How to Explore the Best Day Trips from Lisbon: A Guide for Travelers (Part 5)
Are you looking for some fun and exciting day trips from Lisbon? If so, you’re in luck. Lisbon is not only a beautiful and vibrant city but also a great base to explore more of Portugal. There are many amazing places to visit within a short distance from Lisbon, where you can enjoy the natural beauty, historical charm, and cultural diversity of this country.
Whether you’re looking for beaches, castles, wine, or surfing, there’s a perfect day trip for you. In this article, I’ll share with you some of the best day trips from Lisbon that you can easily do by public transportation or car. I’ll also give you some tips and recommendations on how to make the most of your time and money.
Ready to discover the best day trips from Lisbon? Let’s get started!
1. Sintra: A Dreamy Day Trip from Lisbon to the Land of Palaces
Sintra is one of the most popular and magical day trips from Lisbon. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site that boasts stunning palaces, gardens, and forests. You’ll feel like you’re in a fairy tale as you explore the colorful and whimsical architecture of Sintra.
1.1. How to Get to Sintra from Lisbon
You can get to Sintra from Lisbon by train, bus, or car:
1.1.1. By Train
The train is the fastest and cheapest option, taking about 40 minutes and costing around 5 euros for a round trip. You can catch the train from Rossio Station or Oriente Station in Lisbon.
1.1.2. By Bus
The bus takes longer and is more expensive, but it might be more convenient if you’re staying near Cais do Sodré or Sete Rios stations. The bus costs around 10 euros for a round trip and takes about an hour.
1.1.3. By Car
You can also drive to Sintra by car, but be aware that parking can be difficult and expensive in the town center.
1.2. What to Do and See in Sintra
There’s so much to do and see in Sintra that you might want to spend more than one day there. However, if you only have one day, here are some of the highlights that you shouldn’t miss:
1.2.1. Pena Palace
This is the most iconic and impressive palace in Sintra, perched on top of a hill and painted in bright colors. It was built in the 19th century by King Ferdinand II as a summer residence and inspired by Romanticism. You can admire the exterior from different viewpoints, or pay an extra fee to visit the interior and see the lavish rooms and furniture.
1.2.2. Quinta da Regaleira
This is another fascinating palace in Sintra, surrounded by a mysterious and enchanting garden. It was built in the early 20th century by António Augusto Carvalho Monteiro, a wealthy businessman who was interested in occultism and symbolism. You can explore the palace and its Gothic features, or wander around the garden and discover hidden tunnels, wells, caves, and statues.
1.2.3. Moorish Castle
This is an ancient castle that dates back to the 8th century when the Moors invaded Portugal. It was later conquered by the Christians in the 12th century and used as a royal residence until the 15th century. You can walk along the walls and towers of the castle and enjoy panoramic views of Sintra and beyond.
1.2.4. National Palace of Sintra
This is the oldest palace in Sintra and one of the best-preserved medieval royal residences in Portugal. It was built in the 14th century by King João I and expanded by his successors until the 16th century. You can visit the palace and see its distinctive features, such as the two conical chimneys, the swan room, the magpie room, and the tile collection.
2. Cascais: A Blissful Day Trip from Lisbon to the Coast
Cascais is a charming seaside town that offers a relaxing day trip from Lisbon. It was once a fishing village that became a favorite destination for royalty and aristocracy in the 19th and 20th centuries. Today, it’s a popular tourist spot that attracts visitors with its sandy beaches, elegant buildings, and lively atmosphere.
2.1. How to Get from Lisbon to Cascais
You can get to Cascais from Lisbon by train, bus, or car.
2.1.1. By Train
The train is the easiest and cheapest option, taking about 40 minutes and costing around 5 euros for a round trip. You can catch the train from Cais do Sodré Station in Lisbon.
2.1.2. By Bus
The bus takes longer and is more expensive, but it might be more comfortable if you’re traveling with luggage or children. The bus costs around 10 euros for a round trip and takes about an hour.
2.1.3. By Car
You can also drive to Cascais by car, but be aware that traffic can be heavy and parking can be scarce in the town center.
