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Sintra Day Trips from Lisbon

To complete your trip to Lisbon with an excursion to its surroundings, Sintra and Cascais are probably the best option.

Sintra Day Trips from Lisbon

Sintra | ©Drew Bae

A trip to Sintra is a must. Only half an hour away from Lisbon is this municipality presided by the Pena Palace, one of the most important centers of European Romantic architecture.

1. The best excursions to Sintra

Pena Palace, Sintra
Pena Palace, Sintra

There are different alternatives to go to Sintra. Choosing one or another will depend on what you want to see or how much time you have. I tell you the best options:

2. Excursion to Sintra with visit to Pena Palace.

Cascais | ©Jean-Michel Brunet
Cascais | ©Jean-Michel Brunet

High in the Sintra mountain range is the spectacular Palacio da Pena built in the 19th century by a German architect for Ferdinand of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha. This is one of the most romantic palaces in Europe and therefore the main attraction of this small town. In this excursion to Sintra and Pena Palace: you will be accompanied by an expert guide who will reveal its history and guide you through all its rooms.

Itinerary

  • Pena Palace
  • Queluz Palace
  • Cabo da Roca
  • Historic center of Cascais
  • Estoril Casino Gardens

3. Sintra half day excursion from Lisbon.

Pool hidden among the trees
Pool hidden among the trees

If you have little time during your trip, this excursion is an ideal option not to miss visiting Sintra. It is priced at $ 0, is available in English and Spanish and lasts approximately five hours. The cost of the half-day excursion to Sintra: covers the services of a local guide who will accompany you during the tour so that in addition to marveling at the landscapes of Sintra, you can place this town in its historical context.

The starting point will be the Lake of Camoes and from there you will take a train to Sintra accompanied by the guide and your group. You can use a transport card or pay the five euro fare. In the afternoon you will be back in Lisbon.

Itinerary

  • Sintra Municipal Park
  • Arabic source
  • Sintra National Palace
  • Church of St. Martin
  • Regaleira Park

4. Excursion to Sintra, Cascais and Cabo da Roca with guided visit to Pena Palace.

The Cabo da Roca | ©Ricardo Vidal
The Cabo da Roca | ©Ricardo Vidal
:

In the surroundings of Sintra there are also tourist enclaves that deserve a visit. This is the case of the municipality of Cascais or the impressive Cabo da Roca from where you can contemplate wonderful views of the Atlantic Ocean. This day trip to Sintra and surroundings is designed for small groups and to enjoy the Portuguese landscape, beyond the stress of the capital.

The best thing about the excursion is that it is all inclusive: the pick up and drop off at the hotel, the transfer in an air-conditioned vehicle, the expert guide who will accompany the group (maximum 8 people) during the excursion and lunch. The activity is available in Spanish, English, French, Italian and Portuguese and costs $ 249:.

Itinerary

  • The fishing village of Cascais
  • The natural cave Boca do Inferno
  • The Cabo da Roca
  • The Pena Palace
  • The historic center of Sintra

5. Organized day trip to Sintra and Cascais

Sintra | ©Patrick Nouhailler
Sintra | ©Patrick Nouhailler

This :tour of Sintra and Cascais: combines a guided visit to the points of interest of both towns with free time for the traveler to explore them at his or her leisure. During one day you will visit the two faces of Lisbon's surroundings: the municipality of Sintra which was the retreat of the Portuguese monarchs and the humble fishing village of Cascais.

Both locations have much to discover and for that the figure of the expert guide will be very useful, but they are also places that are enjoyed with a relaxing walk alone. This day tour costs $ 79: and is designed for small groups of a maximum of eight people. The entrance fee for the famous Pena Palace is included in the price.

Itinerary

  • Pena National Park
  • Historic center of Sintra
  • Cabo da Roca
  • Guincho Beach
  • Hell's Mouth
  • Historic center of Cascais
  • Estoril Casino

6. Half day private tour to Sintra and Cascais.

Views of a castle from the water in Cascais
Views of a castle from the water in Cascais

This :half-day tour to the towns of Sintra and Cascais: is designed for those who want to leave the stress of Lisbon behind for a while and relax in the surrounding countryside being back in the early afternoon. The tour is totally private: you will have at your disposal a driver who will pick you up at your hotel and an expert guide who will guide you through the different points of interest of these two cities.

The total cost is $ 105:. The pace is set by you and the tour covers the following points of interest (although if you want to see something different or skip a stop, just let your driver know).

Itinerary

  • Pena Palace
  • Moorish Castle
  • Regaleira Palace
  • Cabo da Roca
  • Montserrat Palace
  • Historic center of Sintra

Two-day tour of Sintra, Cascais, Fátima, Nazaré and Óbidos.

Patio del Monasterio Batalha | ©xiquinhosilva
Patio del Monasterio Batalha | ©xiquinhosilva

Surely once you get to know the surroundings of Lisbon the landscape and the municipalities will catch you and you won't want to leave them so quickly. If you have time during your trip, I recommend this excursion of two days around Lisbon: which includes stops in Sintra, Cascais, Fátima, Nazaré and Óbidos. It is an ideal option to visit in depth and without haste the richness of the Portuguese countryside and take away from your trip a much more complete idea of the country.

