My tried and tested travel guide "Lisbon in 24 hours" accompanies you on 29 pages from breakfast to dinner at a breathtaking sunset. Discover the most important sights without stress and long queues.
Accommodations in Lisbon
Here you can find a selection of the most popular hotels for a city trip to Lisbon.
Hit Lisbon's beaches! Due to its location on the Atlantic Ocean, Lisbon is a great place to combine sightseeing with a beach vacation. Along the coast in front of the Portuguese capital there are numerous dream beaches and picturesque coastal towns like Estoril and Cascais. Bays, cliffs, natural pools and waves offer optimal conditions for a varied beach holiday. Even better, the beaches are easily and quickly accessible by public transport.
The information is updated in real time on the app "Info Praia" and on the website of the Portuguese environmental association. The rules are available at covid19estamoson.gov.pt (in Portuguese).
Translated into portuguese the beach is called " Praia ". Beaches are signposted on brown signs with white writing. Everywhere you find such a sign, starting with " Praia ", it goes to the beach. Fine golden sand, a good portion of UV radiation and clear water await you.
In summer, a trip to the beach is a great addition and a successful change to a city trip through Lisbon. Beaches in the Lisbon region stretch along the stunning coastline to Cascais and on north via Sintra. Among them are popular surf beaches, quiet family beaches to charming spas.
Many visitors are not aware of Lisbon's close proximity to some beautiful beaches. So why not pack your swimsuit and combine the benefits of a beach vacation with those of a city break? The Lisbon beaches listed below are very accessible by public transport, which makes them ideal for a day trip.
In my guide to Lisbon's beaches, I give you an introduction to the beaches and my personal recommendations. Each beach in the list is described in detail further down in the article.
List of the best beaches around Lisbon
The following beaches are the most popular with locals and tourists alike. You can easily reach it from Lisbon by public transport. To get to the beaches, take the train from the terminal station Cais do Sodre (link to Google Maps) or another train station in the direction of Cascais.
- Praia de Carcavelos (37 minutes drive)
- Praia do Tamariz, Estoril (40-minute drive)
- Praia da Conceicao, Cascais (44-minute drive)
- Praia de Sao Pedro (40-minute train ride)
- Praia Santo Amaro de Oeiras (22-minute drive)
- Costa da Caparica (30-minute bus ride)
The above mentioned beaches are located along the coastline of Lisbon with one exception (Costa da Caparica). The beaches at the Costa da Caparica are located on the southern side of the Tagus River. It is easily accessible by public transport (bus) but still very accessible.
List of the best beaches accessible by rental car
- Costa da Caparica (25-minute drive)
- Praia do Creiro (Serra of Arrabida)
- Lagoa de Albufeira (41 km from Lisbon)
- Praia do Guincho (32 km from Lisbon)
- Praia da Ursa (44 km from Lisbon)
- Praia das Macas (43 km from Lisbon)
Lisbon Beach – Costa da Caparica
This Lisbon beach is the first in the list here. Although not the closest to Lisbon, it is very popular with locals and offers stunning beach restaurants and bars. Costa da Caparica is located on the opposite shore of the Tagus River.
Upcoming resort for domestic and foreign tourists
Costa da Caparica beach is a lively and emerging resort visited by many Portuguese people. Foreign tourists do not really perceive this region as a resort yet. The coastline of the Costa da Caparica is simply breathtaking and is known for its long sandy beaches and beautiful natural scenery. It stretches for about 24 kilometers along the entire western edge of the Setubal Peninsula. This makes it one of the longest continuous sandy beaches in Europe.
The spa town of Costa da Caparica is located on the northern edge of the beach and the mouth of the Tagus River. Caparica is currently undergoing an interesting tourist development thanks to the "Portugal 2027" tourism project. Beach and spa can be reached in about 20 minutes by car from Lisbon.
Costa da Caparica is also popular for its waves. More and more surfers find themselves here, fleeing from the crowds of surfers on the beaches of Carcavelos and Guincho. Occasionally it offers nice surfing sessions even in the height of summer.
In summer, the Portuguese flock here for its wide beaches, family atmosphere and nightly beach parties.
Lisbon beaches along the coastline to Cascais
The coast from Oeiras to Estoril to Cascais stretches to the west of Lisbon and offers sandy beaches, calm seawater and characteristic spas. This is the coast where most tourists take a day trip to the beach.
The coastline is connected from Lisbon to Cascais by a regular train service. A ride costs about 2 euros per person each way and takes about 45 minutes from terminus to terminus.
Thus, almost all beaches are easily accessible from Lisbon. The only drawback is that all beaches can be very crowded in summer, especially during the Portuguese summer holidays.
