About Portugalist

Portugalist is the web’s leading guide to travel in Portugal and moving here as well.

The site was started by James Cave in 2016 after he became frustrated with the lack of good quality information about Portugal that he could find online – everything was either top-level or worse out-of-date or inaccurate. Many of the article were even written by freelance writers who had never been to the places that they were writing about (unfortunately, this still happens a lot!).

Since launching, Portugalist has been referenced in countless international publications like Forbes, Skyscanner, and The Culture Trip, and the site now attracts millions of visitors every year.


James Cave

james graduation
Graduating kindergarten in Penafiel in the North of Portugal

I’ve spent a lot of time in Portugal. As a child, I spent several years living in the North of Portugal and I’ve since spent time living in Lisbon and in the Algarve. I’ve also travelled extensively throughout the country, and visited Portuguese communities around the world (like Little Portugal in London and the Kudeejeen neighbourhood in Bangkok).

I travel a lot myself as well. I’ve been very lucky in that I’ve been able to travel throughout Europe, North America, and Asia, and also to live in parts of the world like Germany, Spain, Ireland, the UK, France, and South Africa. Yet, despite having been to so many places, Portugal always manages to draw me back.

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  1. Hi, I'm looking for a place to stay where there are nudist beaches, it's going to be my first trip to Portugal. Also it would be for a single male, looking for a relaxing nudist break.

  2. James, this is just to say thank you for your initiative. The quality of the publications is really different from what I have seen so far.

  3. I am struggling to get an appointment for family reunification visa do you have any recommendations re a lawyer as the one I have hired has not been able to get one for almost a year now!

    I am also in the process of trying to buy a house.

    And importing our belongings from the UK


  4. Hi James,
    Myself and three family members made application to the office of Comunidade Israelita de Lisboa
    Av. Miguel Bombarda nº1, 4º Esq
    1000-207 Lisboa
    [email protected]

    This apication occurred in 2021, long before the new rules took effect, September 15, 2022. We all have CIL Processo numbers and our families lead applicant was approved for analysis . We have tried to communicate with that Lisbon office through email and we have not received a reply since December, 2021. We are wanting assistance in finding out from the Lisbon office the status of our four applications? Do you recommend any Lisbon attorneys that might help us with our efforts?

  5. Enjoyed reading the down sides of living in Portugal and yes agree.... with my own experiences x
    As a globe trotting brit with property in the Uk and a small fruit farm in the Algarve feel very lucky to have found a Gem x Work as with all houses in progress
    Car ... drive and old one don't import or two tractor 2 old ones buy local....
    Boat yacht is still in the Uk
    Moving we for now have decided to do 90 days and 90 days after 3 years of house ownership why ? Not ready to stem into the abyss...Very elderly family is the main reason. but being british and spending 6 months at home can be a + too if you can afford it.
    Taxing for spending 6 extra months in Portugal for me so far is a big hurt as being retired
    Driving and licence I cannot give up my Uk licence for a Portuguese one it is against everything I hold dear to me my classic cars I can still drive and motorbikes.
    Flying back and forth is still fun but as a qualified PPL sitting in the back is starting to get easier at £25 a flight if I get it right for 2.5 hours.
    Food I love the food and as a Trained Chef have had so much fun with the change of ingredients, but Beef ! God it is crap ! The beef mince is good but a steak! I can keep the beef 3 weeks before it is ready. So is the cheese they all taste the same and as for ham and bacon work in progress.
    Mice and rats can be a problem in the house ! Mice needed some assistance to leave.
    Dogs ... Being a dog breeder we also work and show Portuguese water dogs. Barking is not really a problem for us. but ours don't at night as they all sleep in the house, the odd thunderstorm or someone mooching about outside will get noticed.
    Damp and the house I fitted gutters all round transformed the house, dry walls = warmer house and wood burner give the house that glow in the winter and the big fireplace the heatsink to ward off but the house being dry is easy to heat now.. Paperwork so far we have managed to avoid 99% we comply and use the system where ever possible or devise a plan or talk to our Portuguese friends and neighbours who always have a plan lol.
    Keeping a camp in the Uk we are very fortunate we keep a house in the UK as we think the price bubble in Portugal will not last forever so far since we bought 3 years ago our home has more than doubled in Portugal If we sell it yes 40% hit but there is no plan to change it. but never say never xxx
    Medical stuff as we live on the doorstep in Oxford of the biggest teaching hospitals and have had to use the facilities a few times and know how to get the service in the UK.. Portugal is good but sometimes you have to be lucky and listen to what the good staff are saying... it is important. Cost yes it can be expensive sometimes and yes it can go wrong as in the Uk but so far between the two we are fine.
    For us residency is on the cards but for now not in a rush... and if it changes good or bad we change too 🙂

