What to do and see! Your guide of the West of Portugal
Lourinhã has some of the best beaches of Lisbon. Check them out here:
Lourinhã’s beaches for surfing
Lourinhã offers good beaches for many activities.
Four of them have good conditions for surf and bodyboard:
Praia da Peralta: An extensive sandy beach with a natural beauty.Well known worldwide for tow-in. Level – Waves recommended for experienced surfers. Peaks – Several peaks Break – A powerful left reef break. Better tide – Half tide is how works better. Swell – East is off-shore and the better swell direction is west.
Areia Branca: Pura Vida Beach Hostel is located here. Level – There are waves for all levels of surfing. Wind – The best wind comes from east. Peaks – Break Beach break with great extension with at least 4 peaks. Better tide – The best tide is almost high or starting to get low. Swell – The best swell comes from the west, but works with all directions.
Caniçal: Level – It’s the perfect wave for beginners that just made the transition for smaller boards. There are waves for all levels of surfing. Wind– north winds are functional but east is straight off-shore. Peaks – Break Pointbreak to the right that works almost with all tides. At the left side of the beach there is a point break to the left that works with half tide, up or down, and a beach break that only works with low tide. The same wave to the left can be a dry tube that ends into a rock. Swell – All kinds of swell .
Paimogo: At the right corner of the bay another wave breaks very close to the rocks, to the right side.The drops can be pretty nasty. There is a good canal for both sides. Break- Left pointbreak with a strong drop situated in a small bay. Better tide- High tide. Swell – Better when arriving from the west, northeast or north wind.
Despite no longer playing the active role in the economy they once did, the Lourinhã’s windmills are still important heritage.
At Alto da Pinhôa, in the Moita dos Ferreiros region, you can enjoy a close-up experience of five windmills which were fully restored in April/2000.
Did you know that Lourinhã has a very important collection of dinosaur fossils? You can see them in the museum or hiking!
The Paimogo Fort is situated on the cliffs of Paimogo beach. You can visit it while going to Paimogo beach!
It was built in 1674 and its special mission was to defend the Paimogo beach, in order to prevent enemy troops from landing at such an easily accessible place.
The Berlengas archipelago is one of Portugal’s best kept secret – a group of small islands, amazingly made by nature.
There you can hike on trails, birdwatching, visit the caves, go dolphin watching, diving and snorkeling, kayak and stand-up paddle or just relax on the beach.
The only way to get to these islands is by boat from the Peniche Port, where there are regular circuits to Berlenga. You can ask us to book you a boat tour (30 minutes to each side).
Baleal is a former island, now a small peninsula separated from the mainland by a tombolo forming a beach of fine white sand.
It’s located in the north of Peniche, and it became a summer resort for water sports because it offers unique conditions in Europe for surfing and body boarding.
Carvoeiro Cape is a local with natural value as it presents a great quantity of calcaric cliffs.
From here, you’re able to see the Berlengas Natural Reserve.
Birds lovers might observe several species.
Here you will find a lighthouse, the Nossa Senhora dos Remédios Chapel, with tiles from the XVIII century, and even the Furninha grotto, where many archaeologic remainings where found.
As the name suggests, Praia dos Supertubos is famous for its pipe waves and because of that is one of the most important destinations for surfers.
This beach hosts some of the most important surfing championships in the world.
Peniche Fortress was the largest sea entry point in the past. It had multiple uses such as protect refugees from Boer in the early twentieth century. This fortress had great importance for the portuguese people as it was from here that the great escape of several inmates during the dictatorial period.
Nowadays it houses the City Museum. The access to the fort is free of charge.
From the fortress you can see beautiful views of the coast and Consolação beach.
Peniche beaches for surfing
Peniche is surrounded by several beaches with different orientations, so there is a wide range of possibility for surfing.
Porto Batel: Not advised for beginners. It has a very consistent right point break with a large canal. All kinds of swell can work here. With northeastern wind it can be perfect but with northern wind is already pretty good.
Consolação: located in the south of Peniche peninsula, the beach is divided in two parts. To the south there is an area of rocks that offers a point break while in the north there is a large sand beach that reaches the city of Peniche. The spot offers fast and hollow waves recommended for experienced surfers.
Supertubos: located in the south of Peniche, it is definitely the most famous wave in Portugal with international reputation. Its name says it all, it is a reef and beach break which offers powerful, fast and hollow waves, only recommended for experienced surfers. Works best with offshore winds from the northeast and the best swell direction is coming from the southwest. It can be a crowded spot.
Molhe Leste: located close to Paniche harbour, it is a point break on a sand bottom that offers left hand waves fast and hollow. The best swell direction is coming from the southwest and the best wind direction is coming from the North.
