Lisbon, the capital of Portugal, is one of the most fascinating cities to visit in Europe. And it is not only the capital, there are many hidden gems just a few kilometers away that will make you feel like you are in a fairy tale. From picturesque hilltop villages to secluded valleys, read on to discover the best towns andvillages near Lisbon!
Towns and villages near Lisbon: our 6 recommendations
If you are planning to visit Lisbon, we strongly recommend you visit the towns and villages listed below. If you don't have much time, you can select a few, but honestly they are all worth a visit. There are many ways to reach them, such as via bus or train. However, we recommend that you rent a car, this way you will be able to walk through each of these towns and villages more comfortably and at your own pace.
Sintra: Portugal’s fairy tale location
If there is a mandatory stop, Sintra is certainly one. Only 30km away from Lisbon is this town, which was listed by Unesco as a World Heritage Site.
There are so many places of interest! There are several monuments, the ruins of an Arab castle, several palaces and beautiful beaches in the surrounding area. In order to see everything, you will need to spend at least a full day.
However, if you don't have much time, we recommend you visit these 3 sites:the Pena Palace, the Quinta da Regaleira, and the Monserrate Palace.
The Pena Palace is located on the highest hill of Sintra, from where you can take in an incredible landscape. This castle will dazzle you with its colorful architecture. While at Quinta Regaleira, located next to the Pena Palace, you can enjoy the beautiful and extensive gardens. Finally, the Monserrate Palace, a small monument hidden in the outskirts of Sintra. You can appreciate its Arab and Gothic architecture, in addition to the incredible botanical garden surrounding it.
The best way to tour this town is by car, since most of its monuments are located far away from each other. And honestly, they are all worth seeing.
Cascais: Portugal’s Costa del Sol
Cascais, an old fishing village, is located 25km away from Lisbon. Famous for its beaches, but also for its small streets, seafood restaurants and its old town. A place with a great deal of peace, history, glamour and nature.
It has a wide variety of tourist options. Like the Citadel, the Old Town, and the Marina. As well as its small cobblestone streets and tiled houses, which makes this a magical place.
Another attraction not to be missed are its beaches, such as La Reina and El Guincho. You also can't miss Boca do Inferno, its great cliff and the westernmost point of the European continent. Where years ago it was believed to be the place where land ended.
Sesimbra: paradisiacal beaches
The preferred vacation destination for the Portuguese. Sesimbra has incredible beaches, a relaxed atmosphere and incredible Mediterranean gastronomy.
Among the beaches with crystal clear water and soft golden sand we can highlight the Praia do Creiro, Praia de Gálapos and Praia de Figueirinha.
In addition to its beaches, you also need to see Cape Espichel, from where you can enjoy an unparalleled view of the Arrábida National Park.
Estoril: the home of royal families
This town is known as the Portuguese Riviera. We could say that it is the home of royal families, since it was the place of residence and exile of several kings. One of its main attractions is the Estoril Casino, which to date is one of the largest casinos in Europe.
On the other hand, it also has some exclusive beaches, among the best are Praia de São Pedro and Praia de Carcavelos.
And finally, if you are a car lover, you can't miss its Formula 1 circuit. Estoril has attractions for all tastes.
Obidos: the medieval walled city
In addition to the white-walled houses and narrow cobblestone streets, Obidos stands out mainly for its wall. The wall protects its imposing castle. Its lagoon is also a highlight, which separates it from the coast.
Among its monuments and attractions, the most important is the beautiful Porta da Vila, composed of a set of tiles symbolizing the Passion of Christ.
Mafra: the site with the most important Portuguese monument
The last destination on our list is Mafra, a very easily accessible town, since it is only a 45 minute drive from Lisbon. The National Palace is found here, the largest palace in the country, built in the eighteenth century and a symbol of royalty. If you are willing to walk through it, you will need at least 2 hours to appreciate it in detail. Inside you will find more than 1000 rooms, lots of art and history.
While if you are passionate about nature and hiking, another site you can't miss is the Tapada de Mafra. This former hunting ground is currently home to a great variety of animals.
We have reached the end of this brief tour of the most beautiful towns and villages near Lisbon.Want to know more? If so, don't miss the opportunity to create your own driving tour with a rental car in Lisbon, to enjoy these wonderful destinations a few miles away, at your own time and to your own taste, what are you waiting for?