Where to find the best shopping in Lisbon.

Experiencing the best shopping in Lisbon is to discover some of the city's most traditional shops, boutiques and stores. For authentic souvenirs made exclusively in Portugal head for A Vida Portuguesa, a great place to get hold of the “genuine article”. For Portuguese and international wines, plus spirits and liqueurs, it has to be Garrafeira Nacional Wines & Spirits. You can still dress like it's summer by diving into DCK and grabbing a pair of colourful board shorts. Lisbon's year-round mild climate also makes it worthwhile checking out Typographia for T-shirts with funky designs. The Arabesque-styled Embaixada mall bills itself as a “conceptual Shopping Gallery” where some of Portugal’s most talented brand ambassadors have set up boutiques in an abandoned 200-year-old mansion. For a retro retail experience pop along to Conserveira da Lisboa where they sell tinned seafood wrapped in colourful retro packaging. But to fully replenish your picnic basket head out to Deli Delux, a smart little delicatessen sited near the city’s Santa Apolonia cruise port. Back in Lisbon’s Chiado district you can find one of Portugal’s smallest shops, the delightful Luvaria Ulisses, where you can buy beautiful handmade gloves. Another unique place to shop is the venerable Caza das Vellas Loreto. This historic candle shop was founded in 1789 making it one of the oldest retails outlets in Portugal. And for some of the greenest and most eco-friendly shopping, browse the cork products at Rutz. Items for sale include shoes made from this versatile raw material. 


24 de Julho & Docas/Alcantara

Uniquely Portuguese, Rutz sells footwear for men and women crafted entirely from cork. Stock is surprisingly eclectic, and includes several varieties of boot, Chelsea and Oxford high heel, classic pointed toe, moccasin, loafer and brogue. Seasonal collections enhance the range. Colours are in keeping with Nature – olive green, cinnamon-brown, black, burgundy and beige, among other earthy hues. Portugal is the largest manufacturer of cork in the world and this versatile raw material, which is light and totally eco-friendly, is also extremely comfortable to "wear". It's also incredibly waterproof. The store, located in the city's trendy LX Factory complex, also sells a selection of cork handbags.

One of the oldest stores in the city is the wonderfully understated Caza das Vellas Loreto. Trading since 1789, this wood-panelled architectural gem is a candleshop, and its appearance has changed little. Ecclesiastical Candles in all shapes and forms are patiently handmade in a workshop at the rear of the premises before being displayed in handsome wood-framed glass cabinets set either side of a polished teak counter. Other styles are also handcrafted, and include tapered dinner service candles, chunky pillars and dainty tea lights. Less traditional are those sculptured to resemble fruit, various birds and even cupcakes. Many are scented and customers are greeted with a lovely perfume as they browse the collection.

If the glove fits... and customers will find a pair to suit them at this authentic art deco boutique, a dinky, wafer-thin shop situated in the heart of Chiado. Hand crafted from the softest leather, there are dozens of styles in different colours to choose from, for him and her. Designs range from the classically cut to sporty and are lined with cotton, satin or cashmere. The tiny interior can just about accommodate two people at a time, so bespoke, personal service is guaranteed. Ulisses' reputation is such that politicians, TV personalities and socialites number among the loyal clientele, as well as visitors from around the world.

Santa Apolonia

A fantastic selection of Portuguese wines, extraordinary in its range, helps define this upscale delicatessen. An entire wall displays rows and rows of bottles – a connoisseur's idea of shopping! Stocked are some of the country's most celebrated wines, many of them hard-to-get reserves and fine vintages. Also available are international wines from Europe, the Americas and the New World, plus excellent champagnes. Complementing this dazzling cache is an appetizing choice of gourmet produce including all sorts of cured hams, creamy cheeses and smooth patés. Rice, olive oil, aromatic herbs and spices, dried fruit and nuts, sweet liqueurs and other national delicacies like retro-wrapped canned fish and seafood, assorted jams and jellies and aguardente, the local firewater, all tempt the more discerning shopper.

For one of the most original souvenirs of any trip to Lisbon, breeze down to this little cornershop in the city's Baixa (downtown) district and buy a tin of tuna. Not any old tin but one packaged in great retro wrapping. Established over 80 years ago, this family-run business has been selling tins of tuna and other fish and seafood since the early 1930s. The retro wrapping features graphic design from the 1940s faithfully reproduced as if you were shopping during the same period. The range of sardines is especially delicious garnished variously in lemon, oregano, garlic and even curry. There's also tinned octopus, anchovy, mackerel, mussel and cod for sale. On most days you can watch the elderly female staff applying the wrapping to their wares � a delightful trip down memory lane.

Bairro Alto/Principe Real

The salons in the 18th-century neo-Moorish palace located in the city's trendy Principe Real district have been transformed into a series of attractive boutiques, over a dozen in fact, each selling a different range of independent fashion, eco-friendly cosmetics, handmade jewellery and chic interior d�r, most of it created by Portuguese designers. The former palace building, now known as Embaixada ("Embassy" in English), has been completely refurbished and the gallery occupies two floors. Access is gained via a grand marble staircase and much of the Art Nouveau detail has been carefully preserved. Temporary art exhibitions are held here on a regular basis to add even more vibrancy to an already creative environment.

This Lisbon store owes its cool range of T-shirts to a group of local graphic designers who have produced some of the quickest clothing in the city. Each T-shirt is embossed with a unique print created by members of a world-wide collective of young designers and printers. Standout designs include a bizarre but clever take on the Beatles' famous Abbey Road album cover, a smiley face depicting the Clockwork Orange logo, a cut out collection of Lisbon's famous landmarks and a homage to Portuguese poet Fernando Pessoa.

Summer may be drawing to a close but Lisbon's surf season runs year round. OK, it's not so hot and the days are shorter, but hitting the beach is still the stuff of long weekends, and looking the part is an important aspect of surfing culture. Which is why this swimwear store is worth checking out. It specialises in men's board shorts, a range of colourful apparel manufactured from fast drying fabrics to the highest quality. The shorts, printed with funky patterns, are as much a fashion statement as a handy bit of kit, and even you've never been on a board in your life they are still worth wearing as casual seaside attire.

This is the place to go if you're a connoisseur of wines. Stocked with an incredible variety of national and international labels, there are wines from all four corners of Portugal, a bewildering range of reds, whites, roses, late harvest and sparkling, as well as vintage Ports and Madeiras. Established in 1927, this is the country's leading specialist company trading in wines and spirits. Besides their national selection, Garrafeira has an extraordinary range of European and New World wines and an equally impressive selection of whiskies and cognacs. And there's a corner reserved for the finest champagnes.

If you're after an original souvenir of Portugal, this absorbing handicraft-hardware store is probably where you'll find it. Items on sale here are represented by brands that have been manufactured in the country for generations, and the inventory lists some of the nation's most cherished goods. There are fragrant soaps from Brito/Claus Porto (Oprah raved about them on her show) displayed in colourful and stylish retro wrapping paper, and Benamor Cream boxed in similarly eye-catching designs. For the kitchen, look out for the aromatic vinegars from Moura Alves and gourmet sea salt (Flor de Sal) from the Algarve. There are also toiletries, stationary, books, toys and even jewellery, all uniquely Portuguese and with a provenance that stretches back centuries.


Meet Paul Bernhardt

Paul Bernhardt cut his teeth as a press photographer in England before leaving the UK to settle in Portugal, where he has lived for over a decade, and where he started to focus on more...  More About Paul