Cascais is a charming seaside town in the Greater Lisbon region, located on the Portuguese Riviera. It is a cosmopolitan centre and tourist destination. It attracted the rich and royal families to spend summers with the excellent coastal location. Foreign kings and royal families such as King Edward VIII of the United Kingdom, King Carlos I of Spain and King Umberto II of Italy claimed the town as their home. Today, Cascais is one of the wealthiest municipalities in both Portugal and the Iberian Peninsula. It is a symbol of high quality living. Not difficult to imagine, the real estate cost is soaring high.
The little gem welcomes its guests with the picturesque beach, Praia da Rainha. Literally, it is translated as the 'The Queen's beach' as this beautiful small cove was chosen by Queen Dona Amelia as her private beach. The beautiful beach with its proximity to the railway station draws crowds during the holiday period.
We then headed to the direction of the sea. A beautiful yacht harbour came into sight. Round a corner stands the Tower of Santo Antonio de Cascais. It is raw and mighty. Strolling along the streets we saw beautiful houses. Next was the Pousada Hotel and Art District. It is a luxury hotel set within the walls of the historical fortress of the symbolic 16th century Citadel of Cascais. This is the first hotel in Europe which has an art district. It exhibits "in loco" creation by the residing and guest artists in constant dynamics between guests and Art.
Going west is the Museum Quarter. One can choose to visit museums or enjoy a leisure walk between the museums. Museums include:
It was constructed in early 1900 by the Irish tobacco millionaire Jorge O'Neill. His private art collection is displayed. Exhibits include 17th century Oriental art, Indo-Portuguese furniture and an assortments of other varied artifacts. The weather was terrific good. We opt to walk around the Museum Quarter, Hens, peacocks walked freely around.
|Condes de Castro Guimarães Museum - Chapel|
It shows the history of fishing and sailing at Cascais and the royal connection of sailing.
Exhibits are primarily donations by Paula Rego. They include paintings by her late husband, the artist Victor Willing and some of the models used by the donor.
Around the Museum Quarter is the Jardim Marechal Carmona dotted with art pieces and sculptures. Local residents enjoyed the space and sunshine.
Walking further west, about 2km from Cascais, lies the Boca do Inferno (Hell's mouth). It is an interesting cliff formation, a small bay and natural arch resulted by endless pounding of the Atlantic Ocean. The walk along the coastal line is gorgeous. Visitors are rewarded with great views of rocks, birds and natural scenery.
Last but not the least, but perhaps the most beautiful and enjoyable promenade is the beachfront walk from Cascais to Estroil. It is a very popular 3km flat walk. Strolling along the path captures very beautiful views of the open sea, best beaches, historical buildings, cafes and restaurants.