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15 Best Places to Live in Portugal

By Betsy Burlingame

Portugal Residency Advisors
Portugal Residency Advisors

Summary: If you're thinking about living in Portugal, here are the 15 Best Places to Live in Portugal in 2023.

Lisbon

Lisbon

Lisbon, the capital city of Portugal, is a vibrant and picturesque city with a population of approximately 505,000 people. It is located along the western coast of the country, about 313 kilometers (194 miles) southwest of Porto and 758 kilometers (471 miles) west of Madrid, Spain. Lisbon boasts an efficient public transportation system, including buses, trams, and a metro system, making it easy for residents and tourists to navigate the city. The climate in Lisbon is characterized by mild, wet winters and warm, dry summers, with average temperatures ranging from 8-21 degrees Celsius (46-70 degrees Fahrenheit). Lisbon offers a wide variety of recreational activities for visitors and locals alike. The city is home to several beautiful parks, such as the Parque Eduardo VII, Jardim da Estrela, and the Monsanto Forest Park, which provide ample space for picnics, leisurely strolls, and outdoor sports. Golf enthusiasts can enjoy a round at one of the nearby golf clubs, such as the Lisbon Sports Club, Belas Clube de Campo, or Aroeira Golf Club. Additionally, Lisbon's proximity to the Atlantic Ocean allows for various water-based activities, including surfing, sailing, and beach relaxation at popular spots like Cascais and Estoril. With its rich history, stunning architecture, and diverse recreational offerings, Lisbon is a must-visit destination for travelers seeking a unique European experience.

Local Recommendations:

For a taste of authentic Portuguese cuisine, head to Cervejaria Ramiro, a bustling seafood haven that has been serving locals and tourists alike since 1956. Here, you can indulge in a variety of seafood dishes, from the freshest clams to the most succulent tiger prawns. For a more contemporary dining experience, visit Mini Bar, a trendy gastro-bar by renowned chef José Avillez. This hotspot offers a playful menu of small bites and creative cocktails, perfect for a fun night out. If you're craving something sweet, don't miss out on the legendary pastéis de nata at Manteigaria, a pastry shop that has perfected the art of this traditional Portuguese treat. When it comes to accommodation, the Memmo Alfama Hotel is a popular choice among travelers. This boutique hotel is nestled in the heart of Lisbon's historic district, offering stunning views of the city and the Tagus River. For a more luxurious stay, consider the Pestana Palace Lisboa, a 19th-century palace turned five-star hotel. Here, you can enjoy opulent rooms, lush gardens, and a lavish spa, all while being just a short distance from Lisbon's main attractions.

Porto

Porto

Porto, is a vibrant city with a rich history and stunning architecture. The city is located in the northwest of the country, approximately 313 kilometers (194 miles) from Lisbon, the capital of Portugal. Porto is well-connected to other cities and popular destinations through its extensive public transportation system, which includes buses, trams, and the Metro do Porto. The climate in Porto is characterized by mild, wet winters and warm, dry summers, with average temperatures ranging from 8°C (46°F) in January to 22°C (72°F) in August. There are plenty of recreational activities to enjoy in Porto, such as exploring the city's historic sites, visiting its beautiful parks, and taking part in various outdoor activities. One of the most popular parks in the city is the Parque da Cidade, which is the largest urban park in Portugal and offers a variety of walking and cycling paths, as well as picnic areas and playgrounds. Golf enthusiasts can visit the Oporto Golf Club, located just south of the city in Espinho, which is one of the oldest golf courses in Portugal and offers a challenging 18-hole course. Additionally, Porto's proximity to the Atlantic Ocean provides opportunities for water sports, such as surfing and sailing, at nearby beaches like Matosinhos and Foz do Douro.

