the city, the Rua Augusta is one of the best places for shopping in Lisbon. Starting from the famous Praca do Comercio and extending up until Praca Figueira, the Rua Augusta is lined with well-known international brands, fashion boutiques, shoe stores, and other traditional shops selling Portuguese brands and delicacies. Rua Augusta is also a favorite among locals and tourists for relaxing and people-watching because of the multitude of street artists performing here.
Avenida da Liberdade
Similar to New York City’s Fifth Avenue, Los Angeles’ Rodeo Drive and Paris’ Champs-Élysées, the Avenida da Liberdade is widely regarded as the most elegant shopping street of Lisbon. If you are looking for high-end and expensive stores, Avenida da Liberdade is the spot for you! Stretching over 1 kilometer in length, this shopping district is home to famous shops of luxury brands like Louis Vuitton along with mid-range fashion boutiques. Additionally, Avenida da Liberdade is home to some of Lisbon’s most acclaimed restaurants and cafes.
Sitting right in the heart of the Chiado district is Rua Garrett, one of the best shopping areas in Lisbon. Named after writer Almeida Garrett, the shopping street is nearly 30 meters in length (extending from Chiado to Baixa) and is known for its collection of shops and restaurants. At Rua Garrett, historic stores and internationally-renowned brands are all mixed together, catering to the likes and interests of a wide variety of shoppers.
One of the most prominent shops found in Rua Garrett is the Livraria Bertrand, which was established in 1732 and is the world’s oldest bookstore. The iconic book shop houses an extensive range of books – from rare novels to first editions and more. Another landmark found within the shopping street is Café A Brasileira, which is among the oldest cafés in Lisbon and once served as a meeting point for intellectuals, free-thinkers and artists.
Rua do Poço dos Negros
Although Poco dos Negros is more commonly known as a stop on Tram 28, the area is slowly starting to become a hub for Lisbon shopping. Nestled between the neighborhoods of Bairro Alto and Santos, this quaint street is filled with interesting shops and cool stores that cater to the interests of the artsy and creative crowd.
Shopping Centers in Lisbon
Lisbon has no shortage of shopping centers of all sizes, all of which are filled with an interesting mix of shops and boutiques. For the best shopping experience in the Portuguese capital, you need to visit the following destinations.
Centro Comercial Colombo
Found in the Carnide district in northern Lisbon, the Centro Comercial Colombo is one of the biggest shopping centers in Portugal and in all of Europe. Founded in 1997, the complex occupies a total area of nearly 120,000 square meters is among the best shopping destinations for both locals and travelers.
Centro Comercial Colombo has everything you could possibly need. This massive shopping complex consists of over 340 shops, 60 restaurants, 8 cinemas, a bowling alley, fitness centers, an IMAX theater, children’s playground, an amusement park outdoor garden and several other establishments and service providers.
Armazens do Chiado
The Armazens do Chiado is a well-known retail center in the city and a great choice for when you want to go shopping in Lisbon. The building was built in 1894 and was originally a department store until 1988 when the neighborhood of Chiado was ravaged by fire. After several years of rebuilding and rehabilitation, the shopping center reopened in 1999 and has since established itself as a top-notch retail destination in Lisbon.
With over 50 shops to choose from, from international brands to locally-owned boutiques, you can find a broad range of products at the Armazens do Chiado. Also found within the complex are 12 restaurants, a sports complex and even a hotel!
Centro Vasco da Gama
Found in the Parque das Nações district in central Lisbon is the Centro Vasco da Gama, which offers both locals and travelers looking to combine a high-quality indoor shopping experience with leisure activities during their free time. The retail complex is housed inside a building that was originally built for the 1998 World Exhibition. A year later, after the event was held, the building was transformed into a shopping complex that has continued to grow over the years.
Centro Vasco da Gama covers over 49,000 square meters of space and boasts an impressive 170 stores, over 30 restaurants, multiple cinemas, parks, a health club and even an aquarium. Here, you can find everything from international fashion brands to furniture and more. The shopping center also has a hypermarket where you can shop for bread, meat and other fresh produce.
