Things to do in
Setubal

Estuaries teaming with dolphins, flamingos, storks, and more make this port town a true natural paradise.

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Our most recommended things to do in Setubal

Setubal & Tróia: Sado Estuary Dolphin Watching Boat Trip

1. Setubal & Tróia: Sado Estuary Dolphin Watching Boat Trip

Depart from Setubal or Tróia onboard a 22-meter long catamaran and go in search of the community of dolphins that inhabit the Sado estuary. Be accompanied by a knowledgeable crew who will use their expertise to locate these playful dolphins in their natural habitat. Learn more about this unique dolphin community, the only one of its kind in Portugal, with your expert guides. Sail through the estuary and admire the beautiful landscapes of the coastline of the Arrábida Natural Park. Keep an eye out for the playful dolphins which have inhabited this part of the coast for generations. Watch the dolphins frolic and play as they swim through the calm waters. Hear more about their feeding habits, breeding and their relationship to humans on an informative and relaxing boat trip.

Portinho da Arrábida: Coasteering Trip

2. Portinho da Arrábida: Coasteering Trip

Coasteering is a multi-activity that uses various sports modalities such as trekking, climbing, swimming, abseiling, caving and many jumps into the water. The coasteering circuit is located in one of the most extraordinary places, on the border between the Arrábida Mountain Nature Park and the Luiz Saldanha Marine Park, with its crystalline green waters. Venture into one of the most beautiful places in Portugal and enjoy a fun day full of activities.

Sesimbra and Arrábida National Park Tour with Wine Tasting

3. Sesimbra and Arrábida National Park Tour with Wine Tasting

Spend a full day exploring the Setubal region of Portugal on a tour that takes you through the countryside to see castles and taste wine. Begin your trip by crossing the Tagus River on your way to the impressive Cabo Espiche on the westernmost point of the Sesimbra coastline. Then, it is time to go to the fishing town of Sesimbra and visit a Moorish castle. This seaport town also boasts plenty of beaches and restaurants serving fresh seafood. Nearby is Arrábida Natural Park, located on the shore of the Sado River estuary. Visit the famous beaches of Portinho da Arrábida and Figueirinha, before heading to Setubal for a fish lunch! After lunch you will make your way to the astonishing Arrabida Mountain. This is a protected (Arrabida Natural Park) area. Here you will visit a a small local family owned cellar in the middle of the peaceful Arrabida Mountain to learn more about how this precious nectar is made. You will see the vineyards, see how the process is completed and of course, taste the results. All this is done in the company of a local, in an informal and funny way.

Lisbon: Dolphin Watching in Arrábida Natural Park

4. Lisbon: Dolphin Watching in Arrábida Natural Park

This boat tour goes along the coastline in search of dolphins that is possible to find again on the Marine Reserve of Arrábida. The tour will take you to the most known sighting, with a 95% success rate in dolphin sightings. The boats used are powerful semi-inflatable boats with seats and all the comfort and safety for a 3-hour journey. It's always a good experience, that combines the dolphins with a wonderful boat tour on a cost line of calm and pristine waters, that is protected from the north winds by the Arrábida mountain.

Arrábida: Kayaking and Snorkeling Experience

5. Arrábida: Kayaking and Snorkeling Experience

Take in a unique experience designed for those who want adventure and nature activities. The region of the Arrábida Natural Park and the Marine Park Luiz Saldanha offers the ideal conditions for Kayaking: good weather, clear and transparent waters, and a vast sea coast to explore.  Enjoy 2 hours of kayaking along the coast where you can admire one of the most scenic views of Portugal. Enjoy the quiet and narrow beaches between rocks and secret caves along the Serra da Arrábida.  Stop at Pedra da Anicha, a small island of clear and transparent waters. Take your time to snorkel and explore the great biological diversity, cracks, and underwater cavities that provide an excellent diving experience.

