Chiado

Although it is in a walking distance, Chiado can be reached from Baixa by the Elevator Santa Justa. This is the glamorous neighbourhood of cafes, theaters, bookstores and fashion shops. Once the center of intellectual life, today it is one of the most fashionable neighborhoods in Lisbon.

Most of what remained from 19th and 20th-century including two major department stores in Chiado had been destroyed by a massive fire in 1988. However, all the destroyed buildings had been magnificently restored by architect Álvaro de Siza Vieira.

In Chiado, from the upper terrace - Rua Garrett - a narrow walkway will lead you to Igreja do Carmo, dating 1423, Lisbon’s only remaining Gothic architecture. The church had been destroyed by the 1755 earthquake, leaving the structure roofless with only the walls and some ribbing still standing. Although attempted to reconstruct, it was left in ruins. Today, the church is like an open-air museum with its standing tall pillars and walls. In the back end of the church, Archeological Museum can be found.

Following Rua Garret, passing shopping zone, is Largo de Chiado. Great spot to rest and perform the tradition: having a bica at “A Brasileira”, a café frequented by Fernando Pessoa, whom now, in order to commemorate his tradition, has a bronze statue on the esplanade. Today the café serves one of the favorite meeting points in the city frequented by both tourists and locals.

Downhill towards the river will lead you to Chiado Museum where an important collection of Portuguese art dating from 1820 up to present is exhibited. The nearby Teatro Nacional de São Carlos, one of the survivors of the 1988 fire, is well worth a visit.