Local Recommendations:

Indulge your taste buds in Porto's vibrant culinary scene with a visit to Cantina 32, a trendy eatery located on the bustling Rua das Flores. Here, you'll savor modern twists on traditional Portuguese dishes, such as the mouthwatering octopus rice and the delectable slow-cooked pork belly. For a more intimate dining experience, head to Tapabento, a cozy restaurant tucked away near São Bento train station. Their menu boasts an array of tapas and seafood dishes, with the fresh tuna steak and the succulent prawn risotto being crowd favorites. Finally, don't miss out on the iconic Francesinha sandwich at Café Santiago, a Porto institution since 1959. When it comes to accommodation, the luxurious Pestana Vintage Porto Hotel offers a prime location along the Douro River, with stunning views and easy access to the city's main attractions. For a more boutique experience, consider the charming Rosa Et Al Townhouse, where you'll be treated to a blend of contemporary design and vintage charm, as well as a delightful garden to unwind in after a day of exploring.

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Portugal Residency Advisors is a full-service consulting firm dedicated to providing personalized services to individuals and families seeking to relocate to Portugal. With a team of experienced professionals and strategic partnerships, we are well-positioned to assist clients with all aspects of the relocation process.

Click connect to have our partner contact you via e-mail and/or phone.

Portugal Residency AdvisorsPortugal Residency Advisors

Portugal Residency Advisors is a full-service consulting firm dedicated to providing personalized services to individuals and families seeking to relocate to Portugal. With a team of experienced professionals and strategic partnerships, we are well-positioned to assist clients with all aspects of the relocation process.
Connect

Click connect to have our partner contact you via e-mail and/or phone.

Cascais

Cascais

Cascais is a picturesque coastal town located approximately 30 kilometers (18.6 miles) west of Lisbon, the country's capital. Known for its beautiful beaches, historic sites, and vibrant cultural scene, Cascais is a popular destination for both tourists and locals alike. The town is easily accessible by public transportation, with frequent train services connecting it to Lisbon and other nearby towns. Cascais enjoys a Mediterranean climate, with average temperatures ranging from 8-17 degrees Celsius (46-63 degrees Fahrenheit) in the winter months and 18-28 degrees Celsius (64-82 degrees Fahrenheit) in the summer months. There are plenty of recreational activities to enjoy in Cascais, including surfing, sailing, and golfing. The town is home to several golf courses, such as the Oitavos Dunes Golf Course and the Quinta da Marinha Golf Club, both of which offer stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean. For those who prefer more leisurely pursuits, there are numerous parks and gardens to explore, such as the Marechal Carmona Park and the Boca do Inferno, a dramatic cliff formation that offers breathtaking views of the sea. With its charming streets, lively cultural events, and beautiful natural surroundings, Cascais is a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to Portugal.

Local Recommendations:

For a taste of authentic Portuguese cuisine, head to Mar do Inferno, a family-run restaurant nestled on the cliffs of Boca do Inferno. Here, you'll find the freshest seafood dishes, including the famous "cataplana" - a traditional seafood stew. Another must-visit is Restaurante Hemingway, a stylish eatery offering a fusion of Portuguese and international flavors, with an extensive wine list to match. For a more casual dining experience, try the local favorite, Dom Dinis, known for its delicious grilled fish and stunning ocean views. After a day of exploring Cascais, retreat to the luxurious Albatroz Hotel, a charming boutique hotel with a prime location overlooking the bay. Alternatively, indulge in the elegant surroundings of the Grande Real Villa Itália Hotel & Spa, a former royal residence turned five-star hotel, offering top-notch amenities and breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean.

Sintra

Sintra is a picturesque town located approximately 25 kilometers (15.5 miles) west of Lisbon, the country's capital. Known for its stunning architecture and rich history, Sintra is a popular destination for tourists and locals alike. The town is easily accessible by public transportation, with regular train and bus services connecting it to Lisbon and other nearby cities. Sintra experiences a Mediterranean climate, with average temperatures ranging from 8°C (46°F) in January to 24°C (75°F) in August. There are numerous recreational activities available in Sintra, catering to a wide range of interests. Nature lovers can explore the lush forests and gardens of the Sintra-Cascais Natural Park, while history buffs can visit the iconic Pena Palace and the Moorish Castle. For those who enjoy golf, the Penha Longa Golf Resort and the Belas Clube de Campo are two excellent golf clubs located near Sintra. Additionally, the town's charming streets and squares offer a variety of shops, cafes, and restaurants for visitors to enjoy.

