The added value of a trip to Lisbon lies in its incredible variety of beaches that you find just a short distance from the city. It means that you can combine the pleasure of visiting the characteristic streets so ably narrated by the writer Antonio Tabucchi with the priceless relaxation of golden sand and clear waters that the coast offers to visitors in just one trip. It seems like you are in some gigantic nature park, but with all the convenience of a nearby town.
And so from the centre to the coast it is easy to travel even in just one day, by getting on a public bus or on a train that will also give you the unexpected gift of amazing views with the magic of red sunsets on the coast. Or you will have the possibility of using a hire car, which are generally inexpensive, of planning your itinerary between one dip and the next, one beach and the next.
Golden expanses that continue for kilometres or hidden heavenly coves beneath the characteristic cliffs, nature parks that open up suddenly or sand dunes that characterize the landscape, adding an exotic touch. And then the many places that are especially suited to surfing lovers, with the majestic waves and wind that whip up adrenaline-filled thoughts: this is the beauty within the beauty of Lisbon.
- Carcavelos Beach
- Conceicao (Cascais) Beach
- Costa da Caparica
- São Pedro Beach
- Tamariz Beach
- Santo Amaro de Oeiras Beach
- Do Creiro Beach
- Guincho Beach
- Adraga Beach
- Dis Maçãs Beach
- Dis Bicas Beach
- Tróia-Mar Beach
- São Julião Beach
- Magoito Beach
- Cresmina Beach
- Do Meco Beach
- Figueirinha Beach
- Rainha Beach
- Morena Beach
It is so beautiful and easy to reach, that at weekends it is often really crowded. It is loved by both Lisbon locals and by tourists who are visiting the area. And just thing that we are talking about the largest beach on the Lisbon-Estoril-Cascais coast, with its one and a half kilometres of sand. Getting here is simple. There is also a convenient train that comes from Lisbon, on the line for Cascais.
The water is clean (the Tago estuary is a long way from here) and is the favourite playing field for swimmers and surfers who ride the fantastic waves. By the way: all the equipment can be hired cheaply in one of the many shops in Carcavelos. There are also three surfing schools open in the area.
Fast food bars are also available on the seafront. But they are small cafes. The lack of large hotels nearby, as also any typically seaside-tourist buildings, is not a fault, for sure. The view over the beach is intact. There are plenty of sports that you can try with your friends: beach volley or football matches are the main ones.
Conceicao (Cascais) Beach
From May to September it is decidedly pleasant to spend a bit of time on the beach here, one you get used to the ocean water that is always quite cold on first impact and on certain days. The small headland where Villa Casa Faial stands actually splits the beach into two, the one to the west named Praia du Duquesa and the one to the east named Praia da Conceiçao, closer to Cascais. Both beaches join up during low tide.
We are just a short distance from the Chapel of Nossa Senhora da Conceiçao. There is always a lot going on on the beach in the summer, from banana boats to tyres and dinghies pulled by boats, and pedalos: you can choose transport in the water. Children are welcome. Families can relax and count on the lifeguards who keep watch and the calm sea without currents.
Costa da Caparica
A strip of shoreline that is almost thirty kilometres long. It starts in the town of Costa da Caparica and reaches as far as Fonte de Telha. Almost the entire large beach is part of the protected landscape area named Arriva Fossil da Costa da Caparica and is divided into three large areas, Terras da Costa, Acácias and Medos. The blue flag is a guarantee of clean waters and distinguishes these beaches that lie one after the other for the entire walk, changing names as they go.
They are easy to reach and all have a car park close to the entrance, although it is more fun reaching them using the Transpraia service, the little train that leaves the city of Costa and stops at Fonte de Telha, stopping at each of the beaches that you come across on its route.
The best known beaches by way of the popular open-air bars are mainly Praia da Morena and Paria da Sereia, while do Castelo, do Rei and da Rainha are more family-friendly. Here there is also the first beach dedicated to naturism in Portugal, Praia da Bela Vista. Fonte de Telha is the last beach on this stretch, protected by a 70-metre wall of rock, which is perfect for paragliding.
São Pedro Beach
We are in the town - not far from Lisbon - that the car-racing circuit has made famous worldwide: Estoril. You come here from Lisbon by train and is a wonderful panoramic experience. São Pedro do Estoril Beach is bordered by a natural stone wall formed by sea erosion. On one side, the shore is bordered by a harbour, while on the other side there are the buildings in Ponta do Sal.
Pale sands and surfing waves: these are the main characteristics, although often at low tide the sea forms large water pools that are popular with children. The sand is incredibly clean, guaranteed by work of volunteers. At weekends it is a destination for so many tourists, while in the week it is much quieter. Two restaurants offer the possibility of lunch or dinner with an ocean view, as well as showers and facilities.
There is also a casino in Estoril and opposite the building we find Praia do Tamariz, known for its elegance and fine, golden sand that make it one of the most popular beaches along the entire Lisbon coast. Accessible by train, it has all the amenities that are appreciated especially by those travelling with children. There is, in fact, a big choice of coffee shops and restaurants with panoramic external areas and terraces but also a large natural pool formed by the breakwaters and that fills with sea water.
Clean water: Tamariz was the first Portuguese beach to be awarded the blue flag, in1987. Trying the great fresh fish here while enjoying the view of the sea, is almost inevitable. And if you want a walk after your meal, you can reach the centre of Cascais in about twenty minutes.
Santo Amaro de Oeiras Beach
The wonderful strip of sand called Praia do Santo Amaro, the largest in the area, almost one kilometre long, is found on the Oeiras cost, close to Lisbon.. The São João das Maias fortress borders the bathing area to the east. A day here is well spent due to the chance of enjoying the breath-taking view over the sea and the nature that surrounds the shoreline. Not just that. At night the lights of the bars turn on and the fun continues, protected by surveillance and bathrooms, showers and other facilities.