  6. Hi James,

    Loving your website, I have already found more useful information on here than I have anywhere else on the web!

    My partner and I are moving to Portugal from the UK permanently in Summer 2020. He has an EU passport as he is Irish. He owns 2 properties as well as a farm in Northern Portugal. The farm will provide us with an income once it is up and running in the form of selling produce, teaching courses and renting out a cottage.

    I do not have an EU passport and for the first 12 months of living there, it is unlikely that I will have a personal income but I will have around £20,000 in savings.

    Do you know what options would be available to me in order to be able to live there with him? We are unmarried.

    Thanks so much in advance,


  7. Ola, Just went thru the furniture shops on your lists, does anyone know of any Asian furniture shops with traditional items? Obrigada for your help.

  8. Hi James
    Currently living near Anadia for a year and looking for a more permanent move. I am enjoying reading your towns and cities write ups and it is making me want to visit a lot of places. I noticed in your Amarantes article you said that the weather wasn’t that great in the winter. This would be interesting to know for the other towns, i.e. what would they be like to live in all year round. I can’t find anything with this information on the internet, most articles just assume a short visit. This sort of information would be interesting for wannabe expats too, as we are being priced out of the Algarve so have to look further afield. For example, my monthly rent here in a cheap part of Portugal is 800 euros per month whereas we couldn’t find a house for long term rental for less than 1500 euros in the Algarve. I think the prices have shot up over the last couple of years.
    Keep up the good work!

    • Hi Christine,

      Thanks for your message.

      I am starting to write "living guides" as well as "travel guides" as I've noticed quite a few people who are reading the travel guides are doing so to get information about living there.

      Prices have definitely increased although I have found properties in the Algarve around the 800 mark. Maybe the current crisis will bring them down again.

      • Something for people reading your blog to be aware of is that the rental market in Portugal is probably around 90% furnished. This was a shock to us and severely limited our options. They are not willing to take the furniture out. Unfortunately the furniture in some of the accommodation is not great, but you will usually be able to see this in the pictures on the web sites.
        They don’t seem to mind dogs and cats at all. The furniture was much more of a constraint than our pets!
        Also, be prepared to pay the whole annual rental in advance if you have no Portuguese guarantor.
        Other than that, once we found somewhere, the Estate agent and the landlord have been great.

        • That'a a really useful observation, since I am looking to rent in Portugal for 6-months to a year and for that sort of period, 'furnished' is way easier.

  9. Hello James,
    We are staying for a month in Portimao with a rental car in March 2020. Look forward to any suggestions of places we must see. This will be our second visit to Portugal. We have visited Madiera and Lisbon .
    Look forward to your newsletter. Thank you

    • Novacortica Cork Factory Tour
      Sao Bras de Alportel
      | Parque Industrial da Barracha,
      Apartado 39, Sao Bras de Alportel
      8150-017, Portugal

  10. Hi James

    We have visited Lisbon 5 times and love it we are coming for Xmas this year and understand most restaurants will not be open . We are stay in Baixa My Story Hotel do you know if any restaurants will be open on Xmas day , I do think a Chinese might be our only option.

    • Hi Phyllis,

      Definitely good to keep the Chinese as a fallback option. I often go to a Chinese restaurant on New Year's Day - usually to Mr Lu's on Rua António Pedro 95. I imagine the "illegal" Chinese restaurants will be open as well. That could be quite a unique way to spend Christmas.

