Things to do in Mafra

Our most recommended things to do in Mafra

Lisbon Card: 24, 48, or 72-Hour Pass

1. Lisbon Card: 24, 48, or 72-Hour Pass

Unlock the city of Lisbon with the flexible Lisbon Card. Enjoy unlimited travel on city transport, and free admission to 39 museums, historic buildings, and more. Benefit from discounts at a vast range of attractions, vouchers for different shops, and a handy guide that explains how to use the card. After exchanging your GetYourGuide voucher for the magnetic card, the Lisbon Card immediately provides 24-hour, 48-hour, or 72-hour access to the public transport system. Eligible on the Carris metro, buses, trams, and cable railways, it also works on CP trains between Cais do Sodré and Cascais, and trains between Oriente, Rossio, and Sintra.   Skip the lines to enter Jerónimos Monastery, and climb the Belem Tower. Enjoy free access to the National Tile Museum, the National Coach Museum, and others. Admire stunning palaces, including the Mafra National Palace and the Ajuda National Palace. Ride the famous Santa Justa Lift, and much more—all with one card. The Libson Card provides free entry to the following attractions: • Jerónimos Monastery / Monasterio de los Jerónimos• Pilar7 Bridge Experience / Experiencia Pilar 7 • LISBOA Story Centre• National Tile Museum / Museo Nacional del Azulejo   • National Coach Museum / Museo Nacional de Carruajes  • National Ancient Art Museum / Museo Nacional de Arte Antigua• Sintra Mitos e Lendas• Santa Justa Elevator / Ascensor de Santa Justa• Mafra National Palace / Palacio Nacional de Mafra• CARRIS• METRO• CP-Comboios de Portugal• FERTAGUS• National Pantheon / Panteón Nacional• Ajuda National Palace / Palacio Nacional de Ajuda• Chiado Museum - National Museum of Contemporary Art / Museo del Chiado Museo Nacional de Arte Contemporânea• National Ethnology Museum / Museo Nacional de Etnología      • National Costume Museum / Museo Nacional del Traje     • National Museum of Theatre and Dance / Museo Nacional del Teatro y de Danza  • National Archaeology Museum / Museo Nacional de Arqueología• National Music Museum Music / Museo Nacional de la Música• Dr. Anastácio Gonçalves Museum-Residence / Casa-Museo Dr. Anastácio Gonçalves• Republican National Guard Museum / Museo de la Guardia Nacional Republicana• Ceramics Museum - Sacavém / Museo de la Cerámica - Sacavém• Air Museum / Museo del Aire• Batalha Monastery / Monasterio de Batalha • Alcobaça Monastery / Monasterio de Alcobaça• Tomar Convent of Christ / Convento de Cristo - Tomar• Museum of Neo Realism - Vila Franca de Xira / Museo del Neo Realismo - Vila Franca de Xira• Museum of the work Michel Giacometti / Museo del Trabajo Michel Giacometti• Casa da Cerca - Museum of Contemporary Art - Almada / Casa da Cerca - Museu de Arte Contemporanea - Almada• Chapel of the Holy Spirit of the Mareantes - Sesimbra / Capilla del Espíritu Santo de los Mareantes - Sesimbra• Museum of Setúbal - Municipal Gallery / Museo de Setúbal - Galería Municipal• Rua Augusta Arch / Arco da Rua Augusta• Greenhouse / Invernadero Frío• Maritime Museum of Sesimbra / Museo Marítimo de Sesimbra• Museum Tesouro Real• CIRES – Roaz Interpretive Center of the Sado Estuary / CIRES - Centro Interpretativo del Roaz del Estuario del Sado• Royal Treasure Museum / Museu do Tesouro Real  The Libson Card also provides discounts on the following attractions:• Dom Fernando II e Glória ship – 20% discount• Biester Palace (Sintra) – 10% discount• Video mapping (Immersivus Lisboa – O Cubo) – 15% discount• SEOTours – 15% discount• Setubal Alive – 10% discount

