From Sintra To The Coast

After lunch and exploring the cobbled streets of Sintra, our guide arrived promptly to collect everyone and take us on the next part of our tour – to the coast. Only a short distance but what a difference in the weather, the further we got from Sintra the warmer and sunnier it became and those gorgeous blue skies we left behind in Lisbon appeared once again.

The drive was beautiful, we went through Sintra Natural Park to the rocky bluffs of Cabo da Roca – a cliff that rises 460 feet above the Atlantic.

The car park made my heart sink – it was absolutely packed with tour buses, our guide managed to squeeze our little van into a spot and then we were free to explore. There were lots of people around but it was actually worth bearing with the crowds for the outstanding views.

There is a lighthouse built in 1772, it is 22 metres high and stands on the highest point. We had a look at that and also found the landmark cross with its quote by the 16th century poet Luis de Camoes who called this the place “where the land ends and the sea begins.” You can totally understand how at one time, people really did believe this was the end of the world.

Son and I strolled along the rocky paths on the cliff top, away from the car park and the monument it was blissfully empty. We took in the views of the Atlantic and watched mesmerized as the huge waves crashed onto the shoreline. I could have stayed there and looked at the sea for hours.

Back to our mini-van and we continued our drive but this time hugging the coastline. There were no end of gorgeous views. We passed Guincho Beach which is popular with surfers then stopped briefly at Boca do Inferno or “Hell’s Mouth” where powerful ocean waves have created gigantic caves in the rock wall.

Our guide stopped again further along the coast at another view point where we got out, stretched our legs and once more checked out those waves. I have never seen anything like the huge breakers we found in this area, incredible to watch and listen to as they thundered onto the shore.

After soaking up that spectacle it was back to the van and onwards to our last stop of the day – Cascais.

26 thoughts on “From Sintra To The Coast

      • Yes, it was lovely. Drive up the nearby mountain for coffee & lunch. Beautiful area for walking. Both daughter & puppy loved it. Collected some mountain mint leaves for tea. So all in all, productive & relaxing. πŸ˜ƒπŸ˜„

    • We booked online through the viator website – it was the Small Group Tour to Sintra from Lisbon. Someone commented on an earlier post that it is possible by public transport – they said train from Rossio station, bus up the hill then Estoril by bus, Cascais by train and train back to Lisbon. It would probably be also easy to do with a hire car too. I picked the tour because it was the easy option for us, I wanted a relaxed day and not have to be thinking about timings or catching buses etc.. It worked really well, we got to see quite a lot and there were only 8 people on our tour.

  1. Visited here with my daughter when she was less than a year old – she still has the certificate commemorating her visit hanging on her bedroom wall..

  2. I can well understand how you found the coast mesmerising Joy – I love watching huge waves roll and crash onto the rocks! It looks quite similar to the south western Australian coast – there are huge waves especially round the Cape Leeuwin peninsula. I guess being on a west coast at the edge of a vast ocean there are similarities. Lovely photos! Hope you had a good weekend – I seem to have got a bit off track since we came back from holiday but managed to post today and hope to be back into routine this week!

    • I just love this sort of crashing coastline Rosemary, we used to spend our childhood holidays on the north coast of Ireland with rugged scenery like this – totally different weather though!! You must be feeling jet lagged after coming back so can totally understand getting off track and out of the normal routine!! We’ve had gorgeous weather all weekend but pouring rain and windy now – not very summery at all but at least the sun was here yesterday!

      • The Irish coastline must be a wonderful spot Joy – I have never been there but know it’s the sort of place we would enjoy visiting πŸ™‚ Even in wild weather! Yes I have got over the trip but the feeling of being slightly out of kilter does persist for a little while. We had a bit of a drama with our younger granddaughter who knocked one of her front baby teeth out the other weekend so that was a bit upsetting but all back on track now. So sorry to hear about the rain as we had such lovely weather when we were over albeit rather chilly up in Yorkshire! Hope it perks up this week for you πŸ™‚

  3. Beautiful photos! We loved our visit to the coast of Portugal and hope to get back there someday! Maybe this time we will head north to Porto!

    • We went there on a tour but I think if you wanted to do it independently you would need a rental car. It’s not too far from Lisbon though and once out of the city the roads weren’t too busy. It is a gorgeous spot though, definitely recommend a visit.

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