day trips from Lisbon
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14 Amazing Day Trips From Lisbon, Portugal

The Best Day Trips From Lisbon Recommended by Travel Experts!

Europe’s westernmost country Portugal attracts several millions of international and domestic tourists every year.

Usually, the bustling capital city of Lisbon is the most famous destination travelers choose when coming to the birth country of Vasco da Gama.

In my opinion, Lisbon totally deserves to be in the first place – I seriously loved my time there. However, there are tons of other parts of Portugal waiting to be discovered by you!

(This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a certain percentage of a sale if you purchase after clicking.)

Don’t worry if you’re short on time and you can’t do a proper road trip. Thanks to its convenient location, the capital city can be perfectly used as a base to plan some awesome day trips from Lisbon.

For example, in less than three hours you can visit the Algarve and take a swim in the Atlantic. Or you take the road up to the north and spend a day in Porto, Lisbon’s smaller sister city.

So, if you’re going to Portugal, don’t only spend your time in Lisbon but try and plan some extra two or three days for some adventures out of the city.

The following 14 places are personal recommendations from travel writers & experts who’ve been to Portugal on their own already.

TIP: To do all these day trips from Lisbon, I recommend you rent your own car. It’s not only the fastest transportation but it gives you a lot of flexibility as well.

1. Sintra

Recommended by me

Let’s start with Sintra, probably one of the most popular and frequently chosen day trips from Lisbon.

The charming town of Sintra is only 25 km to the west of the Portuguese capital city. You can either go there by public transport (approx. one hour), by car (approx. 30 min), or join a guided tour.

The town became famous thanks to all the special attractions you can visit.

First, there’s the romantic and very colorful Pena Palace sitting on top of a lush, green hill. Because of its bright yellow and red facade, it became the number one hot spot for all kinds of travelers and is now one of the most famous landmarks in Portugal

Besides Pena Palace, Quinta da Regaleira is another place you need to check out.

This UNESCO World Heritage Site is well known for its magical garden featuring hidden caves, an initiation well, and many other mysterious constructions. 


Even though most people head straight to the two places mentioned above, the town itself should not be missed! Pastel-colored villas and stunning palaces can be found there as well.

Especially the Sintra National Palace with its dramatic twin chimneys and fascinating tilework should be on everyone’s Sintra itinerary! 

Tours you might find interesting:

2. Porto

Recommended by Dymphe of Dymabroad

A great day trip from Lisbon is one to the city of Porto.

You can easily reach the city by car and train. Both journeys take about three hours, although the train is slightly faster.

Porto is an amazing place to travel to. It is the second-largest city in Portugal and the atmosphere is great.

Furthermore, the city is one of the most beautiful cities in Europe, because of its architecture and bridges. Also, there are lots of things to do in the city.

The Igreja do Carmo is an interesting church, not only for the inside but also because of the blue murals on its outside.

day trips from Lisbon

Another great thing to do in Porto is to get a view of the city. A good place for that is at the Torre dos Clerigos. From there you can enjoy a magical view of all Porto has to offer.

Besides that, a fun activity is riding an old tram. This traditional activity really adds to your experience in the city.

If you visit Porto, it is recommended to spend at least two days to fully experience it. However, you can easily spend more time in this fantastic city to add other activities such as a Duoro Valley boat tour to your list!

Tours you might find interesting:

3. Cascais

Recommended by Rachel of Average Lives

Of course, Cascais needs to be on this list of the best day trips from Lisbon!

You can escape the city and explore the cobbled streets of a charming town. It’s reached easily from Lisbon via train and a single ticket only costs €2.25, with trains usually departing every 20 minutes.

The journey will take around 40 minutes, but because the train follows the scenic Estoril coastline, the time will go by very quickly.

There are lots of unique things you can do in Cascais.

For example, you can wander through the postcard-perfect Old Town, eat delicious Portuguese food, and relax on the picturesque beaches.

The best beaches include Praia da Ribeira, Praia da Rainha, and Praia da Conceicao.


Also, make time to see the Boca do Inferno, an incredible rock formation with stunning coastal views.

Back in town, you can explore the Cidadela de Cascais Fort, the Cascais Marina, and the Farol de Santa Marta Lighthouse.

If you want, you can visit the museums of Casa de Santa Maria and the Centro Cultural de Cascais.

Finally, to end a wonderful day, you can walk 2 km down the picturesque coast to Estoril. From there you can catch the train back to Lisbon.

Tours you might find interesting:

4. Évora

Recommended by Renee of Dream Plan Experience

Évora, a beautifully preserved medieval town, is the capital of the Alentejo region in Portugal.