From Lisboa: Mafra, Ericeira & Queluz Full-Day Tour

2. From Lisboa: Mafra, Ericeira & Queluz Full-Day Tour

This tour will take you to Mafra, where a world heritage famous convent-palace takes place. The National Palace of Mafra, a complex consisting of a Royal Palace, a Basilica and a Convent, was completed in 1735, by the will of King D. João V by virtue of a promise he had made on behalf of the descendants he would obtain from the queen. It was the residence of the royal family for a few years, until the king's death, but never ceased to be one of the court's favorite places. Mafra's greatest treasure is the library. Here are kept books that are unique and rare examples of knowledge produced between the 15th and 19th centuries. After visiting the palace, head to the coast and arrive at Ericeira, a pretty fishing village. Its connection to the sea is undeniable, which you can enjoy exploring its narrow streets located in the Historic Center that take us back to other times. The cliffs along the shores of Ericeira beach also give it a unique beauty, as do the fishermen's boats that bring the best and freshest fish to land that can be tasted in many of the village's restaurants. Onwards, you will travel towards the interior, to discover Queluz National Palace, not infrequently called the Portuguese Versailles. It is an 18th century palace and was built as a summer retreat. Among the various rooms and other divisions of the palace such as the throne room, music room, ambassador's room, D. Quixote's room, among others, it is here where you will find the most interesting and important historical gardens in Portugal, present the most significant set of statues by the British sculptor John Cheere, outside English territory, which gives it great importance in the international art scene.

From Lisbon: Coastal Villages and Mafra Palace Guided Tour

3. From Lisbon: Coastal Villages and Mafra Palace Guided Tour

First stop will be Azenhas do Mar, a scenic village on the coast built in the "Portuguese Soft Style". Continue along the coast, passing by steep cliffs and wild beaches. Arrive in Ericeira, a village known for its blue and white buildings, as well as its lively food scene. Enjoy free time to explore the village at your own pace and have lunch. After lunch, head to Jose Franco, a working village and open-air museum that showcases the traditional culture and handicrafts of the área. End your tour with a visit to the magnificent Palace of Mafra, a masterpiece from the eighteenth century and one of the most important buildings in the Portuguese Baroque style. The palace is home to 92 bells, 1200 rooms, and over 4,700 doors and windows. It also hosts the oldest library in Portugal with about 36,000 volumes. Enjoy a tour of the site with your dedicated guide, who will share interesting facts and stories about the monument.

Sintra and the Amazing Dream Villages Tour

4. Sintra and the Amazing Dream Villages Tour

In a quiet environment a few minutes from the capital, explore a great selection of the best villages near Sintra. The fact that these villages continue to have unusual life habits, they recreate the way of life of Portugal's ancestors, preserved through smells, colors, and traditions. Visit the charming Azenhas do Mar, a village that has become one of the most famous Portuguese tourist spots. Discover the village of Penedo, perched high on a hillside still home to traditional houses. Walk along its steep and winding streets and alleys. It is a treasure of the traditional architecture of the saloia region. Visit secret villages where you will feel like you are in an open-air museum, where the way of life of Portugal's ancestors is preserved. Travel back in time in the village of José Franco. Get to know a local man's dream that recreated a village of ethnographic character, a testimony to the way of life of the ancient local people.

Sintra: Countryside Gastronomic Tour in a Vintage Car

5. Sintra: Countryside Gastronomic Tour in a Vintage Car

Uncover the beauty and flavors of the countryside surrounding Sintra on this tour in a vintage car. Take some free time to explore the cobble stone streets in the seaside village of Ericeira.  Meet your guide at the Portela de Sintra train station and sit back and relax in a stylish classic car on the drive to a hidden waterfall in the mountains. Have some time to snap some pictures before heading to a rural village.  Sit down in a picturesque country village and breathe in delicious aromas. Immerse yourself in local cuisine while taking in views of the unique landscape.  See the sights along the main street of Mafra city and admire the “Convento de Mafra” palace. Make your way to the seaside village of Ericeira, a world surf reserve. Take some free time to walk in the center of the village before returning to you meeting point in Sintra.