      If you'd prefer to eat something other than Chinese on Christmas Day, you could try using thefork.pt to book a restaurant. In theory, it should only show you which restaurants are open on Christmas Day and, if you book now, the restaurant has plenty of time to let you know if they're not open.

      I'm not sure, but I imagine that some of the restaurants inside hotels would be open as well.

      Hope all of that helps.

      Get the book Moving to Portugal Made Simple on Amazon now

  11. Just returned from my first visit to Europe. I chose Portugal since my world traveler friends have said they would live in Portugal if they ever left the United States. What an adventure I had in Porto and on a river boat up the Douro River on a Road Scholar Tour! I hope to return to Portugal in 2020!

  12. Hi James, I am from Ireland (Waterford) and I am visiting Lisbon on December 6th for 3 days and I am really looking forward to our visit. Can you recommend a nice restaurant to visit whilst in Lisbon, something quirky or unusual would be nice ?

  13. hi James;
    My wife and I have only two days in Porto and will be staying in the Ribiera District. We don't want to schedule an expensive mid-day one-way flight from OPO to LIS on Mon 20 Jan 2020, so we need to choose between the more affordable 9am & 2pm flights. While the early morning flight to Lisbon is logistically attractive, we fear missing out on an "unknown" something in Porto Monday morning. Any suggestions?? Love your blog -- Aloha (Lee & Jackie)

  14. Hey James
    I plan on heading to Portugal next September . It sounds like that would be the perfect time to go . I read some of the notes above an the weather sounds good and the tourist season is over . I feel that your feedback is invaluable .

    You are Greatly Appreciated
    Duane B.

  15. Hi James, my 23 year old daughter and I will be visiting Lisbon for 2 days on December 12-14. Yes it is only 2 days but we are visiting 7 other cities. We are staying downtown Lisbon close to Praca da Figueira and have a pre-booked hop on hop off bus tour on the 13th which is a Friday. What advice could you give to do on the day we arrive the Thursday and the Friday evening. We are looking for a good wine and food experience. And also how to get the most of sightseeing on the bus tour?
    I would greatly appreciate your feedback please.

    • Hi Sharon,

      A food tour is a good way to try lots of different bits of Portuguese food rather than ordering an entire meal. Culinary Backstreets is an example of one company with a variety of walks: https://culinarybackstreets.com/culinary-walks/lisbon/

      If you use the code PRT5, you get 5% off. It's not much but it's something.

      I'd also recommend taking in a fado show one of the evenings. I've written a bit more about Fado here: https://www.portugalist.com/fado/

      Get the book Moving to Portugal Made Simple on Amazon now

  16. Hi James I am moving to Portugal in 18months when I retire staying for six months of the year , really frustrating trying to find if I will be able to get a Fiscal number when the UK comes out of the EU. Will I need to change my driving licence is another concern ? all questions I have and no answers , any help much appreciated my friend.

    Regards Paul

    • Hi Paul,

      It's really hard to say as it depends on whether the UK leaves with a deal and what kind of deal that is. I wrote a blog post about "Brexit and Portugal" earlier in the year, but the UK didn't leave in March, it got a new PM, the PM negotiated a different deal, the UK didn't leave in October, and now there's going to be a general election which could change things again.

      I don't think the fiscal number is going to be an issue. Assuming you're able to live in Portugal, you'll be able to get a fiscal number. The issue will be how complicated it will be for you to move to Portugal. I don't think it'll be ever be impossible, but it's likely that it won't be as straight-forward as it is now.

      As for the driving licence, again it's difficult to say at this point. Back at the start of this year, expats living in Portugal were being told to switch to a Portuguese licence in case there was a no deal Brexit. Who knows what the situation will be in 18 months' time.

      Will you need to switch, though? If your main residence is going to be in Portugal then probably, but it might not be necessary if you're going to be resident somewhere else (you said you were only going to be spending 6 months of the year in Portugal).

      Unfortunately, I think you're going to have to wait and see what (if anything) happens over the next few months. It's quite frustrating but I imagine a lot of other people are in the same boat.

