Portugal is famous for its food, beautiful beaches and of course, Cristiano Ronaldo. If you are heading to Portugal, you likely won’t run into Ronaldo but here are some great day trips from Lisbon to take in all the beautiful sites this country has to offer.
On our seven day trip to Portugal, we fell in love with the food and the warm, friendly people. We did several day trips from Lisbon including Cabo da Roco, a weekend getaway to Sintra, Belem and so much more. There is so much to see in do in Lisbon but if you have some more time then exploring the surrounding area is a must.
If you have more time to explore Portugal, I would recommend driving down the coast where you will find some of the most beautiful beaches in Algarve.
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Must Experience Day Trips From Lisbon
Julie from Julie Dawn Fox in Portugal
Cascais is a gorgeous little seaside resort that’s just 40 minutes by train from Lisbon, which is how we got there. It was, and still is to some extent, the playground of Europe’s rich and famous, although it has quite a relaxed feel to it. Making it a great day trip from Lisbon.
As soon as you step out of the train station, you’re amid the patterned cobbled streets of the historical center, filled with interesting shops and eateries that cater to all palates. These bustling and attractive streets are just a few minutes away from a series of small but attractive sandy bays that line the coast as far as the marina next to the old fortress.
From there, the coastal road continues along a wilder, rockier shoreline to the famous Boca do Inferno, aka Hell’s Mouth, which is a blowhole created by the force of pounding waves into the cliffs. On a windy day, the spray and booms are quite dramatic to watch. We walked there but you can also rent or use one of the city bikes.
Back in the town center, my favorite sight is the Museu Condes de Castro Guimarães. This was built as a private house in 1900 by one of the most sought-after designers of the time. Attractive from the outside, especially given its idyllic setting in the Marechal Carmona Park, it’s a delight inside. Still fully furnished and decorated with traditional Portuguese tiles and elaborate stucco work, it gives you an insight into the lifestyles of the wealthy in the early 20th century.
Day Trips From Lisbon to Vicentina Coast
Campbell & Alya from Stingy Nomads
The Vicentina Coast is about a 2-hour drive from Lisbon, it easily can be visited as a day trip from the capital. The best way of getting here is to rent a car in Lisbon, drive down south to Sines and from there continue driving along the coast, stopping at cozy fishermen’s villages along the route. It’s possible to get here by bus, there are several beach towns that have regular bus connections with Lisbon.
For those who travel by bus, Porto Covo is probably the best town to get off, it’s a small and beautiful town with a couple of sandy beaches nearby, several walking and cycling trails and a couple of surfing spots. The Fishermen’s Trail – a spectacular 4-day hiking route starts in Porto Covo.
It’s possible to walk only a part of it from Porto Covo to Vilanova de Milfontes which is 19km away and from there take a bus back to Lisbon – a perfect day trip for hiking lovers. The trail follows the coastline for the entire 19km.
The Vicentina Coast is a protected area, no big hotels or resorts nearby it’s as wild as it used to be 100 years ago, a perfect place for nature lovers who want to escape from the bustling capital to enjoy tranquility and beauty of the wild coast.
The scenery along the Vicentina Coast is truly breathtaking; rugged coastline, dramatic cliffs, sandy beaches, blue water on one side and endless fields of wildflowers on the other. The Coast is a dream destination for outdoor lovers; hiking, surfing, cycling, kayaking, diving are the main activities here.
Spring is the best time for doing this day trip from Lisbon, the weather is great, it’s warm but not too hot, not too many tourists like in the summer months and there are thousands of wildflowers covering the hills along the coast.
Ann From The Road is Life
The charming village of Obidos is truly like a scene from a fairy tale; whitewashed buildings surrounded by a medieval wall with a castle perched on a hilltop overlooking the town below. If you’re staying in Lisbon for a few days, you’ll be glad to know that taking a day trip to Obidos is easy to do and definitely worth it.
Obidos is a compact little town with all of its sights in close proximity, it’s the perfect place to spend a relaxing day of sightseeing. Make sure to visit the castle while you’re there, it has been listed as one of the 7 wonders of Portugal!
Another must when visiting Obidos is taking a walk around the town walls. Breathtaking views of the town and surrounding countryside can be seen but be careful, there are sections of the walls that do not have barriers!
My personal favorite thing to do in Obidos was exploring the town center and getting lost down the pretty cobbled lanes. The architecture around the town is simply beautiful and there is a new photo opportunity hidden around each corner.
