Lisbon, Portugal

Belém: Gardens, Tower, River Paths

This is a variation of the riverside path, starting in Belém — a medieval fortified tower on a tiny river island, 8 km west of the city center and reachable by bus or tram. Lovely riverside path, beautiful gardens, and several important landmarks and museums. It’s nearly five miles from Belém Tower to the Cais do Sodre, with the the most pleasant stretch between the tower and the Ponte 25 de Abril, which looks like a mini Golden Gate Bridge.

Starting at the Belém Tower, run east on the riverside path by the Padrão dos Descobrimentos, and then the National Coach Museum and then the MAAT, a museum dedicated to dedicated to arts, technology and architecture. Just past the Bridge, follow the bikeway signs. The LxFactory is an arty shopping area, and then turn around near the FUNDAÇÃO ORIENTE MUSEU, collection of Portugese and Asian Art.

For variety, add the gorgeous Jardim de Belém, with its manicured gardens and wide paths (aboit 1 km of running). Landmarks include the Museu da Presidência da República, the Jerónimos Monastery (a World Heritage site), and an archaeology museum and a modern art museum.

Full Riverside Run

Video Tour: River Paths & Other Lisbon Highlights (34 min.)


  • 9.3 km (5.7 miles) RT. Shorter if just the riverside path is taken; Full riverside route from Cais do Sodre and the Belém Tower is 7.5 km one-way
  • 153 feet
  • Belém tower at west end; Alcântara Docks at east end
  • Reachable by bus or tram. Train stops at Belém and Alcântara Mar