Practical Life in Lisbon

Transport in Lisbon

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Lisbon's public transport network is extremely far-reaching and reliable. Bus, funicular and tram services have been supplied by the Companhia de Carris de Ferro de Lisboa.


Lisbon's Metro system is its main artery, connecting the city centre with the upper and eastern districts, and now reaching the suburbs. Ambitious expansion projects will increase the network by almost one third, connecting the airport, and the northern and western districts. The Lisbon Metro (Metropolitano de Lisboa) is the metro (subway) system that provides Lisbon, Portugal with mass-transit services. It was the first subway in Portugal. As of 2007, the four Lisbon subway lines total about 39 kilometres (24 mi) in length and comprise 46 stations. Click here for an interactive Lisbon metro map.


The main operator of buses in Lisbon is Carris. The Lisbon bus network covers 662 km of city with even 88 bus lines. So it’s pretty easy to find a service without walking too much. At night, you can get back home with the eight routes running from 23.45 – 05.30. Vimeca, Rodoviaria de Lisboa, Transportes Sul do Tejo, Boa Viagem and Barraqueiro are the main buses operating from different terminals in the city. For detailed information on bus routes, time tables and fares, please click here.


A traditional form of public transport in Lisbon is the tram. Originally introduced in the 19th century, the trams were originally imported from the U.S. and called americanos. The original trams can still be seen in the Museu da Carris. Other than on the modern Line 15, the Lisbon tramway system still employs small (four wheel) vehicles of a design dating from the early part of the twentieth century.

These distinctive yellow trams are one of the tourist icons of modern Lisbon, and their size is well suited to the steep hills and narrow streets of the central city. The electric tram network (elétricos) is run by Carris and covers the older parts of the city and the downtown areas (Alfama, Baixa Chiado, Cais do Sodré). For more information on routes, timetables and fares, check the Carris website.


There are four commuter train lines departing from Lisbon: the Cascais, Sintra and Azambuja lines, as well as a fourth line to Setúbal crossing the Tagus river over the 25 de Abril Bridge. CP is the Portugese national rail train service. There are Express trains from Lisbon through Coimbra to Oporto (Alfa trains) and regional trains (Inter-cidades and Inter-regionais) connecting the different areas of Portugal. First and second class are available except for local and suburban trains. Special tickets include tourist tickets (valid for 7, 14 or 21 days). There are special rates on "Blue Days" offering return tickets with discount for trips over 100 km. People over 65 are entitled to have special discounts. For international, long and medium distance express services, it's advisable to make reservations. Train timetables are available from information desks at stations and tourism offices. You can acess some information in English on this website.

A separate CP line to Setúbal ends at the southern bank of the Tagus and requires ferry transfer to reach Lisbon. The major railway stations are Santa Apolónia, Rossio, Gare do Oriente and Cais do Sodré.


Another way to cross the river is by taking the ferry. The main company is Transtejo, which operates from different points in the city to Cacilhas, Seixal, Montijo, Porto Brandão and Trafaria and the other company is Soflusa operating only one line to Barreiro. Lisbon has 5 ferry boat terminals (estacoes fluviais). These ferries cross the river to the southern side and the crossing takes about 15 minutes.


Update 7/09/2009


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