Praia de Carcavelos is the biggest and most popular beach in the region. Praia de Santo Amaro de Oeiras, Praia do Torre and Praia Sao Pedro are also recommended. The historic town of Cascais, located at the end of the railroad line, is also a fantastic destination for a beach holiday. Cascais has four small beaches in the city center and one large one a little outside of it.
Alges beach with the shortest way from Lisbon
This beach is the quickest to reach of all the ones mentioned above. What many people don't know: the beach is within walking distance of the Torre de Belem. The beach is not supervised. It has nothing more to offer than a bit of sandy beach and river water, located next to the marina of Alges. For sea water and real beach feeling you have to drive a bit further.
Beach Velha in Paco de Arcos
The Praia Velha in Paco de Arcos is actually the port of the fishing village. On the beach here quite a lot of bathing hungry people find a place in the sand. In the water there are many small, colorful fishing boats, which give this beach a special charm.
In addition, this beach can impress with a truly unique attraction. Close to the shore, piled up with rocks is a geyser. From time to time meter-high water fountains spray into the air. However, the geyser is electronically controlled, so that pedestrians and cars are unintentionally bathed at and on the marginal.
The beach is within easy walking distance of the Paco de Arcos train station. From the station it is about 400 meters to the beach.
Beach of Paco de Arcos
Almost directly next to Praia Vehla is Praia de Paco de Arcos, separated by the ferry line. It is wider and therefore bigger, but with less charm.
The beach is easily accessible on foot through the Paco de Arcos train station. From the station it is about 700 meters to the beach
Beach of Santo Amaro de Oeiras
The beach in Santo Amaro de Oeiras is the first beach where snacks and drinks are sold in the beach cafe. Just behind the underpass of the Marginal there is a 24/7 McDonalds. Strangely enough, it is very crowded at any time of the day or night.
In the summer months there is a lot going on here at the beach. During the high season e.g. on the water a water park is built and operated. For an entrance fee of 7 euros, children can slide, play and train their skills and balance. Life jackets are of course included.
A surf spot right next to the beach
There is also a surf spot here, but due to the partly rocky ground it is only suitable for advanced surfers. I have seen surfers here myself with waves up to 3.5 meters high. Otherwise this surf spot is visited by many Portuguese people. There is no surf school here.
The beach is very well connected by the Santo Amaro train station. From the train station you walk ca. 3 minutes to the beach.
Praia da Torre
This Lisbon beach is a real insider tip and definitely belongs to my Secrets. Here you can find an excellent surf spot, great restaurants, during the season a beach bar and a bathing bay protected by the fortress.
Guarded beach for families and young people
Praia da Torre beach is located on the western border of Oeiras. It is small compared to Carcavelos beach next door, but offers a lot of variety. The beach has a unique environment. The western edge of Praia de Torre is bordered by the massive fortress of Santo Juliao Bara. The east side is adjacent to the yacht and fishing harbor.
On the back side of the harbor there is also a popular swimming pool with safe water for children and high diving boards. Just behind the beach there are two good restaurants and bars. The restaurant Torre Mar and the bar Luar da Barra are located in a converted railroad carriage.
During the summer season there is a lifeguard on site, even though there are no dangerous currents here. The water here tends to be calmer and, more importantly, safer than the other beaches nearby.
To the beach party in the BBeach
An insider tip here in the evening is the BBeach. World famous DJs and other musicians play here regularly. In August 2018 put here e.g. Steve Aoki on, followed by well-known Brazilian DJs with their hits from the radio.
Praia da Torre beach is located at the tidal mouth of the Tagus River. This means that the main source of water comes from the Tagus River at low tide and is mixed with ocean currents at high tide.
The sea swimming pool Piscing Oceanica is fed by the tide and is always warmer than the sea. The swimming pool is less than 200 meters from the beach Praia da Torre and is a great place for children and teenagers. The entrance is free and one of the main attractions is the diving tower.
A recommendation in spite of a time-consuming journey
Lisbon beach Praia da Torre is probably one of the least accessible beaches along the coast from Lisbon to Cascais. It is located ca. 15-20 minutes from Oeiras train station. But the way to the beach is not difficult and well signposted.
The best way to reach the beach is by car and you can park right between the beach and the main road. There is a small and a medium sized parking lot. If both parking lots are full, then the beach is most likely too crowded and you should go somewhere else.
There is a pleasant short walk that connects Praia da Torre with the town and the beach of Santo Amaro. This 2.5 km walk follows the coastline and passes by the harbor, the sea swimming pool and the small fortress of Santo Amaro.
From the bus stop Oeiras it is ca. 25 minutes walk to the beach. Alternatively, you can get off at Santo Amaro and walk along the coastal promenade. It takes you about the same amount of time, but you get to enjoy walking along the water.
