Best Day Trips From Lisbon

Reema Bharti

Reema Bharti

· 16 min read

The Portuguese capital of Lisbon is magical with its hilly streets, historic trams, and those mouth-watering custard tarts. But what if I told you the magic isn't just in Lisbon?

It's also in its neighbors. From beaches to palaces, there's a world waiting just an hour or two away. Dive in with me as we explore the best day trips from this vibrant city.

Best day trips from Lisbon

  1. Sintra

One summer day, I found myself whisked away to the enchanting town of Sintra. Nestled amidst the rolling hills and lush forests, this Lisbon day trip is a patchwork of colorful palaces, ancient ruins, and vibrant markets.

How to Get to Sintra from Lisbon:

I was pleasantly surprised at how straightforward it was to get to Sintra from the heart of Lisbon. Here's a breakdown:

By Train:

  • Starting Point: I began my journey from Rossio station, situated right in central Lisbon. This station is easily accessible via Lisbon's metro system.
  • Frequency: The best part is that trains to Sintra run regularly, with departures almost every 15 minutes during peak times.
  • Duration: The journey is relatively quick, clocking in at around 40 minutes.
  • Tickets: I bought my tickets from the ticket machines at the station. It's a standard commuter train, so no prior reservations are required. Remember to keep the ticket handy; you'll need it to exit the station in Sintra.
  • Views: The train journey offers some delightful views, giving glimpses of suburban Lisbon before transitioning to more rural, forested landscapes as you approach Sintra.

Exploring Sintra:

Sintra’s old town is a maze of narrow alleyways. The cobblestone streets in this small town are dotted with shops, where artisans sell everything from delicate jewelry to intricate fabrics. And oh! The food. The air was filled with the aroma of the local pastries, “travesseiros” and “queijadas”. I suggest you grab a couple; they are an explosion of flavor.

Pena National Palace is the crown jewel of Sintra. It's perched atop a hill, proudly showcasing its vibrant colors. As I climbed its steps, the panoramic view took my breath away. The entire town, with its terracotta rooftops and the shimmering ocean, sprawled before me.

Another gem is the Quinta da Regaleira. This mansion is more than just a building. It’s a labyrinth of hidden tunnels, eerie caves, and an iconic well with a spiraling staircase. The place has stories whispered in every corner.

Practical Tips for Visiting Sintra:

  1. Those shoes? Make sure they're your comfiest pair. The terrain can be uneven and there's lots of walking.
  2. Sintra has a microclimate. I found the weather changing quickly, so packing layers is wise.
  3. Try to beat the tourist rush. Early mornings or weekdays can make for a more peaceful visit.
  1. Cabo da Roca

A few days later, I stood at Cabo da Roca, the very edge of Europe. This rugged cliff, facing the vast Atlantic, was a dramatic blend of wild beauty and serene vastness.

How to Get to Cabo da Roca from Lisbon:

Reaching Cabo da Roca was a two-part journey for me, but every moment was worth it for the destination.

cabo de roca, portugal, sintra

By Train to Cascais:

  • Starting Point: I started from the Cais do Sodré station in Lisbon. This station is connected to Lisbon's metro, making it pretty convenient.
  • Frequency: Trains to Cascais run frequently. During peak hours, you can expect a train every 20 minutes or so.
  • Duration: The journey to Cascais took about 30-35 minutes.
  • Tickets: Much like my Sintra trip, I purchased my tickets from the machines at the station. Again, it's a commuter train, so just turn up and buy a ticket before boarding.

From Cascais to Cabo da Roca by Bus:

  • Bus Number: Once in Cascais, I looked for bus number 403. The bus station in Cascais is close to the train station, so no long walks required.
  • Frequency: The buses aren't as frequent as the trains. Depending on the day and time, they run approximately every hour.
  • Duration: The bus ride takes about 40 minutes to get to Cabo da Roca.
  • Tickets: I bought my bus ticket directly from the driver. Cash is a good idea, as not all buses may have card machines.
  • Views: This ride was a treat! The road winds along the coast, offering breathtaking views of the sea and cliffs.

Experience at Cabo da Roca:

The first thing that hit me was the wind. It roared in my ears, tangling my hair. The waves below thundered against the cliffs, sending sprays of white foam into the air. The lighthouse stood sentinel, its beacon a guiding light in the wild expanse. And the sign, declaring the spot as Europe's westernmost point, was an irresistible photo-op!

