Opened for the 1998 World Expo in Lisbon, the Vasco da Gama Shopping Center was designed in a maritime theme in honor of its famous namesake explorer. Today the mall remains one of Lisbon’s most beautiful, and comprises 170 stores—including international brands—as well as a multiplex cinema, more than 30 restaurants, and a health club.
Designed by Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava, the Vasco da Gama Shopping Center boasts beautiful views of the Tagus River, which it overlooks. The mall hosts a number of international brands such as Zara, H&M, Levi’s, and Lacoste as well as a large Continente supermarket. For the traveling fashionista, private shopping tours cover a plethora of retail hot spots in the Portuguese capital, including Vasco da Gama.
Things to Know Before You Go
- The Vasco da Gama Shopping Center is a must-visit for shopaholics and families.
- Free Wi-Fi is available in the food court, located on the upper level.
- The ground-floor information desk offers store promotions and free stroller rentals.
- There are ATMs on all floors of the shopping mall.
- The entire mall is accessible to wheelchair users.
How to Get There
The Vasco da Gama Shopping Center is in Lisbon’s eastern Parque das Nações neighborhood, right near a number of public transport options. Take the Sintra or Azambuja train lines, or the red metro line, to the Oriente station, which is attached to the mall. Alternatively, take city bus 74, 208, or 728 to the Oriente station stop.
When to Get There
Vasco da Gama’s shops are open from 10am to 12am daily. The best time to shop is during the seasonal sales, generally from the end of December to February for the winter sales and July to September for the summer sales (this is also peak tourism season in Lisbon).
Notable Attractions in Parque das Nações
The Parque das Nações district was built to modernize the industrial area of eastern Lisbon. Besides the Vasco da Gama Shopping center, the area is also home to the incredible Lisbon Oceanarium (Oceanário de Lisboa), the largest indoor aquarium in Europe, as well as the Vasco da Gama Bridge, which is one of Europe’s longest at 10.7 miles (17.2 kilometers). Also here, travelers can take a cable car along the Tagus River and enjoy the public sculpture garden featuring avant-garde art.