Things to do in
Colares, Portugal

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Our most recommended things to do in Colares, Portugal

Sintra: Jeep Tour with Visit to Pena Palace

1. Sintra: Jeep Tour with Visit to Pena Palace

Imagine kings and queens in mountain-top palaces, a kaleidoscope of bright colors. Magical forests filled with fairies, hidden treasure, or even ghosts. Sintra is a region filled with real-life castles and mysterious legends. Explore this UNESCO World Heritage town known for its romantic architecture and landscaping.  Start the day with a visit to the magical Pena Palace, the red-and-yellow Disney-like castle that sits atop Sintra’s second-highest peak. Walk around the external areas of Pena Palace.  The next stop is lunch at a traditional Portuguese restaurant in a small village. Enjoy fresh fish or tasty meat on the wood-fired grill and plenty of wine. After lunch, visit the 12th-century Peninha Sanctuary, built 500m above sea level. From here take in 360-degree views of the forest, the Atlantic Ocean, Lisbon, Sintra, and Cascais, on a stunning hike through one of the most amazing and mystical forests in the world. Finish with a visit to the hilltop megalithic structure that is essentially Portugal’s Stonehenge. As you cruise around in one of the convertible jeeps go off-road to epic lookouts and secret spots other visitors can’t reach.

From Lisbon: Sintra Tour with Queluz Palace Entrance

2. From Lisbon: Sintra Tour with Queluz Palace Entrance

Explore the fantastic Palace of Queluz, built in the 18th Century, the official royal residence of King D. Pedro IV of Portugal. Visit the historic town of Sintra, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Admire the picturesque streets, the Sintra National Palace, the fountains, the churches, chapels, and shrines.  Climb to the Moorish Castle where the construction of the first sections of its wall dates from the 8th and 9th centuries. From the castle, you can enjoy a fantastic view of the whole region. Next, stop at the Pena Palace where you can admire a mix of architectural styles in the interior as well as in the exterior. Make sure to have your camera ready to capture the fantastic landscape surrounding the Palace. Discover the most westerly point of continental Europe and marvel at the fantastic view of the sea from the clifftops. Gaze at the beaches and the beautiful towns of Estoril and Cascais. Enjoy a tasting of the best regional wines at Colares in the cellars of Adega regional de Colares. On the way back, have the chance to enjoy this unique beach with its famous dunes. Finally, visit the charming town of Cascais, a former fishing village now filled with boutiques, restaurants, hotels, beaches, and more.

Sintra: Half Day Jeep Safari

3. Sintra: Half Day Jeep Safari

Begin the tour with a complimentary pick-up from your hotel on the Estoril Coast and climb into a 4x4 Jeep. Listen to a quick briefing of what to expect from your half-day tour, then set off on the adventure. Select the private option for an even more personalized experience.  First, drive to the Sintra Mountain to enjoy breathtaking views of the coastline and the Atlantic Ocean. Get to know the interior of Sintra Forest as you hike along unique trails. Then, stop at the westernmost point of continental Europe, Cabo da Roca. Make a final stop to see the emblematic Peninha Sanctuary.  Finally, enjoy some free time to explore the historical city center of Sintra at your own pace. End the journey with return transport back to your hotel.

Sintra: E-Car Self-Guided Tour & National Palace of Pena

4. Sintra: E-Car Self-Guided Tour & National Palace of Pena

All day in Sintra. First, to the top of the mountain, so you can see: Pena Palace (includes the Gardens, Chalet Condessa D'Ela and Valley of the Lakes). The fantastic Palácio da Pena is one of the best examples of 19th-century Romantic revivalism in Portugal. The interior of the palace is still decorated according to the tastes of the kings and queens who lived there. Moorish Castle, is a privileged viewpoint to admire the view extending from Sintra to the ocean. Afterwards, the visit goes down and passes in a small town call São Pedro. Here you can take the opportunity to enjoy a meal in a typical Portuguese food Restaurant. The next stage is the Romantic Gardens. This route takes you to the mystic Quinta da Regaleira (known for the Inverted Well). Quinta da Regaleira is one of the most enigmatic places in Sintra. Surrounded by lush vegetation, the Palace of Regaleira is a fascinating discovery. The Palace was built in a romantic revivalist style, recovering Gothic, Manueline and Renaissance architectural and decorative forms, mixed with mythical and esoteric symbology. The last monument in this route is Palace and Park of Monserrate. The palace was designed by architects Thomas James Knowles (father and son) and built in 1858. The construction of the gardens was able to exploit the micro-climatic particularities of the Serra, thus obtaining a magnificent park in which more than 3,000 exotic species can still be observed. You can end your visit here, or head to the Coast, where you will find three wonderful beaches: Praia Grande, Praia das Maçãs and Azenhas do Mar. You'll find small enclosed places and wide sands and hidden beaches. It's worth taking a look at some of them even outside the summer period, to see the incredible landscapes of the Atlantic coast. The coast has the particularity of the Mountain joining the Sea. Sintra's beaches can be truly amazing!