2.2. Cascais Attractions
There are plenty of things to do in Cascais, whether you’re looking for sun, sea, culture, or history. Here are some of the highlights that you should check out:
2.2.1. Cascais Beaches
Cascais has several beautiful beaches that are perfect for swimming, sunbathing, surfing, or sailing. Some of the most popular ones are Praia da Rainha, Praia da Conceição, Praia do Tamariz, Praia do Guincho, and Praia da Ribeira. You can also walk along the scenic promenade that connects Cascais to Estoril and enjoy the views of the Atlantic Ocean.
2.2.2. Cascais Old Town
Cascais has a charming old town that is full of character and charm. You can stroll around the narrow streets and admire the whitewashed houses, colorful flowers, and tiled facades. You can also visit some of the historical and cultural attractions, such as the Cascais Citadel, the Santa Marta Lighthouse, the Museum of the Sea, and the Paula Rego House of Stories.
2.2.3. Boca do Inferno
Boca do Inferno is a natural rock formation that is located about 2 km from Cascais. It’s a large opening in the cliffs that creates a spectacular sight when the waves crash into it. The name means “Mouth of Hell” in Portuguese and refers to the sound and fury of the water. You can reach Boca do Inferno by walking, biking, or taking a bus from Cascais.
2.2.4. Cabo da Roca
Cabo da Roca is the westernmost point of mainland Europe and a must-see for anyone who loves nature and adventure. It’s a rugged cape that offers stunning views of the ocean and the cliffs. You can also see a lighthouse, a monument, and a certificate shop that proves you’ve been there. You can reach Cabo da Roca by bus or car from Cascais.
3. Obidos: A Medieval Day Trip from Lisbon to the Town of Castles
Obidos is a picturesque medieval town that transports you back in time. It’s surrounded by a well-preserved wall that encloses a maze of cobblestone streets, whitewashed houses, and flower pots. It’s also famous for its castle, its festivals, and its cherry liqueur. Therefore, it’s one of the must-visit places for a day trips from Lisbon.
3.1. How to get there
You can get to Obidos from Lisbon by bus, train, or car.
3.1.1. By Bus
The bus is the most convenient and frequent option, taking about an hour and costing around 8 euros for a one-way ticket. You can catch the bus from Campo Grande Station in Lisbon.
3.1.2. By Train
The train is cheaper but slower and less frequent, taking about two hours and costing around 5 euros for a one-way ticket. You can catch the train from Santa Apolónia Station or Oriente Station in Lisbon.
3.1.3. By Car
You can also drive to Obidos by car, but be aware that parking can be limited and expensive outside the town walls.
3.2. What to do and see
There’s a lot to do and see in Obidos, especially if you’re interested in history, culture, and gastronomy. Here are some of the highlights that you should experience:
3.2.1. Obidos Castle
Obidos Castle is one of the most impressive and well-preserved castles in Portugal. It was built in the 12th century by King Afonso Henriques after he conquered Obidos from the Moors. It was later transformed into a royal palace by King Dinis and his wife Queen Isabel in the 13th century. You can visit the castle and see its rooms, towers, and battlements. You can also stay overnight at the castle, which has been converted into a luxury hotel.
3.2.2. Obidos Wall
Obidos Wall is another remarkable feature of Obidos that dates back to the 12th century. It surrounds the entire town and offers amazing views of the countryside and the rooftops. You can walk along the wall for about 2 km and enjoy the scenery and the atmosphere. However, be careful as there are no railings or safety measures on some parts of the wall.
3.2.3. Obidos Festivals
Obidos hosts several festivals throughout the year that celebrate its heritage and traditions. Some of the most popular ones are:
- Chocolate Festival: This is a delicious festival that takes place in March or April and showcases all kinds of chocolate products and creations. You can taste different types of chocolate, watch chocolate demonstrations and competitions, and even participate in chocolate workshops.
- Medieval Market: This is an exciting festival that takes place in July or August and recreates the medieval atmosphere of Obidos. You can see people dressed in costumes, performing music, dancing, juggling, fighting, or selling crafts. You can also join them by renting a costume or buying a souvenir.
- Christmas Village: This is a festive festival that takes place in December and January and transforms Obidos into a winter wonderland. You can see snowmen, reindeer, elves, and Santa Claus. You can also enjoy ice skating, sledding, carousel rides, or Christmas shows.
Ginjinha is a traditional cherry liqueur that is made from sour cherries, sugar, alcohol, and spices. It’s a specialty of Obidos and you can find it everywhere in the town. You can drink it from a small glass or from a chocolate cup that you can eat afterward. It’s a sweet and warming drink that will make you feel happy.
