Cabo da Roca Portugal: the nearest point between the European Continent and the USA & how to get there from Lisbon

If your Portugal vacation takes you to Lisbon, don’t miss Cabo da Roca (Roca’s Cape), in the municipality of Sintra, 40 km from LisbonThe magical atmosphere of the westernmost point of mainland Europe (at 9° 29.8′ W), the nearest point between the European Continent and the USA, is really worth a visit! In summertime there’s lots of photo-snapping tourists posing right here.

Cabo da Roca spectacular views

Cabo da Roca Portugal

The views to the Atlantic from here are stunning. The cliff rises 144 meters in height above the cape. Expect strong winds when looking down from the cliff-top. You have to be very careful on windy and rainy days. Take care, it’s a long way down!!

How to get there from Lisbon? Take a train from station Cais do Sodré  to Cascais. Bus 403 travels regularly between Sintra and Cascais stops at Cabo da Roca.

Cao da Roca monument with crusifix

Cabo da Roca, 40 km from Lisbon

A cross has been erected in this spot as a monument to celebrate the end of the European mainland, and the beginning of the Atlantic ocean. The cross basement bears the words of the famous Portuguese poet, Luís Vaz de Camões (1524-1580), born in Lisbon.

Cabo da Roca Camoes

Cabo da Roca, 40 km from Lisbon

‘Aqui…
Onde a terra termina e o mar começa…
Ponta mais ocidental do continente europeu’

‘Here…
Where the land ends and the sea begins…
Westernmost point of the European continent’

Cabo da Roca view on Meco beach

Cabo da Roca, 40 km from Lisbon

View from Cabo da Roca on the fabulous beaches. On sunny days Meco Beach (Praia do Meco) can be seen. (ca. 45 km). The small house is still a remain of the long Moorisch occupation (700C – 1400C).

Cabo da Roca is at the end of a 30 mile stretch of the coast known as the Portuguese Riviera, 40 km from Lisbon. The Atlantic coast, which stretches to the north and west of Lisbon, is of surprising beauty: here the landscape swiftly changes from high, sweeping cliffs to beaches of white sand, backed by lagoons.

Cabo da Roca Lighthouse

Cabo da Roca, 40 km from Lisbon

The construction of the lighthouse (farol) was completed in 1772. It is still active and staffed by a crew of three keepers. Lighthouses in Portugal are owned by the navy (Marinha de Portugal) and operated by the navy’s lighthouse directorate. Portugal has a long distinguished maritime history; the Portuguese first traveled out and around Africa, launching the European age of discovery 600 years ago.

Cabo da Roca church1

Cabo da Roca, 40 km from Lisbon

Cabo da Roca’s church is being restored at the moment. According to construction workers apartments will be built in this church.

Cabo da Roca tiles in church

Cabo da Roca, azulejos

Beautiful tiles (azulejos) inside the church. The azulejo is a typical form of Portuguese painted, tin-glazed, ceramic tilework. They have become a typical aspect of Portuguese culture. Azulejo comes from the Arabic word az-zulayj, meaning polished stone.

Wherever you go in Portugal, azulejos are to be found inside and outside cafes, churches, palaces, ordinary houses and even ceilings, train- or subway stations. Many azulejos chronicle major historical and cultural aspects of Portuguese history.

3 Responses to “Cabo da Roca Portugal: the nearest point between the European Continent and the USA & how to get there from Lisbon”

  1. The last 2 pictures are not Cabo da Roca. Are Cabo Espichel (near Sesimbra – Setúbal)

  2. […] Cape Roca […]

  3. […] and still sitting on a bluff of granite boulders and limestone is the Cabo da Roca lighthouse, built in 1772. Together with the lighthouse, a fort which once sat on the cape during the Peninsula War formed a […]

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