Explore the cultural & natural beauty of Abrantes Portugal: a day trip from Lisbon

Visitar Abrantes. Vista do Rio Tejo a partir do Castelo de Abrantes.
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Abrantes is a small town located in the Santarém District of Portugal, about 145 kilometers northeast of Lisbon. It is known for its rich history, stunning natural beauty, and friendly locals.

One of the main cultural attractions in Abrantes is the Abrantes Castle (Castelo de Abrantes), a medieval castle that dates back to the 12th century. The castle, which sits atop a hill overlooking the town, offers panoramic views of the surrounding landscape and serves as a reminder of the town’s rich history.

Another cultural highlight in Abrantes is the Núcleo Museológico de Abrantes, a museum that showcases the history and culture of the region. The museum features a variety of exhibits, including ancient artifacts, traditional costumes, and paintings.

In addition to its cultural attractions, Abrantes is also home to a number of beautiful natural areas, including the 

Overall, Abrantes is a charming and picturesque town that is worth a visit for anyone interested in history, culture, and nature. It is easily accessible from Lisbon, making it a convenient day trip destination.

What to see and do in Abrantes Portugal in a day trip

If you are planning a day trip from Lisbon to Abrantes, there are plenty of things to see and do in this charming Portuguese town. Here are a few suggestions for your itinerary:

Start your day by visiting the Castelo de Abrantes, a medieval castle that dates back to the 12th century. Take a guided tour of the castle to learn about its history and architecture.

After visiting the castle, take a stroll through the Jardim do Largo do Castelo, a beautiful park with a pond and fountain.

Head to the Church of Nossa Senhora da Graça, a stunning baroque church with a rich history. Take a tour of the church to learn about its architectural and artistic features.

Have lunch at a local restaurant or café and try some traditional Portuguese dishes, such as .

In the afternoon, take a trip to the nearby town of Tomar, home to the Convent of Christ, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Take a guided tour of the convent to learn about its history and architecture.

Before heading back to Lisbon, stop by the Mercado Municipal de Abrantes, a local market where you can find fresh produce, crafts, and other local products.

If you have time, take a boat tour of the Tejo River, which runs through Abrantes and offers beautiful views of the surrounding landscape.

Best things to see and do in Abrantes Portugal

Castelo de Abrantes.
Abrantes Castle.

If you decide to stay overnight in Abrantes Portugal, which is an excellent decision, you can explore the city in more detail and the itinerary for a day in Abrantes that I suggested earlier can be improved.

So, below is a list of what to visit in Abrantes, including walking routes to discover the historic center of Abrantes and the famous river beaches in Albufeira de Castelo de Bode.

The Historic Center of Abrantes

Igreja de São Vicente no centro histórico de Abrantes.
Church of São Vicente in the historic center.

I like to walk in the historic centers of cities, and I have to say that Abrantes surprised me! The center is charming and full of details that are worth taking time to appreciate.

To help you discover Abrantes the way it should be, the municipality has organized three routes to explore the city from different points of view.

Thus, there is a route for lovers of history (Abrantes Histórica), arts (Abrantes Artística) and wide landscapes (Abrantes Panorâmica).

Each of these routes has a length of about 3 km and is of moderate difficulty, as it includes going over sloping terrain.

See, then, which are the main points of each route.

Route 1: Historical Abrantes

See the city through the history told by the National Monuments and other historically relevant buildings. We can say that it is a journey through time, as this route includes spaces that date back from the 12th to the 20th century.

This route passes through the following places:

Largo Avelar Machado/Abrantes Assembly Building, Former Convent of São Domingos, Garden/Praça da Republica, Church of Misericórdia, Church of São João Baptista, Military Fort in Outeiro São Pedro, Statue of D Francisco de Almeida in the Garden of the castle, Abrantes Castle, Church of Santa Maria do Castelo / Museu D Lopo de Almeida, Church of São Vicente, Travessa do Tem-te-Bem/Rua Maria de Lourdes Pintassilgo, City Hall and Falcão building in Praça Raimundo Soares, Largo João de God, Historical Chronological Panel and Cult of the Flower at Largo Dr. Ramiro Guedes, and, finally, it ends in the area of the old Mercado da Palha for animals in Praça Barão da Batalha.

