Costa da Caparica

Beaches Guide

Costa da Caparica Beach

Costa da Caparica is the favorite beach destination of the people of Lisbon

Costa da Caparica (or Costa de Caparica, as some claim to be the correct name) is an uninterrupted, seemingly endless 15km-long stretch of dune-backed sands. It’s just half of a 30km-long coastline south of Lisbon, and is where everyone from the region goes to on a warm and sunny day.

It’s really one enormous beach, but is divided by imaginary lines, creating a group of different stretches, each with its own feel. On the northern end, the beaches are divided by jetties, built to prevent erosion, and there are displays with their names. The central and southern beaches are only identified by blue signs on the dusty gravel road behind them.

Costa da Caparica Beach

Costa da Caparica is really a seemingly endless 15km-long beach

The atmosphere depends on the crowds, with the northern section closer to Caparica town attracting surfers and families, the middle section skewing more middle-to-upper class and trendy, and the one at the very end (to the south), attracting naturists (there are two official nude beaches) and gay men.

Praia do Castelo Beach in Costa da Caparica

There are several trendy bars renting parasols and loungers along the coast

The closer you are to town, the more crowded it is, and the further south you go, the more space and peace you have for yourself. The first five kilometers are the most developed, but after that it’s a rather wild coast (surrounded by pine and acacia trees, protected since 1984), preferred by the local 20- and 30-somethings, who often stay for drinks at the bars until way past sunset.

Costa da Caparica Beach

Costa da Caparica is crowded and overdeveloped on the northern end but wild and more deserted to the south

The town of Costa da Caparica is made up of blocks of 20th-century condominiums, and is not particularly attractive, but is packed in the summer, due to the neighboring campsites and weekenders from Lisbon. There are no major tourist attractions or historic sights. The main pedestrian street is Rua dos Pescadores, which has cafés where many people stop for a refreshing drink or an ice cream after a day at the beach. A promenade runs along much of the northern shore, while a tourist train (the "Transpraia") goes down 9 kilometers to the south during the summer (June to September). Along the way, you’ll find several bars and restaurants, surf schools, areas for kite and windsurfers, and young people playing sports on the sand.

Rua dos Pescadores, Costa da Caparica

Rua dos Pescadores, the main pedestrian street in Costa da Caparica.

The nude beaches are immediately to the north and south of Fonte da Telha, a small fishing community. The one to the north is Beach 19, which is known as the “gay beach” and named for being the 19th stop of the tourist train.

Surfing in Costa da Caparica

Most of the beaches in Costa da Caparica are excellent for surfing

Unlike Cascais and Estoril to the west of Lisbon, this is not an international destination with grand hotels. It's mostly frequented by locals in the summer, and there are few places to stay. The main reason is that getting here by public transportation can be time-consuming, but an increasing number of tourists are making it their alternative to the coast of Cascais, and many rent a car.

Costa da Caparica Beach

There are lifeguards on duty throughout the coast between June and September


Beaches in Costa da Caparica


Starting in the north, these are the beaches of Costa da Caparica. To help you locate them, we provide a map at the bottom of this page, and also indicate the signposted number of those on the Transpraia train route:

Praia de São João da Caparica

Praia de São João da Caparica

This is the northernmost beach in Costa da Caparica. It's within walking distance from the center of town (keep walking to the right when facing the sea) and offers plenty of parking space. For many decades, this was the choice of families from Lisbon, but today it’s mostly a destination for surfers and young crowds, thanks to its trendy bars and restaurants with outdoor seating (check out Clássico Beach Bar, Leblon, Lorosae Sol Nascente, and the Pé Nu Beach Club). It tends to be very crowded on weekends. On its southern end is a camping site, while to the north is Cova do Vapor, a fishing community.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: Yes
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: No


Praia do Norte

Praia do Norte, Costa da Caparica

Frequented by those staying at the campsite nearby, this is where the promenade from the center of Caparica ends (you can continue to Praia de São João to the north, over the rocks). It tends to be less crowded than the neighboring beaches.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: Yes
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: No


Praia de Santo António

Praia de Santo António, Costa da Caparica

It’s a narrow beach when the tide rises, but the convenience of a parking lot nearby brings surfers and bodyboarders from Lisbon.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: No
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: No


Praia do CDS

Praia do CDS, Costa da Caparica

The name stands for “Centro Desportivo de Surf,” and tells you what to expect here -- more surfers than sunbathers. It’s been so since the 1970s, and especially in autumn and winter, when the tide rises and much of the sand disappears.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: Yes
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: No


Praia do Paraíso

Praia do Paraíso, Costa da Caparica

The most central beach in town is where many people arriving by bus choose to stay. Once also known as Praia do Tarquínio, it’s at the end of the pedestrian street Rua dos Pescadores. A ramp provides access to the disabled.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: Yes
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: Yes