Mafra, Ericeira Private Tour from Lisbon

6. Mafra, Ericeira Private Tour from Lisbon

Your private full-day tour begins with a pick-up at your Lisbon accommodation and a drive to Mafra, where you’ll visit the Mafra National Palace. On a tour of the palace you’ll visit the library, considered to be one of the most beautiful in the world. Mafra’s grandiose palace-monastery defies description. Ordered by King João V in 1717 to celebrate the birth of his first child, it was reputedly designed to compete in magnificence with the Spanish royal palace. The overwhelming architectural details include over 5000 doorways, 2500 windows, 880 rooms, 154 grandstaircases, 29 courtyards, and 330 monks’ cells. The two bell towers together house over 100 bells (the largest collection in the world), still played every Sunday and audible across a distance of 25 kilometers (15 miles). Tour the lavish royal apartments; visit the 11 chapels of the pink and grey marble basilica; marvel at the bizarremedical instruments in the hospital and pharmacy; and walk around the beautiful eight-square-kilometer wildlife garden, originally conceived by the King as a deer park and source of hunting, entertainment, food and firewood. Last but by no means least, save time for the mind-blowing library; adorned with marble and jacarandawood, it is one of Europe’s finest, housing over 40,000 rare volumes including the earliest edition of Homer in Greek, a trilingual bible from the early 16th century and a first edition of Os Lusíadas by Luís de Camões, regarded as Portugal’s national poet. Not far from Mafra, travel back in time to the turn of the 20th century at Olaria Tipica Joao Franco (Typical Village of José Franco). This fascinating and somewhat surreal miniature working village showcases the traditional culture and handicrafts of the surrounding area, crafted using traditional techniques by renowned Portuguese potter and sculptor José Silos Franco. During the visit worth trying the bread with sausage (pão com chouriço), it is very tasty! There is also an on-site shop selling handmade pottery from around the country. The village depicts the true story of the region and undoubtedly arouses the curiosity of the many travellers of all ages that frequently pass through here. In the same space, you can also see a permanent exhibition of the ceramic works of José Franco. After this emersion in history you will go and visit the fishing village of Ericeira, take a stroll, taste the local gastronomy and get to know a bit more of its history. Ericeira is an authentic fisherman town. Here you can still see fishing boats, strong waves, and small fisherman houses. It will be the perfect place for an incredibly fresh fish lunch. In the area there is also a miniature village depicting the town's traditions. Recently, this fishing village was included in the list of the 10 “coolest small cities in Europe”. It is famous for its history, cliffs, sandy beaches, surfing, fresh seafood and fresh fish. It's the best place for fresh lunch.

Lisbon: Queluz, Mafra, Azenhas do Mar & Cabo da Roca Tour

7. Lisbon: Queluz, Mafra, Azenhas do Mar & Cabo da Roca Tour

Discover the area northwest of Lisbon and see the highlights off the beaten tourist path. Visit the Palace of Queluz, whose gardens and ground are an exceptionally-beautiful example of 18th-century Portuguese architecture. The palace was built for Peter III of Portugal, prince consort of Queen Maria I (1734-1816), as a royal residence. Many rooms are in a Rococo style, like the ornate throne room with mirrored walls and beautiful gilded woodwork. Admire the gardens with lovely fountains and ornamental ponds and a collection of sculptures around the Neptune Garden and pond. Then visit the Palace of Mafra. The largest castle and cloister complex in Portugal with over 4,700 windows and doors, the Palace of Mafra is approximately 50 kilometers north of Lisbon in Mafra. See the impressive 220-meter-long façade. The palace is approximately 38,000 m², with 1,200 rooms and 156 staircases. Learn all about the church with its 2 fascinating glockenspiels with 48 bells from Antwerp. Continue along the foot of the Sintra Mountains to Azenhas do Mar. Discover an incredible town right on the cliffs, a true postcard picture and destination for artists. See Cabo da Roca, the western-most point of continental Europe, to the west of Lisbon and 140 meters above sea level. The Portuguese national poet Luis de Camões described the place with the following words: "Here, where the land ends and the sea begins..." Then head over the shifting sand dunes of Guincho along the Sintra-Cascais Nature Park back to Lisbon.

From Lisbon: Obidos, Mafra & The Silver Coast Private Trip

8. From Lisbon: Obidos, Mafra & The Silver Coast Private Trip

After being picked up from your accommodation, it is an hours drive, roof down, up the motorway to the stunning town of Orbidos. Admire the views from the motorway and as we approach down the hill. You will get an opportunity to spend about 2 hours here, exploring the narrow streets, shops and cafes, take in the views from the city walls, drink Ginjinha de Óbidos (sour cherry brandy) or coffee if you like!! Once you have finished exploring you can either remain here for lunch or head to the coast and the gorgeous town of Foz do Arelho. You can lunch at one of the shoreline cafes, whilst admiring the views across the sand to the lagoon in one direction and the Atlantic Ocean in the other. Take a walk along the beach, spend time soaking up the sun, the time is yours. When you have had enough it is back in the car and onto Mafia with it's stunning palace.. You will be amazed at it's size and beauty as we approach Mafra. Be stunned as we approach the palace. Here you will get about 2 hours to explore the palace in all it's glory. When your legs can take no more, it's time for a coffee before returning to your accommodation either by motorway (Lisbon) or the coastal road (Cascais/Sintra).

