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Estação do Oriente train, bus and metro station, Lisbon
The Estação do Oriente is a major train, bus and metro station located in the Parque das Nações district of Lisbon. Oriente is Lisbon’s primary intercity train station, with express services to the north (Porto), south (Algarve) and east (Evora), along with urban services that include regular departures to Sintra.
The Estação do Oriente is the main bus terminus for international services and the departure location for smaller, private bus companies. (Note: Rede Expressos coaches depart from the Sete Rios bus station). Orient metro station, which on the lower level of the Estação do Oriente complex, is as equally busy, as this is the main connection to the Parque das Nações, with its numerous tourist sights, conference centres and the Altice Arena.
Luckily for tourists, the Estação do Oriente is safe, modern and easy to navigate, and there are excellent facilities, including the Vasco da Gama shopping centre. This article will provide a tourist guide to the Estação do Oriente station, and includes information the services that depart from here, travel advice and facilities here.
Related Articles: Tourist guide to the Parque das Nações – Sete Rios bus station
Where is the Estação do Oriente?
The Oriente station is to the northeast of Lisbon (GPS: 38.76787, -9.09914) and is situated in the Parque das Nações, which was originally constructed for Expo 98. The station is 2.5km from the airport and 7km from the Baixa district (the historic centre of Lisbon).
Related articles: Travel from the airport to the city centre – Expo 98
Estação do Oriente Overview
The Estação do Oriente was constructed as the centrepiece for Expo ‘98, and was designed as a fusion between Gothic and striking modernism styles. There are vast sweeping concrete arches reminiscent of gothic cathedrals combined with high vaulted metal latticework, which adds the futuristic element to the station’s appearance. Being over 20 years, the Estação do Oriente is starting to show its age, but it is still a magnificent building and will impresses tourists passing through.
Navigating through the Estação do Oriente
The Estação do Oriente is Portugal's busiest transport interchange and the combined bus, train and metro station handles more passengers than New York's Grand Central Station. Thankfully the station complex has been expertly designed, so that visitors pass through with the minimal of hassle.
The station extends over five levels; with the metro on the lowest floor and the train tracks at the top. On the level below the tracks are the rail ticket offices and waiting rooms, and on ground level is the exit for the bus station and Parque das Nações. The level between the ground and the metro provides the entrance to the Vasco da Gama shopping centre and the car parks.
Connecting all of the levels are escalators and lifts, and the entire station is easy to navigate if lugging heavy luggage or have children in tow.
Express train services from the Estação do Oriente
Intercity train travel in Portugal is of a very high standard and surprisingly inexpensive, but the number of cities that are served by regular services is very limited.
The Estação do Oriente is the main intercity train station of Lisbon, and all express services depart or pass through here. This includes the Alfa Pendular high-speed intercity train services to the north of Portugal (Coimbra, Aveiro, Porto and Braga) or to the south (Faro, Tunes).
Intercidades (inter-city) trains are slightly slower and include northern and southern routes, along with services to the east (Evora, Beja). Regional services head to Tomar, Castelo Branco, Santarem and Caldas da Rainha.
A full list of intercity services, timetables and the purchasing of tickets can be made on the Comboios de Portugal (CP) website https://www.cp.pt
Note: Tickets for the trains must be purchased in advance and in the summer do not expect to turn and have seats available.
Train tickets can be purchased from the ticket offices in the Estação do Oriente and are open from 05:30 to 22:10 (Mon-Fri) and 06:15 to 22:10 (Sat-Sun). There is an excellent food court on the top floor of the Vasco da Gama shopping centre, and if you have a long wait for a train or bus, we would recommend heading here.
Lisbon has a second intercity train station, Santa Apolonia, and most (not all!) north/south services stop here also. This station is more convenient for visitors who are based in downtown Lisbon (Baixa, Alfama districts) as it is much closer.
Related articles: Lisbon to the Algarve
- Lisbon to Porto - Lisbon and Evora - Santa Apolonia
Urban train services from the Estação do Oriente
There are two urban rail services from the Estação do Oriente; the western route to Sintra and the northern route to Azambuja. The Azambuja service is of no interest to tourists, but the Sintra route is very useful.
The train is the recommended means of travelling to Sintra (which is the best day trips from Lisbon), and there are train services from either Rossio station in the Baixa district or Estação do Oriente. The Oriente – Sintra service takes 47 minutes, a single costs €2.25 and there are up to three departures per hour.
Related articles: Lisbon to Sintra - Lisbon airport to Sintra - Rossio station
Important: There are no urban train services from Estação do Oriente to Cascais or Estoril. For these train services head to the Cais do Sodré station
Related articles: Lisbon to Cascais - Cais do Sodré
The bus station at Estação do Oriente
Oriente bus station is a coach station which handles, international, intercity and regional bus services from a range of different operators. This varied selection of departures combined with the many departure bays combined and poor information system can make departures from Oriente a confusing process. At each of the bus stops is a sign for the company but a lot of time can be wasted wandering around lost.
Oriente bus station is where the Spanish intercity services operated by Alsa and Avanza, depart from and more information can be found on their websites:
Transportes Sul do Tejo (TST) buses operate express bus service to Setubal and southern side of the Tejo Estuary further details can be seen on their website:
The main national coach company of Portugal, Rede Expressos, use the Sete Rios bus station as their main hub in Lisbon.
Related articles: Sete Rios bus station
Metro at Estação do Oriente
The Oriente major metro station is one of the busiest metro stations in Lisbon and up until 2012 was the final stop on the red line. The metro is the best means of travel to reach the Estação do Oriente, but the red metro line does not extend to central Lisbon, and a change to either the yellow, blue or green is required. In the station, there is a ticket office and many ticket machines.
Related articles: Metro Guide
History of Estação do Oriente
The Estação do Oriente train station was constructed as the main passenger terminus for Expo ‘98 show. The organizing committee invited designers to submit plans for the multi-tier station that could also act as an exhibit hall during the exposition; this is why the complex contains so much open space. The Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava was selected in 1994 and construction started a year later. The station was officially opened on the 19th May 1998 two months before the start of Expo 98.