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The best beaches of Estoril and beach guide

Estoril is a stylish and sophisticated resort town that is situated on the beautiful Lisbon coastline. Surrounding Cascais is a wonderful selection of varied beaches, which range from calm and family friendly through to wild surfing beaches. This article will provide an introduction to the beaches of Estoril.

Praia da Conceição beach  Cascais

There are stunning beaches close are to Estoril

Summary of Estoril’s beaches

• Best beach close to Estoril - Praia do Tamariz

• Best beach for families - Praia do Tamariz or Praia da Duquesa

• Best location for surfing - Praia do Guincho

• Most popular beach of the Lisbon coastline - Praia de Carcavelos

• Scenic beach - Praia da Rainha

• Beach for a day trip (with a car) - Ericeira

• Where to escape the summertime crowds - Praia da Adraga (car needed)

Tourist information for the beaches of Estoril

The weather of Estoril is suitable for spending time on the beaches from May until the end of September. The main tourist season aligns with the school holidays (July and August), and in this season, expect all of Lisbon’s beaches to be very crowded. Visitors new to Estoril are always surprised by the cool sea temperatures, which only reach 21C in the height summer. When surfing at the beaches of the Serra de Sintra be wary of the strong currents and tides, and only ever surf or swim in designated areas. The beaches close to Estoril are sheltered and safe, making them suitable for families and children.

The following section provides details of the beaches of the Estoril region.

Cascais wild coastline

The wild coastline to the north of Cascais

Beaches within walking distance of Estoril

The beaches which are within walking distance of Estoril are characterised by golden sands, gentle seas and extensive tourist facilities. These beaches are some of Portugal’s most popular, and in the summer months, it can feel as if the whole of Lisbon has descended to them.

Praia do Tamariz

(GPS 38.70259, -9.39907 – 10m from Estoril train station)

The Praia do Tamariz is the central beach of Estoril and is a great location to begin a beach holiday. The beach has calm sea waters that lap the soft sands, and as idyllic as it sounds, the setting will be shared with many others, as it is right next to Estoril train station.

The Praia do Tamariz is close to great facilities (beach cafes, bars and shops) and is next to the decorative Forte da Cruz. To the left of the beach is a rudimental sea swimming pool, which is built into the sea wall, and is a favourite with children hunting for small sea life. The Praia do Tamariz is ideal for a simply days relaxing on the beach, but often visitors want more……

Praia do Tamariz beach Cascais

The Praia do Tamariz and the Forte da Cruz villa

Praia da Conceição and Praia da Duquesa

(GPS 38.70045, -9.41561 - 1.5km from Estoril train station)

The two beaches of Praia da Duquesa and Praia da Conceição form the main beach of Cascais, the next resort town along from Estoril. This beach is larger than the Praia do Tamariz and is more hectic, with many more beach activities. During the summer there are large sea inflatables, sea pedalos and power boats towing ringo and banana rides.

The beach is divided into two by a minor headland on which the Casa Faial mansion stands; to the west is the Praia da Conceição and to the east (closer to Estoril) is the Praia da Duquesa. The beach is ideal for families as the waters are clean, calm and supervised by a lifeguard. The walk to Conceição and Duquesa beaches follow the beachfront promenade, which connects Estoril to Cascais and is a pleasant route for a short stroll.

Praia da Duquesa  beach  Cascais

The Praia da Duquesa (nearest) and the Praia da Conceição (on the far side) are really one beach

Praia das Moitas

(GPS 38.70186, -9.40899 - 1km from Estoril train station)

The Praia das Moitas is pretty little beach partway between Estoril and Cascais and is the first beach reached when following the beach promenade from Estoril. Praia das Moitas could be considered as a smaller version of the Praia do Tamariz; nice but hardly amazing……

Praia das Moitas beach Cascais

The Praia das Moitas is overlooked by grand villas and expensive hotels

Praia da Rainha

(GPS 38.69909, -9.41829 – 1.8km from Estoril train station)

The Praia da Rainha is one of the most scenic beaches of the Estoril-Cascais coastline; golden sands and still blue waters which overlook the peaceful harbour of Cascais. In the 1880s Queen Amélia selected this secluded beach as her private bathing area, and since it has been referred as the Queen’s Beach (Praia da Rainha). This is a very pretty beach but being one of the smallest of the coastline, it will always be significantly busier than when Queen Amélia frequented it.

Praia da Rainha  beach  Cascais

The pretty Praia da Rainha, as choosen by a queen.....

