Whilst on our trip we ventured out of Lisbon for a day trip to Cascais, a coastal resort town just 40 minutes away that became the preferred retreat of King Luis in the 1800’s. The transfer couldn’t have been easier, with us catching a clearly signposted train from the Cais Do Sodre station for only 2.20 euros each way. The train was on time, clean and relatively quiet for the time of day.
We chose a beautiful day to visit, as soon as we got out of the station we find ourselves almost immediately at Rua Frederico Arouca, with its wavy tiles and lots of little shops. This was where we found the highest concentration of people but despite the initial crowds we found for the rest of the day we hardly encountered anyone.
It seems Cascais is a very popular little day trip for the older generation and there seemed to be a high density of grey hair floating around however this may account for the decreasing number of people we encountered through the day, as further parts of Cascais were harder to manoeuvre around.
At one end of the centre you can find the Praia Da Rainha beach, which we found almost empty. It was a small cove but incredibly picturesque with its crystal waters and jagged rock. So beautiful was the beach that the last Queen of Portugal even claimed it as her own and I don’t blame her. Our visit was on a day of about 24 degree temperatures and therefore there were few people daring to paddle. The Portuguese were still treating it as if it were Winter!
The Marina is a lovely area to walk around, with a whole host of beautiful boats to mooch around. The marina was incredibly quiet and practically deserted so we spent a while leisurely strolling about. The marina sits behind the fort and it was almost like nobody had bothered to look for it.
To go to Cascais and not have seafood is practically illegal and we settled upon the Restaurante Dom Pedro I for our lunchtime fish fix. We had an amazing valued meal with a 3 course set menu which came to just 7.80 euros. The drink was also great value with half a litre of the house wine just 4 euros. The food was all delicious and the service so friendly, a perfect lunchtime find!
We spent quite a lot of time strolling around the Parque Marechal Carmona. For one it’s got some decent public toilets and therefore perfect for a rest break. The park was also filled with birds from peacocks to roosters and we spent more time than we really should have as adults trying to get as close to them as possible.
Within the grounds sits the Museu Condes De Castro Guimaraes, a 19th century mansion, that has a fantastically eclectic interior. The entry was 3 euros and whilst there wasn’t a huge amount to see I felt the value was great just to get inside this wonderful building.
The lighthouse of Santa Marta sits overlooking an estuary and makes for a picturesque little scene. There is a lighthouse museum you can visit but we skipped that option and just settled for the postcard perfect shot instead.
We spent a fair bit of time walking around Boca Do Inferno, a chasm located in the cliffs. It’s not the easiest thing to get around but it was fun trying to manoeuvre our path and there was something quite serene about walking around with nothing to hear but the smashing of waves on the rocks.
We had planned to walk to Estoril,a town about 40 minutes down the coast but by this point our feet were saying no more and so we hopped on the train back to Lisbon instead. Adam maintains that our day in Cascais was his favourite part of our whole Portugal trip so it was well worth the visit.
Steps walked: 18,091