Belém Tower (Torre de Belém)
Portugal's caravels sailed off to conquer the great unknown from Belém, and today this leafy riverside precinct is a giant monument to the nation's Age of Discoveries. Belém Tower, or Torre de Belém, the much-photographed symbol of Portugal's maritime glory, is a stone fortress on the bank of the river Tagus dating from 1514 - 19. You can climb the tower, and look into the dungeons from when it was a military prison. UNESCO have listed it as a World Heritage Site.
The imposing limestone Monument to the Discoveries, also facing the river nearby, is shaped like a caravel and features key players from the era. If you have time, look around the Centro Cultural de Belém, one of Lisbon's main cultural venues, which houses the Museu do Design, a collection of 20th century mind-bogglers.
This is worth the price of the tour. I bought the 24 hour tour. I started in the afternoon and had the whole day the next day. Note that there are two itinraries available:
the Red and the Blue line. I was able to take both of them and actually took two rounds of each. On the first round, i wrote down what places i wanted to spend more time on (Tower of Belem is highly suggested and the nearby Discoveries Monument). Then on the second round, i actually went down the bus. You won't go wrong with this hop on hop off.
First I have to gripe about other Viator reviewers: Please write more than just "it was excellent" as this tells me
nothing about the tour. Please please please write details, be more descriptive for heavens sake. ***This was a nice orientation of Lisbon. I think it toured around letting you see some of the major monuments, can't exactly remember since I did a tour everyday. Definitely took us to some coach museum, I loved that it took us to Belem to see both the tower and the exploration monument (my two favorite things but didn't have enough time for each) but was still a surprise as I did not know we were headed there. I paid 5 euro for the tower and sprinted up all the way to top and took some pictures really quick and then ran back down to make the bus. For the monument there is a huge globe in front but too many bozos blocking u from taking a clean shot. Also took you to some huge church where Vasco Da Gama is buried. Then took you to some old art of town that was awesome cuz u walk up this cobbled stone road and see tons of restaurants, some are Fado, and end up in a nice souvenir shop that sells tons of different things I wanted to buy it all, plus you get to taste some wine there and buy bottles if you like. The only reason I didn't buy the wine is because I knew I was being dropped off in the city not at my hotel. The tour guide spoke maybe 4-5 languages, too many different languages were accommodated, throw out the italians haha.
We went on the Hop-On Hop Bus bus tour as soon as we arrived, and it was a great way to get the lay of the land. We took both the Red and Blue routes. If you can only do one, I recommend the Red Route, and get off at the Belem Tower for half an hour.
Take tram 15 towards Alges, and get off at the Mosteiro dos Jeronimos stop (this is one beyond stop Belém). Head up the overpass to the right and through the gardens to the riverfront park. From there you can't miss the tower.