Only a 90-minute car or train ride away from Lisbon, this city offers visitors an abundant amount of history and charm.

As a designated UNESCO World Heritage site, Évora is full of well-preserved landmarks that have been shaped by more than 20 centuries of history. The city walls, temples, and ruins of Roman rule still remain today.

The Moorish influences, when they ruled from 715 to 1165, can be seen in the fortified gate and the Se Cathedral.

The city really began to flourish in the 15th century, when convents, churches, and royal palaces began to spring up everywhere, including the long Aqueduct standing just outside the city walls.

best day trips from Lisbon

All of these significant monuments remain undamaged by the great earthquake of 1755, which destroyed many of Portugal’s great cities including Lisbon.

Spend the entire day in Évora by getting lost inside the walls of the old city.

Gaze upon the stunning architecture of the low whitewash houses, decorated with painted azulejos tiles (something Portugal is famous for), mustard-yellow trim, and intricate wrought-iron balconies.

Simply wander, discover every hidden corner of it, and fall in love with its charm. Or join a guided tour from Lisbon to Évora and try some wine tasting!

Tours you might find interesting:

5. Lagos

Recommended by Danny of Danny Explores

Lagos is a small town located on Portugal’s world-famous Algarve coast. The small port town is well known for its long history.

Its old town walls can be spotted from all around Lagos and you’ll even stumble across small statues, the castle of Lagos, and other small historic buildings as you walk around the town.

Lagos is perfect for a day trip if you’re looking for a day at the beach or something a little less touristy! The drive from Lisbon to Lagos is just under three hours and worth every minute.

Lagos is also a perfect place to base yourself if you’re looking to explore more of the Algarve such as the stunning Benagil caves!

Lagos Algarve

If you’re looking for somewhere that’s a lot more relaxed than Faro or Albufeira then Lagos is the right place for you.

Don’t let the relaxed atmosphere fool you though, there are plenty of beautiful beaches in Lagos such as Praia do Camilo as well as caves and cliffs to explore!

You’ll also find numerous stalls selling handmade goods, clothes, food, and much more.

If you fancy something a little different then head out on a boat tour to explore the Algarve’s magical caves! It’s definitely one of the best things to do in Lagos!

6. Obidos

Recommended by Cath of Moving to Portugal

Another great destination for a day trip from the Portuguese capital is the medieval walled town of Obidos.

Situated one hour’s drive from Lisbon, the easiest way to reach Obidos is by car.

While there are public transport links, the journey can take between two and three hours, depending on where in Lisbon you depart from. Another option is via a tour from Lisbon to Obidos.

Obidos is a small town and much of the most interesting parts lie within the old medieval walls that surround the old town.

Visitors can walk the defensive walls in sections, although care should be taken as there are no handrails.

day trips from Lisbon
Obidos streets

Another main feature of Obidos is its castle. The castle is now a hotel, but you can still walk around the outside and admire it.

Obidos is a pretty Portuguese town with narrow streets that are colorful and beautiful, especially when the sun is shining.

Crafts and souvenir shops line the main street and you should make sure to sample or buy some Ginja, the local Obidos liqueur. It’s made from cherries and is a true Portuguese specialty.

No matter how long you spend in Obidos, you are sure to love the town and its charm!

Tours you might find interesting:

7. Nazaré

Recommended by Ella of Many More Maps

The town of Nazaré, on Portugal’s west coast, is among the most ideal beach day trips from Lisbon, with a twist.

Nazaré is a fun day trip by itself, but the main reason people head to the town is to visit the Nazaré giant waves!

Nazaré is where the world record for the biggest wave ever surfed has been continually broken. The title is currently held by Brazilian surfer Rodrigo Koxa, who surfed a terrifying 80-foot wave!


To find the huge waves, you’ll need to visit the Praia do Norte beach and the Nazaré lighthouse. There’s a surf museum at the lighthouse which costs €1 to enter.

At the museum, you can learn why the waves get so massive in Nazare.

Plus, there’s even an exhibition of the many surfboards and equipment used by the surfers to tackle the waves and a fabulous photography exhibition.

To get to Nazaré, you can either join a tour from Lisbon or catch the Rede Expressos bus. The bus journey takes around 1 hour and 50 minutes.

Tours you might find interesting:

8. Batalha

Recommended by Lotte of Phenomenal Globe Travel Blog

There are several ways to get to Bathala from Lisbon.

When you are making a Portugal road trip by car or campervan, it takes about 90 minutes to drive up from Lisbon.

Alternatively, you can join a day tour which often combines a visit to Nazare, Batalha, and either Fatima or Alcobaça. 