Local Recommendations:

For a gastronomic adventure in the enchanting town of Sintra, start with a visit to Tascantiga Sintra, a cozy eatery offering traditional Portuguese dishes with a modern twist. Savor the flavors of the sea at Azenhas do Mar, a cliffside restaurant with breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean and a menu filled with fresh seafood delicacies. For a sweet treat, head to Casa Piriquita, a historic pastry shop famous for its travesseiros and queijadas, two local pastries you won't want to miss. After a day of indulging, retreat to the luxurious Tivoli Palácio de Seteais, an 18th-century palace turned hotel, where you can unwind in opulent rooms and enjoy the stunning gardens. Alternatively, for a more intimate experience, book a stay at the charming Chalet Saudade, a beautifully restored 19th-century guesthouse with a vintage-inspired decor and a serene atmosphere.

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William RussellWilliam Russell

William Russell's private medical insurance will cover you and your family wherever you may be. Whether you need primary care or complex surgery, you'll have access to the best hospitals & doctors available. Unlike some insurers, we also include medical evacuation and mental health cover in our plans (except SilverLite). Get a quote from our partner, William Russell.
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Coimbra

Coimbra

Coimbra is a charming city known for its rich history and beautiful architecture. Located approximately 200 kilometers (124 miles) north of Lisbon and 135 kilometers (84 miles) south of Porto, it is easily accessible from other popular destinations in the country. The city offers a reliable public transportation system, including buses and trains, making it convenient for visitors to explore the area. Coimbra experiences a Mediterranean climate, with average temperatures ranging from 8°C (46°F) in January to 23°C (73°F) in July. There are plenty of recreational activities to enjoy in Coimbra, such as visiting the stunning University of Coimbra, one of the oldest universities in Europe, or exploring the beautiful parks and gardens, like the Jardim Botânico da Universidade de Coimbra and the Jardim da Sereia. For golf enthusiasts, the nearby Montebelo Golf Course offers a challenging and scenic experience. Additionally, the city is home to various museums, such as the Machado de Castro National Museum, and historical sites like the Monastery of Santa Clara-a-Velha, providing ample opportunities for cultural exploration and enjoyment.

Local Recommendations:

For a taste of authentic Portuguese cuisine, head to Ze Manel dos Ossos, a cozy, rustic eatery tucked away in a narrow alley. Here, you'll find a menu filled with traditional dishes like chanfana (goat stew) and bacalhau (salted cod). Another must-visit is A Taberna, a charming restaurant that serves up delicious petiscos (Portuguese tapas) and an impressive selection of local wines. For a more contemporary dining experience, try Dux Taberna Urbana, which offers a modern twist on classic Portuguese flavors in a stylish setting. When it comes to accommodations, the luxurious Sapientia Boutique Hotel is a top choice. This beautifully restored 19th-century building boasts spacious rooms with stunning views of the Mondego River and the University of Coimbra. For a more budget-friendly option, consider the charming Hotel Oslo Coimbra, conveniently located near the city center and offering comfortable rooms with all the necessary amenities.

Faro

Faro

Faro, is a charming coastal city located in the southern region of the country, known as the Algarve. It is approximately 278 kilometers (173 miles) south of Lisbon, the capital of Portugal, and 198 kilometers (123 miles) west of Seville, Spain. Faro is well-connected to other cities through public transportation, including trains and buses, making it easily accessible for travelers. The climate in Faro is Mediterranean, with mild winters and warm summers, with average temperatures ranging from 12°C (54°F) in January to 29°C (84°F) in August. Faro offers a variety of recreational activities for visitors to enjoy. The city is home to the Ria Formosa Natural Park, a protected area with diverse flora and fauna, perfect for birdwatching, hiking, and boat tours. The region is also known for its beautiful beaches, such as Praia de Faro and Ilha da Barreta, where tourists can relax and enjoy water sports like swimming, surfing, and paddleboarding. Golf enthusiasts can find several golf courses in the vicinity, including Quinta do Lago, Vale do Lobo, and San Lorenzo Golf Club, all offering stunning views and challenging courses. Faro's rich history and culture can be explored through its well-preserved Old Town, museums, and historical sites, such as the Faro Cathedral and the Roman ruins of Milreu.