Cerro: located at the beginning of the huge bay connecting Peniche to Baleal, it is a beach break that offers both left and right hand waves. Good spot for beginners and advanced. The best swell direction is from the north northwest and the best wind direction is from southwest.
Meio da Baía: Multiple peaks spreading the crowd. South wind and north swell. For all levels of surfing. The best tide is almost full.
Cantinho da Baía: West is the better direction for the swell and supports side-shore winds very well, however east is straight off-shore. It’s a great place for beginners. Works with all the tides.
Praínha: South wind and swell from north.It’s a great place for beginners. Wait for the medium tide.
Lagide: located north of Baleal it is possibly the best known left-hand reef break of the area. The spot offers mainly left-hand waves fast and fun; it also offers a right handed peak ideal for learning surfers. The best swell direction is coming from the north and northwest; the best wind direction is coming from Southwest.
Almagreira: located in the north of Peniche village. The beach break offers both, left and right hand waves. The best swell and wind direction is from the south.
Belgas: located in the north of Baleal, it is a beach break that offers left and right hand waves. Waves are strong and sometimes tubular. The best wind direction is from the southeast and the best swell direction is from the north.
Rua Direita is the main street of the town and also the one that attracts most visitors. Historically, Rua Direita and Rua Nova have been the main streets of Óbidos and the quickest ways of reaching the castle.
In the 14th century, it was known as Rua Direita, probably due to the expansion of the town towards south. This development culminated with the construction of the Town Gate in the second half of the 14 th century.
Originally the trace of this street was not as linear as we see it today. Some old gothic portals inside the buildings were discovered proving that this street was, in fact, different. However, it has presented this formation since the 16th and 17th centuries.
Located in Saint Mary’s Square, this church is found in the main square of the Town. Legend has it that it was founded during the Visigoth period. Later, it became a Mosque and after King Afonso Henriques’ conquest from the Moors, it became a Christian Temple once again.
Saint Teotónio was its first prior of this church. Later, King João III endowed it his wife, Queen Catarina of Austria. It also housed a collegiate. Queen Leonor profoundly changed the medieval temple in the end of the 15th century. Also, the bell tower was constructed during these restoration works. This church was damaged in the 1535 earthquake, but it was immediately reconstructed with the support of Queen Catarina and of prior Rodrigo Sanches. It is after these works that the temple acquired its current appearance.
The mannerist portico (main entrance) holds an image of Our Lady of Assumption. The interior is divided in three naves and has with a painted wooden ceiling dated back to 1676. The walls are covered with blue and white tiles in from around 1680-1690.
In the chancel, covered with blue and yellow tiles, one can find the retable (c. 1620-1622) by the painter João da Costa. In the epistle side of the altar, a retable of Saint Catherine by Josefa d’Óbidos portraying Saint Catherine’s Martyrdom and Life can be found.
In the Gospel side of the altar, which is in a national baroque style, one can find an image of Our Lady of the Rosary, which is part of Our Lady of Grace Valley Gate.
Also, in this same side one of the first works of art of the Portuguese Renaissance is found: the tomb of João de Noronha and his wife Isabel de Sousa. It is considered a national monument and dates back to 1529-1532. It is made from ançã stone, coming from the region of Coimbra.
Finally, one can admire in the high choir, the pipe organ from the 17th century and a set of oak wood chairs.
Ginja de Óbidos (Ginjinha) is a natural handmade sour cherry liqueur. It combines the wisdom and ancient traditions of Monks with the exceptional quality of the fruits from Óbidos.
Here we drink it with a chocolate cup.
You can buy the bottle and serve as an aperitif or a digestive after dinner drink.
In August the town of Óbidos travels back and time and recreates the customs and spirit of medieval Europe.
Flowing vibrant banners and heraldic flags, wizards, jugglers, court jesters, wandering minstrels, musicians and mimes provide the vivacious merriment. Craft demonstrators and some 100 food, beverage and merchandise vendors take visitors to a time that has long passed.
The afternoon ends with a knights battle on horseback.
Visitants will also come upon two civil and military camp sites, replicas of assault weapons, surgical and domestic tools, and different animals, such as horses, ponies, donkeys, falcons and snakes.
Visitors can also enjoy a “medieval” style meal. Hearty soups, grilled meat and sausages, snails, cod, quail, rabbit, hog, lamb and squid are only some of the tasty delights offered by almost 20 taverns spread throughout the marketplace.
The International Chocolate Festival is one of the biggest and most important events organized in the small historic town of Óbidos.
Every year in March / April visitors come to Óbidos to enjoy many sculptures made of chocolate and traditional sweets.
Ericeira is famous for its beautiful beaches, located where the high cliffs of the rocky coast meet the Atlantic Ocean.
But that is not all. You will love the hospitality of its people, the harmony of the “old village” with its narrow cobblestone streets, the characteristic housing, the sea, the fishing, the cuisine, the Atlantic views…