      Get the book Moving to Portugal Made Simple on Amazon now

  17. Hi James,
    I first visited Portugal in 2007 for a short 4-day trip but I almost instantly fell in love with that place. I promised myself that I will go back and only now I managed to pull the time and go.

    I booked a trip that has the flight, hotels and rental car in and the rest is up to me.
    Was looking for the gems to be discovered as I have about 10 days ( including the arrival and departure days). The itinerary is:
    - Landing Lisbon on Nov 10 and driving to Evora ( Nov 10 to 12)
    - to Algarve on Nov 12 ( Nov 12 to 16)
    - to Lisbon on Nov 16 ( Nov 16 to 19)

    We are a party of 3: myself (40s) and my son (9) and my friend and she is in her late 50s. We are not into touristic-ish stuff but my son might look for some of that thing, so we wanted to touch a bit of everything but with emphasis on the history and local traditions. Back in 2007 I visited the Obidos, Nazare and Fatima (looooved Obidos and Iiked Nazare but did not enjoy that much Fatima).
    I was looking for anything that is a "must see" on or close to my itinerary.

    As my son is fan of FC Porto we were thinking to drive one of the days we are based in Lisbon to Porto and back. The distance seems reasonable but I hear that driving in Portugal is not the same as North America. What do you suggest?

    Thank you so much!

    • Hi Daniela,

      It's more that driving long distances (what we consider long distances) isn't as common in Europe as it is in North America. If you want to drive from Lisbon to Porto for a day it's perfectly doable and there's a good motorway in between. It would mean 6+ hours in the car, though, which you could be spending exploring.

      As for your trip, it sounds like a great route you have planned. It's worth stopping in at Beja and Serpa on the way down from Evora to the Algarve. Both are beautiful towns.

      If you have time, it's also worth driving up to Lisbon via the Parque Natural do Sudoeste Alentejano e Costa Vicentina. It's a really beautiful part of the world.

      Get the book Moving to Portugal Made Simple on Amazon now

  18. Hi James,

    It is nice to read about someone who also likes exploring Portugal, so may we subscribe to your newsletter. It should be of great interest.

    My lovely lady and I are planning to visit the Algarve again by car, in a week’s time. We prefer to travel by car for the flexibility it provides. We have lived in Andalusia for over 25 years and have visited Portugal before, several times, but not in the last 5 years. We have five days to wander, including travelling days and will be based just outside Albufeira. Our approximate itinerary is as follows:

    Day One (Saturday): Silves - Museu Municipal, Cathedral and the Castillo & the Saturday Market, before driving to Porches Pottery later in the afternoon.

    Day Two (Sunday): Going from Tunes to Lagos and back by train - Forte da Ponta da Bandeira, The city walls & castle, Igreja de Santo Antonio & the old town.

    Day Three (Monday): Drive into Albufeira, park & explore on foot the Galeria de Arte Pintor Samora Barros, Convento/Ermida da Nossa Senhora da Orada & the Torre do Relogio. In the afternoon, drive to Guia Centro Commercial and cruise the shops.

    Day Four (Tuesday): Drive to Loulé outskirts to see only the Igreja de São Lourenço de Matos as we have visited Loulé several times before. Then, head for São Bras de Alportel, pass through there and continue to Tavira. Park & explore the old town on foot, taking in the Palacio de Galeria & The Museu Municipal, the Roman Bridge & Tavira Castle. After that we continue for home in Spain.

    Is there anything within these places James, that you feel is of particular merit and should not be overlooked?

    We are 71 and 75 years old and still love exploring, even if we are not quite as active as we used to be.

    With kind regards, Bruce

  19. Hi there James!

    Hope this e-mail finds you in good health and spirit!

    We are moving from Curaçao to Portugal as soon as our house here is sold. Could you maybe recommend a FB page that is equipped with longterm rentals in the Coimbra/Lisbon area, please? That would be grand!

    Wishing you many happy experiences ahead! :-)))

    Peter & Bärbel

    • Hi Bärbel,

      I would recommend reading this article, which lists a few Facebook groups for Lisbon: https://www.portugalist.com/lisbon-long-term-rentals/

      Aside from the Facebook groups, the other websites mentioned (e.g. OLX) are generally going to be the same for Coimbra as they are for Lisbon.

