Coming to UXLx this May and sticking around for the weekend after? After 4 days of hands-on learning, new ideas and inspirational talks, and before carrying all that into your daily work, it’s time for some laid back moments enjoying the sun in a paradise-like white sand beach.
But where will you find that, you ask? The answer is only a few miles away from Lisbon, and some can even be reached using public transport.
If you’re up for a short trip to the coast check our guide to the best beaches around Lisbon.
Oeiras, Estoril & Cascais beaches — best one’s via public transport
The beaches in Oeiras, Estoril and Cascais are the easier ones to get to from central Lisbon. From Cais do Sodré train station you can catch the train going to Cascais that stops near all of them.
⭐️ Top beaches: Praia de Santo Amaro de Oeiras, Praia de São Pedro and Praia do Tamariz
Carcavelos Beach — within easy reach from the city
It’s located right next to the city so it’s very easy to get there by train from central Lisbon (30-minutes ride). Take the train from Cais do Sodré and the beach is a 10-minute walk from the Carcavelos train station. It’s relatively popular for those who like to surf. If you’re not up for some water sports you can sit while sipping a cocktail in one of the lounge chairs at the beachside restaurants.
Guincho Beach — for water sport enthusiasts
If you’re a James Bond fan then you might recognise it from On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969). Guincho beach is a wild expanse of sand and rocks on the coast between Sintra and Cascais. If you’re down for a swim, this might not be the best option. The strong waves coming off the Atlantic make Guincho a tough place for swimming. However, if you’re a water sports fan this is an excellent spot for that. Sign up for surfing lessons at one of the local schools or rent out a board.
🚘 How to get there: The beach is a 30-minute drive from Lisbon but if you don’t have a car you can take the train from Cais do Sodré station to the Cascais stop. Once in Cascais, take one of the two buses from the nearby Cascais Villa shopping mall (25 minutes).
Adraga Beach — a private getaway
This beach combines towering cliffs, golden sands and raging seas. Walk on the south side to find Pedra de Alvidrar, a big rock formation dropping almost vertically into the sea, and explore the caves when the tide is low and. It’s 45-minutes by car from Lisbon’s city center and around 90 minutes by public transportation.
Costa da Caparica — sandy beaches along 26km
The Costa da Caparica coastline is located just across the Tagus river and comprises a single 15km continuous stretch beach. Getting there from Lisbon takes about 20 minutes by car. There’s also a regular bus service from Lisbon to the town of Costa da Caparica.
Serra da Arrábida Coastline — if you’re looking for stunning scenery
Here you’ll find some of the most beautiful beaches of Portugal. With golden sands, crystal-clear sea waters and surrounded by steep hills of the Serra da Arrábida Natural Park. They’re less than a 45-minute drive from central Lisbon.
⭐️ Top beaches: Praia do Creiro, Praia da Figueirinha, Portinho da Arrábida, Praia da Ribeira do Cavalo
⛱ Beach Tips
If you’re looking for a beach day trip, then head to Praia de Carcavelos, Praia de Santo Amaro de Oeiras or Praia da Conceição. These are well connected by the Lisbon-Cascais railway, which departs from Cais do Sodré.
The weather: In Lisbon the weather is suitable for sunbathing on the beach from May through the end of September. The beaches are usually busier in July and August.
Sea temperature: Golden sand? Check. Teal waters? Check. Sunny weather? Check. Warm waters? Uhh, not so much. The ocean currents of the Atlantic make the waters surrounding Lisbon coastline quite cold — between 15ºC and 20ºC in the Summer.
Guarded beaches: Although the water might be a bit cold, you should definitely go for a swim. However, some beaches have strong currents and rocks hidden under the surface, so do it in areas watched by lifeguards.
Official bathing season: This differs from coastline to coastline. In Cascais it starts on May 1st and ends October 15th. In Caparica it’s from June 1st to the 30th of September, and in Sintra and Arrábida it’s between June 15th and September 15th.