Local Recommendations:

For a taste of authentic Portuguese cuisine, head to A Venda, a charming eatery that serves up delicious tapas-style dishes in a cozy, rustic setting. Seafood lovers will be delighted by the fresh catch at Restaurante Ria Formosa, where the stunning views of the Ria Formosa lagoon perfectly complement the exquisite flavors of the Algarve. For a more contemporary dining experience, O Castelo offers a fusion of traditional and modern Portuguese fare, with a beautiful terrace overlooking the Old Town. After a day of indulging in Faro's culinary delights, unwind at the luxurious Hotel Faro & Beach Club, boasting a rooftop bar and pool with panoramic views of the city. Alternatively, for a more intimate stay, consider the charming boutique hotel, Casa d'Alagoa, set in a beautifully restored 18th-century building, offering a warm and welcoming atmosphere.

Portugal Residency Advisors

Portugal Residency Advisors is a full-service consulting firm dedicated to providing personalized services to individuals and families seeking to relocate to Portugal. With a team of experienced professionals and strategic partnerships, we are well-positioned to assist clients with all aspects of the relocation process.

Learn MoreConnect

Click connect to have our partner contact you via e-mail and/or phone.

Portugal Residency Advisors

Portugal Residency Advisors is a full-service consulting firm dedicated to providing personalized services to individuals and families seeking to relocate to Portugal. With a team of experienced professionals and strategic partnerships, we are well-positioned to assist clients with all aspects of the relocation process.

Learn MoreConnect

Click connect to have our partner contact you via e-mail and/or phone.

Lagos

Lagos

Lagos is a picturesque coastal town located in the Algarve region, known for its stunning beaches, rich history, and vibrant nightlife. The town is approximately 90 kilometers (56 miles) from Faro, the region's capital, and 280 kilometers (174 miles) from Lisbon, the country's capital. Lagos boasts a well-connected public transportation system, including buses and trains that link it to other major cities in Portugal. The climate in Lagos is Mediterranean, with mild winters and warm summers. Average temperatures range from 12°C (54°F) in January to 24°C (75°F) in August. Recreational activities in Lagos are abundant, with a focus on outdoor and water-based pursuits. Visitors can enjoy the beautiful beaches, such as Praia Dona Ana and Praia do Camilo, or explore the stunning cliffs and grottos on a boat tour. For those interested in golf, there are several golf courses nearby, including Boavista Golf & Spa Resort and Espiche Golf. The town also offers various parks and green spaces, such as Parque da Cidade de Lagos and Parque Zoológico de Lagos, where visitors can relax and enjoy the natural beauty of the area. With its charming old town, lively atmosphere, and array of recreational activities, Lagos is a popular destination for tourists seeking a memorable vacation in Portugal.

Local Recommendations:

Indulge in the vibrant flavors of Lagos, by dining at the exquisite Dom Sebastião, where you'll be treated to a delightful fusion of traditional Portuguese and Mediterranean cuisine. For a more casual affair, head to Nah Nah Bah, a local favorite known for its mouthwatering burgers and laid-back atmosphere. Don't miss the chance to savor the freshest seafood at A Forja, a charming family-run restaurant that will make you feel right at home. After a day of culinary exploration, unwind at the luxurious Cascade Wellness Resort, boasting stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean and top-notch amenities. Alternatively, experience the charm of Lagos at the boutique-style Casa Mãe, a beautifully restored 19th-century estate that seamlessly blends contemporary design with traditional Portuguese elements.

Albufeira

Albufeira is a popular tourist destination known for its stunning beaches, vibrant nightlife, and charming old town. Located in the southern region of the country, Albufeira is approximately 46 kilometers (29 miles) from Faro and 256 kilometers (159 miles) from Lisbon. The city is well-connected with other parts of Portugal through public transportation, including buses and trains. The climate in Albufeira is Mediterranean, with average temperatures ranging from 12°C (54°F) in January to 24°C (75°F) in August. Recreational activities in Albufeira are abundant, with options for all ages and interests. Water sports enthusiasts can enjoy activities such as jet skiing, parasailing, and scuba diving at the numerous beaches, including Praia da Oura and Praia dos Pescadores. For golf lovers, there are several golf courses in the area, such as Pine Cliffs Golf Course and Salgados Golf Course. Nature lovers can explore the beautiful parks and natural reserves, like Parque Natural da Ria Formosa and Parque Aventura. In addition, Albufeira offers a wide range of restaurants, bars, and clubs for those looking to experience the city's lively nightlife.