      Get the book Moving to Portugal Made Simple on Amazon now

  20. Hi James,
    So glad I found your blog & am signing up for newsletter. My husband & I are traveling to Portugal in October for our 30th anniversary & are so excited yet intimidated because it’s our first trip abroad and we feel clueless.
    Our plan is to fly into Porto & have booked a stay in Villa Nova de Gaia (taxi or Uber from airport??) Then fly to Faro to stay in Lagos a few days (again, taxi or public transport?) Lastly we’re thinking train to Lisbon for a couple of days? Hope to see Sintra (do we need a whole day for that?) Does all that sound reasonable/doable in 10 days?
    Thanks for any advice can share. Looking so forward to seeing your beautiful country.

    • Hi Phyllis,

      That does sound reasonable!

      Taxis and Ubers are available from Lisbon, Porto, and Faro airport. You can also book airport transfers at each, if you want something pre-booked but it's usually not as cheap as an Uber anyway.

      I think a day is really needed for Sintra. You won't be able to see it all in that time, but you could definitely make it to a few of the main spots. Don't forget that you also need to factor in some time to get there and back - slightly less than an hour each way if you go by train.

      Hope the anniversary celebrations go well!

      Get the book Moving to Portugal Made Simple on Amazon now

  21. Hi James,
    What a great blog! I don't know that much about Portugal other than the great poets!
    I work for a book fair company in Boston MA and have a huge Portuguese speaking population. I'm looking for a way to get them popular American children's books that have been translated into Portuguese (or any books really) but having a hard time! any suggestions on how to find a vendor for that in the US? I found your blog when looking for Amazon in Portuguese speaking counties but I don't think it's up and running yet??
    any advice for this book nerd?


    • Hi Mollie,

      Sorry for the late reply.

      I'm not sure. I would have thought if there was a Portuguese books specialist anywhere in the US that it would be in MA.

      You could get in touch with Alla in New Mexico and see if they can point you in the right direction - https://www.facebook.com/pages/Alla/111768695526247

      Get the book Moving to Portugal Made Simple on Amazon now

  22. Hi James,

    Just wanted to say I came across your blog a week or so ago while researching for our upcoming trip - two families with two 6-year old children - and I have been obsessed with your articles ever since. They are fantastic and a wonderful introduction and resource. We arrive in Lisbon Saturday then driving straight down to Algarve, back to Lisbon a few days after that and then a flight to the Azores for 5 days. We are very excited. You paint such a beautiful picture!!

  23. Hi James ~
    I'm coming mid-September through the end of October and can hardly wait. I got an apartment, rented a car and fully intend on seeing/doing anything that appeals to me - I travel alone just so I don't have to accommodate the wishes of anyone else (how spoiled is THAT????!!!) Any current and accurate toll info - say from Faro to Fatima?

    P.S. I read the article on Sandcity - thank you, it's now on my list of to-see's
    P.P.S. Anyone wanting to learn something of the language, whatever their age, I can highly recommend Duolingo.com - - it's free, but you can do add-ons for minimal cost

    • Hey Kerneen,

      That's so exciting! Your life sounds like the way to do it 🙂

      Unfortunately, I don't think there are any toll pricing calculators online if that's what you mean. I normally pay around €20 from the middle of the Algarve to Lisbon, so maybe €30-40 is an estimate for Faro to Fatima.

      A pricing calculator is definitely needed, but I have no idea if I'd be able to get a hold of the data.

      Get the book Moving to Portugal Made Simple on Amazon now

  24. Thanks James! Are the car rental recommendations I saw in an earlier post still relevant? Any updates? Any concerns about the fuel shortage from strike? We are arriving mid September so I need to jump on this.

    • Hi Janis,

      Yes, car rental recommendations are still relevant.

      As for the fuel strike, I would be very surprised if it's still going then. They typically last a few days, and it's unlikely that they would strike again in September.

