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day trips from Lisbon

new york, ny
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day trips from Lisbon

We will be based in Lisbon for a few days of tourist activities as first time visitors. We plan to two day trips out of the city.

1- Which two of these three would be the "best": Sintra, Cascals or Estoril.

2- Is it necessary to book a car and driver or would public transportation (either bus or train) for non-Portugese speakers be easy for us. Thanks, Jane

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1. Re: day trips from Lisbon

By doing Estoril you can also do Cascais.The train goes from Cais de Sodre station in Lisbon down by the river along to Estoril.You can get off here and have a wander around and then walk all the way along the seafront to Cascais or just hop on another train to Cascais which is a few more minutes down the line. There is a lot more to see and do at Cascais.

I think that you can get public transport to Sintra but hopefully one of the Portuguese TA people can help you or if you just put the relevent words into the search box.

Los Angeles
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2. Re: day trips from Lisbon

Hi Jane, I was in Lisbon a couple weeks ago and we did Sintra and Cascais in one day.

We took the train from Lisbon to Sintra, did some of the sights there and then we took a bus to Estoril at about 3pm if I recall. The bus station is right at the Sintra train station and direct buses go to both Estoril and Cascais, it takes about a half hour on a nicer-than-a-regular-city-bus LOL.

The reason we took the bus to Estoril is because it was the first one and we didn't want to wait another half hour or so for the one to Cascais. I don't remember exactly but the bus fare was 3.25 or 3.50 euros and was very easy for us - we don't speak any Portuguese whatsoever. We had the LisboaCard, so when we got to Estoril we walked around a little but but then we hopped on the train to Cascais, only a couple minutes on the train.

I wasn't impressed with what we saw in Estoril, there didn't seem to be much to do besides a casino and beach. Cascais on the other hand has nice pedestrianized shopping streets, tons of restaurants, etc. We didn't go to the beach to sunbathe/swim, so a few hours in the late afternoon and dinner was enough. We also didn't do all of the sights in Sintra - so I felt like this day was not too full but was just right to see both cities. If you want to see more of the sights in Sintra or if you want to spend time at the beach in Cascais, then doing them on two different days would be better.

Anyway we didn't encounter anyone in the tourist industry (like in bus and train stations, restaurants, etc) who didn't speak at least a little English. Definitely definitely use public transportation, it is easy and in lisbon it is oh so very cheap. Have a great time, we really enjoyed both Sintra and Cascais :)

Inverness, Illinois
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3. Re: day trips from Lisbon

We visited Sintra as a day trip when we were in Lisbon two years ago. The train left from the beautiful and centrally located Rossio train station. The trains as I remember are frequent, inexpensive and are only about 45 min to Sintra. It is a bit of a walk from the Sintra train station to the main sights, but the route is quite beautiful and shady. The Palaces in Sintra are very reminiscent of Neuschwanstein and the ruins of the Moorish castle on the hill were quite fun to poke around. Sintra gets my vote for a beautiful and very accessible side trip.

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4. Re: day trips from Lisbon

Rossio station is closed, but you can catch the Sintra train from Entrecampos or (I think) Sete Rios stations.

I was disappointed in the train ride in that the windows of the train were all hazed over (not sure if this was dirt, graffiti, or intentional) so you couldn't really see much en route.

I decided to focus on Pena Palace, and while it was interesting, I thought it was a bit of a ripoff, pricewise, because they make you pay for the Pena Park (nothing special about it---just a green forest) before you can enter Pena Palace. (then again, if you are an UPPER "eastsider," money is not an issue, is it?) And of course, it also costs 4 euros, I think, to take the bus from the Sintra train station to the Pena Palace---it's a very, very winding and steep route. And then when you get off the bus, there's another shuttle bus (1.5 euros, I think, but I walked instead) to the actual entrance of the palace.

While the Palace is picturesque, the interior is kept pretty dim, so it wasn't nearly as pretty as in the interior photos on the post cards (they don't allow interior photography by visitors), and it was quite cluttered---sort of too much to see to enjoy it.

On the way back to the bus stop, I met a German couple who spoke great English, and they felt that the Moorish castle was more worthwhile (I didn't have time to do that one), they were quite unimpressed with Pena.

One word to the wise, upon exiting the Pena palace, if you don't take the little shuttle, and plan to walk down to the main bus stop, it is very easy to get lost on the paths through the park/forest. Not only did I meet that lost German couple, but there was an entire tour group we ran into that was also lost (the female guide pleaded to us, "Does anybody speak English?"....we all answered, "We sure do, but we are lost also." It took us the better part of an hour to work our way back to where we wanted to be. The signage in the "park" is PATHETIC!

I had a better time (and I'm not a big shopper) browsing the little shops in Sintra, including a tile shop, later in the day. It was a hot day, and I had a great cold beer and a wonderful freshly baked bread at Panisintra. (ask the women behind the counter which bread is the best and freshest) But if you get there too late, they run out of bread.

Lisbon, Portugal
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5. Re: day trips from Lisbon

Hi Eastsider!

You cant miss Sintra, it's really beautiful.

Yes, Rossio's railway station is closed, but you can get the train in Entrecampos and in 30 mins get there.

You can visit Pena Palace, Mouros Castle, Quinta da Regaleira, and don't miss eating a "travesseiro" in a typical coffe, "Piriquita".

You can walk through the streets, visit some parks around there, and enjoy the day, as there are lots of restaurants.

You should also visit Monserrate Palace, nearby Sintra, very bautiful.

If you can, visit Cabo da Roca, the most western point of Europe.

Also, lots of beautiful beaches like Praia Grande about 20 mins Sintra.

I'm sure you'll love this trip!

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6. Re: day trips from Lisbon

Cabo de Roca the most western point of Europe? What about Ireland??

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7. Re: day trips from Lisbon

Continental Europe.

Madeira and the Azores are even more to the west.


8. Re: day trips from Lisbon

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