Portugal Travel

Lisbon getaway : Cascais!

I love Lisbon wholeheartedly. It’s a pure love which even shaken cannot be gone for good. No matter the amount of people or children crying in the city, Lisbon has special place in my heart. However, I agree that sometimes can be overwhelming…. So, how about one day getaway?

This charming, little city is just perfect to take breath from noisy Lisbon. Cascais story can be described in one sentence : from zero to millionaire! Well, maybe “zero” is exaggeration but certainly Cascais began prosper incomparably better when the Portuguese royal family chose this city as their summer holiday destination. Inconspicuous fishing town became trendy holiday resort. And since that time, it still is! Mainly for Portuguese people, tourists either stay in Lisbon, or rush to an extremely famous Sintra.

Are you a podcast person? Be my guest <3

What is Cascais phenomenon?

Those views, like taken straight from scandinavian crime stories: raw nature, cliffs and rough Atlantic Ocean. The charm of this little town lies between narrow streets, reflecting the atmosphere from 19th century, secluded alleys, allowing to take a breath from the sun and tourists. Even though, Cascais is becoming more and more popular, it still preserves its climate and charm of small city by the sea.

How to get to Cascais from Lisbon?

You can get there by train, from Cais do Sodre stop. Within 40min, you’re in Cascais. The return ticket costs around 10 euros – imho, it’s the best since the most affordable option to get there. If your portuguese sighseeing schedule is tight, you can spend a few hours in Belem (tha train to Cascais stops there) and then go to Cascais. The train stops in the heart of the city so gettin to the center of Cascais takes only a few minutes.

Cascais itinerary:

1.Let’s start with a view: Praia da Rainha

Quite decent one : beach and azure ocean and nothing but an endless horizon in front of you. Not bad, right? Well, not without reason this viewpoint has became my favourite one in the city. What a perfect spot for the lunch! Once your batteries are recharged, you can take a walk along Rua Afonso Sanchez.

It’s the street made out of bars, cafes and restaurants. In the morning, quiet and sleepy but wih sun going up and up, starts to hum with life. Musicians fill the street with live music and people, both locals and tourists, restaurants with laugh. Rua Afonso becomes the living embodiment what I love the most about Portugal: joy of life!

2.Walking down the street, you get to Praca 5 de Outubro

The main square with the Town Hall, in Cascais is important to see for two reasons. First one, next to the Town Hall is Museu da Vila with BEAUTIFUL portraits of saints made out of azulejos. Second, it’s where you can see the symbol, statue of king Pedro I, of love greater and more moving than Romeo and Juliette – ’cause it’s the true one! If you want to listen about the story of the queen brought back to life, well, listen to my podacst about Cascais 🙂

Third – yep, I lied – raeson to come there is the view. Not a plebeian one ’cause you’re looking at the royal beach : Praia da Ribeira!

Giving posh vibes. I’m not saying you need to bend your knee just because a few kings were drowning their tootsies in this water BUT take a sit for a while to admire the beauty of Palacete Seixas. Built in the 19th century as summer residencee for that the one percent, including the king of Brazil.

3.Royal family beach: Praia da Ribeira

From Praia da Ribeira you can either go to Alameda Combatentes de Grande Guerra, full of bars and restaurants – be sure to drop by for an ice cream or pancakes at Amori d’Ana – on the way to Centro Historico. This piece of a town is like taken straight from 19th century: colorfull houses, covered with flowers – this is how we imagine a small, portuguese fishing town. From Centro Historico, you can go to Jardim Visconde da Luz – adorable little garden with carrousel, cotton candy and feast vibes 🙂

But those of you who want to dive in the green…

4.Take a walk in Marechal Carmona Park

Huge, green lungs of Cascais! Well, city by the sea surely doesn’t lack fresh air but you get the point :d The park is so worth seeing! Endless alleys, picturesque wooden bridges, fountains with azulejos and … peacocks. Gee, full packet :d I wasn’t lucky enough to see peacocks, I guess December it’s not their fav month, however I loved that place with such a lush greenery. What also can be found there is Condes de Castro Guimaraes. Stunning piece of architecture reminiscing Sintra. Well, maybe it’s not like Sintra but still it has a panache!

5. Panache is what also describes this viewpoint!

And the gesture which very rich portuguese aristocrat had. A certain O’Neil gave his beloved daughter villa, built in Cascais by the sea. Today we can admire this architectural beauty.

By the way, the same O’Neil is responsible for aforementioned Condes de Castro – go hard or go home, I guess. However, thanks to him Miraduoro de Santa Maria is breathtaking : villa, Farol de Santa Marta and azure Atlantic Ocean. Imo, one of the most beautiful things to see in Cascais. One of them ’cause the first place is taken by …

6.The best view in Cascais : Boca do Inferno

Gate to Hell. It’s hard to compete with the devil, right? And even harder when this devil is called Mother Nature. Boca do Inferno is the natural rock formation. Depending on the Ocean, you may come closer but with rough waves sometimes it’s not possible at all. It’s truly impressive!

What I recommend you to do is to take a walk from Miraduro de Santa Maria, only around 10 minutes and on the way you can see the view you will never forget <3

Apart from those famous viewpoints, like Pedra da Nau or Campos de Lapias, try to find your own gems. Just be reasonable! The coastline is tricky and sometimes something what looks like innocent path, turns out to be abyss, straight to the ocean. I love reading crime novels but I don’t wanna read the next one with you as victims …

How did you like Cascais? Hope when in Portugal, you will drop by there!

Ciao <3

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