4. Evora: A Cultural and Historical Day Trip from Lisbon to the City of Temples
Evora is a historic and cultural city that offers a fascinating day trip from Lisbon. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site that preserves the legacy of different civilizations, such as the Romans, the Moors, and the Portuguese. It’s also a lively and vibrant city that boasts a rich gastronomy, lively nightlife, and a friendly atmosphere.
4.1. How to get there
You can get to Evora from Lisbon by train, bus, or car.
4.1.1. By Train
The train is the most comfortable and scenic option, taking about an hour and a half and costing around 12 euros for a one-way ticket. You can catch the train from Santa Apolónia Station or Oriente Station in Lisbon.
4.1.2. By Bus
The bus is cheaper but slower and less frequent, taking about two hours and costing around 8 euros for a one-way ticket. You can catch the bus from Campo Grande Station in Lisbon.
4.1.3. By Car
You can also drive to Evora by car, but be aware that the tolls can be expensive and the parking can be limited in the city center.
4.2. What to do and see
There’s plenty to do and see in Evora, whether you’re interested in history, art, religion, or nature. Here are some of the highlights that you should explore:
4.2.1. Roman Temple
This is one of the most impressive and well-preserved Roman monuments in Portugal. It was built in the first century AD and dedicated to the emperor Augustus. It has 14 granite columns and a marble base that showcase the classical style of architecture.
4.2.2. Evora Cathedral
This is the largest and most important religious building in Evora. It was built in the 13th century and combines Romanesque, Gothic, and Baroque elements. You can visit the interior and see the Gothic cloister, the Baroque organ, and the relics of Saint Elizabeth. You can also climb to the rooftop and enjoy panoramic views of the city.
4.2.3. Chapel of Bones
This is one of the most eerie and unique attractions in Evora. It’s a small chapel that is decorated with the bones and skulls of more than 5,000 people. It was built in the 16th century by Franciscan monks who wanted to convey the message of life’s transience. The inscription above the entrance reads: “We bones that are here, we are waiting for yours.”
4.2.4. Evora Museum
This is one of the best museums in Evora that showcases the history and culture of the city and the region. It has a collection of artifacts, paintings, sculptures, and textiles that span from prehistory to modern times. You can see Roman mosaics, medieval paintings, Renaissance sculptures, and contemporary art.
4.2.5. Giraldo Square
This is the main square and the heart of Evora. It’s named after Geraldo Geraldes, who conquered Evora from the Moors in 1165. The place is surrounded by elegant buildings, such as the town hall, the courthouse, and the church of Santo Antão. Additionally, it’s a lively place where you can find cafes, restaurants, shops, and street performers.
5. Nazaré: An Adventurous Day Trip from Lisbon to the Surfing Paradise
Nazaré is a stunning seaside town that offers an adventurous day trip from Lisbon. It’s famous for its huge waves, its fishing traditions, and its colorful costumes. It’s also a lively and fun place that has a lot of charm and personality.
5.1. How to get there
You can get to Nazaré from Lisbon by bus, train, or car.
5.1.1. By Bus
The bus is the most direct and frequent option, taking about two hours and costing around 10 euros for a one-way ticket. You can catch the bus from Sete Rios Station or Campo Grande Station in Lisbon.
5.1.2. By Train
The train is cheaper but slower and less convenient, taking about three hours and costing around 7 euros for a one-way ticket. You have to change trains at Valado dos Frades Station and take a taxi or a bus to Nazaré.
5.1.3. By Car
You can also drive to Nazaré by car, but be aware that the tolls can be expensive and the parking can be limited in the town center.
5.2. What to do and see
There’s plenty to do and see in Nazaré, whether you’re into surfing, culture, or nature. Here are some of the highlights that you should explore:
5.2.1. Nazaré Beach
Nazaré Beach is one of the most famous and beautiful beaches in Portugal. It’s divided into two parts: the lower beach (Praia da Nazaré) and the upper beach (Praia do Norte). The lower beach is where you can find the traditional fishing boats, the colorful umbrellas, and the women wearing the typical seven skirts. The upper beach is where you can find the giant waves that attract surfers from all over the world. You can watch them ride the waves from the cliffs or from the lighthouse.
