After a long day trip to Sintra, we stopped by Cascais for dinner before heading back to Lisbon.
While planning the return trip from Sintra, I read about a place called “Boca do Inferno” which seems pretty interesting. It’s a seaside cliff nicknamed “Hell’s Mouth” because of the pounding waves that crashes into the rock formation. Given the right weather and conditions, one may get to see a stunning orangey fiery sunset as the cliff bask in the rays of the setting sun. Since we planned to return to Lisbon by train from Cascais we decided to make a small detour to see the cliff and have dinner at the restaurant nearby.
Upon some quick research, it turned out that the restaurant – Mar do Inferno located next to the cliff is one that serves fresh fishes with pretty good reviews on the quality of the ingredients used.
We took a short stroll along the boardwalk to admire the cliffs and arrived at the restaurant with starving stomachs at around 7pm. The eatery was still pretty empty when we entered as the locals typically have late dinners.
Placed our order of Clams à la Bulhão Pato (€15) and a Seafood Platter for 2 persons (€39.50). Initially we turned down the bread basket as we knew that the food portion would be very filling for us and we wouldn’t need the bread. However the server guaranteed that we would love to dip the bread into gravy of the clams. He was spot on, as we enjoyed slurping every drop of the perfect mixture between olive oil, garlic, coriander and wine used for the ultra fresh clams. I could almost taste a hint of the ocean from the pot of chewy mollusc.
Paired our meal with a nice and relatively cheap half-bottle wine from Duoro region. We soon realised that wines are super affordable in Portugal…you can get one full bottle from as little as €1+ from the supermart… I seriously think they might even be cheaper than the branded mineral water…
Our jaws dropped when we saw the humongous portion of Seafood Platter presented to us. There were 2 fishes – sea bass & golden bream, along with mussels, grilled prawns, sauteed vegetables and potatoes.
I was blown away by the extremely fresh and well-prepared fishes. The flesh were moist and firm. Despite not being a big fan of fishes, we didn’t want any bit to go to waste and tried our best to finish them (left the potatoes and vegs). I think the slight disappointment was with the prawns which weren’t as succulent as I expected.
After the full meal, we took a bus to the train station and left Cascais for Lisbon which was a 40-mins train ride away. The restaurant staff even told us that the last train leaves Cascais at 1.30am!!! It seems that Cascais is a popular place for Lisboêtas to enjoy a break at the beach during summer though unfortunately we were there during winter.
Other photos taken:
Day trip to Sintra, 8am: Waiting for train at Sintra at Rossio station in Lisbon.
Day trip to Sintra, 1st stop: Moorish Castle which is perched on a hilltop as its a military outpost.
Day trip to Sintra, 2nd stop: Pena National Palace a very vibrant and colourful architecture building juxtaposed with various eclectic styles.
Day trip to Sintra, 3rd stop: Quinta da Regaleira a mysterious estate with a large mystical park filed with extravagant structures.
Exploring the sprawling garden of Quinta da Regaleira.
One of the main features of the garden – Initiation Well. Its a tower that spirals downwards into the underground as you descends through staircase.
Day trip to Sintra, 4th stop: Cabo da Roca westernmost extent of mainland Portugal and continental Europe. You can go to the tourist office to purchase a Certificate with your name written on it to certify that you had been to the westernmost part of Europe~
Day trip to Sintra, detour to Cascais: Boca do Inferno while I didn’t get to see the stormy waves clashing against the cliff as the weather was very good, I caught a nice sunset.
P.S Lastly I’m taking this opportunity to share some tips with folks who may be interested in planning for a day trip to Sintra from Lisbon as I personally had some difficulties getting verified information on the tickets to purchase for transportation. Perhaps it could also be due to the fact that the train and bus providers may be changing the schemes rather frequently. I hope anyone who stumbles upon my blog may find the following information useful.
When I visited in Feb 2016, we purchased a 1-day bus/train pass (€15) + €0.50 for the Viva Viagem card, from Rossio train station in Lisbon. The bus/train pass covers the main Scotturb bus routes that tourists take in Sintra. I can only comment on the routes below as these are the one I’ve taken.
- including train ride from Rossio to Sintra
- including #434 which goes to Moorish Castle and Pena National Palace – I earlier read mixed comments on whether this pass can or cannot be used on this particular bus route. Tried and tested, yes it works!
- #435 which goes to Quinta da Regaleira
- #403 which goes to Cabo da Roca
- including train ride from Cascais to Lisbon
- excludes buses in Cascais so if you plan to visit Boca do Inferno like I did, you will need to pay cash on the bus (#427 from Cascais to Boca do Inferno).
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