Traveling from Sintra to Praia das Maças by tram is a wonderful tourist attraction. Do take time because a ride with this 100 year old tram takes a bit over 45 minutes.
When you start in Sintra you start at the top of the mountain and the tram driver slowly drives you to the beach, making many turns along the way. This tram ride is all about the experience and the views, not so much about comfort. Bear in mind that the ride is very bumpy and lumpy with unexpected stops. That makes it a lot of fun and special, the bumpy ride should not spoil the fun.
The view is fantastic from the tram and because doesn’t go very fast (especially uphill), you can enjoy the view for a long time. Be aware that the tram follows the N247 for a large part, the tram is perched against the mountain wall. To take a picture of the view, you sometimes have to dodge the cars for the perfect picture.
You will pass beautiful places, when you have descended the mountain of Sintra you can see the beautiful Pena palace on the left, with the turrets of Palacio de Monserrate. also visible. And don’t forget to look around when your descend from the mountain of Sintra, in clear weather you can look far inland.
When you cross the road, the tram arrives in Colares. Get off here and pay a visit to the Adega (the local winery) is definitely worth it. It is wise to make an appointment if you want to do a wine tasting. If you travel further by tram, it will take just a few more minutes before you smell the sea air and the beach comes into view!
Praia das Maças is the end of the line, time to lie down on the beach and recover from the ride, before you make the tram ride up again.
The railway line is about 13 kilometers long (8 miles), and has 8 stops on the route.
Children under the age of six ride for free, if it is busy it is expected that the child sits in your lap. For 6 years and older you pay 3 euros per ticket. You can buy a ticket at Vila Alda – Casa do Electrico de Sintra at R. Gen. Alves Rocadas 2, or with the tram driver when you get in.
Long queues in the summer months
In the summer months it can be quite busy, so make sure you are early, especially if you are with children. The first tram leaves at 10:20.
The trip is fun to do with children. Keep in mind that there are no seat belts and that it can sometimes be a bit bumpy and that the kids have to sit still for 45 minutes (sometimes longer).
Are you unlucky and the queues are very long, then you can choose to take the bus (Scotturb) 441, it follows almost the same route as the tram. The experience is a lot less fun and charming, but the view is the same.
There have been plans for years to extend the tram line to the old center of Sintra. So far nobody knows (unfortunately) if and when this is actually realized.
Plan your tram journey well, because the tram does not run every day. On
the website of the Sintra municipality you will find the current times.
A day at the beach
Use the tram to go to the beach for a day, but you can also immediately take the tram back to the Praia da Maçãs terminal. When you choose that, you’ll be back in a little over 2 hours. Combine your day out with a visit to the
historical center of Sintra. From the tram stop this is a comfortable 20 minutes walk.
How to get to Elétrico de Sintra
The tram leaves a short distance from the museum of Modern Art, about 15 minutes walk from the train station.
The starting point can take a bit of searching but if you bought your ticket at Vila Alda, you are close! At the roundabout it is the exit of the N247 in the direction of Colares, on your left you will find the tram stop.