El Corte Inglés
If you’ve ever been to cities in Spain such as Barcelona and Madrid, there’s a pretty good chance that you’ve seen or heard about El Corte Inglés. In 2001, the Spanish department store launched their Lisbon outpost, their biggest branch so far, near the Sao Sebastiao metro stop. Known to offer exclusive shopping (think Macy’s or Galeries Lafayette), the El Corte Inglés has nine stories where you can find a multitude of high-end brands and upscale boutiques – from clothing and jewelry to home decoration. Other amenities found within the complex include restaurants, a 14-screen cinema and an outdoor park. El Corte Inglés also has a gourmet space found on the 7th floor, where you can sample vintage wines, local delicacies and other gastronomic delights.
Located in the hip Príncipe Real neighborhood, the Embaixada is one of the trendiest and innovative shopping areas in Lisbon. Housed inside the 18th century Ribeiro da Cunha Palace, a former palace building, the shopping gallery hosts a series of pop up boutiques and stores focused on local design, culture, gastronomy, fashion and more.
At Embaixada, you can find stalls and vendors occupying two stories and selling products such as eco-friendly cosmetics, handmade crafts, home décor and clothing, most of which were created by Portuguese designers and artists. The venue also occasionally hosts temporary art exhibitions to bring more life and artistry to the already-creative atmosphere.
Amoreiras Shopping Centre
Inaugurated in 1985, the Amoreiras Shopping Centre once held the distinction as the city's biggest shopping center and has continued to be among the most iconic destinations for Lisbon shopping. Easily recognizable for its unique architecture, featuring blocks of post-modernist towers of glass and steel, the shopping complex has over 250 shops and boutiques, more than 50 restaurants, cinemas, beauty centers, banks and a post office! The collection of stores at the Amoreiras Shopping Centre consist of both renowned fashion brands as well as locally-owned shops selling all types of products.
Located in the Campo Pequeno square in Avenida da Republica, the Campo Pequeno is perhaps the most unique shopping center in Lisbon. Built in 1891 by famed architect Antonio Jose Dias da Silva, the building originally functioned as a bullring (Praca de Touros) and exclusively hosted bullfighting matches. After undergoing major renovations, Campo Pequeno reopened in 2006 and became a multipurpose venue with an underground shopping center, restaurants and a cinema. The building also has a concert hall with a retractable ceiling and a 9000-seating capacity; the venue hosts music performances from well-known artists throughout the year.
Must-Visit Flea Markets in Lisbon
Lisbon shopping is not just about upscale shopping centers and busy streets. The city also has a number of traditional markets that sell novelty items and other cool finds.
Feira de Ladra
Found in the historic neighborhood of Alfama, the Feira de Ladra is Lisbon’s most popular flea market and a definite must-visit when in the city. Although its name literally translates to “Thieves’ Market”, everything being sold here is perfectly legal. Happening Tuesdays and Sundays, the Feira de Ladra is lined with stalls and vendors selling an extensive variety of goods (both brand new and second-hand), including handmade crafts, antiques, gems, azulejos (handpainted tiles), clothes, books, furniture, military objects and so much more. Bargaining isn’t really popular at this flea market but it is possible to strike a good deal every now and then.
Feira de Relogio
While it is a little bit off the tourist path, the Feira de Relogio is a market that is worth checking out. Held every Sunday, this sprawling street market stretches along the Olivais neighborhood and is more popular among locals because of its selection of cheap products. Feira de Relogio features vendors selling a range of interesting finds, primarily clothes, food and antiques.
Mercado da Ribeira
Whether you're a foodie or not, you will definitely appreciate a visit to the Mercado da Ribeira, a 19th-century market hall and arguably the most popular food market in Lisbon. A major makeover in 2014 saw the market being divided into two parts: one half of the Mercado da Ribeira continues to function as a traditional fish and fresh produce market while the other half is home to the Time Out Market, which is a food hall featuring more than two dozen specially curated food vendors.
Mercado Biológico do Príncipe Real
For a real taste of Portugal (literally!), head over to Mercado Biológico do Príncipe Real and discover various fresh and organic food items produced by the locals. Held every Saturday at the swanky neighborhood of Príncipe Real, this amazing food market features edible delights such as organic wine, specialty cheeses, homemade honey and more.
Lisbon Shopping in Principe Real and Beyond
Whether you're aiming to hit an area like Principe Real for olive oil and fresh fruit or want to explore the food market at Mercado Da Ribeira, you can't go wrong. Venture to other neighborhoods and browse an antique market or meander through a quaint candle shop. Look for luxury brands at high-end boutiques or the best souvenir ever at a family run business. When visiting Lisbon, you definitely need to make time to check out the range of shopping destinations that the city has to offer!