5 Easy Day Trips from Lisbon: Adventure Beyond the Capital

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Lisbon, with its enchanting blend of modernity and history, is undeniably a jewel in Portugal’s crown. But, if you’re hankering for a change of scenery, consider these five amazing day trips, all easily accessible from Lisbon.

1. Sintra: Fairytales Come to Life

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Why Go: Think of majestic palaces, mysterious forests, and panoramic views. Sintra feels like stepping into a fairytale. ● What to Do: Visit the Palácio da Pena, Moorish Castle, and Quinta da Regaleira. Wander around the town center and get lost amidst its charm. ● Eat: Try the local “travesseiros” (puff pastries with almond cream) at Piriquita, Sintra’s iconic bakery. ● How to Get There: Trains depart regularly from Lisbon’s Rossio station, and the journey is around 40 minutes.

2. Cascais: Seaside Splendour

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Why Go: A blend of sandy beaches and a lively town atmosphere makes Cascais a perfect seaside escape. ● What to Do: Lounge at Praia da Ribeira, stroll down the marina, or explore the Museu Condes de Castro. ● Eat: Savor fresh seafood at Mar do Inferno with gorgeous views of the Atlantic. ● How to Get There: The train from Lisbon’s Cais do Sodré station to Cascais takes about 40 minutes, offering scenic views along the coast.

3. Óbidos: Medieval Charms

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Why Go: This walled medieval town is known for its preserved architecture, cobbled streets, and the annual chocolate festival. ● What to Do: Walk through the city walls, explore the castle, and browse the quaint local shops. ● Eat: Sample the cherry liqueur “ginjinha” in a chocolate cup. Yes, you eat the cup! ● How to Get There: Buses run from Lisbon’s Campo Grande station to Óbidos, taking roughly an hour.

4. Setúbal: Nature and Gastronomy

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Why Go: From the Arrábida Natural Park to the Sado River estuary, Setúbal offers a feast for nature lovers. ● What to Do: Dolphin watching in the Sado estuary, hiking in Arrábida, or exploring Livramento Market. ● Eat: Dive into a plate of choco frito (fried cuttlefish), a local specialty. ● How to Get There: Regular trains run from Lisbon’s Roma-Areeiro station to Setúbal, taking just under an hour.

5. Évora: A Historic Gem

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Why Go: A UNESCO World Heritage site, Évora boasts Roman temples, cathedrals, and a unique chapel adorned with bones. ● What to Do: Visit the Roman Temple, Sé Cathedral, and the slightly eerie Chapel of Bones. ● Eat: Try “açorda Alentejana,” a bread-based dish typical of the region. ● How to Get There: Trains and buses both connect Lisbon to Évora, with journeys lasting around 1.5 hours.

Each of these destinations offers a unique glimpse into Portugal’s rich tapestry of history, nature, and culture. And the best part? They’re just a short hop away from the capital. Ready for a day of discovery? Lisbon’s surroundings are waiting to enchant you! 🚂🍷🏰🌊

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