From Lisbon: Óbidos and Mafra Palace Private Tour

9. From Lisbon: Óbidos and Mafra Palace Private Tour

Step back in time and enjoy a private tour through streets of the walled town of Óbidos, the best-preserved "museum village" in Portugal. Also, visit the Palácio Nacional de Mafra, one of the biggest 18th-century baroque palaces in Europe. Explore Óbidos, which was conquered by Portugal´s first king, D. Afonso Henriques, on January 11th, 1148. Since then, Óbidos continues to be part of Portugal’s history. Here you will visit the various highlights of the Fortified village of Óbidos. Walking inside the village also allows you to taste the Ginjinha and other local goods and crafts. Discover the palace of Mafra. A magnificent building that was only possible due to the Brazilian gold that poured into the country, allowing King João V to carry out the building of the biggest baroque palaces from the 18th century. Learn about its construction, which began on November 17, 1717, integrating four buildings in one: the palace, the convent, the basilica, and a library. The complex covers an area of almost four hectares (37.790 sqm2). It includes an incredible 1,200 rooms, more than 4,700 doors and windows, 156 stairways, and 29 inner yards and courtyards. Walkthrough the longest corridor ever built in a palace (232 m long) that is made of limestone and marble from the Óbidos, Pêro Pinheiro, and Sintra regions.  Go inside the library, one of the most important in Europe. The impressive library has an enormous variety of books, more than 30.000 volumes, from the XVth to the XVIIIth century. Look up to see two massive towers flanking the palace. Next, see the basilica, a “centerpiece” of the facade having been designed by the German architect Johann Friedrich Ludwig, commissioned by D. João V. Note that If you are visiting in July, Óbidos castle hosts a traditional ‘Medieval Market’. For two weeks the castle and the surrounding town recreate the spirit of medieval Europe. Flowing banners and heraldic flags set the mood together with daily parades, hundreds of entertainers and stall workers dressed as traditional merchants, jugglers, jesters, wandering minstrels, soldiers, and more. There are also displays of jousting knights and armed combat.

Lisbon: Wine Tasting Day Tour

10. Lisbon: Wine Tasting Day Tour

Pick up and head west to the magnificent Adega Mãe, about 40 minutes from Lisbon. Beginning the tour with a visit to the beautiful vineyards and learn about the different wine varieties spreading along the hills and it’s individual characteristics. Afterwards you are going to learn about the process of making the wine and the magic happens in the Temple room, where the wine rests in wood barrels. Last but not least you are going to taste five wines (Two red, Two white and one rosé) and be inebriated with it’s characteristics. After the first wine experience at the magnificent Adega Mae, and because is lunch time, lunch in a nearby typical portuguese restaurant, specialized in grilled sea food, for sure, it will be one of the best food experiences of your whole trip. (Prices between 10-20 €/pp). After lunch, we have a 30 minutes ride to the little village of Cheleiros, where we are going to visit our second winery of the day. Starting the visit with the history of the village and the importance of this wine project in this small community, after we continue with the wine process and finish at the barrels room. We finish with the tasting of 5 wines (3 reds and 2 whites), including the single variety Jampal, a unique grape in Portugal and in the world. The tasting is paired with home made bread and olive oil. We finish the visit with a little walk around the village and visiting the medieval bridge of Cheleiros, built upon an old roman bridge. Before return to Lisbon pass by the magnificent "Palacio Nacional de Mafra" is the biggest and more impressive baroque palace in Portugal, built by D. João V in the 18th century. An impressive sight, out of the touristic mainstream.

Other Sightseeing Options in Mafra

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What people are saying about Mafra

Overall rating

4.4 / 5

based on 4,566 reviews

CHeck out all that the card can do. I know that I paid for some activities that the card would have gotten me into for free.

We pick the card at the airport and they provided a great explanation in how to use it and how to take advantage of it

Really handy! It includes some of the "must" sightseeings and having access to Lisbon transportation is quite useful!

Easy to find and book, collection was straight forward and overall good value for money

Really good value card and gets you into loads of attractions also.