Although there are many things to love about Lisbon, one of my favorite aspects of this city is its public transportation system. The convenience and affordability of it makes it so easy to explore neighboring towns and landmarks off of the Metropolitano de Lisboa. While there are many destinations accessible from the city’s transportation system, I’ve rounded up the details on the top three best day trips from Lisbon.
Distance from Lisbon: 40 minutes
Key Landmarks: Museu Condes de Castro Guimarães, Praia da Rainha, Praia do Tamariz
If you’re looking for a mini beach getaway under an hour train ride from Lisbon, this is the spot. Grab the metro from Cais do Sodre and take it to the Cascais stop. The train station is only a short walk from the city center and the beaches.
This was by far one of my favorite stops. You can spend the day exploring the quaint town of Cascais by foot and enjoying some much-needed beach time. There are so many beautiful things to see here, whether you’re walking on the main strip or exploring hidden streets. When you find that you’re ready to grab lunch, I recommend the Jardim dos Frangos for the octopus and half chicken. It may look a bit touristy, but the food is actually very good!
Distance from Lisbon: 45 minutes
Key Landmarks: Pena Palace, Casle of Moors, Quinta da Regaleira, Palace of Sintra
A short train ride from the Rossio metro stop in Lisbon, this is an essential day trip if you’re staying in the area. If you’re visiting Sintra, you can typically decide on either the Pena Palace or the Castle of Moors. Pena Palace is typically more crowded and a bit more expensive, while the Castle of Moors is the road less traveled. Either way, make sure to pack your walking shoes as Sintra has no shortage of hills and stairs.
While there are buses that you can pay to take you up to the castle, we took the long route and walked up, which I would not necessarily recommend. The route is a bit confusing, with no clear signs so it took us a bit longer to get there than expected.
After exploring the castle, hop in an Uber or take the walk down and grab lunch at Cafe Da Natalia. Though it’s a bit of a walk from town, I highly recommend stopping here for a bite.
Distance from Lisbon: 25 minutes
Key Landmarks: Praia da Rainha
The closest of the three day trips, Estoril is a quick 25 minute train ride from Cais de Sodre and is one of the local Lisboa beach spots – think what the Hamptons is to NYC. Head there in the early afternoon and enjoy the day lounging on the beach. You’ll find that food and drinks are a bit pricey here, but the views of the Atlantic and the convenience of the trip from Lisbon is worth it.
Looking to explore more of Portugal? Check out my posts on Top 10 Things to Do in Lisbon, A Guide to Lisbon’s Best Bars & Restaurants and The Beaches of Lagos.
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