Cascais

Praia do Guincho

Praia do Guincho

A gem on the doorstep of Portugal's capital. The main surfing beach Guincho is picturesque and had decent waves for a couple days stay. We approved of the beach side cafe. There's a waitress with a very loose hand for free poured gin and tonic.  

Duncan at Guincho

Duncan at Guincho

Surf can also be found across several local beaches to the south like Praia de Carcavelos. This heavy beach break packs a punch and fills your ears with sand. 

On Praia da Torre next door we found some nice dead rats and lots of rubbish on the beach so it's possible Lisbon sent these presents down river. Despite the pollution the beaches were teeming with surfers who appear, boards in hand, off the train from the city.

Guincho west coast beach

Guincho west coast beach

The best thing we saw, was a free roaming beach dog with a car key clipped to its collar. Would you rely on your pooch to protect your key while you surf? That is trust.

Free wheeling beach dogs are the norm  

Free wheeling beach dogs are the norm  

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Cascais is a great town for an afternoon amble. The cobbled streets are especially trippy and the shopping is better than your average tourist town.

Tourist trippin

Tourist trippin

Shopping for old maps

Shopping for old maps

In low season hordes of waiters tout you with their menu's like underhand seedy propositions. Settling for the least pushy fish restaurant we were served some rubbery squid and white muscles (apparently they're the male ones), it was sadly a disappointing lunch. Fortunately the Bijou cake shop with its long history of stellar bakers saved all with some superb traditional cakes. 

Next up was some sightseeing. Museu Condes de Castro Guimarães, a well preserved privileged household, was an interesting sight. It's antiquated furniture and Portugease style were unique to our eyes. 

Museu Condes de Castro Guimarães

Museu Condes de Castro Guimarães

One of the noble English occupant   

One of the noble English occupant   

Jazzy courtyards  

Jazzy courtyards  

Overlooking its natural harbour 

Overlooking its natural harbour 

Possibly the most small world encounter of our trip occurred in this hard to pronounce town. We came off the beach to find the previous owners of our van excitedly awaiting us. What a van life coincidence! We shared van tales and took a peep at their new bigger beauty thoughtfully renovated for life on the road. They glimpsed at their old vans new make over.

Life on the road

Life on the road

It's amazing that despite the bustle of the millions we pass, the van life community stand out; in sync and on the same journey. The vans, and faces that fill them, cross our path as strangers we have come to know so well.

Palácio da Cidadela de Cascais - sculpture

Palácio da Cidadela de Cascais - sculpture

Graffiti escapes nowhere

Graffiti escapes nowhere