Practical Tips for Visiting Cabo da Roca:

  1. That hat? Secure it or risk seeing it become a gift for the wind. Seriously, it gets really windy.
  2. Stay safe. Those cliffs might offer great views but keep a safe distance. Nature's beauty is best admired with caution.
  3. If the wind gets too much, the shop near the lighthouse offers warm drinks and a reprieve.
  4. For those who seek solitude and reflection, weekdays are quieter.

Both these spots, Sintra and Cabo da Roca, added special pages to my travel diary. Here's hoping your adventure is just as memorable! Safe travels!

  1. Cascais

One sunny day, I decided to take a short trip from Lisbon to Cascais. And boy, am I glad I did! Cascais felt like a sunny dream with its golden beaches, cute streets, and yummy ice creams.

How to Get to Cascais from Lisbon:

By Train:

  • Starting Point: My journey started at the Cais do Sodré station in Lisbon. It's big, so I looked for signs that pointed to trains going to Cascais.
  • Frequency: I didn't have to wait long. Trains leave about every 20 minutes.
  • Duration: The ride took just 40 minutes. I spent my time looking out the window at the cool views of the coastline.
  • Tickets: Buying a ticket was easy. I used the ticket machines at the station. They have English options, so don't worry!

Exploring Cascais:

The beaches in Cascais were a treat! Soft sands, waves making fun sounds, and lots of places to grab snacks like chips and ice cream. The town center had twisty streets with colorful houses. There were also cute shops selling things like handmade crafts, such as pottery and beaded necklaces.

One of my favorite spots was the Boca do Inferno. It means "Mouth of Hell" but it's not scary at all. It’s a big hole in the cliffs where the sea comes in and out. Watching the waves crash was so fun!

Practical Tips for Visiting Cascais:

  1. Wear sunscreen. The sun there can be strong. I learned the hard way!
  2. If you want to swim, the water can be a bit cold, even in summer. But it's super refreshing!
  3. The town is walkable, so good shoes will help. I wore my comfy sneakers.
  4. Weekdays are less crowded than weekends. So, if you want a quiet trip, choose a weekday.
  1. Belém

Next on my list was Belém. Just a short ride from Lisbon, and it's like stepping into a history book, but way more fun.

How to Get to Belém from Lisbon:

By Tram:

  • Starting Point: I caught tram number 15. The big stop is at Praça da Figueira in Lisbon.
  • Frequency: These trams are regular, coming about every 10 minutes.
  • Duration: The ride was short, only 20 minutes.
  • Tickets: I got my ticket from a machine at the tram stop. It was easy and quick.

Exploring Belém:

Belém Tower was my first stop. It’s an old stone tower by the river. People say it guarded Lisbon a long time ago. The views from the top? Super pretty!

Then, I visited the Jerónimos Monastery. It's HUGE! The building looked like a big cake with lots of designs. Inside, there were big rooms and gardens.

But the best part? The pastries! I tried the famous “Pastéis de Belém”. They're small, sweet tarts with creamy insides. Yum!

Practical Tips for Visiting Belém:

  1. Go early. Belém gets busy, especially the pastry shops.
  2. Wear a hat or cap. There's not a lot of shade, and the sun can be hot.
  3. There are lots of museums and cool places. If you like history, you might want to stay the whole day.
  4. Carry some cash. Some small shops might not take cards.

Both Cascais and Belém were awesome! If you're in Lisbon, I say go visit! They're close, fun, and super pretty!

  1. Óbidos

On a bright morning, I decided to hop onto a bus headed for Óbidos. The thought of wandering through this small medieval town and streets and eating chocolate in a cup shaped like a castle had me super excited!

Obidos, Portugal

How to Get to Óbidos from Lisbon:

By Bus:

  • Starting Point: I started from Lisbon’s Campo Grande bus terminal. It’s big, but there are signs everywhere.
  • Frequency: Buses run about 7 times a day, so I had options.
  • Duration: The journey took about 1 hour and 20 minutes. I brought a book, but ended up just staring out of the window.

- Tickets: I bought my ticket at the terminal. It was quick and the staff was friendly.

Exploring Óbidos:

Walking into Óbidos, I felt like I traveled back in time! The walls around the town are super old, and there’s even a castle. Streets are tiny and full of bright flowers. There were shops that sold neat things like postcards, colorful tiles, and scarves.

