What to see near Lisbon
Beyond Lisbon, lies a wealth of day trip options. Some of the most rewarding tourist destinations can be reached within an hour of the city center, either by car, bus, or train. Surrounding Lisbon are ancient castles, sumptuous palaces, and a host of other historic monuments waiting to be discovered. Along the coast, you’ll find traditional fishing villages where the way of life has changed little over the centuries as well as some of the region’s liveliest resorts fringed with beaches of golden sand. Away from the crowds are unspoiled nature reserves, rivers, and estuaries teeming with colorful flora and fauna; havens of wildlife that can be explored on foot or by boat. Whether heading north or south from Portugal’s capital, there’s plenty to see and do on a day trip from Lisbon. What to see near Lisbon? Read it at this post.
If you are searching what to see near Lisbon – arguably the most rewarding day trip from Lisbon is to Sintra. Sintra’s rugged, verdant beauty, its ancient castle, and collection of historic palaces are recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage cultural landscape. You can begin your day of sightseeing by visiting the Palácio Nacional de Sintra. If you are not the do-it-yourself type and don’t want the hassle of catching a train and a bus and finding your way around, book a Lisbon Sintra Cascais private Tour. This tour takes you to Sintra, the Sintra Natural Park, the Pena National Palace and Pena Nature Park, the cliffs of Roca Cape at the westernmost point of continental Europe, and a drive along the Atlantic Coast, with a stop at the town of Cascais.
The lively coastal resort of Cascais lies 25 kilometers west of Lisbon. Draped around a shallow bay with its own sandy beach, Cascais combines tradition with nobility. A busy fishing port since medieval times, Cascais evolved in the 19th century when King Luís I moved his summer activities to the Palácio da Cidadela, the town’s 17th-century waterfront fortress. Soon afterwards, a slew of grand mansions sprang up in and around the town as Cascais took advantage of the royal seal of approval. Today, these opulent properties stand side by side with rows of former fishermen’s cottages. The Citadel is now a plush hotel and a thriving cultural space open to the public, and Cascais still enjoys a rather glamorous, cosmopolitan reputation. Cabo da Roca it’s doubtlessly what to see near Lisbon.
Cabo da Roca
Further north from Guincho along the Sintra coast is Cabo da Roca, the most westerly point in mainland Europe. Crowning the precipitous windblown promontory is an impressive lighthouse. Its isolated position and the fact that it’s situated 20 kilometers from Cascais means visiting the cape is only really practical by vehicle. The stark beauty of the location and the mighty splendor of the Atlantic Ocean, however, make the effort worthwhile.
Fátima has been one of the biggest Catholic shrines in the world since 1937, when it is believed the Virgin Mary appeared to three shepherd children as they were tending their family’s sheep. There are visits to Fátima throughout the year, but it is on May 13th and October 13th that it receives the most pilgrims from all over the world, many of them making their way to the basilica on their knees. It’s an easy tour from Lisbon for those who believe, or for skeptics who may still find a source of spiritual energy in the undeniable atmosphere of mysticism. Fátima Sanctuary it’s what to see near Lisbon too. Book Fátima Sanctuary private Tour HERE.
All of Óbidos has been declared a national monument. It is known as the “Wedding Present Town” because it was a gift King Dinis gave to Queen Isabel on their wedding day in 1282, but that alone is not what makes it such an extraordinarily romantic place – what make it one of Europe’s most romantic medieval villages are its incredibly picturesque cobblestone streets lined with colorful houses filled with geraniums and bougainvillea, Gothic doorways and windows, whitewashed churches, flowerpots, and dazzling tiles – all encircled by the walls of a 12th century castle.
A pleasant beachfront promenade links Estoril to attractive Cascais passing by beaches along the way, and frequent trains connect it to Lisbon. The town a certain grandeur and is still a fashionable cosmopolitan playground with Europe’s largest casino, tennis courts, some of Europe’s finest golf courses, an automobile race track that has held Formula One Grand Prix races, and an attractive sandy beach.
Ericeira, perched on cliffs overlooking the Atlantic, is a growing fishing village with a charming ambiance.
Its pretty narrow streets with whitewashed chapels and white houses edged in blue are a joy to wander around before heading to the sandy beaches, or to a superb seafood dinner at one of the many popular restaurants.
Numbering among Portugal’s most impressive historic monuments – and certainly one of its largest – the vast Mosteiro Palácio Nacional de Mafra overwhelms the small town of Mafra, 40 kilometres northwest of Lisbon. This mighty Baroque palace dates from the early 18th century. It was commissioned by King João V and originally intended as a simple monastery, but as royal coffers began to overflow with wealth from Brazil, the extravagant monarch extended the floor plans to include a sumptuous palace and a magnificent basilica.
The traditional fishing village of Sesimbra is an enchanting day-trip destination that is immediately appealing for its busy little harbour and the 17th-century Fortaleza de Santiago, which houses the lovely Museum of the Sea. Sesimbra is a working port and is the base for a colourful fleet of trawlers and smaller boats. The attractive old town center is a warren of narrow streets and winding alleys brimming with restaurants where the aroma of grilled sardines floats on the salt-laced breeze. Hemmed in either side by inviting strips of golden sand, the harbour and its quayside is a delight to explore, especially in the late afternoon when the boats return with the day’s catch.
A road trip through the starkly beautiful Serra da Arrábida is one of the most enjoyable ways to spend a day out of Lisbon. The wild, craggy mountain range rises 500 meters over the bay of Setúbal, some 38 kilometres south of the Portuguese capital, and encompasses the protected Parque Natural da Arrábida. Blanketed with verdant woodland and scrub, this stunning landscape is home to a fascinating variety of flora and fauna, and it’s possible to park the car and follow a number of signed nature trails. Book Private Tour to Arrábida HERE.
Dominating the charming riverside town of Tomar is a mighty castle that shields the Convento do Cristo, one of Portugal’s standout historic attractions. At its center is the medieval Charola, the original Templar church, richly decorated and exuding all the strange symbolism associated with the Order of Christ. Book Tomar templar private tour HERE.
Another place what to see near Lisbon – Évora is one of Portugal’s finest and most delightful towns. It is a true open-air museum with a large number of wonderfully preserved monuments and buildings of public interest that led UNESCO to protect it as a World Heritage Site. Book Évora private excursion HERE.
Now you know what to see near Lisbon!
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