Fado Free Tour with a real "Fadista"

Duration: 2h and 30min
Languages: English, Spanish
Guru: Take
Quality Verified Registered on February 19, 2020

Take is a small local company that wants to show its cities to the world. We have a team of talented and passionate guides who want to show you the nooks and crannies, secrets and stories of our unforgettable city. Come and discover Lisbon, Porto, Braga and Guimarães and all the charms and charisma of Portugal. 2018, 2019 & 2020 Certificates of Excellence by TripAdvisor.

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  • Free booking and cancellation
    Free payment tour, no set price, booking and cancellation are free

Tour description

Voted the best original walking tour in the world.

Embrace the Soul-Stirring Journey of Fado in Lisbon: A Voyage Beyond Music

In the luminous heart of Lisbon, where the sun kisses the Tejo River and the air carries a scent of nostalgia, the Fado Free Tour beckons—a gateway to an experience that transcends time, delving deep into the soul of Portugal's most poignant musical expression. This isn't merely a walk; it's an odyssey led by voices from the past, narrated by the city itself, and sung by a guide whose life is as intertwined with Fado as Lisbon is with the sea.

The Prelude: Nossa Senhora da Saúde Chapel

Your journey commences at the Nossa Senhora da Saúde Chapel, in the historic Martim Moniz area, where the vibrant threads of Mouraria's Moorish tapestry unfurl. Here, amidst tales of sailors and distant lands, you'll trace Fado's origins back to the lundum rhythms brought by returning seafarers, understanding how a genre rooted in longing ('saudade') and fate ('fado') evolved into a national treasure.

A Symphony of Stories: From Monuments to Melodies

As you ascend Lisbon's storied hills, each stop is a note in a larger melody. The Monument to Fado introduces the Portuguese guitar's mournful twang, setting the stage for a deeper exploration of Fado's lyrical poetry. In Severa Square, the saga of Maria Severa, Fado's pioneering voice, unfolds, whispering of love and loss in the city's oldest quarters.

Your path then leads you to the statue of Fernando Maurício, where Fado's transformation from the alleys of Alfama to the grand stages of Lisbon is narrated, against the backdrop of political turmoil and cultural renaissance. Here, the rise of Amália Rodrigues, Fado's eternal queen, symbolizes not just the genre's national acclaim but its unwavering spirit.

Calçada da Amália and Beyond: Fado's Heartbeat

On Calçada da Amália, Fado's intricate dance with history is revealed. From its nuanced relationship with the Salazar regime to its vibrant resurgence post-revolution, Fado's journey mirrors Portugal's own path to self-discovery. Contemporary artists like Ana Moura and Camané are testament to Fado's living, breathing essence, a tradition forever evolving yet timeless.

The Church and Square of Santo Estêvão: A Deep Dive into Fado's Soul

It is here, in the embrace of Santo Estêvão, that Fado's soul is laid bare. Beyond the melodies lie stories of ordinary lives marked by extraordinary emotions—love, longing, joy, and despair. Your guide's voice, imbued with the authentic pain and passion of Fado, bridges past and present, inviting you to feel the genre's raw power.

Remédios Street: A Serenade Under Lisbon's Sky

As your footsteps echo on Remédios Street, a moment of magic awaits. Your guide, a Fado singer herself, shares her soul through song, offering a direct conduit to Fado's essence. In this intimate performance, the boundaries between guide and guest, past and present, dissolve in the melody.

The Fado Museum: An Ode to a National Treasure

The journey culminates at the Fado Museum, where the story of Fado—its trials, triumphs, and transformations—is chronicled. Here, amidst relics and recordings, you'll grasp the unbreakable thread connecting Fado to the Portuguese spirit, an eternal echo of the nation's heart.

Why Embark on the Fado Free Tour?

To venture on the Fado Free Tour is to immerse yourself in Lisbon's most authentic cultural expression, an experience that promises not just knowledge, but a profound connection with the city's soul. Led by a guide whose life is a testament to Fado's enduring legacy, this tour is an invitation to experience Lisbon through its most enchanting and emblematic art form.

As the melodies fade and the streets of Lisbon resume their everyday rhythm, the echoes of Fado linger in your heart, a haunting reminder of a city that sings of love, loss, and destiny. The Fado Free Tour is more than a journey; it's a pilgrimage to the very essence of Lisbon, leaving an indelible mark on all who walk its path.

Join us, and let the soul of Lisbon resonate within you, long after our voices fall silent.

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What will we visit on this tour?