      Get the book Moving to Portugal Made Simple on Amazon now

  25. Hi James - We are flying into Lisbon but need to go to Porto upon arrival. We will spend 1.5 days in Porto and then go to Douro Valley for 3 nts. Then back to Lisbon. Do you think best idea is to train to Porto and rent car in Porto for the valley and them drive and drop off car in Lisbon? Or rent car in Lisbon for entire trip? What is most economical? And curious if there are Uber’s that would take us to Douro valley and from Douro valley to Lisbon? There are 8 of us. Thank you!

    • Hi Janis,

      I think the most economical option would be to rent the car in Lisbon and keep it for the entire trip.

      Taking the train between Lisbon and Porto will cost around €15 per person, so €120 total - so far more than you would pay to rent the car for that leg of the trip. Obviously you won't use the car in Porto, but I think it still makes sense to rent it in Lisbon.

      Also, I don't think Uber is an option. Currently, it's only really available in cities (e.g. Porto and Lisbon) and not really the countryside.

      Get the book Moving to Portugal Made Simple on Amazon now

  26. Hello. Would you please sign me up for your Portugalist newsletter

    I would apply it if you did not share my email address. Thank you

  27. 2 of us female seniors looking for quaint place with kitchen on southern coast of Portugal for 3 weeksish in November. With a view = ideal. Advice? Your life sounds beautiful!! Obrigada🌞

    • Hi Lynn,

      Sounds like a lovely trip. Airbnb.com is usually better than booking.com when you're looking for places with a kitchen, so I would start by looking there.

      Will you have a car? If not, then you'll want to be somewhere that has good train or bus connections if you're there for 3 weeks. I wrote an article about visiting the Algarve without a car that should help here.

      Personally, for quaint and quiet places, I love the Western Algarve. It's not as developed or even populated as the Central Algarve, and it has a big natural park: the Parque Natural do Sudoeste Alentejano e Costa Vicentina. The beaches here are also very beautiful. It's not great if you don't have a car though.

      Other places that you might want to consider are Ferragudo, Silves, Tavira, Loulé, and if you don't mind driving up a big hill to get there, Monchique. These are all very beautiful towns, some on the coast and some inland.

      Get the book Moving to Portugal Made Simple on Amazon now

      • Hello Lynn,

        I live very close to Portimão. We are looking for a home/dog & cat sitter for a small estate for whatever time period you might require in November/December. (14 to 21 days).The timing is flexible.

        Are you interested?

  28. Looking forward to your local insights. We spend half the year in the Algarve near Portimão. Thanks

  29. Planning to move f oi r retirement to Potugal. Seriously, looking for area that has xpats, lots to do but not extremely touristy.
    Main reason writing is to start getting your newsletter.

    • Hey Sandy,

      The Algarve is probably the most popular area for retired expats. It's quite a wide area, so some bits are more touristy than others. If you stay inland a little or further to the West Coast, you can usually find a nook that's not too touristy.

      I get a few comments from expats in other parts of Portugal like Cascais and Sintra, Coimbra, Madeira, and around Castelo Branco, but I think it's fair to say the Algarve is definitely the most popular area.

      Newsletter will be becoming more regular over the next few months!

      Get the book Moving to Portugal Made Simple on Amazon now

  30. We (my sister and adult son) will be there next week, second time. We are of Portuguese descent....starting in Lisboa working our way up to Porto and a day trip to Chaves area (where my grandmother was born). I hear the weather there is unusually warm. Last visit we did bike rides in both Lisbon and Porto–do you think it to warm for that this time around? Maybe a sailing trip instead? Also looking for a great Fado experience in Lisbon. Are you available to meet for a bite, drink or stroll? Would love too learn more about your experience as living there as an expat.

    • Hi Mandy,

      I'm travelling around the North of Portugal at the moment and the weather is mixed. Yesterday was quite hot (I got sunburnt) but today only got up to 24° which felt cooler. So, it varies from day to day. There's quite a lot of cloud in the morning in the north, but it usually clears by around 11-12 o' clock. You can get a pretty accurate idea of the weather roughly a week in advance.

      I'm not in Lisbon, unfortunately. I think I'll be in the Azores then, but I hope you have a good time in Lisbon.