Route 2: Abrantes Artística

Igreja de Santa Maria do Castelo.
Church of Santa Maria do Castelo.

If you have a special interest in the arts, then this route is for you.

Here are the places where you pass, and this route starts at Parque do Alto de Santo António.

Outdoor Iron Sculpture, Municipal Art Gallery Quartel, Panel of Tiles in the Chapel Sant’ana, Praça Jardim Actor Taborda, Portico of the Convent Nossa Senhora da Esperança, 18th-century house nº 54-56, Cine-Teatro de São Pedro that works in the old Church of São Pedro, Church of São Vicente, Castle of Abrantes, Church of Santa Maria do Castelo and Museum Dom Lopo de Almeida, Panel of Tiles in Rua São Pedro, Church of São João Baptista, Church of Misericórdia and Sala do Definitorium.

Then, do to the Monument to the Dead in the First World War in Jardim da Republica, Project by Duarte Castelo-Branco and Santos Lopes sculpture in the António Botto Municipal Library, sculptures by Óscar Guimarães in Praça Barão da Batalha, Historical Chronological Panel and Cult of the Flower by Óscar Guimarães at Largo Dr Ramiro Guedes, Esculturas Laranjeira Santos at Largo João de Deus and, finally, this route ends at Fontes 3 Marias de Óscar Guimarães at Praça Raimundo Soares.

Route 3: Abrantes Panoramic

Visitar Abrantes. Vista do Rio Tejo a partir do Castelo de Abrantes.
View of the Tagus River from the Castle of Abrantes.

For lovers of open spaces, this is the trail to choose! Explore different landscapes at your own pace and discover special places in the city that probably go unnoticed by ordinary travelers.

Then, this trail stops at the following sights:

Car Park of the old Convent of São Domingos to see the section of the Tagus that crosses the municipality, followed by Rua Maestro Henrique da Silva to admire the view over Rua da Barca, one of the oldest in the city and which once made the connection of the castle to the river. Afterwards, go to Outeiro de São Pedro in Castelo and enjoy a different perspective of the Tagus.

The next stops are Jardim do Castelo, Praça D Francisco de Almeida overlooking the northern part of the county and the main entrance to the Castle. Go to the Torre de Menagem and climb the steps to have a 360º panoramic view over Ribatejo, Alentejo and Beira.

They say that on clear days, the horizon spans about 80 km. Continue the path to the Churchyard of the Church of São Vicente, with a view over the historic center, Alameda Santo António, as well as the Escadinhas da Rua de Angola.

Go down Rua 25 de Abril and go to Esplanada 1º de Maio, from where you will have an intermediate view of the city and the southern part of the county. Finally, the journey ends at Rua de Nossa Senhora da Conceição Bridge.

The Albufeira de Castelo de Bode and its amazing river beaches

Albufeira de Castelo de Bode.
Castelo de Bode reservoir.

The Castelo de Bode reservoir is a popular destination for nature lovers and water enthusiasts located in central Portugal. The reservoir is fed by the River Zêzere and is surrounded by beautiful forests and rolling hills.

One of the main attractions at the Castelo de Bode reservoir is the River Beach, known locally as Praia Fluvial Aldeia do Mato and Praia Fluvial de Fontes. These sandy beaches, located on the shores of the reservoir, offer a range of activities for visitors to enjoy.

At Praia Fluvial Aldeia do Mato, visitors can swim, sunbathe, and relax on the sandy beach. The beach is also equipped with changing rooms, showers, and a snack bar.

Praia Fluvial de Fontes is a more secluded beach, located in a beautiful natural setting. Visitors can enjoy swimming in the crystal-clear waters of the river, as well as picnicking and hiking in the surrounding forests.

In addition to the beaches, the Castelo de Bode reservoir is also home to a range of other outdoor activities, such as fishing, boating, and birdwatching. Whether you are looking to relax on the beach or explore the great outdoors, the Castelo de Bode reservoir is the perfect destination.

River Beach of Aldeia do Mato (Praia Fluvial da Aldeia do Mato)

Praia Fluvial da Aldeia do Mato.
River Beach of Aldeia do Mato.

Nestled among the rolling hills and forests of central Portugal, Praia Fluvial da Aldeia do Mato is a stunning river beach located in the charming town of Abrantes. The beach sits on the shores of the picturesque Castelo de Bode reservoir, which is fed by the crystal-clear waters of the River Zêzere.

