A shaded square surrounded by classic architecture, Carmo Square is the perfect place to stop for a break while exploring Lisbon’s Bairro Alto and Chiado neighborhoods. Park benches line the area as well as small tables and a few kiosks serving up drinks, beers, sangria, and snacks. In the center of the square there’s a trickling fountain, with a tall gazebo over it. During the spring and summer, the square comes alive with purple blooming jacaranda trees and is always filled with tourists and locals alike—an excellent place for people watching.
The square is also home to the Carmo Convent, a gothic-style convent built in the late 14th and 15th centuries. Parts of the convent were destroyed in an earthquake in 1755, leaving ruins to explore. In the rehabilitated parts of the convent, there is an Archeological Museum that displays artifacts and art from throughout Portuguese history.
Carmo Square is in the Chiado neighborhood. Located atop one of Lisbon’s many hills, pedestrians can opt to take the Santa Justa Elevator, or brave the steep hill on foot.