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BRAGA - how to get there by train or bus and how to get around

INFORMATION CHECKED AND UPDATED 27th JUNE 2024

PLEASE CHECK AT THE OFFICIAL WEBSITES FOR THE TIMES ON THE EXACT DATE YOU PLAN TO TRAVEL
REDE-EXPRESSOS LONG DISTANCE BUS (COACH) TICKETS ARE AVAILABLE ONLY 30 DAYS IN ADVANCE
CURRENT TIMES WILL BE OK FOR PLANNING PURPOSES. THEY RARELY CHANGE.

I have no easy means to check or update everything so please confirm through sources given below. PLEASE CHECK AT THE OFFICIAL WEBSITES.

BRAGA (pop.110,000, urban area 171,000) is a city of Northern Portugal. It is not in the Algarve - I was visiting! It stands about 54km (34 miles) north - east of the major city of Porto.

It is therefore about the same distance from PORTO airport. Lisbon and its airport are some 375km (235 miles) to the south.

From Porto Airport to Braga portometrologolinha_braga.gif

GETBUS operates a direct service between Porto Airport and Braga, costing €9 each way or €16 return. This is the quickest way. There are fourteen buses each way every day at irregular intervals. The non-stop journey takes 50 minutes. Tickets can be bought on line or, with cash only,  from the bus driver. At Braga tickets are also sold at the Getbus ticket office in the bus station.

By metro and train it is frequent, straightforward and inexpensive. Take the METRO DO PORTO Line E from the Airport to Campanhã station. You may need to change trains, which I recommend you do at Lapa station where this is done on the same platform, no need for steps, tunnels etc. Trains are currently running about every 15 minutes daily between about 0700 and 2000, about every 30 minutes at other times. The first train from the airport is at 0606 on weekdays, 0558 on Saturdays and at 0557 on Sundays and public holidays That will take about 35 minutes and costs €2.75 - a Z4 (four zone) ticket. More details at the METRO DO PORTO website. By the way, don't throw away your 'ANDANTE' ticket if you are coming back to Porto. It is rechargeable. You can use it until it wears out and saves you €0.60 on each subsequent ticket of the same type. Tickets are sold at the Airport tourist office, but if it's not open you will need some coins for the ticket machines. The service to the Airport from Trindad starts at 0558 on weekdays, 0622 at weekends and on public holidays, with the last train at 0037 every night. The first direct trains from Campanhã station to the airport are at 0707 on weekdays, 0706 on Saturdays and 0703 on Sundays and Holidays. The last train from Campanhã  is at 0031 every night. If no direct train is shown, take any WESTBOUND train and change at Lapa station.

At Campanhã walk from the Metro station round to the main railway station of CP, Portuguese Railways. That takes only a minute.

From there, local electric trains of the Porto Urbanos network run to Braga about once every hour every day, with extra, faster, trains in weekday rush hours. The normal journey takes about 1 hour and 10 minutes and will cost €3.45. There are simple to use ticket machines in the hall; there were long lines at the ticket office all three times I was there. The machines take cards and notes as well as coins. Special note - all CP Porto Urbanos train tickets are now issued on a rechargeable card called SIGA. This costs 50 cents. Do not  throw it away. It can be used for second and subsequent ticket purchases on the Porto Urbanos network. NB these 'Urbanos' tickets are NOT VALID on Alfa Pendular or Intercity trains. Urbanos trains are (mostly) bright yellow!  bragamapIf you do use one of the Alfa Pendular or Intercity fast trains the trip to Braga will cost you 10 - 15 Euros more to save about 20 minutes.

First train from Porto Campanhã to Braga is at 0620 on weekdays, 0650 daily. The last trains are at 2310 then at 0055 daily. These start from Porto São Bento station five minutes earlier. Be sure to check timetables at the Portugal Railways Official website. First train from Braga to Porto runs daily at 0434 then at 0529 (except Sundays and Holidays), 0621 on weekdays and 0629 Daily. Trains then run at least once each hour until 2039 daily, then at 2139 (weekends), 2239 (weekdays) with the last train at 2332 daily.

If you plan to spend some time in Porto before moving on, the trains to Braga start at the city centre SÃO BENTO station. This historic building is in the heart of the city (it has a Metro station also) and is worth a visit in its own right!