One of my favorite parts was trying the "ginjinha" drink. It's a cherry liquor and comes in a chocolate cup! Imagine, a drink and a treat all in one.

Practical Tips for Visiting Óbidos:

  1. Wear comfy shoes. Those cobbled streets are pretty but can be tricky to walk on.
  2. There are some steep parts in town. Take it slow, and bring some water.
  3. The local festivals are amazing. I heard about a Chocolate Festival and a Medieval Fair. Check when they happen!
  4. Small bills are handy. Not all places might take credit cards.
  1. Évora

Next, I took a day trip to Évora. Stone arches, Roman ruins, and the coolest bone chapel I’ve ever seen awaited!

How to Get to Évora from Lisbon:

By Train:

  • Starting Point: I started at Lisbon's Entrecampos station.
  • Frequency: There were around 5 trains a day to Évora.
  • Duration: The ride was about 1 hour and 30 minutes. I listened to some music and before I knew it, we were there.
  • Tickets: I grabbed my ticket from a machine at the station. It was pretty straightforward.

Exploring Évora:

The Temple of Diana was the first thing I saw. It's a big, old Roman temple, right in the center of town. There's also a cool cathedral, and guess what? You can go up to the rooftop!

But the most unusual place? The Chapel of Bones. The walls are, well, decorated with real bones. Sounds creepy, but it's also kind of fascinating.

Practical Tips for Visiting Évora:

  1. A hat or umbrella can help. Some parts of the town don't have a lot of shade.
  2. It's a historic town. So, some streets might be bumpy. Watch your step!
  3. There are some amazing local dishes. Like "açorda". It's a bread soup with herbs and garlic. Give it a try!
  4. Carry a small backpack. It's easier to move around and keeps your hands free for photos.

Óbidos and Évora are two places I won't forget. The charm, history, and yummy treats make them must-visits. If you're in Lisbon, these day trips are totally worth it!

  1. Nazaré

One day, I decided to chase some ocean waves. Not just any waves, but the gigantic waves of Nazaré! I've heard stories of these massive waves, and I was so ready to see them.

How to Get to Nazaré from Lisbon:

By Bus:

  • Starting Point: I hopped on a bus from Sete Rios bus station in Lisbon.
  • Frequency: There's a handful of buses every day, around 5 or so.
  • Duration: The ride was about 2 hours. I packed a snack and enjoyed the changing scenery.
  • Tickets: I bought my ticket at the station. The folks there were super helpful.

Exploring Nazaré:

Nazaré beach was absolutely stunning! Golden sands as far as the eye can see, and those waves – they're colossal. I went to the Sitio viewpoint and the view was incredible. The town below, the vast ocean, and the tiny surfers catching waves.

The town itself was a delight. Little houses, seafood restaurants, and markets selling stuff like fish, fruits, and handmade crafts. Like ceramic plates and bowls.

Practical Tips for Visiting Nazaré:

  1. If you love seafood, you're in for a treat. I tried grilled sardines – delicious!
  2. The funicular ride to Sitio is fun. Plus, it saves climbing a hill.
  3. The weather can change. So, a light jacket might be handy.
  4. Wear comfy shoes. Especially if you plan to wander and explore.
  1. Fátima

Next, I felt a pull towards a spiritual journey. Fátima, with its serene atmosphere and tales of miracles, was calling.

How to Get to Fátima from Lisbon:

By Bus:

  • Starting Point: Again, I started from Sete Rios bus station in Lisbon.
  • Frequency: Buses go to Fátima frequently, nearly every hour.
  • Duration: The bus ride was about 1 hour and 30 minutes. I took a short nap.
  • Tickets: Just like before, I got my ticket at the station. Easy-peasy.

Exploring Fátima:

Fátima felt peaceful. The big white sanctuary and the chapel were like nothing I've ever seen. I heard that in 1917, three kids said they saw the Virgin Mary here. That's why so many people visit.

There's also a big area where people light candles and pray. Some even walk on their knees as a promise or to say thanks for something.

fatima, sanctuary, portugal

Practical Tips for Visiting Fátima:

  1. It's a quiet place, so it's nice to speak softly and respect others.
  2. If you want to light a candle, you can buy one nearby. I saw small shops selling them.
  3. The sun can be strong, so maybe bring a hat or sunscreen.
  4. There are water fountains. So, a water bottle to fill up is a good idea.

