Wednesday, 6 February 2008

Travel from Portugal to Spain and/or Morocco

If you have a home in Figueira da Foz for two weeks why visit Spain and Morocco?

Figueira da Foz is situated almost equidistant between Porto and Lisbon and only 40 kms from the historic University Town of Coimbra.

You can download the Coimbra to Figuera da Foz Train Timetable in pdf format on my blog:

On the right hand side panel scroll down to the section:

>> Algarve & Portugal - Travel Transport Links

At the bottom you will find a link

>> Train Timetable - Coimbra to Figueira da Foz

With a hire car or by train you should have enough to do in these towns and surrounding centres such as Obidos, Alcobaça, Tomar, Batalha, Sintra and Torres Vedras to take up at least a week to two weeks of your time.

Visiting Morocco from here would require a long days (7 to 8 hours) drive to Algeciras, a ferry crossing, a couple of days in somewhere like Tangier and then a ferry crossing and a a long days drive.

Only Royal Air Maroc operate flights from Lisbon to Casablanca. It is not possible to check prices online but I suspect that they will be pricey.

As regards Spain, if you do want to do an excursion, be aware that is it a large country and that there are many beautiful cities and towns to visit.

From Figueira da Foz, I would recommend a route by hire car that took you from there, via the IP1 onto the IP5 through Guarda and then to Salamanca.

This would take about 3 to 4 hours. Salamanca is a wonderful University city and the site of one of the famous Napoleonic War Battles.

Spend the night there - the IBIS Hotel is good. Central and stayed there in December 2007.

Alternatively, you could run North via Porto and Braga and visit Vigo and the famous pilgrimage and University Town of Santiago da Compostela.

Do not forget that there are good intercity bus services in Spain and Portugal.

You can check out some of them on my blog.

Part II/Follow-on comment

Thanks for the rating.

Honestly, there is so much to do in the immediate area as I described, that a Moroccan diversion by air via Madrid on a low cost airline to my way of thinking is a bit of a waste of resources.

Bear in mind that it will take you a day to get to Morocco flying via Madrid - It will take 90 minutes by car to Lisbon Airport, a 2 hour check-in, 1 hour flight - up to 90 minutes on the ground at Madrid Barajas Airport and then a 90 minute flight to your destination and then immigration and then to the hotel. Probably in the order of 7-8 hours minimum provided there are no delays on the Lisbon Madrid route. Remember with low-costs if you buy 2 different sectors and your incoming one is late they will not wait for you and you may have to buy another ticket for the second sector.

Honestly, I do suggest you review the Morocco option.

If want to do other countries/cities why not look at Barcelona which is a great city. You can get low costs daily from Lisbon with ClickAir. Despite your comment, I have just had a look at Clickair's site and they no seem to currently operate Lisbon to Madrid. is low cost airline that operates this route. However, do not buy your ticket yet as there is a real possibility they may merge with ClickAir or another airline in the next few months.

Also bear in mind that Ryanair operate flights to the following destinations from Porto Airport just over 90 minutes from Figueira da Foz by Car which are in or near the towns mentioned:

Bergamo - Italy - 60km from Milan but a wonderful old hilltop city. I was there last year.
Pisa - Italy
Valencia - Spain

Again don't book until nearer the time as Ryanair are renowned for terminating routes without notice. also operate Porto - Milan Malpensa.