Carcavelos beach – the most popular beach of all
Praia de Carcavelos is almost 1.5 kilometers long and one of the most beautiful beaches along the coast of Lisbon. It is by far the most popular Lisbon beach due to its excellent public transport connections.
There are numerous beach bars and cafes along the beach promenade. These are ideal for a light lunch or to escape the intense UV rays of the summer sun. Ice cream stands and watermelon vendors can be found here as well as watch vendors and Asian massage ladies.
Beach volleyball, soccer, surfing – the ideal beach
The beach attracts a mostly active crowd and there really is always something going on. Be it beach volleyball, beach football or even sometimes a championship. The big waves make Carcavelos a popular place for surfing and equipment can be rented at reasonable prices. There are also several surf schools here. Decent changing rooms, showers and toilets can also be found regularly.
Especially on warm weekends and during the high season in July / August all hell breaks loose here.
My recommendation: Carcavelos
Carcavelos is perfect for a relaxing day at the beach. Learn to surf, play beach volleyball, tan in the sun and cool off in the sea, this Lisbon beach has it all. The beach attracts both Portuguese and foreign tourists. Praia de Carcavelos is the ideal choice and my personal recommendation for a perfect beach day in Lisbon. It is easy to reach and is equally suitable for families, young couples or the elderly.
Drive to the Carcavelos stop and then walk down to the beach for about 12 minutes.
Praia de Sao Pedro – Lisbon beach for relaxing
Praia de Sao Pedro offers a wide sandy beach, clean water and is conveniently located near a train station. The waves at the beach are enough for surfing and bodyboarding.
There are usually many stand-up paddlers here and you can also rent a board here. Sao Pedro is also a good choice for a day trip from Lisbon to the beach.
Natural pools at low tide
Unique and special are the natural pools in the rocks during low tide. These are very popular and safe for children.
Get off at the Sao Pedro do Estoril stop and ca. Walk 150 meters to the beach. Please use the underpass or traffic lights to cross the busy street Avenida Marginal.
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How to get there:
Praia do Tamariz in Estoril with attractive surroundings
Tamariz beach is located in Estoril, not far from the train station. The beach is separated from the Estoril casino gardens only by the roadway and the railroad track. This garden is always worth a visit. On weekends you can also find food trucks and flea markets here.
Praia da Conceicao, Cascais
This Lisbon beach is rather the main beach of Cascais. It is very easy to reach because of the direct connection to the train station. The pedestrian zone of Cascais is only a few minutes walk away. The city beach is very popular especially with hotel guests and locals.
Praia da Rainha, Cascais
Rainha beach is really a phenomenon. Take one wrong turn in the pedestrian zone and you'll find your feet in the sand. The beach is small, but very comfortable and protected. The beach, located between rocks, offers shady spots to escape the sun in the morning and in the afternoon. If you need to cool down or are a bit hungry, I can recommend the restaurant Dom Prego. From the row of tables by the window you have a good view of the beach and the marina of Cascais.
Hidden beach Santa Marta in Cascais
The beach is hidden in a very small bay. If you drive your car over the bridge in front of it, you will probably miss it. Located right at the foot of the castle, this beach is also a fascinating photo motif. During low tide many bathing hungry guests find place here. As the tide rises, however, the beach becomes smaller. Brave children take the opportunity to jump into the water from the bridge.
Ribeira – the beach in front of the town hall in Cascais
The beach is located in the historic center of Cascais just 30 meters in front of the town hall. It is also close to the fortress and you have a view of the marina. The buildings are very beautiful, well maintained and colorful. The beach is often frequented by locals, but during the season also by tourists. There are hotels directly behind the small beach. Typically, many fishing boats are anchored here.
Praia do Guincho, Cascais
The beach of Guincho is the largest in the municipality of Cascais, but also the most remote.
Guincho offers ideal conditions for surfers
It is often windy here and is therefore ideal for kitesurfing, windsurfing and surfing. Unlike many other Lisbon beaches, the beach at Guincho offers good conditions for surfing almost all year round. Especially in summer, when there are hardly any waves breaking on the other beaches, this is where most of the surfers from the region hang out.
James Bond beach
Like Thailand has its James Bond island, Portugal has its James Bond beach here. Fortunately with less visitors. Because some people don't even know that the James Bond movie "On Her Majesty's Secret Service" was partly filmed here in 1969.
Danger for swimmers
The moody sea, however, can be a threat to swimmers, especially because of its currents and winds. Special care is required here with children! Full time lifeguards always have a watchful eye and excellent knowledge of the currents.
The instructions of the lifeguards at the Guincho are to be followed absolutely!
Under ideal conditions, however, Guincho beach is one of the most pleasant in the region. Along the beach there are many restaurants, luxury hotels and bars. Recently a new building has opened on the beach here.