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What To Do With Your Free Time in Portugal

From bustling cities, full of lively culture and tasty treats, to hidden beaches and sprawling vineyards, Portugal has something for every traveler. Whether your idea of the perfect free time includes lounging on a beautiful beach, taking on a new adventure or strolling down narrow city-alleys, you are sure to find it all and more in Portugal.

Destination Our Suggestion Important Info


Ponta da Piedade
This beautiful coastal setting is accessible by boat or foot, just a few minutes south of Lagos’ center. By boat, you will arrive through natural caves and arches, while on foot your journey will take you along cliffs and down a steep staircase to the beach. Take in your beautiful surroundings and soak up some sun!
FREE – $
Hours: Dawn to dusk
Location: Accessible by boat or foot from the center of Lagos.


Igreja de Santo Antonio
Church of Santo Antonio – Lagos was originally build in 1707 and features incredible wood decorations on all walls. In addition to the beautiful walls and statues inside, look up to see the wooden, vaulted ceiling and intricate prints it displays.
Hours: 8:00 am – 7:00 pm; open until 8:00 pm on weekends
Location: In the heart of Lagos, next to the Lagos Cultural Center.


Lagos Marina
Head here to kick-start any watersport adventure, or just to enjoy the social atmosphere! The marina is not only the launchpad for many water-based activities, but also home to countless bars and restaurants where you can sit back and enjoy the view. 2019 is a special time to visit the marina – In July, Marina de Lagos celebrates its 25th anniversary!
FREE – $
Hours: Accessible 24/7!
Location: Just across Ribeira de Bensafrim from central Lagos.


Belem Tower
Seeming to float on the Tagus river, this castle was once used for protection in the 16th century. It is a monument to Portugal’s Age of Discovery, often serving as a symbol of the country as it was the starting point for many of the voyages of discovery, and for the sailors it was the last sight of their homeland. Admire the tower’s architecture and peculiar location from afar, or take a tour of the interior!
FREE – $
Hours: 10:00 am – 5:30 pm Oct. – Apr.; 10:00 am – 6:30 pm May – Sep.
Location: Accessible by train: Belém station or boat: Belém river station.


Tram 28
Like cable-cars in San Francisco, Tram 28 runs up and down (literally) the steep streets of Lisbon. Catch a ride from point A to point B, or just to enjoy the ride! To avoid crowds, ride the tram early (or late) in the day. You can purchase a single ticket on board, or stop by a metro station to get a 24-hour pass!
Hours: 6:00 am – 10:30 pm; at least four hourly departures from 7:00 am-8:00 pm
Location: Trams run throughout Lisbon, with departure stations at Martim Moniz and Campo Ourique.


St. George’s Castle
Situated high on a hill, this castle can be seen from nearly anywhere in Lisbon’s historic center. It was first built nearly 2,000 years ago and displays the Portuguese royal seal in the entryway. Catch the tram up the hill or challenge yourself to the climb and be rewarded with amazing views and an on-site restaurant! Once you’ve made it up to the Alfama district check out other attractions including the Fado Museum, dedicated to the popular genre of music, and the Museum of Lisbon, an exhibit on the history of the city.
$ – $$
Hours: 9:00 am – 9:00 pm Mar. – Oct.; 9:00 am – 6:00 pm Nov. – Feb.
Location: In the Alfama district, accessible by foot, Bus 737 departing from Figueira Square or tram 28.
Skip the line and combine your trip to the castle with other Alfama attractions with the Super Lisbon Combi!


Lisbon Oceanarium
Get up close with underwater wildlife at the Lisbon Oceanarium, Europe’s second-largest aquarium! The Oceanarium is home to over 15,000 water-creatures, and the building itself “floats” above the ocean, only accessible by foot-bridge.
Hours: 10:00 am – 7:00 pm; open until 8:00 pm during Summer; last entry one hour before closing
Location: Accessible by bus or underground at the Oriente (East) Station, by train, or by Transtejo boats to Cais do Sodré or Terreiro do Paço.


Dom Luis Bridge
Take a stroll across this famous bridge, designed by the student of Gustave Eiffel, creator of the Eiffel Tower. The bridge has two levels, the lower for cars and the upper for Porto’s metro. Pedestrians can walk alongside either level for incredible views of the city and Douro River.
Hours: Accessible 24/7!
Location: Spanning River Douro between the cities of Porto and Vila Nova de Gaia.


Crystal Palace Gardens
In the shadows of where the Crystal Palace once stood, torn down in 1956, now stand beautiful gardens and walkways. Walk through green trees and colorful flower beds, around fountains and alongside the Douro River. The gardens also have a multimedia library, an auditorium, a cafeteria, and the Romantic Museum.
Hours: 8:00 am – 9:00 pm Apr. – Sep.; 8:00 am – 7:00 pm Oct. – Mar.
Location: Rua D. Manuel II; Accessible by buses #3, 20, 35, 37.


Foz do Douro
Foz do Douro is a seafront area known for its sandy beaches and eclectic restaurants serving global and Portuguese food. Though no longer in use to direct ships safely to shore, the Farol Molhe do Douro lighthouse stands tall on the coast of Douro, at the end of a promenade full of coastal trees and restaurants. For the best views, visit near sunset on a clear day.
FREE – $
Hours: Accessible 24/7!
Location: Accessible by Linha 1 tram from the Ribeira district of Porto.