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Things to do in Setúbal Municipality

Our most recommended things to do in Setúbal Municipality

From Lisbon: Comporta and Setúbal Trip with Horseback Riding

1. From Lisbon: Comporta and Setúbal Trip with Horseback Riding

Take a trip from Lisbon to Setúbal for a day of fun in the sun and the sea. Dive into the town's history and seafaring heritage on a walking tour. Take a ferry ride to the Troia Peninsula dotted with pine forested sand dunes. Then, in Comporta, mount your horse and gallop off to the beach. Explore Setúbal, the most important center of Portugal's fishing industry. Visit the bustling fish market of  Mercado do Livramento, the historic center, the Monastery of Jesus, and the São Filipe Fortress where you can soak in one of the most breathtaking panoramic views of the city. Next, head towards Comporta on a 25-minute ferry ride, admiring the beauty of the Troia's coast, one of the world’s longest uninterrupted stretches of sand, and keep your eye peeled for dolphins. Upon arrival in Comporta, a protected natural reserve suspended between sea and rice fields, get ready for horseback riding with instructions from your guide. Ride your horse across rice paddies, pine forests, and sand dunes until you reach the Atlantic coast. At the end of the tour, return to the center of Lisbon in a comfortable minibus. Before bidding farewell to your guide, get recommendations on things to do during the rest of your stay in Lisbon.

Setubal & Tróia: Sado Estuary Dolphin Watching Boat Trip

2. Setubal & Tróia: Sado Estuary Dolphin Watching Boat Trip

Depart from Setubal or Tróia onboard a 22-meter long catamaran and go in search of the community of dolphins that inhabit the Sado estuary. Be accompanied by a knowledgeable crew who will use their expertise to locate these playful dolphins in their natural habitat. Learn more about this unique dolphin community, the only one of its kind in Portugal, with your expert guides. Sail through the estuary and admire the beautiful landscapes of the coastline of the Arrábida Natural Park. Keep an eye out for the playful dolphins which have inhabited this part of the coast for generations. Watch the dolphins frolic and play as they swim through the calm waters. Hear more about their feeding habits, breeding and their relationship to humans on an informative and relaxing boat trip.

From Sesimbra: Arrábida Dolphin Watching Boat Tour

3. From Sesimbra: Arrábida Dolphin Watching Boat Tour

Enjoy a boat tour with dolphin observation through Arrábida coast, with boarding in Sesimbra. Observe more than one species of dolphin if you are lucky, like common dolphin and roazes corvineiros. Watch the cetaceans in their own natural habitat, as they socialize, swim, and eat. Experience an educational component about sea living and biodiversity, and the geology and points of interest of archeological and historical importance connected with this region. Travel along Arrábida coast, passing through the caves and sacred beaches protected by cliffs with transparent and crystalline water if the dolphin observation happens early in the tour. Stop for diving and swimming if the weather and sea conditions are favorable.

Lisbon: Arrábida All-Inclusive Kayak Adventure Tour

4. Lisbon: Arrábida All-Inclusive Kayak Adventure Tour

Discover Arrabida Natural Park in this unforgettable adventure experience. Enjoy amazing natural locations, the relics of the Blue Coast, and the panoramic view from the Arrábida Mountain on a guided kayak tour. The day begins with your pickup at the meeting location. Following a quick equipment stop, it’s off to Portinho Bay, an old pirate cove that will fill you with a sense of mystery and adventure.  Once the kayak is loaded up with all the food and gear necessary to make sure you’re always safe, warm, and refreshed – the adventure truly begins. Kayak along a limestone coastline and past cliffside beaches, where you’ll have the opportunity to cliff jump, snorkel in the clear waters or explore caves like adventurers of old. For lunch, take a break at the beach and enjoy a picnic. Then explore the mountain and search out the very best views for taking pics. As evening sets, homemade wine and grape juice and traditionally-grilled chorizo will serve as the perfect ending to your adventure-filled day. 

Full-Day Dolphin Watching Tour from Lisbon

5. Full-Day Dolphin Watching Tour from Lisbon

This full-day tour begins as you head south from Lisbon to Setúbal, a picturesque region best known for its fishing port. In Setúbal, board a fully restored salt galleon, or a modern catamaran (depending on weather and sea conditions), for a relaxing and enjoyable cruise in the Sado Estuary, where you’ll learn about the resident bottlenose dolphins and hopefully be able to observe wild dolphins in their natural environment. The duration of the cruise takes about 2 to 3 hours. See the natural reserve of Arrábida, take in the stunning views, and learn about the area’s history and gastronomy. See the Arrábida Convent and discover some important historical sites before returning to the old city center of Setúbal. Before returning to Lisbon, stop at a few sights in the Arrabida Mountain range, from where you can marvel at the natural reserve and get a land view of all the region.

