Lisbon with toddlers: our complete guide to visiting Lisbon with a toddler in tow. Lisbon must-see attractions for small kids, best places to stay and essential travel tips. Updated 2021.
Lisbon ins one of our favorite cities in Europe to visit with small kids.
Beautiful and welcoming, Lisbon has lovely weather, amazing food for kids and adults, a family-friendly atmosphere and several toddler-friendly attractions that make it fun for little kids as well as adults.
Despite this, visiting Lisbon with toddlers requires a little bit of planning!
Steep hills, cobbled streets and steps can be hard to navigate with strollers and pushchairs and you may worry that a big European city might be boring for a small child.
We are here to assure you! Visiting Lisbon with toddlers is great fun for kids and adults and all you need to plan a perfect family stay are a few tips.
Based on tour family stays in Lisbon, these are our tips tups for visiting Lisbon with a toddler.
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Quick travel tips for visiting Lisbon with toddlers
When planning a family trip to Lisbon with toddlers, it is good to keep in mind the following.
- The best time to visit Lisbon with toddlers is the late spring and summer (see below ‘Best time to visit Lisbon’). This is the best time of the year for your kids to enjoy Lisbon’s parks and when you are most likely to avoid the rain.
- The most toddler-friendly hotel we found in Lisbon is the wonderful Martinhal Chiado.
This is a luxury hotel right in the center of Lisbon and justifies its price tag with amazing family rooms, a stellar location and a wonderful toddlers club (a unique facility in the city center, usually only find them in seaside resorts).
- Lisbon has an efficient public transport system with trams, lifts/cable cars and metro.
They are handy to use with toddlers too but you want a baby carrier/ lightweight stroller with you, as you may find yourself folding and unfolding the pushchair pretty regularly!
- Lisbon is mostly stroller-friendly but with some noticeable exceptions.
The Alfama, the old part of town, and some or the areas on top of the Lisbon hills can prove hard on stroller wheels because of steps, cobbles and narrow lanes.
Do bring a carrier for days when you may be exploring these neighborhoods!
- Many Lisbon restaurants are family-friendly and offer high chairs or are accommodating to you using your own.
Even if not advertising kids menus as such, we found many were willing and able to make simple and smaller portions for the kids when asked.
- Here is a selection of our favourite books about Portugal.
The best time to visit Lisbon with toddlers: weather and what to expect
Lisbon is a good year round destination but some seasons are without a doubt more pleasant than others.
Lisbon with toddlers in spring
|Month||Low/High temp||Rainy days|
|March||11C/52F – 18C/66F||13|
|April||12C/53F – 20C/68F||12|
|May||14C/5 – 22C/72F||8|
Spring is pleasant in Lisbon and a good time for sightseeing however, rain is possible.
If visiting Lisbon with toddlers in the spring, bring layers, stroller rain gear and expect to get a mix of rainy and bright days.
This is the time when we visited last and it was a delight (you can read our trip report here).
The weather was warm enough to wear t-shirts and the kids even wore shorts and you only needed a light cardigan or possibly a light jacket in the evening.
You might get rain this time of the year, like everywhere in Europe in spring, so it is wise to still bring closed shoes and an outer layer and to keep an eye on the weather forecast for the specific days of your visit.
If visiting Lisbon with toddlers in the spring, make sure you avoid the busy Easter week or book accommodation in advance: it gets very busy, very fast! Find our recommended family hotel in Lisbon here.
Lisbon with toddlers in summer
|Month||Temperature Low/High||Rainy days|
|June||17C/70F – 21C/78F||5|
|July||18C/65F – 28C/82||2|
|August||19C/65F – 28C/83F||2|
Lisbon in summer is bright and sunny, with temperatures that will go from pleasant to hot depending on the time of the day.
If visiting Lisbon with toddler in summer, make sure you are equipped for the sun (sun cream, sun hats, lots of water etc) and consider day trips to the beach or possibly even a base on the coast for day trips into the city.
The main thing I notice in Lisbon in summer is the blinding light! Beautiful but potentially tiring for adults and toddlers, make sure you equip your whole family with good sunglasses and get an extra-large canopy for your stroller: you will need it!
