Together with Estoril, Cascais forms the seaside resort of Lisbon, Portugal's capital. Cascais fame started at the end of the nineteenth century when the Portuguese royal family chose the fishing village as summer residence. Nowadays that pleasure is no longer reserved to blue blood: both Portuguese and foreigners like to spend their holidays here.
The town has 35,000 inhabitants.
Cascais is located 30 kilometers west of Lisbon on the Estoril Coast. Directly north of town lies Sintra, where you can find the royal palaces and which borders the beautiful Parque Natural de Sintra-Cascais. Northwest of Cascais lies the most western point of the Continent, Cabo da Roca, which rises 140 meters above sea level.
Cascais' economy revolves around tourism and it's successful: Cascais is one of the richest cities in Portugal. People visit the town not only for the beaches, but also to practice water sports. In 2007 the World Championship sailing was held here. Cascais also hosts many other sports events (mainly car races, motorcycling and tennis).
The nearest airport for commercial flights is Lisbon's international airport Portela Airport over 35 kilometers east of Cascais. This airport is easily reachable by rental car from Cascais/Estoril via freeway A5. The way and the exit to the airport are clearly signposted.
BusCas runs in a loop covering most destinations within Cascais and surroundings. Free bicycles are also available. These can be found opposite the train station and near the traffic circle at the Guincho Beach. For destinations further out buses leave from the bus station underneath the large shopping center opposite the train station.
The old part of Cascais consists of narrow, winding and sometimes steep streets. This district is best explored by foot; worse still, some streets can only be reached by foot. In summer months Cascais gets very busy and it may be difficult to find a free parking place. There's a large parking lot near the harbor, but it's not guarded. It's best to leave your rental car at your hotel or at a guarded parking lot.
Cascais has no shortage of accommodations ranging from basic guesthouses and midrange hotels to luxurious holiday resorts. We recommend booking your hotel room well in advance when visiting Cascais in summer months.
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