Local Recommendations:

Savor the authentic flavors of Portugal at Vila Joya, a two-Michelin-starred restaurant nestled in the heart of Albufeira. With a stunning ocean view and a menu crafted by renowned chef Dieter Koschina, this gastronomic gem offers a dining experience you won't forget. For a more casual affair, head to O Marinheiro, where you can indulge in fresh seafood and traditional Portuguese dishes in a cozy, nautical-themed setting. Alternatively, try A Ruina, a historic eatery perched on the edge of the sea, offering a unique blend of local cuisine and breathtaking views. When it comes to accommodation, the luxurious Pine Cliffs Resort is a top choice for travelers seeking a blend of comfort and style. This sprawling, cliff-top retreat boasts a world-class spa, golf course, and private beach access. For a more intimate stay, consider the charming Vila Sao Vicente Boutique Hotel, a beautifully restored 19th-century mansion with stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean and Albufeira's Old Town.

Portugal Residency AdvisorsPortugal Residency Advisors
Connect

Portugal Residency Advisors is a full-service consulting firm dedicated to providing personalized services to individuals and families seeking to relocate to Portugal. With a team of experienced professionals and strategic partnerships, we are well-positioned to assist clients with all aspects of the relocation process.

Click connect to have our partner contact you via e-mail and/or phone.

Portugal Residency AdvisorsPortugal Residency Advisors

Portugal Residency Advisors is a full-service consulting firm dedicated to providing personalized services to individuals and families seeking to relocate to Portugal. With a team of experienced professionals and strategic partnerships, we are well-positioned to assist clients with all aspects of the relocation process.
Connect

Click connect to have our partner contact you via e-mail and/or phone.

Funchal

Funchal, the capital city of Madeira, Portugal, is a picturesque destination known for its stunning landscapes and vibrant culture. The city is located approximately 520 kilometers (323 miles) from Lisbon, Portugal, and 978 kilometers (608 miles) from Santa Cruz de Tenerife, Canary Islands. Funchal offers a well-connected public transportation system, including buses and cable cars, making it easy for visitors to explore the city and its surroundings. The climate in Funchal is mild and pleasant, with average temperatures ranging from 16°C (61°F) in winter to 24°C (75°F) in summer. Funchal offers a variety of recreational activities for visitors to enjoy. Golf enthusiasts can tee off at the Palheiro Golf Club or Santo da Serra Golf Club, both located near the city. Nature lovers can explore the beautiful parks and gardens, such as the Madeira Botanical Garden and Santa Catarina Park, which showcase the island's diverse flora. Additionally, Funchal's coastal location provides ample opportunities for water sports, such as sailing, diving, and whale watching. With its charming blend of natural beauty and cultural attractions, Funchal is a must-visit destination for travelers seeking a unique and memorable experience.

Local Recommendations:

Savor the flavors of Funchal at the renowned Armazém do Sal, where you'll be treated to a delightful fusion of traditional Madeiran and contemporary cuisine, all set within a beautifully restored 19th-century warehouse. For a more casual dining experience, head to Taberna Madeira, a cozy eatery offering authentic Madeiran dishes and tapas, accompanied by live music and a warm, welcoming atmosphere. Don't miss the chance to dine at Il Gallo d'Oro, a Michelin-starred restaurant that promises an unforgettable gastronomic journey through Mediterranean and Iberian flavors. Rest your head at the luxurious Belmond Reid's Palace, a historic hotel perched on a clifftop with stunning ocean views, or opt for the chic and modern Vine Hotel, where you'll find a rooftop pool and a sleek design inspired by Madeira's wine-making heritage.