The national long distance bus (coach) network Rede-Expressos has frequent daily service between Porto's Campanhã bus station and Braga from 0845 until 2230 with earlier and later journeys on certain days of the week. Times at www.rede-expressos.pt - tickets cost about €9 but vary according to time of day etc - this is double the train fare. Tickets can be bought on line up to 30 days in advance at the Rede Expressos website www.rede-expressos.pt.  Journey time is 1 hour.  You can get to the bus station on the metro, alighting at Campanhãand walking through the tunnel under the railway lines. The journey from the airport is about 35 minutes and is mostly above ground.

From Lisbon Airport and City to Braga by train  cplogo

You can now pay for Lisbon metro journeys using contactless payment. Each journey including transfer to another line if needed will cost €1,80.

If you are not planning to spend time in Lisbon, you will need to get from the Airport to LISBOA ORIENTE station. Obviously, taxis are available. However, this is very simple using the Lisbon metro (subway) from the airport station. Trains run to Oriente station every few minutes from 0630 until 0100 every night. The journey takes about 5 minutes, ticket price (cash) €2,30 including 50 cents for the rechargeable ticket card. There is also city bus 744 to Oriente, however large luggage is not permitted. City bus details at http://www.carris.pt/
 
If you are planning to spend time in Lisbon, trains to Braga start from the city centre SANTA APOLÓNIA station. Check timetables and buy tickets at www.cp.pt

One way 'normal' tourist (2nd) class fare is €36,60 on the direct Alfa Pendular trains, €28,45 on others. Discounts available for advance booking - see below. SEAT RESERVATION IS COMPULSORY.

Direct trains Lisbon (Santa Apolónia to Braga) at 0700, 0930, 1400, 1600 (**), 1800 and 1930, calling at Lisbon Oriente 9 minutes later. **The 1600 train does not run on Saturdays and public holidays. Journey time between 3hrs 30 minutes and 4 hours. Trains from Braga to Lisbon daily at 0554, 0959, 1254, 1359, 1754, also at 1954 except on Saturdays and public holidays.

You can create more journey options (about another eight trains) by taking one of the frequent trains between Lisbon and Porto (Campanhã) and changing to / from the local 'Urbanos' service there. Train times are subject to change around major public holidays, for example Easter, Christmas and New Year. Check official timetables carefully when making your plans.

Reservations for train trips in Portugal can only be made up to a MAXIMUM of 60 days in advance. You can reserve on line at www.cp.pt and print your own ticket. A big discount is available on many trains for tickets purchased more than 8 days in advance. DO NOT use RailEurope etc as they cannot issue the required seat reservation for which you will pay extra.

Lisbon - Braga by bus (coach) operated by REDE EXPRESSOS

You will need to make your way from the airport to the ORIENTE bus terminal. This is about 2 miles/3.2km from the airport and is linked to it by the underground metro line. Trains run every few minutes from 0630 daily. The journey will take around 8 minutes and cost €2,30 cash, €1,80 contactless. Taxis are readily available.

For your bus options from elsewhere in the city check the city bus website at http://www.carris.pt/

Consult the long distance bus website www.rede-expressos.pt for Lisbon Oriente - Braga times and tickets. Remember it's LISBOA on the timetable search. Some journeys require a change en route. This is clearly shown in the timetables and on your ticket.

Lisbon Sete Rios Bus Station is more convenient for the city centre. Journeys to Braga start from there.

One-way standard fare is currently €25.00 (some discounted tickets can be available for as little as €10) and the journey takes about 4hrs 30 minutes. There are about 12 journeys every day, from 0630 to 1900 with earlier and later journeys on certain days. Rede Expressos also has routes to Braga from many towns and cities through Portugal.

Lisbon - Braga by bus (coach) operated by FLIXBUS

Flixbus ( www.flixbus.pt or app ) can get you to or from Lisbon Airport about five times a day, but you always have to change at Porto. It is a very long journey, 9 hours in one case!

Arriving in Braga

The railway station in Braga is on the western edge of the city centre, a few minutes walk along a mainly pedestrian street will get you there. Taxis are outside, as are local buses. None of the city buses directly connect the railway station and main bus station!