Obidos is conveniently located 1 hour from Lisbon by express bus service that departs regularly from the Campo Grande bus station in the north of Lisbon. You can reach the bus station from Lisbon city center by taking the metro. Visiting Obidos makes a fun day trip that can easily be done on your own without having to be on a tour.
Day Trips From Lisbon to Evora
EvorPriya Vin from Outside Suburbia
Evora makes for a great day trip from Lisbon. It is located in the Alentejo region of Portugal and is just a quick hour’s drive from Lisbon. It is pleasant during the spring and winter months but does get pretty hot in the summer. Evora is also a UNESCO World Heritage site and you don’t want to miss it.
The historic center of the Évora, Portugal dates back to the Roman and Moorish periods. It has whitewashed houses with bright yellow borders and glazed tiles that are typical of Portugal. From the eighth to the 12th century, the Moors ruled Évora and during its Renaissance years, Évora was favored by Portuguese kings.
While driving into Evora the first thing you will see is the aqueduct. It provided clean drinking water by connecting the city to the nearest flowing river and helped the water flow into the Praça do Giraldo, in the main plaza. In the city center, it is hard to miss the 14 Corinthian columns that sit above a granite block. While many refer to as the Temple of Diana, there is no clear evidence of any association of the Roman temple of Evora with the Roman goddess.
Don’t miss a visit to The Sé Cathedral, dedicated to the Virgin Mary, the view from the tower is worth the climb. Located inside the Church of St. Francis is a Chapel of Bones. It is an ossuary that is entirely made from the remains of 1200 monks, skulls, bones and all. It is After visiting Evora if you have time you can drive to see the Megaliths which are older than Stonehenge.
Joanne From Sunsets and Roller Coasters
Tomar, Portugal is the home of the mystical Order of the Knights Templar. It was here that the Order was based as it ruled over and protected large areas of Portugal from the Moors in the 1100s. When the Pope took power away from the Knights Templar in the 1300s and sentenced them to death, many that survived escaped south and rebranded themselves as the Order of Christ. Others escaped to Scotland where they became the Masons.
Symbols of the Order of Christ can be found throughout Portugal but most interesting, in locations linked to the Age of Discovery such as Belem as Henry the Navigator was Governor of the Order of Christ.
Located just 137km from Lisbon, Tomar is easy to get to by car but we opted to hire a guide for the day. While there are several companies in Lisbon that offer the service, we decided to go with those that know the history of the Knights Templar best, Knights Templar Tours. Our guide provided round trip transportation and lead our exploration of the key sights in and around Tomar.
Tomar is a small town yet still uncrowded so it’s a perfect day trip to take during your Lisbon holidays.
The most popular attraction in Tomar is the Castle and Convent of the Order of Christ, built by the Order of the Knights Templar. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is absolutely amazing. Besides the incredible history, architecture is a wonder to behold as there is a recreation of the Temple of Soloman and the most stunning Manueline windows.
Nearby visitors can explore the incredible aqueducts that were created by the Knights Templar as well as the Castle of Almourol which was part of the Templar defense along the Tagus River. This rustic castle is surrounded by water. While access to the castle is free of charge, visitors do need to pay for the very short boat ride. The view of the castle from the water is well worth the small fee.
Day Trips From Lisbon to Costa da Caparica
Wendy Werneth of The Nomadic Vegan
Costa da Caparica is a gorgeous beach just outside of Lisbon that’s popular with locals but virtually unknown among foreign visitors. I had even been living in Lisbon for more than a year before I found out about it. And since this long, sandy beach stretches for about 10 kilometers, it never feels crowded even during the peak season in July and August.
Even if you’re not really a beach person (I’m not), I highly recommend Costa da Caparica for its beautiful coastal scenery and the hiking opportunities it offers. For several kilometers, the beach is backed by red sandstone cliffs that have formed into intricate shapes thanks to the natural forces of erosion.
There’s a great hike that runs along the top of the cliffs, starting from the small beach town of Fonte da Telha. You can easily make it a loop hike by scrambling down to the beach at the halfway point and walking along the water’s edge on the way back. This offers the best of both worlds, as you get to experience the landscape from different viewpoints.
Unfortunately, there is no direct public transport from Lisbon to Costa da Caparica, but that’s part of why it has remained so undiscovered. I visited with a local hiking group and was able to arrange a ride with one of the other hikers. If you are coming here on your own, the easiest way is just to take an Uber.
Rides are quite affordable in Lisbon, so it shouldn’t break the bank. There are a few beach restaurants in Fonte da Telha, and even some with vegan-friendly options. But if you’re planning to go to a more secluded part of the beach then be sure to bring plenty of water and snacks.
