This post is for music lovers, who would like to listen to a live performance while in Lisbon. I’m gonna share my personal preferences for best Lisbon fado places and music bars.
Lisbon Fado Bars
Firstly, try to avoid crowded touristy places with high entrance fees and street guys trying to pull you in with a special offer. There is still a bunch of great authentic places where you can enjoy high-quality live performance for free. So here goes my list:
One of the classics of Lisbon fado, opened in 1993. There is a fado show every night, with a few singers in the same evening. Normally, there is 15-minute interval between the singers. While waiting, you can order a drink, or a snack. There are two locations – one in Alfama, and one in Bairro Alto.
This fado venue is located in a former chapel in Alfama, and decorated with beautiful Azulejo tiles and murals on the walls. I really like the ambience of this place, it’s a total emergence into fado experience. The lineup consists of well-established stars, as well as emerging fadistas.
Located a few steps from Avenida da Liberdade, main shopping avenue in Lisbon. There are fado shows on Wednesday and Friday nights around 9 p.m. Besides a good performance, they offer a variety of Portuguese dishes to compliment your experience.
This Lisbon fado bar stars emerging fado singers. The objective is to discover new voices and help them in their career development. The shows are from Tuesday to Sunday between 8:30 p.m. and 11 p.m.
Actually, Chapito de mesa is a circus school, but also a restaurant with great views over the city. There are different shows, you’d better check the agenda on their website. Fado shows are always on Tuesdays, it’s better to reserve your spot in advance.
Live Music Bars
Besides, if you’re not a fado fan, but you appreciate nice private concerts, I would recommend the following bars with live performances (actually they are all located around Graça/Penha da França, since I lived in that area for a few years):
I love this bar, it’s like a cosy apartment-style bar with a fire place, sofas, bookshelves, and great performances. They have different shows each week (live music, cinema evenings, theatre performances etc.), just check their agenda on their IG and pay a visit!
This is another bar I truly enjoy. They serve original snacks prepared with Portuguese and local products and have a great wine list from various regions of the country. For now, there’s live music every Thursday night and DJ sets on Saturdays, movie sessions on Tuesdays, and there are also jam sessions with musicians and art exhibitions. You’d better check their agenda on IG to get an update for the upcoming events.
Another music venue with a nice ambience and great private performances. For now, there are shows on various days of the week, sometimes with emerging artists, sometimes with well-known musicians. On the days of shows, the ticket costs 3 euros. So, on these nights, the bar serves special dinners, often inspired by the concerts. The place is pretty small, so it’s better to come before the show (you can check the agenda on their IG)
This is a cultural space with a Brazilian touch. It is a bar that sells records and books, and has nice live music performances. The monthly schedule also features workshops, exhibitions and film screenings (IG agenda here).
m: Galina M.