Praia Grande, Sintra: Group Surf Lesson

5. Praia Grande, Sintra: Group Surf Lesson

Have an expert assess your surfing level on shore to see if you are a beginner, intermediate, or advanced surfer. Set targets according to the surfer's levels and the conditions of the sea/surf. Practice some technical and specific work according to the group or surfer's level on the sand. Work on the acquisition of skills and the necessary technique to progress in different levels. Get expert instruction from high-quality coaches that know how to work according to the characteristics of the beach, the surf, and the safety rules.

From Lisbon: Day Trip to Cascais, Cabo da Roca, and Azenhas

6. From Lisbon: Day Trip to Cascais, Cabo da Roca, and Azenhas

Travel along the coast in style in a convertible on this day trip from Lisbon. Take in dynamic coastal landscapes as you drive to the towns of Estoril, Cascais, and Azenhas. Have coffee, bottled water, and snacks on your tour. Enjoy the convenience of being picked up from your accommodation in Lisbon. Stop at the Tagus River in Lisbon to capture photos of the Belem fortifications. Sit back and relax on the drive to Estoril where you cans see the Hotel Palacio & Casino which was featured in the 007 novel 'Casino Royale.'  Continue to Cascais where you can take a stroll on the promenade before stopping for a cup of coffee. Walk to the Boca da Inferno sea arch, or choose to have some time to peruse the local shops. Pass through Guincho and drive up into the hills for stunning views of the coast below. Capture pictures of the westernmost point in mainland Europe at Cabo da Roca. Go to a restaurant with a view where you can purchase a delicious lunch. After lunch, drive to Praia das Maçãs (Apple beach). Go for a walk on the sand and admire the river that flows into the sea. Finish your tour in town of Azenhas where you can visit the the dunes and spend some time in the shops. Return to your accommodation in Lisbon.

From Lisbon: Sintra, Cascais, and Colares Gastronomy Tour

7. From Lisbon: Sintra, Cascais, and Colares Gastronomy Tour

Discover architectural and culinary marvels on this guided tour from Lisbon. Escape the big city bustle for Sintra, Colares, and Cascais. After visiting palaces and charming villages, taste the highlights of southern Portuguese cuisine. Finish the day on a sweeping bay before the drive back to Lisbon. Start the tour at Praça dos Restauradores in Lisbon. Settle into the private van and relax on the way to the outskirts of the city. Once in the town of Sintra, follow your guide up to the Pena Palace. Now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the palace took inspiration from Islamic and Romantic architectural styles. From Sintra, head towards the foothills and the Atlantic coast. Stop off in Colares. On a cliff overlooking the ocean, the village is a popular destination. It’s well-known for its wine and cuisine. Meet up with a guide who’ll show you some of the local eateries. Find a new favorite dish.  Finish the day with a trip to Cascais. Listen to stories about the town while following your guide. Learn about the former citadel that stands by the town’s marina. Stroll on the beaches along the bay and soak up the last rays of the sun before heading back to Lisbon.

From Cascais: Sintra Guided E-Bike Tour & Guincho Beach

8. From Cascais: Sintra Guided E-Bike Tour & Guincho Beach

Feel the fresh air from the mountains and the splendor of the Atlantic Sea on high-end e-bikes during this adventurous trip from the Sintra Mountains to the Cascais Sea. This experience welcomes all biking skill levels to discover the natural wonders of Portugal. Start with pick up at your hotel or address in Cascais, then go to Cidadela Art District where the ride starts. Your e-bike will take you effortlessly to all the amazing sights in Cascais and Sintra thanks to its top-of-the-line Bosch motor. Begin the route from Cascais Market and up the Sintra Forest through a path that will lead you to the middle of the countryside, with sheep, horses, and local vegetable gardens. Continue up the forest to reach Peninha Convent at the top with a 360-degree-view of the region. Later, go down Guincho Beach to have lunch (cost not included) and admire the waves. The group will then go to Boca do Inferno (Portuguese for Hell's Mouth) and Cascais’ old town before heading back to where the trip started.