From Lisbon: Half-Day Arrábida Tour w/ Transfers

6. From Lisbon: Half-Day Arrábida Tour w/ Transfers

You have a choice of landmarks and attractions that can be worked into a 4-hour program. First, visit Albufeira Lagoon and its warm waters known as a perfect place for kayaking, kitesurfing and windsurfing. Then, visit an almost wild Praia das Bicas, an unexplored beach with clear waters in the Sesimbra area. From the cliffs, you can enjoy a wonderful view of the ocean and of the Sintra ridge in the background. Cabo Espichel is an impressive cliff where you can visit the sanctuary and the Church of Nossa Senhora do Cabo and the aqueduct. Make the most of this incredible landscape by making a toast. Admire the dinosaur footprints at Zambujal. Then at Sesimbra Castle, contemplate the view over the fishing village. Sesimbra is a fishing village located in a bay with calm waters. In the village, you can enjoy fish and seafood of exceptional quality and take a walk along the breakwater near the beach. Afterwards, head to Portinho da Arrábida, a paradisiacal beach with crystal clear waters and white sand in the mouth of the river Sado. It can’t be missed. Serra da Arrábida is a climb up to the top of the ridge. You will have no words to describe the incredible landscape presented in front of you. To the north, you will be able to see the entire city of Lisbon, the mountains of S. Luís, S. Francisco, Louro and Gaiteiros. And to the south, the crystal clear blue sea, the islets, the Tróia peninsula and the city of Setúbal. Then go to the Azeitão in the cellars of José Maria da Fonseca to have a tasting of the best regional wines and the local delicacy of Tortas de Azeitão.

SUP at Arrábida: Stand Up Paddleboard Tour

7. SUP at Arrábida: Stand Up Paddleboard Tour

Glide across the gorgeous waters of Arrábida Natural Park on a stand-up paddleboard and take in breathtaking views of the Luiz Saldanha Marine Park. Enjoy calm waters, a vast sea coast, and pleasant weather, all of which make the ideal conditions for paddleboarding. Meet your guide at Creiro Beach, where your activity begins. After a quick safety briefing and instructions, get kitted out and take to the waters. Paddle along the sea and through the coves of Serra da Arrábida and the Marina Professor Luís Saldanha Reserve. Pass by deserted beaches and local vegetation before returning to the beach.

From Sesimbra: Hiking Tour of Arrábida Mountain

8. From Sesimbra: Hiking Tour of Arrábida Mountain

Discover the beauty of the Arrábida Mountain and its surroundings on this beautiful hike. Learn about the Arrábida flora and fauna from your specialist local guide and explore the various vegetation that grows there. Zigzag through the pathways of plants as you head to the top of the mountain (501 m) and marvel at the amazing view. Snap a photo from the summit of the Arrábida as you overlook one of the most beautiful areas in the Mediterranean.  From the top, gaze at the stunning panoramic views of the Setúbal Peninsula, Serra do Risco, and the coastline of Lisbon.

From Lisbon: Palmela Wine Tasting Tour with Snacks

9. From Lisbon: Palmela Wine Tasting Tour with Snacks

Take at trip 40-kilometers south of Lisbon to wine country. Enjoy wi-fi in the vehicle, then take part in a tasting of several wines and a liqeur in the scenic landscape that surrounds Arrábida Mountain. Nibble on snacks, and take a visit to the store to complete your experience. About 40kms south of Lisbon in Palmela, it rises a great opportunity to taste the excellent wines of the Setúbal region, as well as enjoy the beautiful green landscape of Arrábida Mountain. Its excellent wines are produced on soils close to the Atlantic Ocean belonging to the huge massif of Arrábida Mountain. A professional in wines will conduct the wine tasting in a totally relaxed and passionate environment explaining since the harvest species up to the wine production processing that is, the grape treatment related to the amount of sugar, acidity and the fermentation process. You will be tasting several varieties such as the Setúbal muscatel a sweet and fresh wine, the liqueur Bastardo as well as the rare boal grape variety called White Tradition. Also noteworthy are the White Reserve and the Red Reserve wines, the latter being produced in a tank using the technique of foot trodden. The wine tasting is served along with local bread, olives, cheeses, and a variety of Portuguese chorizo. The visit ends at the local store, thus providing the wines tasted and also with some unique products such as regional sweets.