Located at almost 150 km outside Lisbon, Portugal, Nazare is a day trip destination suitable for any season. It is a seaside resort along the Atlantic Ocean with large beaches perfect for sunbathing during summer. It may look like a regular resort, but during winter you can discover where the notoriety of this place comes from.
Nazare is famous around the world for its gigantic waves. An underwater canyon that ends exactly where the red lighthouse was built creates the perfect conditions for these waves. An annual competition for surfers is organized here and also the Guinness world record for the largest wave ever surfed was awarded for a wave in Nazare.
It is enough to see a picture on the Internet and you will decide you must see that in person. The only thing is to check the weather conditions on their official website to see when is it a good moment to see the waves.
Guided tours from Lisbon to Nazare are organized, but they cannot guarantee you that you will see them. We arrived here by car and after we park we walked down the hill until the lighthouse and the Sao Miguel Arcanjo fort. From the lighthouse, you can have the best view of this natural miracle.
We stopped to eat at one of the taverns next to Praia da Nazare and after that, we went on the beach. The waves were not as big as we saw on the Internet, but they were the biggest waves we ever saw. It is fascinating to watch them and feel the salty drops on your hair. Nazare is one of the most interesting places to visit in Portugal!
Day Trips From Lisbon to Berlengas Islands
Maria and Rui From Two Find a Way
There are some truly amazing Lisbon beaches, but if you’re looking for a refuge different from everything else you get to see in continental Portugal, make sure you visit the Berlengas islands. This archipelago is located off the coast of Peniche, one of the largest fishing ports in the country, worth visiting on its own.
The Berlengas archipelago has been a protected area since the 15th century, which is part of the reason it remains one of the most unique and magical places in the world to this day, even though it’s so easy to reach from the capital city of Lisbon. If you only have a day, you’re most likely only going to visit the main island of the archipelago, the Berlenga Island, but that’s enough to create amazing memories.
This piece of land in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean is a haven for nature lovers and the only way you’ll get to see it is by walking through the island. As we mentioned, it’s small, so you don’t need any specific physical preparation to do it. You can also tour the island by sea.
Near the harbor, you’ll find plenty of small boats ready to take tourists around to hidden beaches, unique caves, and even a fortress dating back to the 16th century, that now works as a small accommodation on the island.
To get to the Berlengas archipelago from Lisbon, you first need to get to Peniche. The best way is to rent a car, but you can also get there by using public buses or private tours. We went on our own by car (around 1h drive from Lisbon) and parked by the harbor, where we caught the boat to the Berlenga Island.
Iris From Mind of a Hitchhiker
While scrolling through my Instagram feed, I saw a beautiful photo of green hills steeply dipping in an azure sea. I clicked the location tag to find out the place name: Parque Natural da Arrábida. Once found on a map, I saw it was not too far from Lisbon. I knew I had to see this place with my own eyes on my next visit to Portugal’s capital, which happened to be during a chilly January!
While staying in the lovely Campo de Ourique neighborhood outside of Lisbon’s center, my partner and I started plotting the trip. Some 50 kilometers southeast of Lisbon is the city of Setúbal, from where we could rent a motor scooter for the day. Figuring out the bus was complicated, but once we arrived in Setúbal and picked up our scooter, it was a breeze.
The scenic routes in the park took us from gorgeous viewpoints to desolate beaches, quiet monasteries, and vertigo-inducing cliffs. The roads were curvy at times, but in a very good condition and supremely picturesque. It’s no surprise why they chose this road for the soul-stirring closing scene of the James Bond movie On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.
In summer, the park and its beaches can apparently get quite crowded. As we visited in winter, we didn’t have that problem—we just had to dress warmly for the scooter. We self-organized the entire trip knowing that many businesses would also be closed at this time of year, so we had a picnic along the way and drank a coffee in the town of Sesimbra. We returned to Setúbal around sunset and were rewarded with a very dreamy sky before dropping off our scooter and getting on a bus back to Lisbon in time for Portuguese dinner time.
Day Trips from Lisbon to Peniche
Alexine from Lexieanimetravel
Staying in Lisbon for more than a week, one of the most memorable moments that we have (my husband and I) was the spectacular views of Cape Carvoeiro found in Peniche, Portugal.
Peniche is known for its long beaches, which are popular for recreational activities and sports such as surfing, windsurfing, bodyboarding, and kite surfing. Located in the Oeste region, formerly Estremadura Province.
