Destinations

CASCAIS; DISCOVER THE GEM ON THE ENTRANCE TO LISBON

Cascais, at the gates of Lisbon and where the Tejo river meets the Atlantic Ocean, where mesmerizing views and down-to-earth Portuguese tradition meet. Despite the sun kissed location, Cascais is not only an alive summer destination. Whether you’re looking for that sparky evening party by the beach or just enjoy the splendid scenery which in the past inspired Sir Ian Fleming’s thrilling espionage dramas, Cascais will not disappoint. This beautiful village is also known for its many activities and events occurring every month. The entourage of the Volvo Ocean Race became a regular visitor lately and during this summer, the Rolex TP52 World Championship will be held in Cascais. No wonder, since the waters of Cascais offer some of the best conditions in the world for sailing. The immediate proximity to the Atlantic and the constant wind changes keep challenging participants to be always on the edge.

WHERE TO STAY

You will find a diverse choice of luxurious hotels in Cascais.  Located in the city center, where all festivities happen, or further away from the buzz, on top of the cliffs battling the steadily incoming waves, emanating the call of the sea so familiar to the Portuguese. If you rather have the city center, the glamorous Hotel Albatroz in the heart of Cascais will conquer your senses. With breath-taking views to the sea and the balancing yachts in the distance included. With rooms having access to the swimming pool overlooking the sea and facing the ocean, it is easy to imagine a quiet day of sunbathing while still being close to all.

Or, you prefer to leave the village and explore the surroundings. Then, The Oitavos Hotel is the place to be. Located amid a fascinating dune landscape, with its own spa and one of the best golf courses in the country, the hotel forms a perfect hideaway from the city rush. The combination of absolute privacy, an innovative balneotherapy spa as well as interior and exterior swimming pools will let you forget anything else.

WHERE TO DINE

Portugal is well known for its gastronomy and Cascais is no exception. Restaurants serving excellent seafood, freshly caught fish, hearty tasteful steaks and so many other typical Portuguese dishes can be found in every corner of Cascais. For a more voluptuous dinner, the Fortaleza do Guincho restaurant is an excellent choice. Holding a Michelin star since 2001, this restaurant serves mainly finest French cuisine with a Portuguese touch. Fortaleza do Guincho is located right by the beach with the same name, one of Portugal’s premier surf locations. The constantly strong wind makes not only for perfect surf conditions, but also for a dramatic orchestra of distant oceanic sounds.

For the famed Portuguese seafood, Mar do Inferno is one of the best restaurants you could choose. With stunning views to the sea, this place takes you on a palate journey through the Portuguese seafood tradition. As a bonus, it is also situated close to one of the most iconic places in Cascais, the Boca do Inferno caves.

Afterwards, you will be looking for the best dessert in town and Cascais will offer the Geladaria Santini. Traditionally made Italian ice cream is created with Portuguese classics in mind, with the Pastel de Nata flavour being an absolute must-try well worth every minute spent waiting for it.

WHERE TO PLAY

It is said that the Casino Estoril, just minutes away from the Cascais center, was the inspiration for the James Bond epic Casino Royale, as the creator of the iconic British spy once called Cascais his home. From simple slot machines to the classic card games in the upper floors, the casino will not bore you.

For the lovers of sophisticated racing machines, a visit to the Autódromo do Estoril is an absolute must. The legendary Formula One track has not seen a Grand Prix since 1996, but other events fill the stands with the smell of gasoline frequently.

Back to the center of Cascais, the Casa de Histórias Paula Rego invites to learn visually and acoustically about the meeting of contemporary art and Portuguese tradition. A certainly unique venue in this little pearl by the Atlantic.

 

Fabio Mendes

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