The downside of joining a tour is that you often don’t have that much time to spend in Batalha. While you don’t need a full day to explore, a whole morning or afternoon would be perfect.  

The top reason to visit Bathala is the Batalha Monastery. This UNESCO World Heritage site dates back to the 14th century and is highly worth a visit.

day trips from Lisbon

Opening hours vary a bit depending on the season.

From April until mid-October, the Monastery can be visited between 9:00 am and 6:30 pm. The other half of the year, the Monastery closes at 6:00 pm.  

When in Batalha, also visit the MCCB (Museu da Comunidade Concelhia da Batalha) to learn more about the history of the area and the city itself.

After exploring the sights, have some lunch or dinner at one of the many restaurants that can be found in the very walkable city center.  

9. Fatima

Recommended by Victoria of Guide Your Travel

Fatima is located about an hour north of Lisbon and is a great place for a quick day trip or a stop on your Portugal road trip.

The town is a Catholic pilgrimage site but is well worth a visit even if you’re not interested in the religious aspect.

The main attraction in Fatima is the Sanctuary of Fatima which is a giant complex with a large church and impressive architecture.

Fatima, Portugal

It’s an incredibly beautiful place and you’ll be amazed by how large it is.

The Sanctuary of Fatima is also the place where the Virgin Mary allegedly appeared in the early 20th century. Thus it’s considered a holy site in the Catholic faith.

Make sure to visit the Museu de Arte Sacra e Etnologia which is the perfect spot to learn more about Fatima’s incredible history.

Don’t forget to dress modestly when you visit the religious sites in this town and remember to be respectful.

Tours you might find interesting:

10. Porto Covo

Recommended by Dean & Layni of Routinely Nomadic

While the Algarve gets all the press and most of the foreign tourists, the gorgeous stretch of beaches, cliffs, and sand dunes surrounding Porto Covo on the southwestern coast of Portugal is every bit as impressive.

While it is quite popular with Portuguese tourists in mid-summer, if you visit outside high season you just might have the place to yourself.

With wide, clean streets, whitewashed buildings, and a dramatic cliff-top location, Porto Covo still evokes its traditional fishing village roots.

There are many beaches nearby, with large, sandy Praia Grande and rocky, sheltered Praia dos Buizinhos firm favorites.

day trips from Lisbon

There are also great surf breaks in the area and boat trips to Ilha do Pessegueiro are recommended to visit the historic remains of Forte do Santo Alberto and the many different birds that use it as a migratory bird habitat.

Porto Covo is also one of the best stops along the famous Rota Vicentina long-distance hiking route, offering wildly scenic trails in both directions along the Atlantic coast.

Porto Covo is less than two scenic hours by car from Lisbon, or there are several daily Rede Expressos buses from Sete Rios station (2.5 hrs, €16).

11. Serras de Aire

Recommended by Kat of Wandering Bird

Another one of the many awesome day trips from Lisbon is Serras de Aire e Candeeiros National Park.

Serras de Aire e Candeeiros Nature Park was created in 1979 and covers about 35,000 hectares – much of it Estremadura’s limestone massif, the biggest limestone area in Portugal.

The Park is made up of two mountain ranges, with plateaus in between. There are hundreds of hikes and places to explore – including over 1,500 caves hidden throughout. 

One of the highlights is Porto de Dos Castle perched on a hill with breathtaking views. Be sure to arrive early to avoid crowds. 

You also need to see the immense natural amphitheater of Fórnea – it’s 500m wide and 205m high. If you’re driving or campervanning in Portugal, you can go right to the top edge and park. 

Serra de Aires

And of course, you must visit Mira de Aire Caves – voted as one of the seven best natural wonders in Portugal

But possibly the most famous thing about this park is the dinosaur footprints. They are on the west side of the park (just follow the signs).

If you are driving, the park is about an hour north of Lisbon. You can arrange tours or public transport, but you won’t have the same freedom as you will with your own vehicle.

12. Peniche

Recommended by Milene & Paul of Surf & Unwind

A small fishing town located approximately one hour north of Lisbon, Peniche’s unspoiled coastline is the perfect off-the-beaten-track destination for a quick break away from the azulejo-covered buildings of the Portuguese capital.

Nestled on a peninsula along the Silver Coast, you can get to Peniche by joining an organized tour, taking one of the comfortable, regular-scheduled coach services from Lisbon, or driving up the coast for a more flexible visit.

Peniche’s main attractions are in and around the Old Town within walking distance.

Some examples are the 16th-century São João Batista’s Fortress, Museu de Renda de Bilros, Cabo Carvoeiro and its uneven rock formations, as well as UNESCO’s World Biosphere Reserve Berlengas Islands.