Ponta Delgada

Ponta Delgada is a picturesque city located on São Miguel Island in the Azores archipelago of Portugal. It is situated approximately 1,450 kilometers (900 miles) west of Lisbon and 3,900 kilometers (2,400 miles) east of New York City. The city boasts a mild climate, with average temperatures ranging from 14°C (57°F) in the winter to 24°C (75°F) in the summer. Public transportation in Ponta Delgada includes buses and taxis, making it easy for visitors to explore the city and its surroundings. Ponta Delgada offers a variety of recreational activities for tourists and locals alike. The city is home to several beautiful parks, such as the António Borges Garden and the José do Canto Garden, where visitors can enjoy lush greenery and exotic plants. For those interested in water activities, the Portas do Mar complex features a marina, swimming pools, and various nautical sports. Golf enthusiasts can tee off at the nearby Batalha Golf Course or the Furnas Golf Course, both of which offer stunning views of the island's landscapes. Additionally, the city's rich history and culture can be explored through its numerous museums, churches, and historic sites, such as the Fort of São Brás and the Carlos Machado Museum.

Local Recommendations:

Savor the flavors of Ponta Delgada with a visit to A Tasca, a cozy eatery offering a delightful array of traditional Azorean dishes, such as the mouthwatering seafood stew, "Caldeirada de Peixe." For a more contemporary dining experience, head to Big21, where you can indulge in a fusion of Portuguese and international cuisine, all while enjoying stunning views of the marina. Don't miss the chance to sample the local specialty, "Bolo Lêvedo," at O Forno, a charming bakery that has been perfecting this sweet, fluffy bread for generations. After a day of exploring, unwind at the luxurious Azor Hotel, boasting a rooftop pool and panoramic views of the city and ocean. Alternatively, immerse yourself in the history of the island at the charming Solar do Conde, a beautifully restored 17th-century manor house nestled amidst lush gardens.

Evora

Evora is a charming city with a rich history and beautiful architecture. Located approximately 130 kilometers (80 miles) east of Lisbon, it is easily accessible by car or public transportation, such as buses and trains. The climate in Evora is Mediterranean, with hot, dry summers and mild, wet winters. Average temperatures range from 8°C (46°F) in January to 29°C (84°F) in July. There are plenty of recreational activities to enjoy in and around Evora. The city is home to several parks, such as Jardim Publico de Evora and Parque Infantil do Bacelo, where visitors can relax and enjoy the outdoors. History enthusiasts can explore the ancient Roman Temple of Diana and the impressive Evora Cathedral. For those interested in golf, there are a few golf courses in the surrounding area, such as the Montado Hotel & Golf Resort and the Ribagolfe Golf Course. With its rich history, beautiful scenery, and variety of activities, Evora is a must-visit destination for travelers to Portugal.

Local Recommendations:

For a taste of authentic Alentejo cuisine, head to Taberna Típica Quarta-Feira, where the cozy atmosphere and delicious dishes will make you feel right at home. Another must-visit is Botequim da Mouraria, a small, intimate eatery offering a variety of Portuguese tapas and an impressive wine list. For a more upscale dining experience, visit Dom Joaquim, where you can indulge in exquisite regional dishes with a modern twist. After a day of exploring Evora, unwind at the luxurious Convento do Espinheiro, a beautifully restored 15th-century convent turned hotel, complete with a heavenly spa and a divine restaurant. For a more budget-friendly option, consider the charming Vitória Stone Hotel, which boasts a rooftop pool and a prime location within walking distance of the city's main attractions.

Guimaraes

Guimaraes, is a charming city with a rich history and a population of approximately 150,000 people. Located in the northwestern part of the country, it is about 55 kilometers (34 miles) northeast of Porto and 25 kilometers (15 miles) east of Braga, making it easily accessible from these popular destinations. The city offers public transportation options, including buses and trains, which connect Guimaraes to other cities in Portugal. The climate in Guimaraes is mild, with average temperatures ranging from 8°C (46°F) in January to 20°C (68°F) in July. There are various recreational activities available in Guimaraes, such as exploring the well-preserved medieval architecture, including the iconic Guimaraes Castle and the Palace of the Dukes of Braganza. For nature lovers, the city offers several parks and green spaces, such as the Parque da Cidade and the Monte e Parque da Penha, where visitors can enjoy leisurely walks, picnics, and outdoor sports. While there are no golf clubs within the city limits, the nearby Golfe de Amarante, about 50 kilometers (31 miles) away, offers a challenging course for golf enthusiasts. Overall, Guimaraes provides a delightful mix of history, culture, and outdoor activities for visitors to enjoy.

