“I NEED, EVERY TIME AGAIN, TO GO TO CASCAIS …”
Fernando Pessoa em Carta para Ophélia Queiroz, 1929
Cascais, located 20 minutes from Lisbon, is the most beautiful and sophisticated of Portuguese cities and one of the most charming in all of Europe.
The sea, white sand, beautiful, luxurious hotels and the street shops enchant tourists all year round.
An elegant summer retreat of the Portuguese monarchy during the 19th century and a harbor of European royalty during World War II, over time, the city has become a refined pole of culture, sport and an enviable quality of life.
Walk to Rua Direita, which is the main shopping street of the city, where you can find beautiful shops and street vendors.
There are also small shopping centers and the famous Cascais fairs with excellent opportunities to buy handicrafts and good bargains.
The proximity to the sea and the mild climate, are allied to the gastronomic tradition, giving to the region a marked and varied offer, based on fish and seafood.
Among the most popular dishes of the region are the sea bass, the sargo or the unparalleled sole of Cascais, very fresh and accompanied by the best ingredients. The sea offers naturally much more. Aguce your appetite with shrimp, crab, barnacles, crayfish or lobster, prepared here in an unique and traditional way.
To finish off the meal do not forget to taste one of the traditional sweets: Travesseiros (the “Pillows”), the famous Queijadas de Sintra and Areias de Cascais. Portuguese sweets made from eggs are unique in Europe, and probably in the world.
As for wines, the quality of the best Portuguese red wines is internationally recognized. In the region, the exquisite digestive wine of Carcavelos is made. It is a liqueur wine, produced in Demarcated Region (VLQPRD), topaz color, velvety and with an almond flavor.
Right next to it, in the Sintra area, Colares wine is produced. They are red and white table wines, whose production region has the classification “DOC – Denomination of Controlled Origin” and extends along the coast, with the vineyards protected by sand dunes.
Choosing a restaurant is really easy thanks to the great offers available. From the most exquisite to the most popular, the wide variety of dishes will surely surprise you.
- Atlantico Bar e Restaurante
- Casa da Guia
- Confraria (Japanese)
- Chef’s table
- Porto Santa Maria
- The Mix – Farol Design Hotel
- Baia do Peixe
- Moules e Gin
- Os Prazeres da carne
- Have an ice cream in Santini at the main point in Cascais
- Have a “Pastel de Nata” in “O Mundo Precisa de Nata” in the center of Cascais and chocolates in “Arcadia” (these shops are in front of Pizza Hut, also the tourist office is right next door).
- Have the world’s best hot dog at a van parked at Boca do Inferno at the end of Guincho Road and watch a dazzling sunset.
- Visit the market for fish, vegetables, fruits and meat on Wednesdays and Saturdays in the Center of Cascais. Have some pasta at the Gulli at the bay of Cascais (also in the Center). Have some traditional seafood in any seafood restaurant, ask for: clams (and for some bread for the sauce).
- In Estoril you can go to the Casino for dinner or to have a drink (dinner at Zeno or any Japanese restaurant there).
- To savor good wine, you should choose DOURO, ALENTEJO or SADO wines. Expensive wine does not mean great wine.
WHERE TO EAT FRESH FISH
- Baía do Peixe (in the center of Cascais, in the bay)
- Furnas do Guincho (on Guincho road)
- Mar do Inferno (in Boca do Inferno, at the end of Guincho Road)
- Visconde da Luz (in the center of Cascais)
- Vela Azul in Pampilheira, Cascais, near the pharmacy of Cascais) – a very modest, cheap restaurant with great fish, you must eat “açorda”
- Garret in Estoril, near Casino up to 7:00 p.m.
- CASCAIS Shopping
PLACES TO GET TO KNOW
Cascais Bay: practically all the roads in Cascais will lead to the Bay. It is where the headquarters of the municipality is located and where during the year many events are organized. From the bay, walking in any direction you can find restaurants, bars shops, gardens and more.
Cascais Marina: chosen to be the place of departure and arrival and the GFNY Portugal Expo is, by vocation, the stage of major international events. A noble space of welcome, leisure and comfort to all who pass by. From the inspiration and persistence gathered from these ancestors, the Marina de Cascais assumes itself as an ambitious project of the 19th century, allied to the environment and new technologies.
Besides the beautiful place, you can enjoy the various restaurants with stunning views.
