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Lisbon Suburban Bus and Coach Services

A DAF coach of EVA Transportes at Arco do Cego, 2002.

28 June 2009 (in part)

Copyright: ©
Compiled by John Laidlar

Lisbon Bus Stations

A Mafrense service (2002)

Lisbon has an extensive range of suburban bus operators, including a number whose names have been given a new lease of life by bus denationalization during the 1990s. After the 1974 Revolution all companies with 60 or more vehicles were nationalized and became part of the Rodoviária Nacional company (RN). RN has now been disbanded, though some vehicles still operate in its livery of orange and white, with their new operators' name added to the bodywork.
Amongst the best places to see a wide variety of vehicles and operators are
  • Sete Rios. This is now Lisbon's main coach station - opened on 22 September 2004 to replace Arco do Cego, q.v.. It is convenient for the Metro (Jardim Zoológico) and the railway station (Sete Rios), though not very well signposted within the complex which combines these two stations. It has 15 covered bays and 4 open bays and is located where the former Metro sidings were.
  • Campo Grande Bus/Metro Interchange, at the northern end of the Green and Yellow Lisbon Metro lines handles services mostly to the north of the city.
  • Oriente Bus Interchange adjacent to Oriente railway station, accommodates services across the Ponte Vasco da Gama, as well as long-distance services to northern Portugal.
  • Praça de Espanha in north-west Lisbon is the starting point for a number of services across the 25th April Bridge to such locations as Sesimbra.
  • Arco do Cego Coach Station near Saldanha, housed many long-distance coach services in the former tramsheds of Carris but closed in September 2004 as the new facility opened at Sete Rios q.v. At closure it handled an average of 347 services and transported 6,000 passengers a day. Now converted into a car park and garden
  • Marquês de Pombal. Lisboa Transportes and VIMECA used to have ticket offices and operate a number of suburban services from the unmarked road which runs down the western side of the Parque Eduardo VII.
    Outside the city confines, other bus stations include:
  • Algés Bus/Rail Interchange - a less busy spot than Campo Grande is the modern Algés bus station near the railway station of the same name on the Cascais Line railway from Cais do Sodré station in Lisbon. Algés is also reachable by the no.15 tram from Praça da Figueira. Services from here are mainly east-west routes.
  • Estoril and Cascais, along the coast west of Lisbon, also have extensive bus services from outside their respective railway stations.
  • Cacilhas Bus/Ferry Interchange, across the River Tagus, is the focus for services to the south of Lisbon.

    1: Sete Rios Bus/Metro Interchange

    This facility (seen above) opened on 22 September 2004 on the site of the former Metro workshops. It replaced the coach station installed in the former tram depot at Arco do Cego, q.v.. Though less central than Arco do Cego, it has much better Metro and rail connections but lacks the character of the former location. The national long-distance bus service, Rede Expressos(Express Network) has an excellent web-site with an on-line timetable detailing services from Sete Rios.

    2: Campo Grande Bus/Metro Interchange

    If you follow the 'Autocarro' signs from the Metro at Campo Grande you will be directed to an overbridge above the bus station. In the station atrium is a board listing the various bus operators and their services. The destinations are predominantly to the north of the city of Lisbon, but not exclusively so. Once outside the Metro station you will observe not only the bus stands but also very close by, the Alvalade stadium of the Sporting Lisbon football club, a new stadium built for "Euro 2004".

    Bus Operators from Campo Grande

    Boa Viagem service at Campo Grande, 2002.

    Although city services are the preserve of Carris, many other operators also run suburban services from Lisbon. These firms include:


    One of the largest bus operators in the area, Barraqueiro is owned by the French Vivendi group, which also has a large stake in the Fertagus cross-river rail service. They operate a mixed fleet of vehicles, with the newer ones in a blue and white livery with a striking, stylised 'B' on their sides. Their routes include services to Mealhada, Covas Ferro, Torres de Bela Vista, Frielas and Moninhos. The Barraqueiro company is a major shareholders in the Fertagus railway company which runs the cross-Tagus service.

    Barraqueiro Oeste (Barraqueiro West)

    Barraqueiro Oeste (Barraqueiro West) services include the frequent route from Lisbon's Campo Grande to the towns of Torres Vedras and Vimeiro, made famous by the Peninsular War siege. Other destinations served include Lourinhã, Mafra, Malveira and Cadaval. The company's origins go back to the João Henriques dos Santos and Capistranos companies, via Rodoviária da Estremadura, which was set up in the 1990s. Its telephone number within Portugal is (061)-313-304.