Local Recommendations:

For a taste of authentic Portuguese cuisine, head to Histórico by Papaboa, a charming restaurant set in a 16th-century building. The menu features traditional dishes with a modern twist, such as the mouthwatering Bacalhau à Minhota. Another must-visit is São Gião, a Michelin-starred restaurant offering a fine dining experience with a focus on local ingredients and innovative techniques. For a more casual meal, try Tapas e Manias, a cozy spot serving delicious tapas and a great selection of wines. After a day of exploring Guimarães, unwind at the luxurious Pousada Mosteiro de Guimarães, a stunning hotel set in a former monastery with breathtaking views of the city. Alternatively, opt for the stylish Hotel da Oliveira, located in the heart of the historic center, offering modern amenities and easy access to the city's main attractions.

Braga

Braga

Braga is a vibrant city with a rich history and stunning architecture. Located in the northwest region of the country, it is approximately 47 kilometers (29 miles) from Porto and 378 kilometers (235 miles) from Lisbon, making it easily accessible for travelers. The city offers a well-developed public transportation system, including buses and trains, which makes getting around the city and exploring nearby destinations convenient and affordable. The climate in Braga is characterized by mild winters and warm summers, with average temperatures ranging from 8°C (46°F) in January to 25°C (77°F) in August. There are plenty of recreational activities to enjoy in Braga, catering to a wide range of interests. For those who enjoy outdoor activities, the city is home to several parks, such as Parque da Rodovia and Parque de São João da Ponte, which offer beautiful green spaces for walking, picnicking, and relaxing. History enthusiasts can explore the numerous historical sites and monuments, including the iconic Bom Jesus do Monte Sanctuary and the Braga Cathedral. While there are no golf clubs within the city limits, the nearby Golfe de Ponte de Lima, located about 40 kilometers (25 miles) away, offers a challenging and picturesque course for golfers to enjoy. With its diverse range of activities and attractions, Braga is a must-visit destination for travelers seeking a unique and memorable experience in Portugal.

Expats Talk about Living in Braga:

"I would recommend Gualtar or Trofa as an area of Braga to live in. It's part of the city, yet doesn't have the "city" feel. It's atmosphere is more "suburban" than anything. The city has everything you need to live a life that you've been accustomed to in the US. Additionally, it's location is spectacular because you have the beach 30 minutes to the west, (awsome) Geres mountains 15 minutes to the east and Spain 40 minutes to the North.... you can't go wrong. :)," said one expat living in Braga.

Local Recommendations:

For a taste of authentic Portuguese cuisine, head to Braga's renowned Restaurante Centurium, where you'll be treated to a delightful array of dishes, including the famous Bacalhau à Braga. Alternatively, indulge in the contemporary flavors of Taberna Belga, a local favorite known for its mouthwatering francesinhas and Belgian-inspired fare. For a more upscale dining experience, visit the Michelin-starred Casa de Pasto das Carvalheiras, where you'll savor exquisite dishes crafted from locally sourced ingredients. When it comes to accommodations, the elegant Meliá Braga Hotel & Spa offers a luxurious retreat with its modern rooms, indulgent spa, and stunning rooftop pool. For a more intimate stay, consider the charming Hotel Dona Sofia, a boutique hotel nestled in the heart of Braga's historic center, just steps away from the city's most iconic landmarks.

