The best independent guide to Sesimbra
The best independent guide to Sesimbra
Sesimbra is a charming beach town on the southern side of the Setubal Peninsula. This is a region of stunning natural scenery and a popular holiday destination with the Portuguese.
Sesimbra is only 40km to the south of Lisbon, and this close proximity makes Sesimbra suitable for a day trip from the capital, and an alternative beach destination to the Cascais/Estoril coastline. Equally, if you are on holiday in Sesimbra, it is possible to have a day trip to Lisbon using public transport.
This guide will detail how to travel from Lisbon to Sesimbra by public transport and at the end of the article details of travelling from Lisbon airport to Sesimbra.
Related articles: Lisbon guide - Sesimbra introduction
The beautiful Praia do Ouro beach inSesimbra
The only public transport option from Lisbon to Sesimbra is by bus. There is no direct train to Sesimbra; there is a railway from Lisbon to Setubal, and then a regional bus from Setubal to Sesimbra, but this long route is impractical.
Note: Certain automated transportation websites suggest catching the train from Lisbon to the Almada Peninsula (south of the Tejo estuary) and then catching a bus – this makes no sense as there is a direct bus between Lisbon and Sesimbra.
The bus service from Lisbon to Sesimbra is a regional bus operated by TST
The 207 service is a direct bus service between Sete Rios bus station (in Lisbon) and Sesimbra bus station. This bus service is operated by Transportes Sul do Tejo (TST), which is a subsidiary of the Arriva DB group.
The journey takes 70 minutes but can be much longer if there is heavy traffic around the Ponte 25 de Abril bridge. A single ticket costs €4.50, and is purchased from the bus driver. These tickets are not charged to the Viva Viagem card, which is used by all other public transport in Lisbon.
The number of bus services has been greatly reduced over the last few years, and now there are only five daily departures, with eight more Monday to Friday.
Adding to the lack of departures is a huge gap of late afternoon departures from Sesimbra on Saturday and Sundays. Before making any day trip to Sesimbra or Lisbon, always check the latest timetable on the TST website: https://www.tsuldotejo.pt/
Sesimbra bus station and ticket office
Important note: The 207 route departs from the Sete Rios bus station in Lisbon, this route used to depart from the Praça da Espanha but was changed in June 2020. The bus still departs from Sete Rios bus station in 2021.
This change has been labelled as an “experiment” by the Câmara Municipal de Lisboa. There is a small possibility that it may change back to the Praça da Espanha, always confirm the departure location in Lisbon, which is stated on the timetable.
The hike up to Sesimbra castle is challenging, but the views are worth the effort
In Lisbon, the Sesimbra bus departs from Sete Rios, which is the main bus station in Lisbon. Sete Rios is to the north of the city and is connected to the blue metro line by the Jardim Zoologico metro station (Lisbon zoo is close by, hence the name).
The TST bus stops are not in the main bus station building but on the Avenida das Forças Armadas street (underneath the IP7 expressway). Sete Rios is a busy bus station, so give yourself ample time to find the bus stop. Also, while in the bus station, use your common sense and do not flash valuables, as there have been cases of theft.
In Sesimbra, the bus terminates at the Sesimbra bus station, which is just to the north of the town centre, on the Avenida da Liberdade, and is only a 5-minute walk to the beach.
Lisbon airport is the main international airport of Portugal and the closest airport to Sesimbra. From Lisbon airport there are a number of different options to travel directly to Sesimbra:
• Pre-booked private transfer
• Public transport
A taxi hired from the arrivals lounge will be the most expensive, and due to the long distance it will cost more than €80. If you do take a taxi either agree on the price or use the meter; taxis from the airport used to have a reputation for conning weary tourists, but this has been clamped down on and rarely happens now. There is no shared transport to Sesimbra as there is simply not the demand.
Uber will be slightly cheaper than a taxi, but it will still be a comparatively expensive option. Also, it can be tricky finding the exact meeting point for Uber cars at Lisbon airport as they are not allowed to pick up from the arrivals hall.
A pre-booked transfer will be much cheaper than a taxi, and is a sensible option for families or groups heading to Sesimbra.
The most reliable and highest regarded (by people who live and work in Lisbon) transfer company is “B Up”. They operate smart, clean and safe cars and their drivers are renowned for being punctual.
A transfer from Lisbon airport to Sesimbra costs from €35 (up to 3 people) and takes around 90 minutes, further information, along with bookings can be found on GetYourGuide.com. (link opens new window)
The Cabo Espichel church
It is possible to travel from the airport to Sesimbra using public transport, but the last departure is not very late (please see previous timetables). From landing, it takes a good hour to exit the airport and about 30 minutes to travel from the airport to the Sete Rios bus station.
Always factor in enough time for this journey; we would only suggest taking public transport to Sesimbra if your flight arrives before lunchtime. If you are arriving later than this either book a private transfer or spend a night in Lisbon.
The best method to travel from the airport to Sete Rios is by the metro. The airport is on the red metro line and Sete Rios is on the blue line, and a connection is needed at the São Sebastião metro station. The single metro ticket costs €1.50 and is charged to the reusable Viva Viagem card (€0.50 for the initial purchase).
When on holiday to the Sesimbra region it is recommended to have a rental car. There is good public transport from Sesimbra to Lisbon, but the local bus network around Sesimbra is very limited.
Many of the main attractions are outside of the town limits and can only be visited with a rental car. Driving around Sesimbra is safe and hassle-free as the roads are good and empty. Driving in Lisbon is the complete opposite with busy roads, erratic drivers and no parking.
Driving from Lisbon to Sesimbra by car is simple. The journey time is only 35 min and follows good roads, once outside of the crowded roads of Lisbon.
The route exits Lisbon via the A2 and the Ponte do 25 Abril suspension bridge, this is a toll bridge but is paid only when travelling northwards and entering Lisbon. After following the A2 for 10 km of the route turns onto national highway N378, which leads directly to Sesimbra.
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