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Solo travel to Portugal - Itinerary advice

Solo travel to Portugal - Itinerary advice

Old Dec 1st, 2022, 05:47 AM
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Solo travel to Portugal - Itinerary advice

I just know this will be the place for advice! 47-year-old mother of four who has decided to celebrate mid-life with an adventure.

I will be flying in and out of Lisbon tail end of March through the first week of April. I enjoy history, nature, reflection, and food. I don't need beaches, bars, or crowds. I do not plan to rent a vehicle but will be using train/bus.

Currently, I'm thinking of the following itinerary: two nights Sintra, 3 nights Evora, 3 nights Lisbon.

I have a day trip scheduled from Sintra for all the lovely places and the coast. I would like to soak in Evora and possibly take a day trip to Monsaraz while there. I think 3 nights in Lisbon will be enough to explore and enjoy. While I would love to stay a night on the Atlantic coast, I'm not sure it would be wise to take a night away from either Evora or Lisbon (plus, it seems my three destinations are very simple in terms of using public transport).

Suggestions? Thank you so very much!
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Old Dec 1st, 2022, 07:43 AM
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Welcome to Fodors and how exciting

certainly check out seat61.com to get an English language understanding of the train system
https://www.cp.pt/passageiros/en

you may like these https://www.pousadasofportugal.com
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Old Dec 1st, 2022, 03:50 PM
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Since you don't require beaches and will be traveling at the end of March, I would skip the Atlantic beaches, which would be very quiet at that time, and I wouldn't take a night away from either Evora or especially Lisbon.

3 nights in Lisbon will give you just a brief glimpse-- a basic overview--of all there is to see. The city has just gobs of small, wonderful museums, if you're a museum go-er/art lover.
It will take a three-quarters of a day or even full day to cover all the many sights of Belém, which you can reach by tram 15, by train from Cais de Sodré or by taxi, uber, or Bolt.

If you do decide to spend 3 nights in Evora (which has become somewhat of a gourmet Mecca this year), there is a day-trip available to Monsaraz.
Check it here:
https://www.evoratourismtours.com/en/tours/monsaraz/

You can reach Evora by train or also by convenient Rede-Expressos bus, which takes only 1 hr. 30-45 min. The bus departs from Lisbon's Sete Rios bus station.
The bus schedule:
https://rede-expressos.pt/en.
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Old Dec 1st, 2022, 10:45 PM
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On my first (solo) trip to Portugal I had a guide in Lisbon who urged me to spend at least one overnight in Porto, and I have thanked her ever since. Have been back a couple times and count it as my favorite Portuguese city. Easy to reach via train from Lisbon. I'd shave a day off Sintra, add it to Lisbon, and one from Evora in favor of at least an overnight in Porto. Even better would be if you could change your flight itinerary to arrive into Lisbon and depart from Porto.
Sintra was, IMO, easily done in an admittedly full day trip from Lisbon using public transport. Tourist hordes should be more reasonable around the time of your planned visit
Drove around the Alentejo region with a guide, hit a few lovely wineries but did not stay overnight in Evora, though as maribel notes it is getting increasingly popular with tourists.

Consider this your sampler trip which will likely just whet your appetite for return visits!
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Old Dec 3rd, 2022, 11:58 AM
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I spent about five days in Lisbon and two nights in Sintra last spring. I loved Sintra and highly recommend exploring it for a few days, especially to enjoy the atmosphere before and after the day trippers are there. Although I was with my husband, I enjoyed spending lots of time on my own. I loved staying at Chateau Saudade and would have had every meal across the road at Incomum if I could!
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