Aveiro

Aveiro, often referred to as the "Venice of Portugal," is a charming coastal city located approximately 75 kilometers (47 miles) south of Porto and 250 kilometers (155 miles) north of Lisbon. The city is well-connected to other parts of the country through public transportation, including trains and buses. Aveiro experiences a Mediterranean climate, with average temperatures ranging from 8°C (46°F) in January to 22°C (72°F) in August. Aveiro offers a variety of recreational activities for visitors and locals alike. One of the most popular attractions is the Ria de Aveiro, a network of canals and lagoons where visitors can take a leisurely boat ride on the traditional moliceiro boats. The city is also home to several beautiful parks, such as the Infante Dom Pedro Park and the City Park. For those interested in golf, the Montebelo Golfe, a 27-hole golf course, is located just 25 kilometers (15.5 miles) from Aveiro. Additionally, the nearby Costa Nova beach is a popular destination for sunbathing, swimming, and surfing. With its picturesque scenery, rich history, and diverse recreational options, Aveiro is a must-visit destination in Portugal.

Local Recommendations:

Indulge your taste buds in the enchanting city of Aveiro with a visit to O Bairro, a contemporary eatery that serves mouth-watering Portuguese cuisine with a modern twist. For a more traditional dining experience, head to Restaurante Marisqueira Mare Cheia, where you can savor the freshest seafood dishes in a cozy, nautical-themed setting. Don't miss the opportunity to try the local specialty, ovos moles, at Confeitaria Peixinho, a charming pastry shop that has been delighting locals and tourists alike since 1856. After a day of exploring the city's picturesque canals and vibrant Art Nouveau architecture, unwind at the luxurious Hotel Moliceiro, which offers elegant accommodations and stunning views of the central canal. For a more budget-friendly option, consider staying at the trendy Aveiro City Lodge, a stylish guesthouse that boasts a prime location in the heart of the city.

The Algarve

The Algarve

The Algarve, is a stunning coastal region in the southernmost part of the country, known for its breathtaking beaches, picturesque fishing towns, and vibrant nightlife. With a population of approximately 450,000 residents, the Algarve is a popular destination for both tourists and locals alike. It is located about 278 kilometers (173 miles) south of Lisbon, the capital of Portugal, and 200 kilometers (124 miles) west of Seville, Spain. The region is well-connected by public transportation, including buses and trains, making it easy to explore the various towns and attractions. The climate in the Algarve is characterized by warm, sunny summers with average temperatures ranging from 23°C to 29°C (73°F to 84°F) and mild winters with temperatures between 12°C and 18°C (54°F to 64°F). This pleasant weather makes it an ideal destination for outdoor recreational activities such as golfing, hiking, and water sports. The Algarve is home to numerous world-class golf courses, including the Oceanico Faldo Course, Quinta do Lago, and Vale do Lobo. In addition to golf, visitors can enjoy the region's beautiful natural parks, such as Ria Formosa Natural Park and Monchique Mountain Range, which offer opportunities for hiking, birdwatching, and exploring diverse ecosystems. The Algarve's stunning coastline also provides ample opportunities for water sports, including surfing, windsurfing, and sailing. With its unique blend of natural beauty, cultural attractions, and recreational activities, the Algarve is a must-visit destination for travelers seeking a memorable vacation experience in Portugal.

Expats Talk about Living in The Algarve:

"I would come here in the summer before you move. It is over flooded with tourists. I live in Albufeira and travel in the summer. While Albufeira has a reputation as a party town, it is limited to two areas. The quality of life is very high, it empties out quite a bit in the winter but plenty is left open," said one expat living in The Algarve.

Local Recommendations:

Discover the culinary delights of The Algarve at these must-visit restaurants. Start your gastronomic journey at Rei das Praias, a stunning beachfront eatery offering fresh seafood and traditional Portuguese dishes. For a more intimate dining experience, head to Vila Joya, a two-Michelin-starred restaurant nestled within a luxurious resort, where you can indulge in a tasting menu crafted by renowned chef Dieter Koschina. Don't miss the chance to dine at Bon Bon, another Michelin-starred gem, where Chef Rui Silvestre serves up innovative and artfully presented dishes inspired by the region's rich flavors. When it comes to accommodations, the Algarve has no shortage of exceptional options. For a truly unforgettable stay, book a room at the Conrad Algarve, a five-star hotel boasting lavish suites, a world-class spa, and a stunning infinity pool. Alternatively, immerse yourself in the region's natural beauty at Vila Vita Parc Resort & Spa, a luxurious cliff-top retreat offering breathtaking ocean views, lush gardens, and a private beach.

About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.


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