    Boa Viagem

    Boa Viagem's green and white buses serve Alverca, Sobralinho and other destinations from Campo Grande (route #72). They were founded in 1972 from the residue of the Lopes e Matos company. Tel. no. (063)-71-13-03/4. Their routes link Lisbon to V.F. de Xira and towns north of the cpital. They also run local services in Alenquer and Arruda dos Vinhos.


    Estremadura has roots going back to the early 20th century.

    Fertagus Sul

    Fertagus Sul buses provide links from immediately outside the railway stations on the Fertagus network, across the river from Lisbon. Services run to numerous towns in the Almada, Pragal and other areas.

    Isidoro Duarte

    A long-established independent operator, with services from Campo Grande and other bus terminals. Their livery is red, grey and white and their destinations include Póvoa da Galega, Tesoureira and Venda do Pinheiro.


    This is another division of the Barraqueiro company, with an identical blue and white livery.


    As the name implies, this company runs services to Mafra, an historic town most famous for its enormous 18th-century royal palace, to the north of Lisbon. The company's routes go back to the 1920s and the João Sadinha Dias company. Mafrense also operates to the coastal town of Ericeira and to Malveira, an hour and a quarter's journey to the north-west of Lisbon, as well as to Sintra, Torres Vedras and Loures. It carries more than 3 million passengers a year. (Tel: (061)-816-152).

    H.L. Mota & Filhos

    Mota is one of the smaller operators, whose fleet includes flexi-buses.

    Rodoviária de Lisboa

    The rear portion of each vehicle in the extensive Rodoviária de Lisboa fleet of buses is painted in one a striking variety of colours, including blue, green, yellow and red, with the front ends in white. Rodoviária de Lisboa operates an extensive service from a number of Lisbon hubs to the towns around Lisbon. The hubs include Campo Grande, Areeiro, Colégio Militar and adjacent to Oriente railway station. Destinations include Lisbon Airport, Montemor, Caneças, Tojal, Odivelas, Zambujal and Bucelas. The fleet includes modern Mercedes stock. The company's offices include ones at Caneças (tel:(01)-9803907), Odivelas (tel: (01)-9341172), Bucelas (tel: (01)-9694078) and Santa Iria de Azóia (tel: (01) 9593541).

    A Rodoviária do Tejo double-decker parked in front of a Rodoviária de Lisboa vehicle, June 2002.

    Rodoviária do Tejo

    This company operates services to Malveira, Lourinhã, Torres Vedras and Peniche from Campo Grande. Their fleet includes modern double-decker coaches, as seen, right, at Campo Grande. They also ran from Arco do Cego to such towns as Fátima and Leiria. It has a website.


    Until it was absorbed by TST in 2006, Setubalense operated from its base in the city of Setúbal, on the River Sado, to the south of the Tagus, Setubalense running services to a variety of Lisbon termini. Its services can also be seen at Cacilhas.

    3: Oriente Bus Interchange

    L to R: A service to Guimarães in northern Portugal; a suburban service operated by a Dennis bus of Rodoviária de Lisboa.

    Situated on the landward-side of the Oriente railway station complex, this is a large, modern facility. Like the railway station, the booking offices are situated at a higher level than the services and is also poorly signposted. The stands nearest to the railway station are those for Carris services, though it should be noted that some routes, such as the 44, stop under the station itself at the south end of the complex. Other operators from the bus station include Setubalense, who run services across the Ponte Vasco da Gama to Palmela and Setúbal. A number of northern Portuguese operators also run long-distance services to here, including ones to Spain (Badajoz etc). Amongst the Portuguese firms running to the north of Portugal are Joalto.

    Joalto service at Oriente, June 2002.

    4: Praça de Espanha

    L to R: A TST service at Praça de Espanha; the Belos canteen bus used by Setubalense crews, an AEC-UTIC, fleet no.8442; an RBL (Coimbra) bus waits in the parking area.

    Praça de Espanha is situated near the Metro station of the same name, some five minutes walk from the Gulbenkian Museum amd Centro de Arte Moderna. It is a focus for services primarily using the 25th April Bridge across the Tagus to towns on the southern side of the river, including Setúbal. The main operators from here are Transportes Sul do Tejo (TST) (which since 2006 has incorporated the Setubalense company). Locations served include Setúbal, Elvas, Palmela, Corruche, Montijo, Almada and the Costa de Caparica. Apart from a few shelters and the unprepossessing booking kiosks of the operators, the Praça de Espanha bus station is lacking in facilities. As well as the bus stands, there is a large unmetalled section where out-of-service stock parks up.

    5: The Former Arco de Cego Coach Station

    L to R: The main entrance to Arco do Cego coach station, with a short length of old tram track on the forecourt; a Chevrolet bus from the Algarve served as an exhibit at Arco do Cego; after closure Arco do cego has become a car park with an adjacent garden, as seen here in 2007.

