Lisbon is one of Europe’s foremost foodie paradises. From pastel de nata (custard tart) to world renowned port, delicacies abound in Portugal’s capital city. The range of foods that are commonly encountered in the ubiquitous tavernas and cafes are quite broad with some surprises, like snails, along the way.
What better way to fully experience Lisbon’s culinary side than with a guided tour? That is why we have compiled a list of the best five food tours on offer. In our deliberations, price, range of foods and quality of experience, and past customer reviews have all been taken into account.
FROM: €45 per person
For a tour that combines samples of the finest regional food and drink with a better understanding of the local culture and history, look no further. On this three-hour walking tour you’ll be given the opportunity to try some excellent local produce including São Jorge cheese paired with a glass of port, a local green wine, and a selection of petiscos, which are Portugal’s take on tapas. All the while your guide is able to provide local knowledge on the best wines, food and even information about the classic Portuguese form of music and dance called fado. The tour weaves its way through the city’s historic centre.
From €30 per person
This excellent-value food tour of central Lisbon starts things off the right way, with a bica, the local version of an espresso. The drink is traditionally paired with a creamy egg custard tart called pastel de nata, in the surrounds of a traditional style café. Next up, the tour homes in on the nucleus of all things gastronomic in any country: a local market. The Mercado da Ribeira is the biggest market in Lisbon, which is surrounded by some of the city’s best restaurants. Other food samples include the traditional bifana (pork sandwich), and a shot of the ginjinha cherry liqueur.
From €71 per person
One thing about the group experience on any food tour is that the local cuisine sampled is usually skewed towards people with no specific dietary requirements. Instead, this private three-hour tour of Lisbon can be completely customised to your preferences and includes eight food tastings and the sampling of two local drinks. The latter includes the excellent ginjinha, a Portuguese sour cherry liqueur. Edible possibilities include pasteis de nata egg tarts, local cheeses, and pastel de bacalhau which is a fishcake made with cod. Add to this a chance to drink in the sights of the great city and it’s easy to see what makes this such a popular tour option.
FROM: €85 per person
This private 3-4 hour tour gives you a taste of the best traditional Portuguese dishes as you learn about the history behind them. While walking around the neighbourhood of Campo de Ourique, away from the well-trodden tourism trail, you’ll also discover how Portuguese cuisine has influenced food in other countries and cultures. Some of the dishes you can look forward to sampling include carapaus fritos (fried mackerel), chouriço assado (roasted chorizo) and peixinhos da horta (fish with vegetables).
From €61 per person
If walking is not your jam, then it is always possible to have the Portuguese food and wine tour experience from the comfort of a standing position atop a Segway. In-between visiting some of the main Lisbon landmarks such as Lisbon Cathedral and Alfama over the two hours, there is time taken to try local ice cream, pastries and the ginjinha cherry liqueur. This tour’s group-size is limited to eight people.