      As for fado, I need to put together a list of recommendations but Tasca do Chico in Alfama is a good option. You don't need to order food there, just drinks, so you can have a nice meal somewhere beforehand.

      Get the book Moving to Portugal Made Simple on Amazon now

  31. Hello
    I am Aziza and I am from Tunisia , I'm about to take a life changing decision , looking for a fresh start , I am lucky enough to have an opportunity to work in portugal in a village called Fundao , Please I need to know about this village , life style activities, expenses, what is the average salary that can make me have a decent life and make me able to travel and see few places in Europe , activities , Gym classes music and dance schools if there are any .
    I know I am asking a lot but I am really excited and can not stop thinking about it , counting on your help and advice.
    Thank you so much in advance
    Peace and love from Tunisia

    • Hi Aziza,

      I can't remember if I've been to Fundão, but I don't think so. I have been to some places in that area, though, particularly Castelo Branco.

      I imagine Fundão is going to be quite a small town (population of around 30k) so you may find that you need to travel into Castelo Branco for things like dance classes (roughly 35 minutes by car), although it does look like it has a few gyms (e.g. Vivactivo Health Club and SHFIT).

      As for travel, you'll be very close to the Spanish border so Spain should be top of your list of places to visit. There isn't really a big airport nearby, so you'll probably have to travel to Lisbon, Porto, or maybe somewhere in Spain if you want to fly anywhere.

      Hope that helps.

      Get the book Moving to Portugal Made Simple on Amazon now

  32. Hello, looking to spend January and February in Portugal. Would prefer a place that is not tourist during the summer Can you advise please

    • Hi Heather,

      It depends on what you like.

      The Algarve will have the best chance of good weather in mainland Portugal for that time of year, but it's somewhere that does get touristy in the summer. Of course, that's mainly along the coast. Inland regions of the Algarve, for example, don't get as inundated with tourists.

      Of course, there are plenty of places that you can go that rarely get tourists. Avoid Lisbon, Porto, the Algarve, Évora etc (basically the list of top places to visit in Portugal) and you'll avoid the vast majority of tourists.

      Get the book Moving to Portugal Made Simple on Amazon now

  33. I live in Chicago USA, and I had the pleasure to visit Lisboa in 2016. I fell madly in love with Portugal!!!...

  34. Wonderful info. Wondering if finding a job as a massage therapist would be doable . . . .

    • I honestly have no idea, Chrystal, as it's not my industry. I would recommend trying to speak to someone who works in the same industry or something similar as they would be able to give you a better idea.

      Get the book Moving to Portugal Made Simple on Amazon now

  35. Hi James,

    After a week in Spain we'll be flying from Malaga to Porto on October 12 and spending about 3 or 4 days. Then we'll go to Lisbon for 4 days. Your newsletter sounds intriguing.

    Looking forward to it!

    • Hi Susan,

      Hope you have a great time in Porto and Lisbon. They are both great cities.

      Newsletter is on its way. I am currently travelling around Portugal myself, so everything is a little behind schedule at the moment!

      Get the book Moving to Portugal Made Simple on Amazon now

  36. Hi James, I am interested in visiting Vilamoura in March or April, is there lots to do at that time of the year?

    • Hi Dianne,

      It depends on what you're looking for.

      Both will be fairly quiet months, but March will be quieter than April as businesses that close for the winter normally re-open in April. Not everywhere closes. You'll find plenty of restaurants and cafés open in March as well, but a few will be shut. Museums and attractions don't really close for the winter.

      It can be difficult to predict which will have the better weather, though. It is known to rain in April here in Portugal, but that could happen in March either.

      Get the book Moving to Portugal Made Simple on Amazon now

  37. Hi James.
    I'm Polish nationality, living in UK since 2004. Within 7 years will retired and just start thinking to move for last episode of my life to more sunny and pleasant contry (Portugal). Required a lot of informations about legal side of purchasing house, National Health System, Estate Agencies. I will apretiate any tips, English lanquage websites and would like meet you personally next year at my visit in Portugal.
    Kind Regards Kaz

  38. James I just wanna say that I am so happy to stumble upon your site/blog! I am a flight attendant and so lucky to have the privilege of traveling the world. Lisbon is on my top ten cities in the world . I've been in Portugal few times and had made some friends , who I treasure so much. I still have so much places to visit in Portugal so although I have already been there few times and visited different towns and cities, I will be back to see more, as a matter of fact I will be there in July and August. I really appreciate your knowledge of the country and looking forward to learn more about Portugal from it. Just wanna say " Obrigada!"