With this tour you will not have to sleep outside Lisbon as it is divided into two days, but the departure and return is to your hotel in the capital. The first day you will see Sintra and Cascais and the second day Fátima, Nazaré and Óbidos. So that you can comfortably enjoy all the visits, the group is reduced to a maximum of eight people.

Both days you will have free time to visit the cities at your leisure and the price of the tour ($ 148) includes a Portuguese liqueur tasting as well as the transfer in a comfortable air-conditioned vehicle and the services of the expert guide (lunch is on your own).

Itinerary

  • Pena Palace
  • Historic center of Sintra
  • Cabo da Roca
  • Guincho Beach
  • Hell's Mouth
  • Historic center of Cascais
  • Estoril Casino
  • Basilica of Our Lady of the Rosary in Fatima
  • Batalha Monastery
  • Cliffs of Nazaré
  • Church of Our Lady of Nazaré
  • Medieval village of Óbidos

8. How to get to Sintra from Lisbon on your own.

Lisbon train at Sintra station | ©Jason
Lisbon train at Sintra station | ©Jason

If you are not a fan of guided tours (although it is something I always recommend both when it comes to sightseeing and visiting the most emblematic points of a city) you can also get to Sintra on your own easily and quickly.

The train to Sintra departs from Lisbon's Rossio station, located in the city center between the botanical garden and the Santa Justa elevator. The journey takes approximately 40 minutes, trains leave every half hour and cost approximately five euros (with the Lisbon tourist card you will not pay for the train).

You can also get to Sintra by rental car from Lisbon, but the train works so well that I do not recommend it unless you are going to follow the route around the capital. Once you arrive in Sintra, you can move around the town on foot or by bus 434 that connects the historic center with the Pena Palace.

Ana's Traveller Tip

Ask for queijadas or traveseiros in Sintra's pastry shops; they are the typical sweets of the region.

What to see in Sintra

Quinta da Regaleira | ©Susanne Nilsson
Quinta da Regaleira | ©Susanne Nilsson

Any guided tour will cover the main points of a visit to Sintra; some will focus more on the historic center, some on the surroundings and some on the scenery. If you visit Sintra individually this is the list of sites you have to see (I recommend leaving Lisbon early to see them all).

Pena Palace

It is the main attraction of Sintra and the greatest architectural exponent of the romanticism of the nineteenth century that Portugal has. It is located on top of a hill and you will distinguish it by its yellow and pink walls. You can find all the information you need to visit it in this other article about the entrances to the Pena Palace.

Sintra National Palace

In addition to the Pena Palace, Sintra has this other palace with white walls and orange roofs that is well worth a visit both inside and outside. Architecture lovers will delight in analyzing the medieval, Gothic, Romanesque, Manueline and Renaissance elements present on its facade. Although the opening hours change according to the season, you can visit it every day of the year for an approximate price of 10 euros.

Quinta da Regaleira

Palaces are the main attraction of Sintra, but this one is different from the rest. The Quinta da Regaleira palace looks like an enchanted castle full of turrets and sculptures adorning its brick-colored walls. The entrance fee ranges from 8 to 16 euros depending on whether you want to visit with or without a guided tour and the opening hours change according to the season (although you can usually visit every day of the week all year round).

Moorish Castle

On top of a mountain is located this enclave also known as the Castle of Sintra. To get there you have to climb some stone stairs and from the top you will have stunning views of the Atlantic if the day is clear.

Ana's Traveller Tip

If you like gastronomy, in Sintra you will find the Bristol restaurant by chef Sergi Arola, but you will have to book well in advance.

10. When to go to Sintra

Aerial view of the Castle of the Walls in Sintra
Aerial view of the Castle of the Walls in Sintra

Like Lisbon, Sintra receives tourists all year round. In high season (June to August) you will find the town more lively, but there will also be more queues to visit the Pena Palace and the entrance fees to the tourist sites will be higher.

As for the weather, it is good at any time of the year as there are no low temperatures that prevent you from visiting the city and in summer in Sintra will always be less hot than in Lisbon. The ideal month to visit the city is September since the weather will be ideal and you will not find the summer crowds in the tourist spots.

11. If you liked the excursion to Sintra, you will also like...

Nazaré | ©Sergei Gussev
Nazaré | ©Sergei Gussev

Sintra is not the only attractive place you can visit during your trip to Lisbon without having to travel long distances. The surroundings of the Portuguese capital are exciting and if you have not yet booked your plane ticket, I advise you to add a couple of extra days to your vacation to be able to visit them all.

The Algarve, Fatima, Sesimbra, Nazaré, Óbidos, Arrábida, Evora... if you haven't heard of these places after visiting Lisbon you will have heard them several times. In this article about Best Tours and Day Trips from Lisbon you will find all the necessary information about what you can see during your trip.