  • Meeting point:
    R. da Mouraria 38, 1100-584 Lisboa, P...
    R. da Mouraria 38, 1100-584 Lisboa, Portugal
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    The guide will be next to the chapel with a Take Lisboa badge.

  • 1
    Outside visit
    Capela de Nossa Senhora da Saúde

    This chapel, originally outside Lisbon's city walls, has a significant historical and emotional tie to the city's residents. Initially dedicated to St. Sebastian in 1505 due to the plague, it was later dedicated to Our Lady of Good Health in 1662 to commemorate the city's deliverance from the disease. Its simple façade makes it a fascinating start to understanding the roots of Fado and the evolution of its name within the context of of Lisbon's history and its battles with destiny.

  • 2
    Outside visit
    Estátua "Mouraria - Berço do Fado"

    While the tour may vary, learning about the Portuguese guitar—a key instrument in Fado music—provides insight into the traditional melodies and poetic expressions that define this genre. The intricate relationship between the music and its lyrics opens a window to the soul of Portugal.

  • 3
    Outside visit
    Largo Severa

    Named after Maria Severa, the first iconic Fado singer, this spot is pivotal in understanding how Fado emerged from the humble origins of Lisbon's quarters to become a national symbol of Portuguese identity. Her story is a testament to the depth and passion inherent in Fado music.

  • 4
    Outside visit
    Calle Capelão

    Situated in Lisbon's historically impoverished neighborhoods, this statue commemorates Fado's journey to prominence. Fernando Maurício, known as the "King of Fado" in Lisbon's Mouraria district, symbolizes Fado's ascent from local taverns to the national stage, including its complex ties with the Salazar regime and the cultural icon Amália Rodrigues.

  • 5
    Outside visit
    Calçada da Amália

    Here, the narrative delves deeper into Fado's history, including its role during the Salazar regime, its revival post the April 25th revolution, and its reinterpretation by contemporary artists like Ana Moura and Camané. This segment of the tour offers a reflection on Fado's enduring legacy and its ability to adapt and resonate across generations.

  • 6
    Outside visit
    Largo de Santo Estêvão

    Exploring the lyrics and origins of Fado near this church allows for a profound understanding of its connection to Portuguese culture and identity. Fado is more than music; it is an expression of life's complexities, a sentiment that is "felt, not understood."

  • 7
    Outside visit
    Rua dos Remédios

    Experiencing Fado sung live by your guide amid the historic setting of Lisbon's streets adds an unparalleled layer of authenticity to the tour, allowing you to feel the raw emotion and soul-stirring power of Fado music firsthand.

  • 8
    Outside visit
    Museo del Fado

    Concluding near this museum, you're invited to explore the history and impact of Fado further. The museum serves as a treasure trove of knowledge, housing relics and recordings that chronicle the evolution of Fado through time.

How much does this tour cost?

Free tours do not have a set price, instead, each person gives the guru at the end of the tour the amount that he or she considers appropriate (these usually range from €10 to $50 depending on satisfaction with the tour).

Tour opinions

75 ratings
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Miriam 18 May 2024

Verified booking
Travelled in couple - May 2024
Nos ha encantado! Un Tour muy interesante, emocional y divertido. No os perdáis este Tour con Mariana si visitáis Lisboa!
Mar López 11 May 2024

Verified booking
Travelled alone - May 2024
Si esperas escuchar fados a lo largo del recorrido del tour, este no es tu tour. Solo cantan los fados al final de un recorrido de 3 horas de duraciin
MARIA 04 May 2024

Verified booking
Travelled in couple - May 2024
Un tour muy interesante y entretenido. Un recorrido inmersivo en las calles de la Alfama, ambientado por las explicaciones, y el sentimiento de Mariana. Super recomendable.
Gabrielle 26 Apr 2024

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Travelled in couple - Apr 2024
Diferente. Muy Interesante. Llevada con mucha pasión. Era SU historia = SU vida
Manjit 18 Apr 2024

Verified booking
Travelled in couple - Apr 2024
Mariana was a fantastic guide for the Fado tour. Her knowledge of the area, history of Fado and her ability to express herself made this a memorable tour. And then she sang- such a wonderful experience.
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Who is this tour for?

Non suitable for people with reduced mobility.
Does not accept large group reservations.
Not suitable for pets.

What should you know?

Minimum of attendees
A minimum of 4 people is required for the tour.
Additional costs:
The tour does not require the payment of entrance fees or additional expenses.
Free cancellation
If you will not be able to attend the tour, please cancel your booking, otherwise the guide will be waiting for you.
Payment methods
Only cash payment is accepted.
When do you want to go?
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