At Praia Fluvial da Aldeia do Mato, visitors can spend the day swimming, sunbathing, and relaxing on the sandy beach. The beach is equipped with changing rooms, showers, and a snack bar, making it easy for visitors to make the most of their day by the water.

In addition to swimming and sunbathing, the beach is also a great spot for picnicking and enjoying the beautiful natural surroundings. The surrounding forests and hills offer plenty of opportunities for hiking and exploring, making Praia Fluvial da Aldeia do Mato a great destination for nature lovers.

Whether you are looking to relax on the beach or explore the great outdoors, Praia Fluvial da Aldeia do Mato is the perfect destination. With its stunning natural setting and range of activities, it’s no wonder this river beach is a popular destination for visitors to Abrantes.

Fontes River Beach (Praia Fluvial de Fontes)

Praia Fluvial de Fontes.
Fontes River Beach.

Praia Fluvial de Fontes is a beautiful river beach located in the charming town of Abrantes, Portugal. Situated on the shores of the Castelo de Bode reservoir, which is fed by the River Zêzere, the beach is surrounded by rolling hills and forests.

Praia Fluvial de Fontes is a secluded beach that offers a peaceful and natural setting for visitors to relax and enjoy the great outdoors. The crystal-clear waters of the river are perfect for swimming and picnicking on the sandy beach.

In addition to swimming and picnicking, visitors to Praia Fluvial de Fontes can also enjoy hiking and exploring the surrounding forests and hills. The beach is a great starting point for a range of outdoor activities, making it a popular destination for nature lovers.

Whether you are looking to relax on the beach or explore the great outdoors, Praia Fluvial de Fontes is the perfect destination. With its stunning natural setting and range of activities, it’s no wonder this river beach is a popular spot for visitors to Abrantes.

Aquapolis: the urban and riverside park

Aquapolis e zona ribeirinha de Abrantes.
Abrantes riverside area (Aquapolis).

Aquapolis is a unique and innovative urban park located in the Portuguese town of Abrantes. It is situated along the banks of the Tagus River, offering stunning views of the water and the surrounding countryside.

The park is designed to be a hub of activity and recreation, with a range of facilities and amenities for visitors to enjoy. These include a playground and sports courts, as well as a skate park and an outdoor gym. There are also plenty of areas to relax and unwind, with benches, picnic tables, and shady trees scattered throughout the park.

One of the most popular features of Aquapolis is its riverside promenade, which stretches for several kilometers along the banks of the Tagus. Here, visitors can take leisurely walks or bike rides, or simply sit and admire the views. The promenade is also home to a number of restaurants and cafes, making it a great place to grab a bite to eat or drink.

Overall, Aquapolis is a truly unique and diverse destination, offering something for everyone. Whether you’re looking for a place to relax and unwind, or to engage in active recreation, Aquapolis has it all. So if you’re in the Abrantes area, be sure to visit this incredible urban and riverside park – you won’t be disappointed!

Hotels in Abrantes Portugal

If you’re planning a trip to Abrantes Portugal and are looking for accommodation in the city center, there are several hotels to choose from.

Luna Hotel is a four-star hotel situated in a prime location, within easy reach of the city’s main attractions and amenities.

The hotel features a range of comfortable and well-appointed rooms, all equipped with modern amenities such as en-suite bathrooms, air conditioning, and free Wi-Fi. Guests can also enjoy a range of on-site facilities, including a restaurant, two swimming pools and a bar.

If you prefer to stay in an apartment, the 4U Alojamento – Jardim might be what you’re looking for. It has three bedrooms, an equipped kitchen and a balcony to enjoy the views.

However, if none of these suggestions appealed to you, check out the available accommodation in Abrantes using the button below.

Brief summary of Abrantes History

Fortaleza de Abrantes.
Abrantes Fortress.

Abrantes was founded in the 12th century, in order to defend the conquered territories and ensure the active life of Santarém.

To better protect the city, D. Afonso Henriques donated the Castle and surrounding land to the Order of S. Tiago da Espada in 1173 and six years later granted it a charter.

The city has a strong military history and was known for its castle and walled structure, which were built in a place that was difficult to access and used the Tagus River as a natural obstacle.

