Best Neighborhoods for Airbnb in Lisbon


Like across the rest of the world, Airbnb is now thriving in Europe, with the major cities holding the most accommodation options for free flowing travelers. Airbnb in Lisbon has taken off and offers a wonderful alternative to regular hotel living in the Portuguese capital.

Don’t get me wrong, the hospitality industry in Lisbon is still thriving and the hotels & hostels in the city are great for anyone who enjoys that kind of experience. Personally, however, I can’t help but feel like Airbnb offers one a more local and wholesome living environment during their visit to the land.

Lisbon – by Andreas Brücker – Unsplash

Airbnb’s are quite literally someone else’s home. That someone is usually a local, meaning their space is a home and you’re invited. Airbnb’s are less rigid than hotels and offer kitchens in which one can prepare daily meals instead of having to eat out all the time.

Your Airbnb will depend largely on your budget and desired proximity to the city center. Here are some neighborhoods in which this app movement is currently thriving in Lisbon.

Airbnb in Chiado in Lisbon

Chiado is just about as closes as you get to the center, center of Lisbon. Staying here is ideal for travelers who desire to be exploring the center for the majority of their trip, and who enjoy making their way around Lisbon by foot.

There are plenty Airbnbs, hotels and hostels on offer in Chiado, all built into the 18th century buildings that make up the district’s grid.

When considering Airbnb in Chiado keep in mind that this is the busiest neighborhood in Lisbon and there is constant foot traffic, noise pollution and free guided walking tours flowing through the space.

Chiado – by to lobato – Wikimedia Commons

The streets of Chiado are filled with cafes, restaurants, bars, shopping complexes, street artists, bookshops, fruit vendors… you name it. There is no day of the week when Chiado can be considered “quiet”.

Because of the dated nature of most of the building’s in Lisbon, apartments aren’t able to offer soundproofing and few of them have air-conditioning either; meaning in the summer your windows will be open even while you sleep, and the noise from the streets can filter on in.

Airbnb in Chiado – by Airbnb – Sourced from their website

If you don’t think chaos will bother you, then Airbnb’ing in Lisbon’s heart is a beautiful first introduction to Portugal. This is where I stayed the first time I came to the city myself.

Airbnb in Cais do Sodre in Lisbon

If you’s like to be close to the center, but close to the water as well, then Cais do Sodre would be the most suitable area in which to book your Airbnb.

Cais do Sodre is a small neighborhood on the edge of the Tagus, just slightly west of Chiado.

From here you are still within walking distance of all the restaurants and entertainment that the center has to offer, but your also right on the water which is great for early risers who like to run during sunrise (or simply watch the sun come up).

Airbnb in Cais do Sodre – by Airbnb – Sourced from their website

I wish I could say this area is quieter than Chiado but unfortunately this is Lisbon’s transport hub, so it remains full of foot and vehicle traffic throughout the week.

The Cais do Sodre train station is the main transport network in the city, connecting Lisbon’s metro to the trains that can take one up the coast through to Cascais and further. In the summer everyone has to flock here so that they can take advantage of the beach weather.

Airbnb in Cais do Sodre – by Airbnb – Sourced from their website

That being said, booking an Airbnb in Cais do Sodre is great for anyone keen to explore both the center and the rest of Lisbon. You’re right at the doorstep of any transport you may need to get anywhere in the city.

Airbnb in Bairro Alto in Lisbon

Bairro Alto is a very famous, very loud little cluster of streets close to Lisbon’s city center. It is a short walk from Chiado, and while Chiado maintains a chaotic energy throughout the day, Bairro Alto comes alive only at night.

The tight knit alleys and streets of Bairro Alto are lined with hundreds of traditional restaurants, fado venues and bars. Once the sun set’s in Lisbon the neighborhood comes alive and stays this way until 6am in some parts.

Bairro Alto nightlife – by Aapo Haapanen – Wikimedia Commons

Needless to say renting an Airbnb in Bairro Alto is not for the faint hearted. One should be comfortable with constant street crowding and ruckus from the entertainment venues. If you’ve come to Lisbon to party you’ll feel right at home.

Airbnb in Alfama in Lisbon

The Alfama is Lisbon’s most historic neighborhood, with beautiful old streets and buildings dating years before the great earthquake wracked the city .

What’s great about staying in the Alfama is that there is a more harmonious balance between locals and tourists. An element of reality still exists here, with communities of people who have called these streets home for generations as opposed to areas like Chiado which have become completely gentrified.

The Alfama – by Nostrix – Wikimedia Commons

The Alfama is also built upon one of Lisbon’s main hillsides, so the views from the Airbnb’s higher up are usually over the terra-cotta rooftops through to the Tagus. It’s a beauty to behold, especially one to wake up to each morning.

The Alfama is huge, and there are parts that are undeniably saturated by tourists most of the day. But the quiet, local parts far outweigh these areas, making for the perfect escape and “holiday mode” in Lisbon’s city center.

Airbnb in the Alfama – by Airbnb – Sourced from their website

Airbnb in Belem in Lisbon

I get asked a lot by people who are coming to Lisbon whether or not booking an Airbnb in Belem is worth it.

Belem is up the west coast from the city center. It has a number of great museums and landmarks that are on most Lisbon bucket lists, but should one book accommodation out here?

Because it is considerably further from the city center, Airbnbs in Belem are usually a bit cheaper and look like a great deal on paper.

Airbnb in Belem – by Airbnb – Sourced from their website

If you’re going to stay in Belem then be aware that the money you’re saving staying further out is probably just going to go toward transportation to take you further in each day.

The entity of Belems attractions can be explored in a single day, by foot. After that you’ll be left twiddling your thumbs in the village pondering where to go next.

I do, however, like Airbnb in Belem for families traveling with children. It’s an extremely wholesome, suburban town which is settling for young travelers. Do a bit of research before you commit to this area in Lisbon.

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