Parque Marechal Carmona: This park, where Condes de Castro Guimarães Museum is located, is home to many birds, such as ducks, swans, peacocks, as well as beautiful plants and flowers. There is plenty of space for children to play freely without being overlooked by adults, and a café by the lake where most birds congregate.
The park complements the beauty of the area, elected by the Portuguese and foreign bourgeoisie and aristocracy since the 18th century, and is composed of several garden areas, lawned spaces, a stretch of river and several lakes, a picnic area, a greenhouse, a traditional playground, a juvenile library, a mini zoo and a children’s space divided into three distinct zones according to the age of it’s visitors.
Casa da Guia: Another beautiful place to visit and relax. Formerly the Quinta dos Condes de Alcácovas, it still preserves its emblematic 17th century palace, fully restored.
Facing the ocean on the way to Guincho Beach, you can find shops, restaurants, terraces and a perfect view to enjoy.
Guincho Beach: Located at 8kms from the center of Cascais, bathed by the Atlantic Ocean, it is excellent for water sports. It became famous in one of the James Bond movies “In the service of His Majesty” and in the 1990s, was one of the World Windsurfing World Cup venues. Nowadays, with perfect asphalt, it is a training place for cyclists, where several events take place during the year.
Estoril Casino Gardens: Ex-libris of Estoril, is a large garden that stretches from the Casino to the Avenida Marginal. Always with an immaculate presentation, it counts on extensive lawns, several trees, banks, fountains and some lakes.
The view to the sea perfectly accompanies any walk, physical activity or one of several exhibitions or events that usually happen there.
Boca do Inferno: Located on the west coast of the village, it is a spectacular geological formation that owes its name, “Boca do Inferno”, to the morphological analogy and to the tremendous and frightening impact of the waves that are felt there.
In times, it would have been a cave carved in the rock by the waters of the rains and by the force of the waves, whose ceiling finally fell. It is a place of great visual and sonorous impact and with an unforgettable sunset.
Condes de Castro de Guimarães Museum: The Library Museum, with the name of its donor, opened to the public in 1931. In the works of adaptation to the Museum, care was taken to maintain the atmosphere of an inhabited house, and the architecture was valued interior and its decorative motifs.
In this place, you can enjoy pieces of great artistic and documentary value, including works of art depicting Cascais, by Portuguese and foreign authors, Indo-Portuguese china and an excellent archeology room. Also worthy of mention is the library, with about 2,500 rare volumes.
Tamariz Beach: Located in Estoril, next to the railway station, Tamariz beach is the most cosmopolitan of the municipality of Cascais. Separated from the gardens of the Estoril Casino by the Marginal Road and the Train line, it is one of the tourist attractions in the region, with several bars and nightclubs.
Being located next to the train station and the bus terminal, it is one of the preferred destinations for those who use public transport.
Santa Marta Lighthouse: With an architectural project of Francisco and Manuel Aires Mateus and the museum program of Joaquim Boiça, the Lighthouse Museum of Santa Marta was rehabilitated based on a protocol signed between the Municipal Council of Cascais and the General Staff of the Navy Portuguese. Opened to the public in July 2007, its model is unprecedented in the country, combining exhibition spaces with the function of coastal signage, supervised by the Direction of the lighthouse of the Navy.
With the exception of the canna bullet found in archaeological excavations in the precincts, the collection of the Lighthouse Museum of Santa Marta was entirely restored and deposited in the Lighthouse Museum by the Portuguese Navy / Directorate of Lighthouses.
Visit “Feira do Artesanato” in Estoril. Near the casino you can find a handicraft fair where you may also dine (sardine or something typical).
Rent a bike in the center of Cascais, near McDonalds or at the end of Guincho Road (it’s free!). Take a stroll along the seafront road, near the sea, start in Cascais, behind Hotel Albatroz to São João do Estoril (there are many beaches and places to eat and you may walk from Cascais to Estoril).
Rent a surfboard, windsurf, paddle or other water sport geers at Guincho, behind the Muxaxo hotel.
At Guincho you have Abano beach, Ponta da Galé beach and Crismina beach – all very beautiful.
LEARN MORE ABOUT CASCAIS
If you want to go to Lisbon, do not go on a hot day or a Sunday because you’ll find that most things are closed. You can drive by the “marginal” sea road from Cascais to Lisbon, follow the sea and the train, or you can go by train. The train station is in the center of Cascais and leaves at the last exit (Cais do Sodré) then going to “Baixa/Chiado”.