Wide, golden beaches in easy reach of Lisbon
Head west out of Portugal's capital, and you'll be greeted with a stunning coastline that rivals the Algarve. This is the Lisbon Coast, an often overlooked slice of Portugal that deals out charming fishing villages and sandy bays, with a helping of historic sights thrown in the mix, too.
The beaches along this coast come in all shapes and sizes - some are small coves backed by jagged cliffs, others are long, wide stripes of sand. Base yourself in the beach towns of Cascais or Estoril. The former boasts a lovely old town and a vibrant arts scene, while the latter flaunts a casino that inspired James Bond author Ian Fleming.
When you've had your fill of sunbathing, pop in to Lisbon for a dose of city chic - trains whisk you to the centre in around 40 minutes. You could also head for the hills; the mountain castles of Sintra are an easy drive away.
Flights from the UK to Lisbon take around two and a half hours.
Thanks to its ocean-side location, the Lisbon Coast enjoys plenty of bright and breezy weather. Expect temperatures to hit the high 20s during the summer months - ideal for beach days and sightseeing in the city. Spring and autumn are also pleasant, with average highs of 20-22 degrees.
Currently visas are not required for UK citizens travelling to Portugal.
Tipping in Portugal is generally optional. At cafés and when taking taxis, you can just round up to the nearest euro. When in restaurants, it’s common to leave around 10%.
The official language of Portugal is Portuguese. English is widely spoken too, so getting by is easy.