The Lisboa Oriente station in Lisbon. Photo: Zoia Kostina/Shutterstock

The Train Is the Best Way To See Portugal's Stunning Landscapes From Lisbon To Porto

Lisbon Porto Train Travel
by Morgane Croissant Mar 21, 2023

The two largest cities in Portugal, Lisbon and Porto, are both located on the Atlantic coast, 190 miles apart. The drive between the two cities is a scenic one, but it does mean you’ll have to rent a vehicle to make the three-hour trip. If you want to travel between Lisbon and Porto in comfort, for cheap, and without putting in too much effort, take the train instead. The Lisbon to Porto train is very frequent, takes just as long as driving, costs less than what you’d pay for a rental and gas, and the landscape out the window is equally gorgeous.

Is there a high speed train from Lisbon to Porto?

The Lisboa Oriente station in Lisbon. Photo: Zoia Kostina/Shutterstock
The Campanha train station in Porto. Photo: BONDART PHOTOGRAPHY/Shutterstock

The Portuguese national railway company, Comboios de Portugal, runs multiple direct high-speed trains between Lisbon (Lisboa Oriente station) and Porto (Porto Campanha station) daily. On Comboios de Portugal’s online timetable and booking system, high-speed trains are marked “AP” meaning “Alfa Pendular”.

There are also direct intercity and regional trains that run between the two cities every day, from early morning to late at night. On Comboios de Portugal’s online timetable and booking system, intercity trains are marked “IC”, and regional trains are marked “R”.

How long is the train ride from Lisbon to Porto?

The direct high-speed train “Alfa Pendular” is the fastest, making the journey between Lisbon and Porto in less than three hours (between two hours and 49 minutes and two hours and 56 minutes).

The direct Intercity train takes a little longer: three hours and 15 minutes.

The direct regional train takes the longest at about five hours.

How much does the train cost from Lisbon to Porto?

Riding the direct high-speed train “Alfa Pendular” from Lisbon to Porto costs $48 (44.60 €) in First class and $34.35 (31.90 €) in Second class. Watch for promotions on Comboios de Portugal’s booking system — you can get a seat for just $29 (27 €) in First class or $21 (19.50 €) in Second class if you book five or more days early.

First class cars in the high-speed train “Alfa Pendular” are usually more spacious and include more comfortable seats, power outlets, and access to the first-class lounge at the Oriente station in Lisbon.

Watch the video below to see what First class (AKA Conforto) and Second class (AKA Turistica) cars look like on the high-speed train “Alfa Pendular”:

The journey between Lisbon and Porto on the direct intercity train costs $40.20 (37.35 €) in First class and $27.20 (25.25 €) in Second class. Promotions are also available for the direct intercity trains — keep an eye on Comboios de Portugal’s booking system and you may get a seat in First class for $24.25 (22.50 €) or in second class for $16.70 (15.50 €).

Compared to Second class cars, First class cars in the intercity train are quieter, have larger, adjustable seats, and have power sockets.

Taking the regional train between the two city takes the longest, but its standard price is the cheapest at $19.90 (18.50 €).

Is the Lisbon to Porto train scenic?

The Lisbon to Porto train is extremely scenic. The ride offers beautiful views of the Portuguese countryside and picturesque cities like Coimbra, and runs along the Atlantic coast for a little time before entering Porto. Make sure to get a window seat on your train journey between Lisbon and Porto to make the most of the ride.

Do I need to buy train tickets from Lisbon to Porto in advance?

Train that connects Lisbon to Porto

vPhoto: Markus Mainka/Shutterstock

If you want to score the best price and ensure that you have a seat, you should book your train ticket in advance on the website of the Portuguese National Railway company, Comboios de Portugal. (Translate the website into English in the top right corner of the homepage if you don’t speak Portuguese.)

Is Porto worth a day trip from Lisbon?

Porto, Portugal’s second city, is very much worth a visit, but a day trip from Lisbon (whether you decide to go by car, by train, or by plane) will be a waste of your time. By car and by train, it’ll take you around three hours to get there from the capital and three hours to get back, so you’ll have very little time to actually spend in Porto. By plane, the trip is only 55 minutes, but you’ll need to get to the airport from the city and be there at least 90 minutes before the flight.

How many days is enough in Porto?

Porto is a small city, so three days should be enough to see all the highlights and even go on a couple of special outings. Taking a short cruise on the Douro River is a good place to start — from this vantage point you’ll be able to take in the beautiful architecture of the city and its impressive bridges. Then, stroll around Rua Santa Catarina for some souvenir shopping, and stop at Café Majestic for an eyeful of Art Nouveau decor like you’ve never seen before. Also, make sure you pay a visit to Livraria Lello, one the most beautiful bookstores in all of Europe. When you’re ready to take things up a notch and try out some Port wine, make your way to Vila Nova de Gaia across a the Dom Luís I Bridge, which only takes a couple of minutes to cross on foot.

Where to stay in Lisbon and Porto to be near the train stations

For the best Airbnbs in all of Portugal, check out Matador‘s selection for an unforgettable trip.

We hope you love the spaces and stays we recommend! Just so you know, Matador may collect a small commission from the links on this page if you decide to book a stay.

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