Palmela and Arrabida 4x4

10. Palmela and Arrabida 4x4

Lagoa de Albufeira - A beautiful and well preserved beach just 20 km south of Lisbon. The natural lagoon is ideal for windsurfing, canoeing or just walking around. A parasol and sunglasses are recommended, especially for children. Espichel Cape - The Cape Espichel is a predominantly located west of Sesimbra village. The location is famous for its sanctuary complex, built extremely close to the edge of the tall cliffs, including a church still in use today. The architectonic set called the "Shrine of Our Lady of Mua Stone", is undoubtedly the most important and characteristic in the area. The cult of Our Lady of the Cape is lost in the mists of time, and its credible that prior to their worship - from the XV century -. Cape Espichel was already an important center of pilgrimage. From 1715, the large influx of pilgrims to Cabo forced the construction of hostels, houses and shops. Here, there are four major sights; the lighthouse, the Santuário de Nossa Senhora, the small Chapel of Ermida da Memória and the dinosaur footprints dated from the Jurassic Era. The church was constructed by King Dom.Pedro II in 1701. The interior follows the simplistic baroque designs and most of the marble was mined from Arrábida.  Overlooking the cliffs on the edge of Cape Espichel is the Chapel of Remembrance, a small temple implanted precisely at the spot where tradition says that the Virgin appeared. Cabo Espichel is ideal for tourists who enjoy raw stunning scenery and uninhabited landscape with stunning views and rugged coastal walks overlooking the Atlantic. Arrabida Natural Park - A road trip through the starkly beautiful Serra da Arrábida is one of the most enjoyable ways to spend a day out of Lisbon. The wild, craggy mountain range rises 500 meters over the bay of Setúbal, and encompasses the protected Parque Natural da Arrábida. Blanketed with verdant woodland and scrub, this stunning landscape is home to a fascinating variety of flora and fauna, and it's possible to park the car and follow a number of signed nature trails. For the most dramatic views, follow the Estrada de Escarpa (N379-1), a narrow winding coastal road that snakes past Sesimbra all the way to Cabo Espichel, a precipitous headland topped by a lighthouse. Bacalhoa museum and winery - Take part in an unforgettable visit of Quinta da Bacalhoa, and discover its history which brings together wine, nature and art.  During the tour, take the opportunity to taste the wines and fully appreciate the pleasure which can be found in the degustation of wines. From the tasting room, admire the tranquil scene of the Japanese garden, in which some of the works of the sculptor Niizuma are exhibited, along with a Kaki tree, the 'great-granddaughter' of the only tree to survive the Nagasaki bomb.  Azeitão - Beyond the excellent wines, Palmela region has a unique cheese (Azeitão's cheese), considered by some specialists the best cheese in the world. For those who appreciate pastry the Tortas de Azeitão are irresistible temptations. Palmela village - The town's name comes from its Roman founder, Cornelius (Palmella). Palmela, once a fortress, was conquered by the Portuguese in the 12th century. The town is located up a hill in the Arrábida mountains. The castle offers a wonderful view over the whole region, including Lisbon, and the Atlantic Coast. It was a strategic place in past centuries, and today it's still a main place to visit. Palmela is an important Portuguese wine region. The principal grapes of the region include Alfrocheiro, Arinto, Cabernet, Sauvignon, Fernão Pires, Muscat of Alexandria, Periquita, Rabo de Ovelha, Roupeiro, Tamarez and Tinta Amarela. The soil of the area is predominately limestone with good drainage potential for the cultivation of red wine varieties. Palmela first gained attention for its off dry white wines made from Muscat grapes harvested early, but has recently turned its attention to producing dry red and white table wines. Quinta da Bacalhoa, JP, Ermelinda de Freitas, Periquita are examples of well -known Palmela brands. Cristo Rei - On May 17, 1959, the Shrine of Christ-King is inaugurated. On that day, 300.000 people wanted to be present to celebrate Christ, King and Redeemer, and the statue was then built.

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Frequently asked questions about Setúbal Municipality

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What people are saying about Setúbal Municipality

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 370 reviews

We had an amazing morning on our trip. Everyone was really friendly and the staff on the catamaran were very knowledgeable. The views of the coastline are stunning and even though it took us a while to find the group of dolphins they were not in any rush and reassured us that we would find them and it was definitely worth the wait when we did! I would highly recommend this excursion for anyone in the area!

The team is very friendly and you can tell that they actually have a close bond and respect the animals accordingly. We rode along for about 30 minutes and then turned off so as not to disturb them further. The catamaran is large with plenty of seating. The environment is great from the water! All highly recommended!

This was a wonder experience I will never forget. The charming village of Setubal, the amazing views and the funniest horseback ride I never had. Our tour guide, Flavio was extremely professional. Worth your money!! Muito obrigado!!

What a great day that was! We've seen some amazing caves and just seeing all those things makes your whole day. The guides were funny and we had a nice group of people. All in all, a great trip!

Setubal was a surprisingly beautiful town and the horseback riding at Melides tops up this entire experience.