Nazaré and Fátima, both different, but both so special. From giant waves to quiet prayers, these places touched my heart. And if you're near Lisbon, they might touch yours too! Safe travels!

  1. Ericeira

I remember the morning I decided to chase the salty breeze to Ericeira. This seaside town is known for its world class surfing, and even though I'm not a pro, I just had to experience its charm!

How to Get to Ericeira from Lisbon:

By Bus:

  • Starting Point: I jumped on a bus from Campo Grande station in Lisbon.
  • Frequency: There are buses almost every hour, which is great.
  • Duration: The journey? About 50 minutes. Time flew by as I daydreamed of waves.
  • Tickets: Getting my ticket was a breeze at the station. The queue moved quickly.

Exploring Ericeira:

The blue and white houses of Ericeira are a sight! They're so pretty and bright. And the beaches? Wow! I could hear the waves crashing, and I saw surfers riding them.

There are surf schools, like Na Onda and Progress School, where people learn to dance with the waves.

The town is also filled with cool shops and places to eat. From seafood dishes, like grilled octopus, to sweet treats, like pastries, there's something for everyone.

Practical Tips for Visiting Ericeira:

  1. Sunscreen is a must. The sun feels strong near the sea.
  2. If you're thinking of surfing, rental shops are everywhere. They have boards and wetsuits.
  3. Try the seafood. Restaurants like Mar das Latas have yummy dishes.
  4. Carry some cash. Some small shops might not take cards.
  1. Azenhas do Mar

Another day, I decided to find the hidden gem called Azenhas do Mar. People talk about its cliffside views and I wanted to see them for myself.

How to Get to Azenhas do Mar from Lisbon:

By Car:

  • Starting Point: I started from central Lisbon.
  • Duration: The drive took about 40 minutes. The roads were clear and the signs were easy to follow.
  • Tips: A GPS or map app on the phone helps a lot.

Exploring Azenhas do Mar:

This village is like something out of a postcard. Houses are built into the cliffs, and below, the ocean crashes into natural pools. The view is amazing!

There's a viewpoint up top where I took loads of photos. Down below, there’s a restaurant right by the sea. They serve dishes with fresh fish and other yummy stuff.

Practical Tips for Visiting Azenhas do Mar:

  1. Parking can be a bit tricky. Arriving early helps.
  2. The cliffs are high. So, it's good to be careful and watch your step.
  3. The restaurant by the sea gets busy. Maybe book ahead or pack a picnic.
  4. Wear sturdy shoes. The paths can be uneven in places.

Both Ericeira and Azenhas do Mar made my trips special. From surfing vibes to dreamy cliffside views, these places are magical. If you're ever in Lisbon, don't miss out on them! Safe journeys!

  1. Setúbal

One day, I got this itch to explore a place with a mix of city vibes and beachy feels. That's when I packed my day bag for Setúbal!

How to Get to Setúbal from Lisbon:

By Train:

  • Starting Point: I began at Lisbon's Roma-Areeiro station.
  • Frequency: Trains are plenty! One almost every half hour.
  • Duration: It's just a 50-minute ride. I munched on some cookies as the landscape changed.
  • Tickets: Got my ticket from a machine at the station. So easy!

Exploring Setúbal:

Setúbal welcomed me with its bustling city streets. But then, there's the harbor! Colorful boats bobbed up and down, and seagulls sang their songs over the Atlantic Ocean.

I visited the Livramento Market. It's more than 100 years old! The seafood section is a treat. Fresh fish, shiny octopuses, and even some weird-looking sea creatures.

For a history fix, the São Filipe Castle is a must-visit. The views from there? Breathtaking!

Practical Tips for Visiting Setúbal:

  1. Try the local delicacy - choco frito. It’s fried cuttlefish, and oh so tasty.
  2. Comfortable walking shoes? Yes, please. Some streets are cobbled.
  3. The sun can be sneaky. Sunscreen and a hat would be handy.
  4. Love dolphins? There are tours where you can spot them in the Sado River!
  1. Arrábida National Park

Nature was calling and I answered with a trip to Arrábida National Park. Imagine mountains, beaches, and forests all in one place!

