May 17th, 2019back to Things To Do
Lisbon is a 20 minute drive away but we recommend that you travel by train from the village station during week days when traffic is busy and there is limited parking available. Tickets are less than €2 (2016 prices) and trains run every 15 minutes during rush hours and then every hour and on public holidays and weekends every hour. Journey takes around 30 minutes depending which part of the city you are going to. There are additional trains leaving from Rio do Mouro station, a 5 minute drive away. At weekends, you can drive into Lisbon since there is more parking available and less traffic and on Sundays, street parking is free.
Oceanarium and Science Museum
Oceanarium and Science Museum
Located in the Parque das Nações (the EXPO98 site) on the northern side of Lisbon, along the River Tejo estuary. You can drive there in 30 minutes without traffic and there is plenty of parking, or you can catch the train from Meleças station direct to Oriente Station - pass through the Vasco da Gama Centro Comercial (Shopping Centre) to get to the river front.
The Oceanarium, or Oceanário de Lisboa, is the second largest in Europe and is quite spectacular to visit. The main feature is a huge central tank, containing over 25,000 marine animals and fish, which you can observe from 2 levels. Very popular with children and adults alike.
The Centro da Ciência Viva (Science Museum) is located near to the Oceanarium and is a great place to visit with children of all ages. The exhibits are enormously varied and very interactive so there are lots of buttons to press and levers to pull and turn.
At the Parque das Nações, there is also a cable car that travels along the waterfront with great views over the river. If you are planning to go to the Oceanarium, Science Museum and use the cable car, save a few euros and get an all-in ticket from the Tourist Information Booth.
St Jorge's Castle
St Jorge's Castle
The Castelo de São Jorge is located on top of one of the 7 hills of Lisbon and is well worth the climb - or you can catch a tram or bus of course. The Castle, dating back to the 12th century, is an impressive place to visit, to climb on the ramparts and enjoy the breathtaking views of the city. There are gardens and terraces to wander through and the medieval quarter of Santa Cruz is worth a visit. You can go on from here to the Alfama District where there are local traditional restaurants for you to enjoy.
Located south east of St Jorge's Castle, the Alfama district is the oldest part of Lisbon and is one of the most traditional housing areas with narrow calçada streets and lanes, many without traffic. It is a great area to walk around and to grab a bite to eat at one of the small restaurants or cafés tucked away. This is also a good place to come to if you want to sample the traditional Fado (Portuguese music) while having dinner.
‘We had a great tour through this district on Segways up into the hills overlooking Lisbon with www.lisbonbysegway,com An amazing and unusual experience – highly recommended
The train from Sintra terminates at the Rossio Station which is around ½ hour's journey from our village station. Exit at the lower street level and you come out at the northern end of the Baixa District which was rebuilt after the 1755 earthquake. There are many streets, most without traffic, and shops to wander around and several squares, including the Praça do Comércio, Praça Dom Pedro IV and Praça da Figueira, filled with cafés and restaurants. Look out for the Elevador de Santa Justa which will take you 32 metres up to the top of the hill overlooking the Baixa.
Torre de Belém
BelémLocated on the west side of Lisbon with plenty of parking and a 20 minute drive from Quinta do Scoto, Belem has enough to see to more than fill a day. The Monastery, Mosteiro dos Jerónimos, dominates the area with its imposing European gothic architecture and you can't miss the tower, Torre de Belém, located right on the waterfront, built in the early 1500s. Near to the tower is the Monument to the Discoveries, Padrão dos Descobrimentos, erected in 1960 to commemorate the 500thanniversary of the death of Henry the Navigator. There are also several museums to visit including the Coach museum (Museu dos Coches) and the modern art museum (Museu do Design).
While in Belém, you must visit the café Antiga Confeitaria de Belém which is world famous for its Pasteis de Belém (or pastel de nata - flaky pastry tarts filled with custard and dusted with ground nutmeg - delicious!). Don't join the queue which is normally snaking down the street outside (for take-away orders) but go inside the café and you can sit in one of the many delightfully tiled dining rooms and enjoy your pasteis in comfort.
The Zoo can be reached from Quinta do Scoto either by car with a 15 minute drive, without traffic, or by train directly from the village station alighting at the Sete Rios station for the Jardim Zoológico, 25 minutes later. The Zoo has been expanded and developed over the last few years and is a great day out for families, with many animals and attractions including various animal shows, cable car and boating lake.