Arrábida Natural Park: Wild Canoeing from Sesimbra

6. Arrábida Natural Park: Wild Canoeing from Sesimbra

Get in harmony with nature on a canoe trip through the Luís Saldanha Marine Park in the Arrábida Natural Park and see one of the most beautiful cliffs in Europe from a different perspective. Paddle along the coastline of Sesimbra and around the magnificent landscape, dominated by impressive escarpments and inlets. Encounter the marine life and discover the sea caves, pristine beaches and coves of the rugged landscape. Benefit from the services of a guide with expert knowledge of the region and learn all its secrets. Enjoy a 30-minute break to relax on a deserted beach before returning to Sesimbra. 

Arrábida: Stand Up Paddle & Snorkeling Experience

7. Arrábida: Stand Up Paddle & Snorkeling Experience

Cruise across the gorgeous waters of Arrábida Natural Park and enjoy views of the biological diversity of Marine Park Luiz Saldanha. Enjoy the ideal conditions for stand up paddle that the area offers: calm, clear waters, a vast sea coast, and pleasant weather. Quickly learn the techniques of riding and paddling a SUP board from expert instructors. Once you’re comfortable on the water, paddle along the coves of Serra da Arrábida and the Marina Professor Luís Saldanha Reserve, through deserted and narrow beaches between the rocks. Finish the activity with snorkelling session and look out for marine life

From Lisbon: Private Wine Tour with Setúbal & Arrábida

8. From Lisbon: Private Wine Tour with Setúbal & Arrábida

Discover the peninsula of Setúbal and admire the impressive mountain ranges and beaches. Ride over the Vasco de Gama Bridge and see the other side of the river at Tejo. Enjoy the view of the beautiful coast and the Arrábida mountains, then ride past the wine producers in Palmela, Setúbal and Montijo, where the finest wines are made. Visit Cabo Espichel and its breathtaking landscape. Sample the famous local cake in Azeitão, then ride again over the Arrábida mountains, which take their name from the Arrábida Natural Park, to Setúbal. Visit the Livramento Market and sample regional wine and cheese at the Mourisca tidal mill.

Dolphin Tour from Sesimbra

9. Dolphin Tour from Sesimbra

The Sado estuary is the natural habitat of the Bottlenose dolphins (Roazes in Portuguese). Welcomed by the population who feeds and protects them, these marine mammals are especially sociable. They can be observed along the coast of Arrábida all year long. This activity is carried out between Setúbal, Troia and Serra da Arrábida. Swim from the boat supported by the specialized guide on board for unforgettable encounters with the dolphins. They will also teach you about the marine environment and the biodiversity all around you. As you go they will comment on the geology and points of local archaeological importance.

Lisbon: Hiking in Arrábida Natural Park

10. Lisbon: Hiking in Arrábida Natural Park

These walking tours are a great way to explore the Arrábida Natural Park. Your guide will be a local who knows this region extremely well. They will help you discover it’s hidden secrets, while providing information about the local biodiversity, geology, history, culture and much more. The half-day hiking tour in Arrábida has between 6 to 8 kilometers and a maximum ascents/descents of approximately 130 meters. With a medium difficulty level, they are entirely made in the Arrábida Natural Park which is a mountain that rises above one of the most beautiful Portuguese coastlines and one of the most beautiful natural protected areas of the Lisbon region. The objective of this tour is to provide you with an activity where you can feel the mountain and the sea, in perfect harmony.

Frequently asked questions about Setubal

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What people are saying about Setubal

Overall rating

4.8 / 5

based on 564 reviews

Luciano was an amazing guide to us. He made the experience really fun and exiting. We kayaded our way to a small island where we stopped later to snorkel. He was very helpful and made our snorkelling experience worthwhile. Amaaaazing, amazing experience. He was also being a good teacher and helped me find happiness in the ocean. Highly recommended experience

What a lovely experience. We loved our guide, Tania. She was so knowledgeable and fun. We had an excellent lunch at the “Old Man and the Sea” restaurant in Sesembra. What a memorable day!!

Super cool experience! Top service and nice guides, highly recommended! They knew a lot about the area and it was very beautiful! It's totally worth the splurge!

Our guide Tania had enormous amount of interesting stories around the area. Good and calm driver (even for our finnish standards) and really enjoyable company.

It was a wonderful day, the trip was excellently organized and the tour guide was flexible in responding to all requests.