Praia da Ribeira

GPs: 38.69690, -9.41945 2km walk from the Estoril train station)

The Praia da Ribeira was traditionally where fishermen hauled up their fishing boats, these boats are no longer pulled onto the sands but it is still affectional known as the fishermen’s beach. Sunbathers on the Praia da Ribeira may feel on display as there is constant trudge of day trippers wandering past the beach and the close proximity of the harbour means the quality of the sea waters is questionable.

Praia da Ribeira beach Cascais

The Praia da Ribeira is at the heart of Cascais

Piscina Oceânica Alberto Romano

(GPS 38.70131, -9.41288 – 1.3km walk from the Estoril train station)

The Piscina Oceânica Alberto Romano is a sea filled swimming pool, which is ideal for children and families to bath safely (and the water is slightly warmer than the sea!). There is no admission fee and is a favourite with children, especially if there are fish trapped in the pool after the tide recedes.

Piscina Oceânica Alberto Romano swimming pool Cascais

The Piscina Oceânica Alberto Romano looks dated and has a lot of concrete but is great fun!

Public Transport Accessible Beaches

All of the previous beaches were very similar; calm, safe, and with extensive tourist facilities. The beaches close to Estoril are ideal for families or a relaxing day on the beach, but certain visitors may wish more exciting or improved natural scenery, which this next set of beaches can provide. These beaches require a bit more effort to travel to, but all can be reached via the inexpensive public transport from Estoril.

Praia do Guincho

(GPS: 38.73180, -9.474136 - 8.5km from Estoril)

Praia do Guincho is a wild and rugged beach that is situated within the beautiful Serra de Sintra nature park. Guincho is one of the best surfing beaches of the region, as it is exposed to the powerful waves of the Atlantic Ocean.

Guincho beach boasts dramatic and raw natural scenery, but it is no relaxing or tranquil beach, there are constant strong winds, and hidden beneath the waters are powerful currents. Guincho beach is 8.5km north-west of Estoril and is connected by the 405 and 415 bus services that departs from Cascais bus station (which is a 15 minute walk from Estoril).

Praia do Guincho Cascais

The wild and rugged beach of Praia do Guincho is only a short bus ride away

Praia de Carcavelos

(GPS: 38.67931, -9.33462, 6km from Estoril)

The Praia de Carcavelos is the Lisbon coastline’s most popular beach. Carcavelos is much larger than all of the beaches close to Estoril, there are medium waves for surfing and excellent public transport links to Estoril and Lisbon. Along the beachfront are numerous beach bars, restaurants and shops, and in the summer, there is always a lively atmosphere.

Praia de Carcavelos beach Cascais

Praia de Carcavelos is a huge beach.....

Praia de Carcavelos is an outstanding beach, and for visitors based in Lisbon this is the recommend beach to visit. The residents of Lisbon also know it’s their best beach, and in the summer it can feel as if most of Lisbon are on the sands of Carcavelos. For visitors on holiday in Estoril, Carcavelos is still an excellent beach but Praia de São Pedro is similar, closer and slightly less busy. Carcavelos is connected to Estoril by the regional railway, and the direct train takes 25 minutes and a ticket costs €2.10. From the station it is a 700m walk to the beach.

Praia de Carcavelos beach

.... but it fills up quickly in the summer!

Praia de São Pedro

(GPS: 38.69375, -9.37021, 3km from Estoril)

The Praia de São Pedro should be considered as a smaller version of the Praia de Carcavelos. The beach is slightly sheltered from the headland, and this means the waves are not as good for surfing (but for surfing head to Praia do Guincho). Praia de São Pedro is connected to the Estoril-Lisbon with a 20-minute train ride, and there is no long walk to the beach from the station.

Praia de São Pedro beach cascais

The Praia de São Pedro in the low season

The Costa da Caparica

(GPS: 38.64134, -9.23846, 25km from Estoril)

The beaches of the Costa da Caparica coastline are on the southern side of Lisbon (on the Setubal Peninsular) and it is possible to travel to them via public transport. The Costa da Caparica offer the same great surfing of Guincho but are within a modern resort town. For visitors based in Lisbon the Costa da Caparica beaches provides an alternative to the Estoril coastline, but for tourists on holiday in Estoril the Caparica beaches are not worth the complex and long journey.

Costa da Caparica beach

Costa da Caparica is a great beach but too far from Estoril

Estoril Day trip Beaches

The following beaches and resort towns make for enjoyable day trips from Estoril but require a rental car to travel to them.

Praia das Maçãs

Praia das Maçãs is a traditional Portuguese resort town which is positioned on an incredible scenic beach. The town has a much slower pace than Estoril and makes for an enjoyable day trip.

Ericeira

Ericeira is a pretty fishing port, which is located in a region of outstanding surfing beaches. For a guide to Ericeira please click here.

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