Guincho Beach (Praia do Guincho)
Guincho beach, near Cascais, is not what many people imagine when thinking of the archetypal Portuguese beach. Despite being within an hour of the capital, Lisbon, Guincho has a wild desolate feel. Well, except for the summer months when it doesn’t!
This wide stretch of fine, golden sand sits in the shadow of the forested hills of Sintra, one of Portugal’s most beautiful towns. To the north are high cliffs with Portugal’s (and continental Europe’s) most westerly point, the rugged Cabo da Roca, only a few kilometers beyond. This goes some way to explaining why Guincho can feel so exposed to both the wind and powerful Atlantic swells.
Whilst this might not make it ideal for swimming all year round it does make it a popular spot with surfers, windsurfers and kite-surfers.
If Guincho feels strangely familiar yet you have never visited the beach this could be due to its cinematic heritage. Not only does the beach feature in countless car commercials but it was used in the opening scene of the 1969 James Bond film, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.
There is virtually no development around Guincho beach with the oldest, and only significant building, the Forteleza do Guincho. This 17th century fortress is now a premium 5 star hotel and Michelin Starred restaurant with stunning views from its cliff top position overlooking the beach.
At the far end of the beach is a completely different experience, the Bar do Guincho. A “barefoot beach bar” this wooden shack is well known for its laid back vibe and great seafood.
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Current weather (Fri Jul 10th 08:00)
21°C / 70°F