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Cascais 1 Week Suggested itinerary & Tour
Cascais is a pretty and historic beach resort that is close to Lisbon. The town makes for a great holiday destination, and is able to offer a range of beautiful beaches, enjoyable day trips and lively nightlife. Cascais is an ideal base from which to explore the surrounding region and popular day trips include Lisbon and Sintra. This guide will provide a suggested itinerary and list of activities for a 1 week holiday to Cascais.
The Guimaraes museum in Cascais
Day 1 Explore Cascais and Estoril
Cascais is a very scenic town with grand 19th century architecture that is blended with traditional Portuguese charm. A day can be easily spent wandering the town visiting the local churches, the Hell’s Mouth cliff formation, the Guimaraes stately house and the pretty Casa Santa Maria.
In the afternoon follow the beach front promenade that connects Cascais to Estoril and passes the small family friendly beaches. For the evening enjoy a meal in the restaurants in central Cascais or for a glamorous night head to the Estoril Casino.
The shops and restaurants of central Cascais
Day 2 – Day on the Carcavelos beach
There are some fine beaches near Cascais and the second day of the 1 week holiday is an ideal time to go and find them! Carcavelos beach is regarded as one of the finest beaches of the region with a massive golden beach, surfing waves and great facilities. For a guide to the beach please click here.
The glorious beaches near Cascais
Praia do Carcavelos is extremely popular with the population of Lisbon who flock here during the summer weekends. Carcavelos beach is connected to Cascais via the railway and is only a 15 train ride away.
Day 3 Exploring Lisbon
No week holiday to Cascais is complete without visiting the vibrant capital of Portugal. Most single day visits to Lisbon explore the Baixa and Alfama districts, which includes the the castle, cathedral and a selection of the grand plazas that make up central Lisbon.
For an alternative method to explore the city ride the number 28 tram as it screeches through the narrow streets and steep hills of the city. There is too much to write about Lisbon in a single short paragraph so to read an in-depth tourist guide please click here. Cascais is connected to Lisbon via a direct railway and the journey is less than 30 minutes and more detail can be found here.
Lisbon is a great capital
Day 4 Bike ride to Guincho Beach
Guincho beach is 8km north of Cascais and is a popular surfing destination that is set in the beautiful scenery of the Serra de Sintra National Park. Connecting Cascais to Praia de Guincho there is a purpose built cycle path that follows the coastline and is suitable for all cycling abilities.
The Bicas bikes are basic but have a basket!
The bike ride takes around an hour but there are multiple interesting sights along the route including; fortifications, lighthouses, handcraft markets and dramatic coastal scenery. Free bikes (called Bicas) can be hired from Cascais and for a full guide please click here.
The vast Guincho beach is only 8km from Cascais
For a less strenuous activity it is suggested to visit Sao Pedro beach (near Carcavelos beach) for a relaxing day on the beach. Alternatively, there is a bus service from Cascais to the Praia de Guincho but the near constant breeze does not make Guincho idea for simply relaxing.
Day 5 Day trip to Sintra
Sintra is a delightful town that is situated within the pine covered hills of the Serra de Sintra national park. The town was a favourite with the Portuguese nobility who constructed a range of varied palaces and castles. The common tourist route of Sintra visits the gothic national Palace, the ruins of the Moors castle and the elaborate Pena Palace.
The view over Sintra from the Moors Castle in Sintra
The sights of Sintra are spread across the hills of the region and a special tourist bus connects them. Cascais is connected to Sintra by bus (details here) and for an extensive guide to Sintra please click here.
Day 6 Return to Lisbon and Belém
For the second visit to Lisbon it is suggested to visit the Belém district. This district is to the west of the capital and follows the banks of the Tejo estuary. It was from here that the 14th century voyages of the Age of Discovery departed from and the riches that returned funded the extravagant Jeronimos Monastery.
The beautiful Jeronimos Monastery
Today the area is filled with immaculate parks and is the location of some of Lisbon’s most iconic monuments, which include; the Torre de Belém, the discovery monument and the Jeronimos Monetary. Lisbon is a great city and visitors may wish to spend more than just the suggested 2 days in the capital.
Torre de Belém
Day 7 Cascais
The final day of the week in Cascais is suggested as a relaxing day, either visiting one of the beaches again, shopping in Lisbon or walking the coastal path from Carcavelos beach. For those who wish a day trip for the last day should head north along the coast to the picturesque village of Praia das Macas and the golden beaches of the region. Cascais is connected to Praia das Macas by a direct bus service.
The castle and marina of Cascais