Although Dan and I had been to Lisbon and Sintra before our wedding trip, we had never made it to Cabo da Roca, the westernmost point in continental Europe. Cabo da Roca was always on my “bucket list,” but its not the easiest place to get to, especially without a car or a guided tour group. For our wedding trip, we organized a day trip from Ericeira to Sintra for our guests, and were able to tack on a stop at Cabo da Roca in the late afternoon! As you can see, Cabo da Roca is gorgeous and an amazing way to end our day trip (and wedding week!).
Cabo da Roca turned out to be a great add-on to our trip, and I would recommend it to visitors in the area. Cabo da Roca was especially great for our group, in which most people had not visited Portugal and were looking to maximize new experiences on the trip!
What Is Cabo da Roca?
In tour guides, Cabo da Roca is the westernmost point of continental Europe. In reality, its a gorgeous cape with dramatic cliffs overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. Offering stellar views, Cabo da Roca reminded me a lot of the Cliffs of Moher in Ireland. Cabo da Roca is definitely worth a detour if you are in the Sintra/Cascais area. Take a camera and go on a sunny day if possible!
What To Do At Cabo Da Roca?
The main attraction of Cabo da Roca are its stunning views. And seriously, they are stunning. A trail runs along the coastline and you can really lose the crowds of tourists by walking along the trail.
Aside from staring in awe and taking lots of photos, Cabo da Roca offers a simple monument with its GPS coordinates, a pretty lighthouse (that you cannot enter), and a small gift shop.
Cabo da Roca is actually part of the Sintra park system and a lot of longer trails in the area pass through Cabo da Roca. Since its part of Sintra, everything is well maintained and very clean!
How To Get To Cabo da Roca?
The easiest way to get to Cabo da Roca is really to join a tour leaving from Lisbon. That is what we did; we stopped at Cabo da Roca after a day trip to Sintra and spent about 20 minutes at Cabo da Roca.
Alternatively, you can drive to Cabo da Roca. Its located about 45 minutes from Lisbon, 30 minutes from Sintra, and 25 minutes from Cascais. There is plenty of free parking at Cabo da Roca.
Finally, public bus 403 stops at Cabo da Roca on its route between Sintra and Cascais. To take the bus, get off at stop Azoia Chafariz (4th stop from Caiscais Central, 25 minutes, 8th stop from Sintra , 40 minutes).
How Long To Spend At Cabo da Roca?
You can really spend as long as you want at Cabo da Roca. We only spent about 20 minutes, which was plenty of time to walk around and snap some gorgeous photographs! Plan to spend longer if you want to walk the trains or wait around for sunset. Also, add in a little extra time to find a parking spot. While free, the parking lot is a bit of a free for all…
STEAL OUR TRIP
Bus 403: Bus route between Sintra and Caiscais. Runs hourly during the day in winter, longer in summer. Confirm times with your hotel before planning to take the bus. You can buy a ticket in advance or or the bus (slightly more expensive), and there are many options for buying tickets. Consult your itinerary for the best deal.
ON A BUDGET
Aside from transportation, a visit to Cabo da Roca is totally free. If you have time, the bus is a good budget option. Alternatively, try to find a hostel offering tours for young people. This will be cheaper than joining a large tour company.