The Tagus was a major transportation route and a major river port was established on the south bank of the river. This port was used to import and export products from the Alentejo region and to transport goods between Lisbon and Abrantes.

Throughout its history, Abrantes has played a significant role in various episodes of Portuguese history. For example, in 1385, D. João I and D. Nuno Álvares Pereira were in Abrantes with their troops before departing for the Battle of Aljubarrota. In 1476, D. Lopo de Almeida, the father of the first Viceroy of India, was appointed the first Count of Abrantes.

In 1641, Abrantes was given the title “Remarkable Vila de Abrantes” for being the first village to proclaim King D. João IV after Lisbon.

In 1807, the city was occupied by French troops led by General Junot, who was later granted the title of Duke of Abrantes. This event inspired the famous phrase “Everything as before, Headquarters in Abrantes!”, which was used as a military passphrase.

On June 14, 1916, Abrantes was officially designated a city, and this day is now celebrated as the city’s annual holiday.

Best places to visit near Abrantes Portugal

Convento de Cristo em Tomar.
Convent of Christ (Convento de Cristo) in Tomar.

If you’re visiting Abrantes and are looking for places to visit in the area, there are many options to choose from.

One of the top places to visit near Abrantes is the town of Tomar. This historic town is home to the Convent of Christ, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the most important examples of Templar architecture in the world. The convent is a must-see attraction, with its beautiful gardens, cloisters, and chapels.

On the other hand, it is worth considering a trip to Ourém and Fátima. The Medieval village of Ourém is charming and Fátima is one of the most important centers of religious tourism in Portugal, attracting millions of visitors every year.

If you like nature and outdoor activities, the Serra de Aire e Candeeiros Natural Park is a great place to visit. Located a short drive from Abrantes, delight in the stunning scenery as you explore caves, cliffs and forests. Don’t forget to include a stop at the Dinosaur Footprints National Monument in your itinerary.

Gastronomy and Restaurants in Abrantes

There are many places to enjoy a meal in Abrantes! In our case, we wanted lunch to be accompanied by music and with a view of the Ruo Tejo, so we chose Cervejaria Aquapolis.

The meal started with cheese, sausages, olives, tuna pâté and delicious bread.

Afterwards, hearty dishes arrived at the table to feed our family: strips of fried cuttlefish with fried potatoes and rice and beans, pork cheeks with baker potatoes and even Alentejo-style pork.

As you can imagine, in the end no one managed to order dessert.

Speaking of sweets, Abrantes is famous for its Tigeladas and “Palha de Abrantes”, which can be bought in one of the city’s pastry shops.

Where is Abrantes in Portugal and how to get there?

Abrantes is a city located in the central region of Portugal, in the Santarém district. It is situated approximately 145 kilometers north of Lisbon, the capital of Portugal.

There are several ways to get to Abrantes from other parts of Portugal or from abroad. By air, the nearest airport is Lisbon International Airport, which is approximately a 1h30 drive from Abrantes. From the airport, you can either rent a car or take a bus or taxi to the city.

If you prefer to travel by train, there are regular trains from Lisbon to Abrantes, which take around 1 hour and 20 minutes. The train station is located just a short distance from the city center, making it easy to get to your final destination.

Another option is to travel by bus. There are regular buses from Lisbon to Abrantes, as well as from other cities in the region. The bus station is located in the city center, making it easy to get to your final destination.

Overall, Abrantes is easy to reach by a variety of modes of transportation, and is a great destination for a relaxing holiday or a quick getaway.

Best time to visit Abrantes Portugal

Aquapólis e zona ribeirinha.
Aquapolis and riverside area.

The best time to visit Abrantes depends on what you expect from the trip.

So, if you like warm weather and sunny days, consider visiting the region during the summer months of June, July or August.

However, it is important to bear in mind that this is also the busiest time of year in Abrantes and hotel prices tend to be higher.

On the other hand, if you’d rather avoid crowds and still have a good chance of nice weather, consider visiting during the mid-seasons of April, May or September. Remember that, as a rule, these months tend to have milder temperatures and fewer tourists.

Finally, if you are planning a trip to Abrantes during the winter months, you can expect lower temperatures and some rain.

That is, this could be a good time to visit the city if you prefer peaceful trips, have little money and don’t care about the weather conditions.

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