Information & Facts
The focus of daytime activity while on holiday in Cascais are
the local beaches, but those who want a break from sand and sun can
tour some worthy local sights, like the Church of Our Lady of the
Assumption, which features paintings by 17th-century female artist
Josefa de Obidos. There are a couple of museums, displaying
maritime relics and items depicting the history of Cascais. The
Parque do Marechal Carmona is also worth a visit, offering shady
picnic spots and a small zoo. Most visitors take an excursion to
the Boca do Inferno, a scenic spot where waves tumble into a hole
in the cliff.
Portuguese is the official language, but English is
widely spoken and understood.
Portugal is a member of the European Union and its official
currency is the Euro (EUR), which is divided into 100 cents. There
are numerous banks, bureaux de change and ATMs available in main
cities and tourist destinations. Foreign currency can be exchanged
at banks, bureaux de change and automatic currency exchange
machines. Banking hours are generally 8.30am to 3pm Monday to
Friday. Major credit cards are widely accepted, as are travellers
There is not much nightife in Cascais and it is better suited to
older travellers and couples.
The Cascais resort has a vibrant nightlife, offering everything
from traditional Fado to wild dance clubs. Largo Luiz de Camoes
Square is the hub of the hotspots, with a collection of bars and
clubs. Most popular and lively of the clubs, Coconuts, is however
to the west of the town on the seafront, with a bar and dance
floor. Other favourites include Baluarte, Ferdi's, O' Neills Irish
Pub and Bally Bally Pub.
Cascais is renowned for its quality dining, drawing gourmets
from Lisbon and nearby Estoril. The main restaurant strip of
Cascais is the walk-through Rua Frederico Arouca, and the lively
Largo Luis de Camoes. Here you will find a wide choice of eateries,
most with outside areas, from cafes to traditional taverns, serving
both local fare and international cuisine. Fish restaurants abound;
be warned it is said that one should not eat fish in Portugal on
Mondays, because fishermen do not go to sea on Sundays!
Specialities of the Estoril coast are fish stew, sole, dried
codfish, lobster and crab. Spicy chicken dishes are also popular.
Enjoy the reasonably priced good local wines. Popular restaurants
in Cascais include the Michelin-starred Fortaleza do Guincho, and
the local seafood at Restaurante B and B.
Shopping in Cascais' town centre is an enjoyable pastime,
exploring the Rua da Raita pedestrianised street which offers
numerous small shops selling local wares, including
hand-embroidered linen and hand-painted tiles and other ceramics.
Along the beachfront are the ubiquitous open-fronted stores and
kiosks selling holiday requisites like buckets and spades,
sunglasses and sunscreen. For local colour the place to be is on
the Rua Mercado on Wednesdays or Saturday mornings when the
farmer's market is held, selling fresh produce and plenty of other
goods. Glitzy shopping is at the huge Shopping Cascais Centre, out
of town on the highway to Sintra, where there are two floors with
hundreds of stores dealing mainly in clothing, accessories,
furniture and household goods.
Local time is GMT (GMT +1 from last Sunday in March to
Saturday before last Sunday in October).