The bus station (Centro Coordenador de Transportes de Braga) in Braga is a closer to the city centre, in Avenida General Norton do Matos. Taxis outside if you need one. It is in the centre of this Map. The tourist office is right in the city centre, at Avenida da Liberdade, number 1.

Getting around in Braga

tub_logoBraga is a walkable city, if a bit hilly! If you need local buses around the city and immediate suburbs, consult the city bus company website at www.tub.pt

Bus service generally runs between 0700 and 2100hrs, but many routes do not run at all at weekends or on holidays. The website is only in Portuguese. There are some late buses, in particular between the railway station and the University campus. There is a zonal ticket system. Cash fares are €1,55 or €2,00 according to the number of zones travelled. These are valid for 1 hour from first use, so you can use more than one bus for your journey. Tourist tickets are available for 1, 2 and 3 days offering discounted travel on all city bus routes. The one day tourist pass all zones is €3,35, two and three day passes are also available. These are also available, with discount, for 5 and 10 people as a group.They have a very good city street and bus map on their website here and also good maps of individual routes showing all stops.

Further afield from Braga - local and regional buses

Braga is at the end of the railway line, so the train does not give many options apart from getting back to Porto or Lisbon. You can, with a change of train at Nine (pronounced NEEN) get to the Spanish border at Valença do Minho in around 2 hrs 30 minutes. From there, two trains a day and a few buses (www.autna.com) run to the Spanish city of Vigo. There are a few direct coaches (buses) between Braga and Vigo operated by Flixbus (www.flixbus.pt) and ALSA (www.alsa.com) with connections to and from Santiago de Compostela.

Several bus companies operate from Braga bus station to a variety of nearby destinations. There is an excellent website showing all departures and arrivals at https://cctb.cm-braga.pt/ - only in Portuguese but easy enough to use.

Buses are reasonably frequent on weekdays, but few run on Saturdays and on many routes there are none on Sundays or Holidays. Interurban and local buses finish between 2000hrs and 2100hrs. Please bear these things in mind before making your plans too firm.

Other bus companies operating from the terminal include:

Autoridade Intermunicipal do Transportes do Cávado (AITC) - buses to Famalição, Arcos de Valdevez, Ponte de Lima, Esposende, Vila Verde -  Timetables can be viewed and downloaded from the Portuguese language page here - https://aitc.cimcavado.pt/horarios/

Buses to Viana do Castelo are a joint operation between AVIC and Rodominho - Transportes.

How to get to the Gerês National Park area from Braga

There are buses between Braga and Gerês, operating seven times a day on weekdays, three times on Saturdays, Sundays and Holidays. Journey is 1 hr 25 minutes, price unknown.  Details here, will open a new window to an external link. The timetable is dated 2021, so perhaps check locally if you can.

There is a limited bus service between Braga and some areas around the edge of the park. Go to https://aitc.cimcavado.pt/horarios/ and choose linhas 200 and 201. For other travel options, use the very good map at https://aitc.cimcavado.pt/mapa-de-rede/ to find other bus routes in the area.

Braga < > Guimarães by bus

It is not possible to travel between Braga and Guimarães by train except by a very long and indirect route. Details about buses below.

Braga - Guimarães : This is AVE route 9304 which runs every 30 - 60 minutes on weekdays, less frequently at weekends. Go to https://avemobilidade.pt/schedules and select the 'line' number (they use American English) and be aware that there are different choices for Dias Úteis (weekdays), Sábado (Saturdays) and Domingos (Sundays and Holidays).AITC Bus 101 Braga <> Guimarães (slower) via the Universities do Minho and Guimarães here.

Football Stadium in Braga

The stadium of SC Braga is within walking distance of the city centre, you will be pleased to know. It's about a mile (1.6km) outside, on the northern edge. Local bus routes 05 and 22 stop nearby. Additional buses are provided for matches.

Comments and updates

If you have any comments or updates for this page, I will be pleased to receive them by email. For more about Braga as a city, please see this article http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Braga

I take no responsibility for any inconvenience caused as a result of later changes to times etc. This page is for general guidance only and you must check details before making commitments and decisions!

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