Lisbon in Autumn
|Month||Temperature Low/High||Rainy Days|
|September||18C/64F – 26C/80F||6|
|October||15C/59F – 23C/73F||11|
|November||12C/53F – 18C/65F||14|
The autumn is a time of transition in Lisbon: on average, you can expect September to feel rather summery, while October and November tend to get more rain and lower temperatures.
If visiting Lisbon with toddlers in autumn you can expect mild to chilly temperatures and a mix of nice crisp days and rainy ones.
This is a good time to visit Lisbon if you are on a budget as this is when crowds are lowest however, you may have to budget for days at the museum to escape the rain.
We love Lisbon in the fall, we actually find it one of the nicest in European cities to visit with kids in the fall!
Lisbon in winter
|Month||Temperature Low/High||Rainy Days|
|December||9C/49F – 15C/60F||14|
|January||8C/47F – 15C/60F||15|
|February||9C/49F – 16C/61F||15|
Lisbon gets reasonably mild winters but it is not a year-round sun destination.
In winter, you have frequent grey sky and rain and you need to wrap up but is it a great time if you want to visit museums or get lover prices. If visiting Lisbon with kids in winter, pick a hotel close to public transport so you can avoid long walks in case of rain.
What to do in Lisbon with kids
We have written extensively about our favourite things to do in Lisbon with kids but this is an overview of our top 5.
Visit the Castelo de Sao Jorge
Located at the very top of the Alfama hill, this is a wonderful place to visits if you want to to mix proper sightseeing with a kid friendly activity.
The castle has a large terrace overlooking the city with stunning views and friendly peacocks, a guaranteed hit!
Explore the Oceanario
The world famous Lisbon Oceanarium is a great place to visit with kids as it is informative, interactive and out them in close contact with the marvels of the ocean.
Get on a Hop-on Hop-off bus
The best way to visit Lisbon without getting little legs too tired is to get onto one of the city hop-on hop-off bus tours. They cover several areas and are a great way to cover long distances fast.
‘Fly’ on Lisbon’s Cable Car
If you are not afraid of heights, a fabulous way to view Lisbon from above is to catch the Telecabine, the city’s cable car.
The gondola starts from Parque das Nacoes and can easily accommodate a family: each cabin takes up to 8 people and offers a 360 view over the city.
This may be an obvious point but if you have any issues with high places, this is not the attractions for you!
Discover at the Pavilhao de Conocimiento
Lisbon has many fabulous museums and the Lisbon Science Museum is one of the best for kids.
Like the name suggets, this is a real ‘Pavilion of knowledge’ where kids are invited to see, touch, try, experiment in a safe and fun environment.
The space is fantastic and there is a whole pavilion that is just for the kids where parents are allowed, of course, but invited to ‘think like their children.
A super family-friendly space where children are kings. Official site here.
Take a tuk tuk ride to Belem
A tuk tuk ride is a touristy thing to do but one of the most enjoyable activities for toddlers in Lisbon!
With the air in your face and a fun vehicle, they can see lots of Lisbon without any effort from their side nor yours!
We loved catching one to Belem: as well as nice views on the way, Belem itself is lovely with toddlers as it is flat (lots of space to run and for the stroller) and has a lovely playground and garden.
Things not to miss here are:
- Jeronimos Monastery (kids can play outside if they cannot take the visit)
- Monument to discoveries
- Belem Tower (lots of space to play outside)
- Belem’s famous pastry shop: pasteleria de Belem (the pastries are sweet and many toddlers love them)
Get on a hop-on hop-off bus tour
I never took hop on hop off bus tours before I had kids but with toddlers, I love them!
They are a wonderful easy way to get the sightseeing going when your child is too tired to walk but not enough to nap and you can see and lern a remarkable number of things from them.
I like to get the tour on my first day and take notes of what to go back and see properly in the following days.
Discover Lisbon Parks
Lisbon has lovely parks and green spaces that are fun for toddlers but also pleasant for parents.
Among the best of them there are:
- Principe Real, in Chiado, with playground
- Jardim de Estrela, shaded and with lovely ponds with ducks and frogs
- Alvito Garden with a good playground
- Jardim do Ultramar, lovely botanical park in Belem
You can find more things to do in Lisbon with kids of all ages here
Where to stay in Lisbon with toddlers: family friendly areas and hotels
Lisbon has several family-friendly areas. The ones we prefer and recommend for families with young kids visiting Lisbon for the first time are:
Baixa, centrally located, well served and flat, something important to know if moving around Lisbon with a stroller!