Peniche is one of the best places to visit if you plan on surfing in Portugal. The main beaches in Peniche, Baleal, and Supertubos, sit a few miles away on each side of the Old Town.

Baleal is split between North and South beaches by a rugged headland which makes the conditions on each beach completely unique as they face opposite directions on the cape.

Supertubos is another long stretch of sandy, preserved coast that stages a yearly elite surf competition. Plus, the area is more developed with a greater choice of accommodation and amenities than Baleal.

Tours you might find interesting:

13. Aveiro

Recommended by Priya of Outside Suburbia

If you are planning a day trip to Porto from Lisbon, then Aveiro is worth a quick stop.

Situated on the edge of an extensive coastal lagoon system, Aveiro is a colorful town often called the Venice of Portugal thanks to its small network of picturesque canals. 

You will find colorful boats called moliceiros in Aveiro, Portugal.

Traditionally, they were used for seaweed harvesting, but these days, they’re only used for the touristy route of canal cruises. A ride on the canals usually takes around 45 minutes.


Do try the Ovos Moles de Aveiro, creamy egg pastries that are a local specialty. Moreover, if you have time for lunch, try some other Portuguese delicacies as well! 

During summer, the beach town of Praia da Costa Nova with its colorfully striped wooden beach houses is also worth a stop.

Tours you might find interesting:

14. Cabo da Roca & Sintra-Cascais Natural Park

Recommended by Kenny of Knycx Journeying

If you look closely at a map of the European continent, the Iberia peninsula may seem like the face of a man glazing toward the Atlantic Ocean.

Spain is the hair that was blown by the wind and Portugal is the man’s face; and the tip of the “nose” is Cabo da Roca – also known as the westernmost point of Europe’s mainland.  

If you love hiking, start your trip from Lisbon and then walk leisurely on one of the many hiking trails in the nature park.

Explore the deep valleys, drop by an intimate farm, or simply observe the unique flora and fauna. Then, sit down and enjoy an afternoon tea in one of the exotic resorts on the South Coast.

Best day trips from Lisbon

By the end of the day, head to Cabo da Roca where you will be able to see a romantic sunset, as it is one of the best locations to do so in Europe. 

The cape is a small area by the cliff with a picturesque lighthouse.

Take a picture of the latter and check in at the monument that says “Aqui, onde a terra se acaba e o mar começa…” (Where the land ends and the sea begins).

Its unique location and poetic inscriptions hold dear to many visitors’ hearts.

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Do you want to travel like me?
Here are some of my favorite travel tips and resources:

Flights: I prefer using CheapOair or Skyscanner to book flights. The destination everywhere feature is perfect for finding some cheap deals!

Accommodation: is my favorite site to find some great hotel deals. I do love staying at a local place as well, so I book an Airbnb every now and then.

Travel Insurance: There are many reasons why travel insurance is important and I never travel without one. I use the simple and flexible one from SafetyWing that protects me against unforeseen events.

Tours: I love taking tours to explore destinations like a local. My favorite website to book them in advance is GetYourGuide.

Camera Gear: I use a Nikon D5300 camera with an 18-105 mm and a 10-20 mm wide-angle lens to take my photos.

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  1. This takes me back to our Portugal road trip in 2018 – we visited Lagos, Lison and Porto and loved every minute of it. I think Sintra day trip is a must for any visitors to Lisbon!

  2. Love this, so comprehensive. I find that Portugal has the best beaches in Europe and it’s just gorgeous wherever you go, especially at the Algarve. Will save this when I travel to Lisbon for the first time, which I still haven’t been to!

  3. Lisbon has been on my bucket list for a while, but I never realized there were so many incredible day trips from the city! Porto looks absolutely stunning! That’s another destination I’d love to visit! Although the coast looks so pretty too! I’d love to explore some of the beaches in the area too. I hope restrictions will start to ease so I can visit soon. Thanks for the great guide!

  4. These are great ideas! I’ve always wanted to visit Porto but never considered doing it as a day trip from Lisbon so definitely going to look at that for when I can next go to Portugal!

  5. Great Post!!! I truly believe that there is much more to explore new places. The world has incredible beauty which makes us visit new places for sure.

  6. These are great. Thanks for the recommendations! Do you have any vegetarian or vegan restaurant recommendations for Lisbon, Sintra, Porto?

    1. Happy you like it! 🙂 When I was in Portugal a few years back I haven’t been vegan then so unfortunately I can’t really help you.

  7. That reminds of the movie “Last train to Lisbon”. I’d love to visit Portugal one day very soon. Thank you for the inspiration.

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