How to Get to Arrábida National Park from Lisbon:

By Car:

  • Starting Point: Downtown Lisbon was where I began.
  • Duration: About a 40-minute drive, not too long at all!
  • Tips: Having a map app or GPS really helps. Also, don't forget some fun tunes for the ride!

Exploring Arrábida National Park:

Wow! The beauty of Arrábida left me speechless. The incredible beaches like Praia da Figueirinha and Praia dos Galápos looked like they were from another world. White sand, clear waters, and all surrounded by green hills.

I took a hike, and the air smelled of pine trees. I even spotted some tiny critters like lizards and colorful birds.

Practical Tips for Visiting Arrábida National Park:

  1. Bring a refillable water bottle. Hydration is key!
  2. The park is vast, so maybe pack a picnic. I had sandwiches, fruits, and some juices.
  3. There are many trails, but some can be tough. So, always tell someone where you're going.
  4. If you love snorkeling, this is the place! The underwater world is just as beautiful.

Setúbal and Arrábida National Park were both so different yet so close to Lisbon. City vibes, market buzz, serene beaches, and the call of the wild. What an adventure! If you're around Lisbon, do drop by these spots. Trust me, you won’t regret it! Safe travels!

  1. Tomar

One sunny morning, I decided to journey to a place where history whispers in every corner: Tomar.

How to Get to Tomar from Lisbon:

By Train:

  • Starting Point: I hopped on the train at Lisbon's Santa Apolónia station.
  • Frequency: Quite often! About every 2 hours.
  • Duration: A cozy 2-hour ride. I just sat back, relaxed, and watched the world go by.
  • Tickets: I bought mine at the station. Pretty straightforward!

Exploring Tomar:

Tomar feels like stepping into a storybook. The Convent of Christ is huge! It was once a castle and a monastery. I could see the whole town from the top.

There’s also the cute Praça da República. It’s a square with lovely buildings and friendly faces.

Practical Tips for Visiting Tomar:

  1. Wear comfy shoes. Trust me, there’s a bit of walking.
  2. The Convent has an entrance fee. It’s worth every penny though.
  3. Don’t forget your camera. The views are awesome.
  4. If hungry, local bakeries have yummy treats. I tried a pastel de nata. So good!
  1. Alcobaça and Batalha

Next on my list? Two towns, both filled with history: Alcobaça and Batalha.

How to Get to Alcobaça and Batalha from Lisbon:

By Bus:

  • Starting Point: I started from Lisbon's Sete Rios bus station.
  • Frequency: Buses run a few times a day.
  • Duration: To Alcobaça, it's about 1.5 hours. Batalha is 30 minutes from Alcobaça.
  • Tickets: I got them from the bus station. Easy as pie!

Exploring Alcobaça:

Alcobaça has a huge monastery right in the middle! I heard stories of kings and queens. It’s called the Alcobaça Monastery. And guess what? It’s over 900 years old! The inside is cool and quiet, a nice break from the sun.

Exploring Batalha:

Then, I headed to Batalha. The Monastery of Batalha is a UNESCO world heritage site. It’s grand and has tall towers and pretty windows. Some say it took over 100 years to build.

Practical Tips for Visiting Alcobaça and Batalha:

  1. If you're short on time, choose one monastery. Both are awesome, though!
  2. Wear a hat or cap. The sun can be quite strong.
  3. There are local guides. They tell fun stories of the places.
  4. Hungry? Local cafes have tasty sandwiches and juices.

Tomar, Alcobaça, and Batalha. What a trio! History, stories, and lovely views. These places have it all. If you're in Lisbon and have a day to spare, take this trip. It's less than an hour away, adventure waiting to happen. Happy travels!

  1. Praia da Guincho

Craving waves and golden sands, I decided on a beach day. My choice? The ever-famous Praia da Guincho.

How to Get to Praia da Guincho from Lisbon:

By Train and Bus:

  • Starting Point: I began at Lisbon's Cais do Sodré train station.
  • Train Destination: Cascais.
  • Duration: The train ride? Around 40 minutes. Then, a bus (#405 or #415) took me directly to the beach in about 20 minutes.
  • Tickets: I grabbed a combo ticket at the station. No fuss!

Exploring Praia da Guincho:

Oh, the beach! Wild waves. Wind in my hair. The sound of the ocean? Music to my ears. Surfers were riding big waves, making it look so easy.

Dunes surrounded the beach. They're like golden mountains but all soft and squishy.