    Until September 2004, many long-distance coach services terminated inside the former Carris tram-sheds at Arco do Cego, which lie on the Avenida Duque de Ávila, near to Saldanha Metro station. Rede Expresso services covered most of the country, whilst operators such as Tejo and EVA also ran coaches from here. International services also operated, including an express service to Madrid. The outside of the building was adorned by eye-catching diagrammatic maps of nationwide coach services. Inside, there was an information desk, booking offices, a café and waiting areas. The former tram-shed and bus station building is now sadly a utilitarian car park whilst the outside coach-parking area has been converted into gardens.

    6. Marquês de Pombal

    Lisboa Transportes and VIMECA have ticket offices and operate a number of suburban services from the road which runs down the western side of the Parque Eduardo VII. These are chiefly commuter rather than tourist routes and destinations include Linda-a-Velha and Carnaxide. In summer 2005 this area was given over to major roadworks and buses had been moved elsewhere, in some cases slightly lower down the Avenida da Liberdade.

    7: Algés Bus/Rail Interchange

    L to R: Lisboa Transportes SCANIA and a VIMECA Mercedes at Algés bus station, 2002.

    Algés interchange is reached via the subway from the Algés railway station, or by walking towards the coast from the tram #15 stop. It has striking modern architecture but, unfortunately, the bus shelters are aligned in such a way that they afford most protection from the sun for passengers standing beside rather than under them. The bus station tower bears the name of Oeiras (the local administartive area) ratherv than of Algés itself. A five minute walk from here, along the inner coast road, away from Lisbon, is the Aquário Vasco da Gama which is well worth a visit. Amongst the bus operators to be seen at Algés are:

    Lisboa Transportes

    LT services are to be seen also at Belém and Marquês de Pombal. The fleet colour is a striking turquoise and white.

    Vimeca- Viação Mecânica de Carnaxide

    Vimeca Mercedes, no.112, out of service but stuck in a Belém traffic jam.

    Formerly known as VMC, Vimeca operates services from Algés, using a modern fleet of Mercedes vehicles. The livery is white, with blue and red stripes. Headquarters are at Rua Marcos de Portugal, 2810 Laranjeira, (tel: (01)253-20-57).

    8: Estoril and Cascais Bus/Rail Interchanges

    The bus station at Cascais is to the left of the station exit, alongside the railway platforms on the seaward side of the station. The newish shopping centre on the landward side of the station (at the buffers-end of the station) has a cafe on the top floor with an open-air balcony which affords good views of Cascais train station and the adjacent road transport. The stops at Estoril are immediately outside the landward side of the station, towards the Lisbon end of the platforms. There is also a Scott URB information kiosk here. Across the road in the left arcade, adjacent to the Tourist Information Office is the Yate Bar which, with its neighbours, provides a good open-air vantage point.

    Scotturb / Stagecoach Portugal

    Scotturb, successor to Stagecoach Portugal, operates its modern fleet of buses largely to the west of the city centre, around Cascais, Estoril and Sintra. The company also runs a jointly operated bus service with Rodoviária de Lisboa (Expresso 498) between Cascais, Estoril, and the former Expo 98 site, now termed the Parque das Nações. Scotturb uses the Stagecoach livery of white, with orange, red and blue bands. Tel no: (01)-483-20-55.
    For further details of the Sintra bus and tram services of Scotturb, visit this site's Sintra page.

    9: Cacilhas Bus/Ferry/Metro Interchange

    L to R: TST blue-liveried service to Caparica; TST yellow and blue flexibus at Cacilhas; TST bus in the old RN orange and white livery at Cacilhas- all seen in 1999. Far right: a 2008 view of a TST Scania, #561.

    Cacilhas ferry terminal, a short ferry-ride across the River Tagus from either the Cais do Sodré ferry station, has a busy bus station immediately outside the ferry terminals as well as the MST tram terminal. Here can be seen numerous and varied vehicles from the TST (Transportes Sul Tejo) fleet and lesser numbers from other operators such as Setubalense. For ferry service details, see Lisbon Ferries page. In dry dock nearby are the former Navy sail ship D Fernanda e Glória and a submarine.

    TST- Transportes do Sul do Tejo, S.A.

    TST services are particularly numerous at Cacilhas bus station, adjacent to the ferry terminal for services to Lisbon. Their fleet is in a variety of liveries, including blue and yellow and blue and white. Vehicles in the fleet include flexibuses. Services include connections to the popular beaches of the Costa de Caparica.

    A Coach Trips from Lisbon page is under development, indicating return trips that can be made from Lisbon in a day.

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