TRIP What was originally built to help locals traverse the hilly streets of Lisbon has now become one of the city’s top tourist attractions. A testament to late 19th Century ingenuity and a must ride when visiting this excellent European city.
TAP Completed in 1902 under the guidance of Raoul Mesnier de Ponsard, the Elevador was built to help the people of Lisbon travel between the lower streets of Baixa and Largo de Carmo (Carmo Square) in the upper part of the city. Ponsard, a former student of Gustave Eiffel, used the knowledge obtained under the great Frenchman to create this neo-gothic, wrought-iron masterpiece which would later be designated a national monument in 2002.
The Elevador consists of two elaborately, designed wood-panelled cabins that transport visitors from Rua de Aurea to the Elevador’s first level. From here visitors can follow the walkway to Largo de Carmo or ascend the small spiral staircase to the upper level viewing platform. The viewing platform, which was originally used to house the structures steam engine, offers visitors one of the best vantage points in the city, 45 metres above street level.
GO Visitors can access the Elevador de Santa Justa via the entrance on Rua de Aurea, at the end of Rua de Santa Justa. A return ticket for the Elevador will cost visitors € 5.30. Opening hours vary depending on the season, so be sure to check before your visit. You’re more than likely to come across the Elevador whilst exploring the popular Baixa district.