  39. Hi James, I will have to be in Lisbon tomorrow May 21 to catch a flight to Toronto but I am staying in Praia das macas. The problem is the trains are on strike that day. How do I get to Lisbon? Uber is out because my phone was stolen and I really don’t want to pay 60€ for a taxi. Sorry to ask again but the wifi’s not very good here.

    • Hi Christine,

      I had a look for you and I'm not sure what bus (if any) goes to Lisbon. Sorry I couldn't be of more help, but I couldn't see anything. I would recommend asking in the tourist information for more info.

      Otherwise, Welcome Pickups will organise a taxi to pick you up from your hotel for around €32.

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  40. James, is there a group for Canadians on facebook? I'm looking to move there from Canada ...thanks

    • Hi James,
      Another Canadian here! My husband and I visited Portugal last year and fell in love; we plan to come back for a month in 2019 - just deciding which month that will be. Likely shoulder season, perhaps March. So grateful that my research led me to your website - it's very helpful! I'm looking forward to our visit to Portugal next year and to receiving your newsletter. Keep up the great work, and thank you! -Liz

  41. Hi!
    My husband and I are sincerely thinking about living part time in Portugal and part time in the USA after we retire. We have visited your beautiful country and traveled from the south to the north venturing inland to explore and know this is where we would like to live 3 months out of the year (or more depending on the difficulty of obtaining proper visas for a stay longer than the 3 months).
    But, we are concerned about healthcare and would greatly appreciate solid and specific advice on how USA citizens can acquire medical coverage and anything else you feel is helpful.
    Thank you for your help!


    • Hi Debbie,

      I'd recommend joining one of the Americans in Portugal expat groups on Facebook. This is a question that (unsurprisingly) comes up a lot, and the people in the group would be a lot more knowledgeable than me on this.


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    • Hi Debbie!
      James is right, but, anyway, healthcare in Portugal , particurlaly the Public, is, not only considered one of the best in the world, but also very much affordable...i would say, Cheaper(not in the negative sense, of course).
      Enjoy Portugal!

  42. Hi James, we are going to visit the Azores in late June-early July.
    Any advice on accommodations and restaurants? Any must see places?

    • That is excellent advice. To get the most of a trip to another country one needs to spend more time in one place to emerge into the culture and meet local people. Pick out your place and use the rest of the trip for the minor venues. I have traveled extensively around the world and since my parents are from the Azore's Islands and Portugal in dept. This is the best place to start a trip to Europe. Culture, History, Great Food and the friendlyist people in all Europe besides awesome wine!

  43. Hi, would like to ask your advice on a 10-day trip to Portugal in July starting with 3 days in Porto, driving north to Braga and Guiamares, then back to Aveiro for the 4th night. But trying to logically fit in Tomar, Coimbra, Alcobaca, Evora and Obidos has us stumped in 2 days as the last 3 days will be in Lisbon. Can you advise on logistics of time to see stuff and what is best to include if impractical? Would be grateful for your thought, thanks

    • Hi Cynthia,

      That's a lot to try and cram in, and I don't know that you have time to see it all unfortunately.

      I would probably cut out Évora. It's a beautiful city, but it's so far out of your way in comparison to the other cities that I think it's the one that has to go. Normally I would recommend a day in each place, but this would only allow you half a day in each. With travel included, it's going to be very tight and you're only going to get a glimpse of each place.

      If it was me, I would either cut my list down further (1 place = 1 day) or I'd take a day off of Lisbon and try and do 4 places in 3 days. There's a lot to see and do in Lisbon, but you will be able to cover the vast majority in 2 days.

      This doesn't leave any time to relax, so I guess you'll have to book another holiday to recover 🙂

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