Practical Tips for Visiting Praia da Guincho:

  1. Windy? Yep! It's great for surfing, kiteboarding, and all those fun water sports.
  2. Sunscreen, always. The sun loves the beach too.
  3. Beach shacks have yummy food, like grilled fish and cold drinks.
  4. If you're not into surfing, just relax. I brought a book and had the best time.
  1. Almada

Looking across the river from Lisbon, I saw a statue. Tall, proud, and calling me over. That’s in Almada!

How to Get to Almada from Lisbon:

By Ferry:

  • Starting Point: I boarded at Cais do Sodré in Lisbon.
  • Destination: Cacilhas in Almada.
  • Duration: Just a quick 10-minute ride. I loved feeling the breeze on the ferry.
  • Tickets: There’s a ticket booth right there. Simple!

Exploring Almada:

Almada's gem? The Christ the King statue. I climbed up and guess what? Lisbon looked tiny from there! The view as well as the Costa da Caparica were stunning.

Cacilhas is cool too. There are old boats, and I felt like I was in a movie. Streets are lined with cafes. I sipped on a coffee and watched the world go by.

Practical Tips for Visiting Almada:

  1. Wear good shoes. Climbing to the statue takes a bit of energy.
  2. Buses go up to the statue if walking’s not your thing.
  3. Hungry? Try the seafood. Restaurants have dishes like shrimp and clams. So fresh!
  4. A camera or phone is a must. You'll want to capture those views.

Praia da Guincho and Almada. One epic day trip, two adventures! Beach vibes, then city views. Both are just a ride away from Lisbon. If you're around, don’t miss out. Trust me, it's worth it. Safe journeys!

  1. Sesimbra

One day, craving both beach and seafood, I found myself thinking: "Why not Sesimbra?" And off I went.

How to Get to Sesimbra from Lisbon:

By Bus:

  • Starting Point: From Lisbon's Praça de Espanha.
  • Destination: Directly to Sesimbra.
  • Duration: About 1 hour. A short nap, and you're there!
  • Tickets: I got mine from the nearby kiosk. It was easy-peasy.

Exploring Sesimbra:

Sesimbra felt like a postcard. Golden sand beaches. Clear waters. And guess what? There's a castle on a hill! Yep, the Sesimbra Castle. The views from up there? Wowza! I could see the whole town.

But the star? The seafood. Restaurants by the beach have these big grills. They cook fish, like sardines and seabass, right there. And the smell? Oh boy, mouth-watering!

Practical Tips for Visiting Sesimbra:

  1. Bring your swimwear. The water's great for a dip.
  2. If you love seafood, this is your paradise. I had the grilled sardines. A-ma-zing!
  3. A hat or cap can be handy. Sun's bright out there.
  4. The castle’s worth a visit. But remember, it's uphill. I wore my comfy sneakers.
  1. Queluz National Palace

History and grandeur were on my mind. So, where to? The Queluz National Palace, of course!

How to Get to Queluz National Palace from Lisbon:

By Train:

  • Starting Point: From Lisbon's Rossio train station.
  • Destination: Queluz-Belas.
  • Duration: A quick 20-minute journey. I listened to two songs, and I was there!
  • Tickets: At the station itself. Super simple.

Exploring Queluz National Palace:

Walking into the palace, I felt like royalty. Gilded rooms. Sparkly chandeliers. It was like a fairy tale!

The gardens? Oh, they're huge! Fountains, statues, and even some birds chirping. I took a stroll and lost track of time.

I heard whispers about the palace’s history. Kings, queens, and even some secrets. Stories in every corner.

Practical Tips for Visiting Queluz National Palace:

  1. Wear comfortable shoes. Trust me, there's a lot to explore.
  2. There's an entrance fee for the palace. I felt it's totally worth it.
  3. Guided tours are available. If you love stories, go for it.
  4. There's a cafe inside. I had a lovely tea and some pastries. Yum!

Sesimbra and Queluz National Palace. Two different vibes, both equally amazing. If you're ever in Lisbon, take a day to explore these spots. They've got stories, views, and experiences waiting just for you. Enjoy the journey

Difficulties in Lisbon day trips

Lisbon day trips sound easy and fun, right? And most times, they are. But I've bumped into a few hiccups on my journeys. Let's chat about some challenges and how we can smartly tackle them.

