Top 5 family-friendly activities for Easter weekend in Lisbon
Since its origin, the Easter weekend has evolved into a holiday enjoyed by religious and nonreligious communities alike and best spent, we think, enjoying the company of loved ones, family, and friends. A time for sweet chocolate bunnies, elaborate Easter egg hunts, and big family brunches, Easter couldn’t be a more ideal holiday for your kids than if they’d planned it themselves!
But why stop there? All the usual Easter festivities are great of course (who doesn’t like spending time with friends and family and eating chocolate?), but why not treat your kids to a unique experience they can’t get at home? Why not take the family abroad for Easter … say to Lisbon, Portugal? Lisbon is a hot travel destination of the moment, and we see that first hand here at Family Twist. And no wonder people are loving Portugal – its warm weather, stunning beaches, rich history, and delicious variety of local food drive a hard bargain to say the least.
So it is a great vacation spot, that much is clear – but what makes Lisbon ideal for an Easter getaway, and especially one spent with the kids? Here are our recommendations that make an Easter weekend in Lisbon well worth your time and money:
Go sightseeing along the Tagus River
With days stretching longer and the sun starting to peak out of the clouds, spring in Lisbon brings warm, temperate weather, and it is often recommended as the best time of year to visit the city by travel experts and locals alike for this very reason. Without having to slather your kids with a thick layer of sunscreen or go through the fuss of making them pull on a down jacket for the cold, you are free to travel about the city in comfort.
On a nice day in Lisbon, one of the best ways to spend time with your family outdoors is to take a walk, or bike, along the Tagus River. The longest river in the Iberian peninsula, the Tagus makes its final stop in Lisbon as it empties into the Atlantic Ocean. Some of the best views and biggest tourist attractions to be seen in Lisbon, including the Jerónimos Monastery and the Tower of Belém, can be found near the banks of the Tagus.
Select Family Twist’s ‘The Treasures of Belém’ activity to make the most of your walk along the Tagus. After you and your family have taken some time to take in the views along the river, meet your expert guide and begin your private tour of both the Tower of Belém and the Jerónimos Monastery. And don’t worry about the kids getting bored, they will each get a fun-filled game booklet to keep them occupied and engaged throughout the entire tour!
Relax on the waterfront at the Jardim Parque das Nações (Park of Nations Garden)
Obviously one of the first things that pops into anyone’s mind when they think of Lisbon is the beach. And who can blame them? Lisbon’s beaches are a perfect place to hang out with friends and family while getting some sun.
But have you heard of the Park of Nations in Lisbon? Perfect for cooler spring days where you still want to be on the waterfront but not particularly in the water, the boardwalks and grassy areas in the Park of Nations Garden are a popular place for locals and tourists alike to relax and enjoy the view.
This makes the park the perfect place for an Easter family picnic! Head out with some snacks from local markets, a bottle of wine for the adults maybe, and sit back, relax, and enjoy the view of the waterfront with your kids.
And don’t worry, should you or your little ones get a little restless walking the boardwalk or relaxing on the grass, there’s still plenty to do within the greater Park of Nations area! Built on the former site of the 1998 World Fair, the park houses several large tourist attractions, such as a cable car line and the Lisbon Oceanarium, as well as the Vasco da Gama Shopping Center, one of the largest malls in the city!
Take a food tour of the city
Good food, and lots of it, is an essential part of any Easter holiday. It may be more traditional to sit down for a Sunday brunch with your family over Easter, but if you’re traveling in Lisbon, why not try something a little more local?
When in Lisbon, do as the Lisbonites do and indulge in some local food! With our family-friendly food tour, you and your kids will be led by a private, expert foodie guide on a local culinary experience through the streets of Baixa and Chiado, two lively neighborhoods in the heart of the city.
Leave it up to your guide to know exactly where to go for the best cured hams, local cheeses, traditional cod fish, pork sandwiches, and, of course, the famous egg-tart dessert, pasteis de nata, to satisfy your sweet tooth. And for the adults on the tour, the guide may also show you where to grab the best Ginjinha, a traditional Portuguese liquer.
Visit the Jardim Botânico da Ajuda (Ajuda Botanical Garden)
Flowers in bloom are a clear sign that spring is in full swing, and the vibrant color and beauty they bring with them are always a welcome sight after a long winter.
So if you’re headed to Lisbon for the Easter holiday, why not stop and smell the flowers? Get outside with your family and visit the Jardim Botânico da Ajuda, the first botanical garden of its kind in Portugal.
Built in the late 18th century by Marquis of Pombal, a well-known Portuguese statesman at the time, the garden is located on the grounds of the Palácio Nacional da Ajuda (The National Palace of Ajuda) and hosts an impressive collection of over 5,000 species of plants – everything from tropical flora to common garden herbs. What’s more, the garden has a great view of the Tagus River!
Let the kids learn while they play at the Pavilhão do Conhecimento
Of course, spring will be spring, and there’ll always be a chance of showers. Fortunately, a rainy day in Lisbon doesn’t have to stand in the way of your parade.
The Pavilhão do Conhecimento (Pavilion of Knowledge) in Lisbon is the perfect place for a visit with the kids when the weather isn’t holding up. Awarded the ‘Best Museum for Families’ in the 2018 Pumpkin Awards, leaving it up to local families to vote on the most family-friendly services in Portugal, the Pavilion of Knowledge is sure to be both a learning experience and a blast for your kids!
A trip to this museum is a hands on and immersive experience where your kids will be able to experience everything from building a house at a play construction site, tinkering with (safe) electrical circuits, and even stepping inside a giant kaleidoscope!
One of the current temporary exhibitions on display at the museum is Cats and Dogs, open to the public until September 8, 2019 and definitely a worthwhile stop over your Easter holiday. The temporary exhibition’s purpose is to allow children and adults alike to explore the world of their furry friends and includes interactive challenges, games, and experiences that will leave your family with a deeper understanding of their favorite pets.
Check out all the family-friendly activities in Lisbon offered by Family Twist here.