Private Sintra Tour with Regaleira Experience

9. Private Sintra Tour with Regaleira Experience

The first stop is the fantastic Palace of Queluz, built in the 18th Century, which was the official royal residence of the King D. Pedro IV of Portugal. Visit the beautiful and historic town of Sintra, a UNESCO world heritage site, and discover the picturesque streets, the Sintra National Palace, the fountains, the churches, chapels, and shrines.  Climb to the Moorish Castle where the construction of the first sections of its wall dates from the 8th and 9th century. From the castle, you can enjoy a fantastic view of the whole region. The next stop is Quinta da Regaleira, one of the most amazing monuments of Sintra. Explore its tunnels, mazes, riddles, and symbols that will remind you of the mythology, of Olympus, Virgil, Dante, Camões, and the Knights Templar of the Order of Christ. Then enjoy a fabulous lunch at a traditional restaurant. Stop by Colares in the cellars of Adega regional de Colares, to have a tasting of the best regional wines. Next, discover the most westerly point of continental Europe. From the cliff tops, enjoy the fantastic view of the beaches and the sea. From the road near the coast, you can gaze at the beaches and beautiful towns of Estoril and Cascais. On the way back, you will have the chance to enjoy this gorgeous beach with its famous dunes. A real sanctuary for surfing windsurfing and kitesurfing.  Of course, you can’t leave without visiting the charming town of Cascais. This former fishing village used to be a royal getaway. Nowadays it's still one of the most attractive destinations for the Portuguese and foreign elite, thanks to all that it has to offer: boutiques, restaurants, hotels, beaches and much more.

From Estoril or Cascais: West Coast of Portugal Day Trip

10. From Estoril or Cascais: West Coast of Portugal Day Trip

Travel along the coast in style in a convertible on this day trip from Cascais or Estoril. Take in dynamic coastal landscapes and views as you first drive East towards Lisbon and see this amazing city and bridge from a distance. Then drive to the towns of Estoril, Cascais, and Azenhas via the viewpoint at Cabo da Roca. Have coffee, bottled water, and snacks on your tour Enjoy the convenience of being picked up from your accommodation in Cascais or Estoril. Drive East along the Marginal to Paco de Arcos for a great view of Lisbon, the 25th April Bridge and Christo Rei. Then sit back and relax on the drive to Estoril where you can see the Hotel Palacio & Casino which was featured in the 007 novel 'Casino Royale.' Stop for coffee on the promenade before walking on to Cascais. From Cascais it is on to the Boca de Inferno sea arch where you will see the power of the sea at it's very best. Pass through Guincho and drive up into the hills for stunning views of the coast below. Capture pictures of the westernmost point in mainland Europe at Cabo da Roca. Go to a restaurant with a view where you can purchase a delicious lunch. After lunch, drive to Praia das Maçãs (Apple beach). Go for a walk on the sand and admire the river that flows into the sea. Finish your tour near Azenhas and get your final views of this amazing coastline. Return to your accommodation in Cascais or Estoril.

Other Sightseeing Options in Colares, Portugal

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What people are saying about Colares, Portugal

Overall rating

4.8 / 5

based on 21 reviews

If you are a couple, a solo traveler, or a small group of three, looking for a truly personal and private tour of the outskirts of Lisbon—Sintra, medieval and seaside towns, palaces, castles, and sunsets—taking a tour with Iain is the way to go. Iain will drive you around in his convertible that is clean and spacious enough. He is a very responsible driver. Iain can come up with a one-of-a-kind tour that caters to the specific places you want to visit and see. He is kind and respectful of your time and interests. He communicated with me even before I arrived in Lisbon and suggested various options we could do for the tour, making sure there were no glitches or surprises on the day of the tour. However, he was still flexible enough to make tweaks and changes if need be on the day of the tour. Especially for couples and those who want to make their Portugal trip a more memorable even romantic experience, I recommend a tour with Iain at the helm. It’s the best way to go.

Me and my wife booked the day trip with Iain before arriving to Portugal. It was an amazing experience, Iain sent us the itinerary in advance. It wasn't rushed at all, we enjoyed every place and we found this trip very useful to plan our next days in Portugal. If it wasn't for him I'm sure we would have missed all these places during our holiday in Portugal. Iain is a great guide, very friendly and a great conversation starter. Looking forward to return and get another trip with him. Definitely a must-get trip if you get around Lisbon and you want to know where to start from.

Excellent tour and a good way to experience two Sintra palaces in detail, as well as see several others from afar. Pedro was an outstanding guide and provided insightful commentary throughout the day. This tour, unlike most, requires one to get to Sintra on their own. While it is easy to do see via train from Lisbon and takes less than 40 minutes, it is crowded and not at all scenic. Lunch at a local restaurant was good. It was an additional 20E for everything included and a good value.

Fantastic time rich with history. Great way to Sintra quickly but effectively! Our guide - who was fantastic - gave us the option to spend the last part of the day going to Pena Palace or seeing some incredible sights. We chose the latter and were not disappointed!

Diogo was an incredible guide, and the tour was fantastic. Both palaces we visited were gorgeous, and the lunch provided was delicious and came with so much food. I could not recommend this tour enough!