Exploring the beautiful region of Sintra will provide one of the most memorable experiences during your visit to Portugal, with spectacular castles and palaces, historic villages and beautiful beaches to explore on the rugged Atlantic coast.
The area also features a thriving restaurant scene, and whether you are looking for freshly caught fish and seafood straight from the ocean, Portuguese petiscos (snacks), organic and local vegetarian food, or a refined Michelin starred restaurant for a celebratory occasion, there is something to suit everyone’s palate.
We’ve compiled below some of the best restaurants in Sintra and the surrounding region to help you avoid some of the tourist traps while you stop for lunch during one of your sightseeing tours, or simply while away a long afternoon relaxing over a slow meal or early dinner with a glass of wine, enjoying the magical ambience and spectacular scenery.
Restaurants in Sintra Town
This ancient tasca is the perfect stop for lunch in Vila de Sintra, located away from the crowds on a terraced staircase with a view above the 14th century Pipa Fountain. Offering a modern take on seasonal tapas and petiscos, the dishes are perfect for sharing including grilled portobello mushrooms, fish croquettes, goats cheese salad with figs and fried cuttlefish. It’s a great option for families with kids too. Recommended to try the delicious sangria or house wine and warm pumpkin cake for dessert.
A traditional Portuguese cuisine restaurant located in a former rustic barn. The menu offers tasty dishes including Brazilian beans, cod with cream, rice with squid, prawn açorda, rice with octopus, among many other delicacies. The restaurant also offers a great vegetarian section on the menu with a couple of vegan options, the aubergine with sauteed vegetables is delicious.
Incomum by Luis Santos
This gastronomic space by Swiss trained chef Luis Santos offers excellent service in an elegant, contemporary setting in the centre of town. The Mediterranean fusion menu provides a range of creative suggestions from the tasting menu for a complete experience or you can order from the à la carte menu. Don’t miss the house special tiramisu for dessert.
A relaxed café-restaurant close to Sintra train station, that is perfect for breakfast, brunch or afternoon tea. Located in a beautiful old converted house that transports you to another time, offering simple, home made food including hearty toasted sandwiches, salads, and a good brunch menu and selection of herbal and organic fresh teas to accompany Mathilde’s infamous cheesecake.
A Praça is a charming vegetarian restaurant set in a canteen with a local community atmosphere. With seating centred around an open-plan kitchen, you can see the chef making your dish in the middle of the restaurant, surrounded by a beautiful display of fresh fruits and vegetables. There is a set seasonal menu serving local fresh food at a reasonable price. The menu changes daily, offered as a three-course meal, including options for drinks such as hibiscus tea and homemade lemonade, and dessert.
An Eclectic spot in the heart of the historic centre of Sintra Village, offering homemade organic food and live music in a cosy terraced setting. There is a great variety of delicious, homemade food and drinks and passionate service, from fondue, healthy salads, fish dishes, and couscous picanha beef as well as a good selection of vegetarian and vegan options, including the Beetroot burger as dish of the day.
Restaurants in São Pedro
A cosy restaurant with much character located in Sao Pedro village, just outside the centre of Sintra town. Offering a plant-based menu with vegan and vegetarian dishes at a moderate price, with delicious options even for non vegetarians, including the best bean burgers in town, and a range of local, heart warming food made with love, including casseroles, dahl with rice and savoury tarts. A great option for breakfast or lunch, with warm and welcoming staff. The Palacio de Pena is only a short walk up the hill.
Located in São Pedro De Penaferrim in Sintra, Harkos is a relaxed modern restaurant offering a unique menu combination of both Japanese and Italian cuisine. The sushi is fresh, varied and delicious, and the Italian specialities feature the carpaccio di melanzane, shrimp linguini, squid ink risotto and fabulous desserts including tiramisu and panna cotta.
Restaurants in the Area Surrounding Sintra
Penha Longa Resort
The Penha Longa Resort is housed in a 14th century estate within the Sintra nature reserve, and hosts a range of culinary experiences at one of their seven onsite restaurants, which are well worth the journey whether or not you are a guest at the hotel. Most outstanding within these are the michelin star LAB by Sergi Arola, which invites diners on a creative and innovative gastronomic journey, with its seasonal menu offering locally foraged ingredients all in an idyllic setting; Midori, also awarded with its first Michelin Star offers a Japanese gourmet cuisine; Spices their new Pan Asian restaurant presenting four different cuisines: Chinese, Japanese, Indian and Thai; the trendy Arola, also featuring Chef Sergi Arola, where modern tapas are reimagined and can be enjoyed in a relaxed atmosphere; and finally Penha Longa Mercatto, a family restaurant offering seasonal Italian dishes. Finish the evening with a cool cocktail at B Lounge, the lobby bar.
Flores do Cabo
An interesting concept featuring a vegan restaurant located in an art gallery in Pé da Serra, selling beautiful art and jewellery. The restaurant offers an interesting menu with organic food, natural cooking and sustainable gastronomy as well as delicious desserts. The venue also hosts a range of art and cooking classes.
Azenhas do Mar
Named after the Azenhas do Mar village where it is located, this staple fish and seafood restaurant is set against the cliffs directly overlooking the waves of the Atlantic ocean. Enjoy one of the many fresh dishes paired with the excellent wine list sourced from the local wineries in the region.
An upscale family restaurant founded in 1979 by Manuel and Maria Esteves da Silva in Praia Grande, named after the north wind of the Atlantic ocean. Recognised as an icon on the Sintra coast, the fresh regional food is made with passion, serving fresh fish and seafood caught off the local cliffs, served simply with garlic, coriander and olive oil sauce. Particularly a lovely spot for a late lunch with a glass of wine overlooking the ocean, or for an early dinner at sunset.
Located in a refurbished windmill in Magoito, this relaxed Portuguese restaurant in a quirky setting is a well-kept secret offering high quality meat, fish and BBQ grilled on an open fire for all the family. The house steak is marinated and grilled to perfection, with other options including the Iberian pork, lamb and octopus.
Truly offering the best pizzas in town, don’t miss this family run restaurant in Colares offering a relaxed dinner for all the family after a long day of sightseeing. The pizzas are organic and delicious, combining a homemade fire-oven sourdough base, with traditional imported Italian products and local fresh ingredients.
Moinho Don Quixote
This restaurant is a good option for lunch with its beautiful location and spectacular views overlooking Colares and the ocean. The menu is simple but varied, including burritos and hamburgers, as well as smaller dishes such as guacamole and nachos, garlic shrimps, with milkshakes for the kids and some great desserts. The charming atmosphere and friendly service offers a peaceful respite away from the crowds after a morning of sightseeing.