If you're in Lisbon and traveling around Europe, the most obvious next stop on your trip is next-door neighbor, Spain. What's not so obvious is to travel down to Seville instead of more popular destinations like Madrid or Barcelona. Seville not only gives you a delicious taste of the Andalusia region in southern Spain, but it's also conveniently connected by high-speed train to the bigger cities up north and makes an excellent jumping-off point for the rest of the country.
Because of the relatively close distance between Lisbon and Seville, there are several ways to get between them, including by bus, plane, train, and car. Air travel will get you to Seville the fastest—and sometimes the cheapest. However, between Lisbon and Seville are picturesque towns, Roman ruins, and sensational beaches, all of which can only be reached if you travel by train, bus, or car.
How to Get from Lisbon to Seville
- Train & Bus: 5 hours, 45 minutes, from $8
- Flight: 1 hour, 5 minutes, from $12 (fastest option)
- Bus: 7 hours, 30 minutes, from $12
- Car: 4 hours, 30 minutes, 250 miles (400 kilometers)
By Train and Bus
You can't take a train directly from Lisbon to Seville, so you'll first need to catch a train to Faro in the southern region of Algarve. Trains leave daily from the main train terminal located near the airport, Lisboa Oriente, and get you to Faro in about three hours. Trains get more expensive as the trip date gets closer, so buy your tickets as far ahead in advance as possible. A ticket bought weeks in advance can cost as little as $6; however, even a same-day ticket should only cost about $25—assuming seats are still available.
Once you get to the Faro train station, you'll have to walk about 150 yards to the Faro bus station. The bus ride from Faro to Seville is about two hours and 45 minutes, and tickets bought in advance can cost as little as 1 euro.
The train and bus combination is ideal for visitors who want to visit Faro and Southern Portugal anyway. It's an especially lively area during the summer months, although it also has a much quieter charm in the low-season from autumn to early spring. Spend a day or two relaxing on Portugal's beaches before crossing the border and on to Seville.
The fastest way to get to Seville is to book a flight. It's only an hour between the two cities, and budget airlines like RyanAir and TAP Portugal mean that it's possible to find plane tickets for the same price as the bus. Low-cost airlines have strict luggage policies and some even charge for carry-on bags, so check all of the fees to make sure you're getting the best deal.
It's easy to reach Seville's city center from the airport by taking the city bus, which takes about 35 minutes and only costs 4 euros, or about $5. You can also hail a cab which should come out to 20–30 euros depending on your final destination and traffic.
For a direct trip without worrying about transfers, you can take a bus from Lisbon to Seville for as little as $12. The journey usually lasts seven and a half hours, but overnight buses that avoid traffic and make fewer stops can get you there in five and a half hours (although you have to catch a bus at 3 a.m.).
Check the schedule and purchase tickets using FlixBus, which uses dynamic pricing, meaning that tickets get more expensive as demand increases. If you're flexible on your departure time, you can usually find even same-day bus tickets at the lowest prices. Buses depart from Lisbon at the Oriente Station near the airport and arrive in Seville at the centrally-located Plaza de Armas.
Setting out from Lisbon by car, you'll want to head east toward the Portuguese city of Évora before continuing to the Spanish city of Mérida, then south toward Seville. The entire journey will take almost five hours driving, but you'll want to plan an extra day or two for your trip if you truly want to enjoy these additional cities. Évora is the capital of Portugal's Alentejo wine region and also has some great Roman ruins, while Mérida has Spain's best-preserved Roman ruins with an amphitheater in such good condition that local actors still put on performances there.
Alternatively, driving south through Portugal toward the Faro and the Algarve takes the same amount of time. Especially if you're visiting while the weather is warm, a pitstop at Portugal's most famous beach region could be an excellent way to break up the drive.
Driving gives you the most freedom on your trip, but don't forget about other costs that come with it. Besides the gasoline, Portugal and Spain both use tolls on national highways that can quickly add up. Also, unless you're returning to Lisbon, most car rental companies charge a hefty fee for dropping off a vehicle in a different country than you picked up from.
What to See in Seville
Seville is the political, economic, and cultural capital of Andalusia, the southernmost region of peninsular Spain. If you want to experience the best tapas, flamenco, and festivals that Spain has to offer, Seville is the place to be. It has a huge foodie scene with premier restaurants, although you'll find most sevillanos bar-hopping in the afternoon while snacking on tapas. If you happen to be in town for Holy Week or the Seville Festival at the end of April, you'll be in for a cultural treat that has no equal in Spain (but make your travel plans early for these popular holidays). Even if you miss the festivals, you'll still fall in love taking in the city's rich history, its Moorish architecture, and the sound of guitarras playing in the street.