The promenade that runs behind the beach allows you to visit the beautiful places around the beach too. Just further west, we find the tourist port of Oeiras and immediately behind the salt water Ocean Pool with lots of diving boards. By following the path, we come to the small, welcoming Praia da Torre. Nearby, it is possible to walk in the Jardim da Quinta dos Sete Castelos and at the centre of the park you can admire the view of a vintage building entirely covered in ivy.
Do Creiro Beach
For many people, this is the beach with the whitest sand in Europe, surrounded by lush trees full of chirping birds. Walking on the paths of colourful pebbles, enjoying the view and then swimming in the clear water is a wonderful experience. A Californian beach in Portugal, in the context of a beautiful city like Sesimbra, famous for its fish delicacies.
All around there are splendid natural beauties, for example the hills of Serra de Arrábida where there are lovely lanes leading to the beach and the beautiful cliffs of Cabo Espichel. The harbour in Sesimbra is a part of the panorama, adding beauty to the place, as does the wonderful little fort. It is easy to get here from Lisbon for a day trip. The bus service is extremely reliable and comfortable, but another interesting option is car hire, as it is not expensive.
With a journey of just 5 kilometres from Cascais, travelling along the magnificent road along the Atlantic Coast to the north west, we come to the enchanting and characteristic Guincho Beach. This continues for a kilometre and is known for its wonders and for the wind and waves that makes it a favourite destination for surfers who come here from all over Europe and at all times of the year.
The water is crystal-clear and the sand dunes on the beach are now an attraction for everyone. From Cascais you can reach Guincho Beach thanks to a cycling path that is popular with runners, cyclists and skaters. It continues for ten kilometres and crosses several interesting places. Cascais also have a free hire service. There are several bars, restaurants and hotels, generally affordable for everyone.
We are in an environment that is striking due to the line of crags shaped by the force of the sea over the centuries, but also the cliffs, caves and tunnels. Praia da Adraga, close to the town of Almoçageme, is crowded during summer months but is also busy in other periods of the year for people wanting to take long, pretty walks.
The beach has been awarded a blue flag, has access for disabled people and all facilities. From here, it is easy to reach the true jewel-like beaches such as Praia do Cavalo, Praia do Caneiro and Praia Grande. Or you can climb the hill, following a small lane that everyone can tackle, first covered with white gravel and then becoming brown sand amidst the slim trees. There are patches of yellow, white and purple flowers and on top of the hill there is a wonderful view over the cliffs and the entire Almoçageme landscape.
Dis Maçãs Beach
Tradition would have it that this beach’s name comes from ripe apples that in the past would fall from the trees onto the sand, and were transported from the orchards by sea, until they reached this beach via Ribeira de Colares.
There is a deep beach, ideal for beach sports. Water sports enthusiasts are also at home here, such as body boarding and surfing and the beach can be reached by tram from Sintra, that runs along the whole valley, from the city to the beach, which also has shops, restaurants, coffee shops, bars and a salt water swimming pool.
Dis Bicas Beach
South of Moinho de Baixo beach, and close to the Campimeco campsite, Praia dis Bicas is another paradise for surfers and bodyboarders. On blustery days, however, it becomes dangerous for everyone to enter the challenging sea. Its beauty lies in the woodland that surrounds the rocky coastline and the strip of sand lose to the river bank. The flow of fresh water makes it unique.
A big set of steps leads up to a beautiful observation point. As it is so small and wild, the beach does not have tourist facilities, there are no bars and restaurants. They can be found just outside, near the car park. How clean the beach is really catches your eye. A day here brings special emotions with it.
One of the most beautiful settings of Portugal's coastline, 13 kilometres of unspoilt beaches, clear waters and plenty of sand due that go as far as the pine forests. There are also exclusive tourist facilities for exclusive holidays in the shade of the trees.
The Troia area occupies the northernmost point of this elegant peninsula. The area's reputation of exclusive, amazing venues started in the 1980s, when the Troia Golf was completed, one the most beautiful courses in the whole of Portugal.
But everyone can afford to come to this seaside resort thanks to the wide range of accommodation. The beach is always busy but if you want to try other activities there is no end to your choices here. You can also hire bikes and cycle to the deserted beaches and cool woods. It is also possible to choose a trip to visit the ruins of a huge Roman settlement in the Cetobriga area, where the ancient population spent their time salting fish.
São Julião Beach
Do Meco Beach
Are you looking for the best place to go surfing? Ericeira is thought to be the surfing capital, the most desirable destination for surfing enthusiasts in Europe and one of the top destinations worldwide. Crags and coves make it ideal for waves and therefore also for surfing at all levels, from beginners to professionals.
Surfing is not the only attraction, however. The Ericeira area is decidedly beautiful, with its narrow lanes down to the beach, the little houses with their blue roofs, and the view of the ocean and crisp air that all help to create the magical atmosphere. This place deserves more than one day to visit it, although it is so easy to reach from Lisbon and can be included as a a stop on your itinerary to discover the beautiful spots in this part of Portugal.
The old town centre is charming, including Praça da República surrounded by pretty villas, but also restaurants specialised in seafood recipes, in particular with lobster. Palacio nacional de Mafra was the majestic residence of the Portuguese royal family and is definitely worth a visit.
Set sail for Lisbon with Costa Cruises
Beaches for families, youngsters and surfing enthusiasts, wide or narrow beaches between crags and an old castle standing over the sea; choosing your destination on the coast around Lisbon will be no simple task. A feast of beautiful places!