Chiado, immediately above Baixa, a charming and atmospheric neighborhood with the only hotel in the city entirely designed with families in mind.
Avenida da Liberdade, elegant, well served with hotels and public transport options
Belem, immediately outside the city centre but perfect for families with kids thanks to the vast green spaces, good accommodation options and a laid back feel, away from the busier central districts.
Some of our favourite hotels for families with toddlers in Lisbon are:
Martinhal Chiado (5 stars), fabulous family hotels with kids club. This is our favorite hotel for toddlers in Lisbon as it has a city center feel perfect for parents who don’t want to renounce city life and great facilities for the kids
Charming Apartments Chiado, lovely and family-friendly 1 or 2 bedroom apartments
You can read our full guide to our favorite family-friendly hotels in Lisbon here. (Options for different travel styles and budgets)
How to use Lisbon public transport with toddlers in tow
Lisbon has an excellent public transport system made of metro, trams and elevadores (lifts).
The metro is the most efficient way to cover long distances in Lisbon with little kids in tow.
The Lisbon metro connects the airport to the city centre and has quite an extensive network within the city too.
The system is fast, clean and efficient and children under 5 go free.
However, using the Lisbon metro with strollers does sometimes provide challenges: while many metro stations are accessible, others are not and you may have to lift the stroller to negotiate steps or awkward spaces.
Buses and trams are another good way to travel across Lisbon and one kids can enjoy as can double up as a sightseeing opportunity!
You can travel on both bus and trams with strollers but how easy or hard it is depends on the specific mean of transport: modern trams can take strollers not problem but the old one, such as the n28 is not accessible as such as you may find you have to fold the stroller to get in and allow space for all passengers.
Lisbon is famous for one more mean of transport that is peculiar to the city and immensely handy: the lifts.
Lisbon is built on 7 hills and the road climbing up to their summit are very steep. The ascensor is the city answer to this problem.
They are cable cars and do in a matter of minutes what would take quite a while to negotiate on foot.
These are lifesavers if visiting Lisbon with small kids! You can use them with the same tickets you use on the other public transport system, they are included in the transport covered by the Lisbon card and they are great fun.
Ticket options to use the Lisbon public transport system with kids
The most hassle free way to use the public transport system in Lisbon with kids in tow is to get a Lisboa Card.
You can by them in the arrival hall of the aiport, at the tourism kiosk, in town or you can purchase it online before arrival.
Other ticket options are:
Carris / Metro single tickets: these can be bought in advance and are the perfect solution if you need the occasional hop on bus, trams or metro. These tickets have a validity of 1 hour from the first use.
Day tickets: valid on Carris and Metro networks for 24h after the first validation
What to pack when visiting Lisbon with kids: travel essentials
What to pack to visit Lisbon with kids varies widely depending on the season. however, these are some must haves:
- A good city stroller with wheels that can take cobbles and bumps (find our favourites strollers for European travel here)
- A toddler carrier for pushchair unfriendly areas
- Comfortable shoes with cushy soles to allow long walks (find our favorite travel shoes for toddlers here)
- Sun protection for the summer
- Waterproof layers for the winter and, possibly, a rain protector for baby carrier if using
- Travel snacks for toddlers
- Travel adaptor for Europe and spare battery pack for your tech
Where to eat in Lisbon with kids
Eating out in Lisbon with kids is easy and a real pleasure.
Portuguese food is fresh, healthy and varied and we felt welcome in all the restaurants we tried, even if some were not equipped for small children as such (many didn’t have high chairs, for instance).
Our two favourite places were the Time Out Market and the Cerveceria Trinidade.
Time out Market is a large market with stalls with food from all over the world, from Portuguese fish to Italian pizza and Asian noodles).
It has tables in the centre and is an informal, stroller-friendly space, albeit often busy. Our kids loved the variety of the food and the extra treat of the small playground just in front.
Cervercaria Trinidade, in Chiado, is a traditional restaurant, very big and with excellent food where we had our dinner.
The restaurant is equipped with high chairs and a kids menu and while it is very used to tourists with menus in several languages, still manages to keep an local feel and a high standard of food.
We were recommended it by a friend of my dad as we were delighted with it: the meal was truly delicious,
I hope you enjoyed this practical guide to Lisbon with a toddler. Safe family travels!