We’ve arrived in Peniche late afternoon. It was about an hour road trip from Lisbon. How did we found this place? Well, I have searched via social media photos online, and I stumbled into these beautiful photos of the Cape Carvoeiro.
We thought about asking about tours that the hotel offers, but, in the end, we ended up driving our rented car up to Peniche after our buffet breakfast at the hotel.
We drove up to Cascais and Sinta (Cabo da Roca), and after that, we went to a shipwreck black spot in Peniche.
Driving around Peniche was the most wonderful experience since it has these beautiful rock formations, which make it more magical to see. Known for its Nau dos Corvos, a rock formation that is one of Peniche’s landmarks.
Peniche is one of the best surfing locations in Europe.It a consistent destination for surfers. It annually hosts the MEO Rip Curl Pro Portugal from the World championship tour of the World Surf League (WSL) at the Supertubos beach.
I would strongly recommend you to visit the Cape Carvoeiro Viewpoint, an exceptional spot where you can see the whole view of Peniche’s area and as well as the cliff views and some incredible rock formation in the cliff. Another place to check out is the interiors azulejos of Remedios chapel, Old harbor walls, Fortaleza de Peniche, and of course, let’s the stunning beaches of Peniche.
Day Trips From Lisbon to Cabo da Roco
Zach and Julie From Ruhls of the Road
Cabo da Roca is one of the most fun, beautiful, and memorable day trips you can do while visiting Lisbon, Portugal. This wonderful destination is the most Western point in mainland Europe, as it juts out into the Atlantic and offers an unbelievable view of the huge expanse of ocean. On top of that, there is nearby Ursa Beach locates right beneath Cabo da Roca that offers similar views, but from a stunning sandy beach. Combine all that with the stunning drive to get from Lisbon to Cabo da Roca, and you’ll have the most memorable day of your vacation!
The thing Cabo da Roca is most famous for is being the Westernmost point in Mainland Europe! For a short period of time, every single person in Europe will be East if you as you visit! There is an enormous memorial marking this exact point, which makes for an excellent photo opportunity.
Cabo da Roca’s View is over an enormous cliff, at the base of which is the Atlantic Ocean. Right near Cabo da Roca is a hiking trail that takes you down that cliff to Ursa Beach, one of the best beaches in Portugal. Before you go, note that this is a clothing-optional beach. Most people do wear a swimsuit, however, it is best to know this ahead of time! The beach itself is absolutely stunning, complete with beautiful clear water, enormous rock formations, and fine white sand. Cabo da Roca and Ursa Beach are absolutely worth the trip.
A final reason to go to Cabo da Roca is the journey there! From Lisbon, you’ll have a beautiful drive through the Portuguese countryside and cliffs. We chose to rent a scooter for the trip and had a BLAST cruising on two wheels in this wonderful area. We stopped at a few lookouts and enjoyed the trip there as much as the destination. You will absolutely love Cabo da Roca, both for the destination and the journey. Enjoy!
Day Trips From Lisbon to Faro
Paulina from Paulina on the Road
One of my favorite day trips from Lisbon is definitely going to Faro. The city is considered as the capital of the scenic Algarve region and it’s a great way to get away from the bustle of Lisboa.
It’s extremely easy to get from Lisbon to Faro. All you need to do is taking a train from Lisbon to Faro and the ride doesn’t take more than 3 hours. You can either opt for a day trip or spend several nights in Faro.
I particularly liked Faro for its relaxed beach vibe and non-touristy bars. Whilst Lisbon is getting extremely popular, I loved having a Portuguese coffee and pastry and watch the daily grind go by.
Besides sipping tasty Portuguese coffee, I recommend visiting the Faro Cathedral. It’s famous for the altar and side chapels that gleam with gold, and the walls of the choir have multi-colored azulejos.
Another attraction of Faro is the entrance gate to the downtown. Built in 1812, it was meant to give every visitor an impressive welcome to Faro.
A visit to Faro wouldn’t be complete without heading to the Faro Municipal Museum. It is actually the second oldest museum in the Algarve, opening in 1894 on the 500th anniversary of the birth of Henry the Navigator.
If you are wondering about the best places to stay in Faro, Algarve I recommend the old city center as it’s a truly magical place at night.
Day Trips From Lisbon Conclusion
Lisbon is such a magical city and so much to explore in the city and outside of Lisbon. Making it a great hub for great day trips from Lisbon. There are so many great beaches to explore around Lisbon. If you enjoy surfing then a visit to Ericeira is a must. Have you visited Lisbon? I would love to hear if you experienced any great day trips from Lisbon?
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