  1. Busy Stations: Lisbon's train and bus stations can get crowded, especially during summer. How to beat this? Try to go early or buy your tickets online if possible. Less waiting and more exploring!
  2. Language Barriers: Not everyone speaks English outside of Lisbon. I've had times when I needed to ask something and got blank stares. The solution? Learn basic Portuguese phrases. Words like "hello" (olá) and "thank you" (obrigado/obrigada). Or, use a translation app. Super handy!
  3. Unexpected Closures: Once, I went to a museum, and guess what? It was closed! The fix? Always check opening hours online and note local holidays. They can be sneaky.
  4. Getting Lost: New places mean new roads. I've taken a wrong turn or two. What to do? Maps are your best friend. I use map apps on my phone. They've saved me more times than I can count!

Remember, every challenge is just a mini-adventure. With a bit of prep, your Lisbon day trips will be smooth sailing!

Is a day trip from Lisbon to Porto possible?

One morning, sipping my coffee in Lisbon, I thought, "How about Porto for the day?" Sounds crazy, right? Well, let's break it down.

Getting There:

I jumped on a fast train from Lisbon to Porto. It's called the "Alfa Pendular." Cool name, huh?

  • Starting Point: Lisbon's Santa Apolónia station.
  • Destination: Porto's Campanhã station.
  • Duration: Roughly 2 hours and 40 minutes. I watched a movie and, boom, I was there!
  • Tickets: I bought mine online. There are a few trains daily, so choices, choices!

What I did in Porto:

Time was ticking, so I had to be snappy. Porto's known for its charming river, the Douro, and the famous Dom Luís I Bridge. The views? Picture-perfect! Oh, and those colorful houses by the river? Like a rainbow on buildings.

I had a quick snack. Something called a "Francesinha." It's a sandwich, but not just any sandwich. It’s massive and comes with a special sauce. So yummy!

Heading Back:

By evening, it was train-time again. Another 2 hours and 40 minutes. I was back in Lisbon by night.

So, is it doable?

Yes, but with a big "BUT." It's a long day. And Porto? It's got so much to see. Churches, cellars, and streets that whisper old tales. I felt I only tasted a tiny bite of a big cake.

Practical Tips:

  1. Start early. The earlier the train, the more time you get.
  2. Plan ahead. Decide on 2 or 3 must-sees. For me? The bridge and that sandwich.
  3. Porto’s famous for port wine. If you love wine, grab a quick sip.
  4. Be ready for a tiring day. It's worth it, but boy, was I pooped!

In a nutshell? Yes, a day trip is possible. But, if you ask me, Porto deserves more. Maybe a weekend? Or even a week! If you can spare the time, let Porto woo you a bit longer. Safe travels!


Lisbon, with its unique charm, is just the tip of the iceberg. Whether you're chasing history, beaches, or simply a change of scenery, the surroundings offer treasures galore. Each trip, short as they are, promise memories for a lifetime. So next time you find yourself in Lisbon, remember, adventure is just a train (or bus) ride away. Happy travels!


  1. How do I buy train/bus tickets for these day trips?

Most tickets can be bought at the station. Some routes even offer online bookings. Easy and convenient!

  1. Is it necessary to book tickets in advance?

While it's not always necessary, it's a good idea during busy seasons. For example, summer months. Better safe than sorry!

  1. Can I do multiple places in one day?

Some places, like Sintra and Cascais, can be combined. But remember, there's a lot to see. So don't rush too much!

  1. What should I pack for a day trip?

A good pair of walking shoes, snacks, water, sunscreen, and maybe a hat. Always be ready for a little sun or rain.

  1. Are these places kid-friendly?

Absolutely! Places like beaches or palaces are great for kids. Just remember to keep an eye on them, especially in crowded areas.

  1. Is it expensive to travel outside Lisbon?

Not really. Train and bus tickets are pretty affordable. Plus, think of the memories! Totally worth it.

  1. Are there any religious day trips from Lisbon

Yes, you can go to Fatima, which is about an hour North of Lisbon, for a religious day trip/

Reema Bharti

Reema Bharti

I am a globe-trotter with a passion for exploration. From the sun-kissed coasts of Portugal to the snow-capped peaks of Switzerland, my travels are as diverse as they are inspiring. My journeys through Spain, Finland, Austria, and Germany have fueled my soul and shaped my writing.