Are you feeling fed up with your current city? Want to try somewhere else—ideally with a little sun? If so, you might want to try out Lisbon. Portugal’s capital has everything. Sun, sea, nightlife, and a vibrant economy. Better still, Lisbon is also one of the cheapest and nicest places in Europe.
That’s the finding of Conde Nast Traveller, which ranks it among the ten cheapest cities in Europe. The list also includes the likes of Athens, Riga, Sofia and Tbilisi in Georgia. These cities all have two things in common. First, they are much cheaper than the traditional European hotspots such as Paris, Milan or Madrid, and second, they offer everything you could want from a city.
So, what makes Lisbon so special?
First of all, it has a perfect location and climate. It overlooks the sea and is just an hour away from the Silver Coast, which has emerged as one of the most desirable locations in all of Portugal for expats.
It offers a rich history with museums, art galleries and all sorts of tourist attractions. Award-winning restaurants and bars mean there’s always something to do in the evening with a wide array of fine dining to choose from.
All this, though, comes at a relatively modest price. Aside from Athens, it’s the cheapest place to get a bite to eat with an average of £40 for two people. A local beer will set you back a couple of euros—which will be a revelation if you’ve recently tried to get a drink in London or Paris.
Travel is cheap and gets even cheaper if you buy a Viagem card, which entitles you to half-price train travel. It has a great selection of hotels at all price points as well as some great value apartments on Airbnb.
Lisbon, then, offers a place where everything you could want from a top European destination is at your fingertips, but your euros will stretch a little further. But it also has a growing reputation as a welcoming place for foreign professionals.
With the digital nomad visa, it is now possible for any remote worker, to stay in the country. To qualify you must be earning more than four times the Portuguese minimum wage which amounts to around €2,800 per month. You can either stay for a year or apply for residency which will be reviewed after four years.
In a world in which more and more of us need nothing more than a laptop and internet connection, this will be appealing for people looking for a better work/life balance.
So if you’re looking for a great place to work, play and live, which will not break your bank balance, Portugal’s capital is the place to be. Not only is it one of the cheapest places in Europe, but Lisbon also offers an all-around excellent quality of life.