5.2.2. Nazaré Lighthouse
Nazaré Lighthouse is located on the cliffs of Sítio da Nazaré, a hilltop village that overlooks the town and the ocean. It’s a historical and cultural landmark that was built in 1903 and still operates today. You can visit the lighthouse and see its interior, its machinery, and its museum. You can also enjoy breathtaking views of the coast and the waves.
5.2.3. Nazaré Funicular
Nazaré Funicular is a cable car that connects the lower town with the upper town. It’s a convenient and fun way to travel between the two parts of Nazaré. It’s also a scenic way to admire the landscape and the architecture of Nazaré. You can take the funicular for about 1 euro per ride.
5.2.4. Nazaré Market
Nazaré Market is a local market that sells fresh produce, fish, meat, cheese, bread, and other products. It’s a great place to experience the authentic and vibrant atmosphere of Nazaré. You can also find some souvenirs, such as ceramics, baskets, or textiles. The market is open every day except Mondays.
Book Your Best Day Trips from Lisbon
Are you ready to explore the best day trips from Lisbon and discover the beauty, culture, and adventure of Portugal? If so, you don’t want to miss this opportunity. You can find amazing deals on various day trips from Lisbon that will suit your needs and preferences. You can choose from different options, such as:
- Sintra tours, where you can visit the stunning palaces, gardens, and forests of this UNESCO World Heritage Site. Explore now.
- Cascais tours, where you can enjoy the relaxing and charming seaside town and its sandy beaches, elegant buildings, and lively atmosphere. Explore now.
- Obidos tours, where you can experience the picturesque and medieval town and its castle, festivals, and cherry liqueur. Explore now.
- Evora tours, where you can explore the historic and cultural city and its Roman temple, cathedral, chapel of bones, and museum. Explore now.
- Nazaré tours, where you can witness the stunning and adventurous seaside town and its huge waves, fishing traditions, and colorful costumes. Explore now.
All these tours include transportation, a guide, entrance fees, and lunch (for full-day tours). You also have the option to customize your itinerary and enjoy personalized service with a private tour. You’ll have a car and a driver at your disposal for the whole day.
Don’t let this opportunity pass you by. Discover one of the most amazing and diverse places in Portugal with these day trips from Lisbon. Choose your favorite tour below and book today!
How to Choose the Best Day Trip from Lisbon for You
As you can see, there are many wonderful day trips from Lisbon that you can choose from. Each one of them offers something unique and memorable for your travel experience. However, you might not have enough time or budget to visit them all. So how do you choose the best day trip from Lisbon for you?
Here are some questions that can help you decide:
- What are your interests and preferences? Do you prefer nature or culture? Beaches or mountains? History or modernity? Adventure or relaxation?
- How much time do you have? Do you want to spend a full day or a half day? Do you want to visit one place or multiple places?
- How much money do you want to spend? Do you want to save money or splurge? Do you want to use public transportation or rent a car?
- What are the weather conditions? Do you want to avoid the heat or the cold? Do you want to avoid the rain or the wind?
Based on your answers, you can narrow down your options and pick the best day trip from Lisbon for you. Of course, you can also mix and match different places and create your own itinerary. The most important thing is to have fun and enjoy your trip!
I hope this article has helped you find some inspiration and information for your day trips from Lisbon. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below. I’d love to hear from you!
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READ THE LISBON SERIES
If you enjoyed this article, you’ll love the rest of our Lisbon series. I have more articles that cover everything you need to know about this amazing city, such as:
- Best Things to Do in Lisbon: A Guide to the City of Seven Hills
- Lisbon Attractions: How to Explore the History and Culture of Portugal’s Capital (Part 1)
- Lisbon Food and Nightlife: A Journey Through the Flavors, Sounds, and Culture of a Vibrant City (Part 2)
- Discover the Hidden Gems of Lisbon: Top 3 Unusual Things to Do in Portugal’s Capital (Part 3)
- Adventurous Things to Do in Lisbon: Have Fun with the Outdoor Activities and Adventures in Lisbon (Part 4)
Don’t miss out on these valuable and informative articles that will help you plan your perfect Lisbon trip. Follow the blog and subscribe to my newsletter to get notified when I publish new articles. You can also share your feedback and questions with me in the comments section below. I’d love to hear from you!