Praia do Dragão Vermelho

Praia do Dragão Vermelho, Costa da Caparica

It’s right across from Caparica’s main hotel (see accommodation listings below), so it’s where many tourists who don’t want to walk very far stay. When the waters of Praia do CDS are just too crowded, some surfers come here.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: Yes
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: No


Praia Nova

Praia Nova, Costa da Caparica

The last beach between jetties is also the last one in the center of town. To the south, there’s a more natural landscape with no high-rise buildings, as the area is protected from new development. It can still get a little crowded, as many surfers and bodyboarders choose it as their favorite spot.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: Yes
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: No


Praia da Saúde

Praia da Saúde Beach in Costa da Caparica

It’s the first beach reached by the Transpraia tourist train (which departs a few feet to the north), but it’s signposted number 4. It’s a beach that stands out for its colorful, wooden fisherman huts built right on the sand. Photographers might want to stop by, and those who enjoy fish may try some at the restaurant O Golfinho. Behind it is a large camping site.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: Yes
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: No


Praia da Cornélia

Praia da Cornélia, Costa da Caparica

The series of fisherman huts on Praia da Saúde continues to this beach. It’s really the same beach, except that it has a different camping site behind it.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: No
Bar or Restaurant: No
Accessible: No


Praia da Mata

Praia da Mata Beach in Costa da Caparica

Stop number 7 of the tourist train, this is where the coast starts to become wilder and more beautiful. It’s just south of the camping site, and attracts surfers. Its restaurant Praia da Mata remains open out of season.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: Yes
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: No


Praia da Riviera

Praia da Riviera Beach in Costa da Caparica

Beach number 8 tends to attracts the youngest crowds and is also the beach for surfers, as it has a surfing school. Joining the surfboards on the ocean are often fishing boats, which are sometimes seen bringing the catch of the day to shore. Its restaurant Riviera also rents loungers and parasols.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: Yes
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: No


Praia da Rainha

Praia da Rainha Beach in Costa da Caparica

Thanks to the parking lot behind it, this beach (number 10) gets a little more crowded than the ones before it, but it’s still a peaceful and relaxing place. There’s a restaurant on the dunes (Pelicano), which also rents wicker parasols and loungers at the beach.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: Yes
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: No


Praia do Castelo

Praia do Castelo Beach in Costa da Caparica

It’s called “Castle Beach,” but there’s no castle. The name may refer to a castle-shaped house, which is seen from the road nearby. Because of its two bars and restaurants (Irmão is the most recommended), it tends to attract young crowds.
It’s number 11 on the train route.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: Yes
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: No


Praia da Cabana do Pescador

Praia da Cabana do Pescador, Costa da Caparica

“Fisherman’s Hut Beach” is best known for its restaurant/beach club "Bohemian" that remains open throughout the year. It places straw parasols and loungers on the sand during the bathing season. It’s stop 12 of the train, and although it was once known as a family beach, you’ll now likely be in the company of Lisbon’s youngish bohemians, due to the restaurant.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: Yes
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: No


Praia da Princesa

Praia da Princesa, Costa da Caparica

This beach marks the beginning of the trendier area of Costa da Caparica, with stylish bars and restaurants. The one you’ll find here has the name of the beach, and rents parasols and loungers -- Princesa.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: Yes
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: No


Praia do Rei

Praia do Rei, Costa da Caparica

Behind this beach is a pine forest which King João V had planted in the early 18th century. It has grown in popularity due to its large parking lot. Its bar Posto 9 has a laid-back atmosphere and is usually less crowded than its neighbors.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: Yes
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: No


Praia da Morena

Praia da Morena Beach in Costa da Caparica

Home to the most famous restaurant on the Caparica coast (“Borda D’Água”), this is a trendy beach (number 14). Young crowds fill the entire outdoor seating area of the restaurant and the sun loungers. Others prefer to take advantage of the volleyball net, and there is still plenty of space to simply spread the towel and sunbathe.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: Yes
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: No


Praia da Sereia

Praia da Sereia Beach in Costa da Caparica

Praia da Morena becomes Praia da Sereia to the south (number 15), and that’s where you find another very popular bar and restaurant, "Waikiki". At night it turns into a club, so this is the “party beach” of Caparica. During the day, however, everyone lies quietly on the sand, catches some sun on the restaurant’s loungers, or grabs the surfboard and heads to the ocean.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: Yes
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: No


Praia do Infante

Praia do Infante, Costa da Caparica

Very similar to Morena and Sereia, this is a trendy beach which attracts young crowds due to its cool bar (Casablanca Beach Lounge) offering outdoor dining, sunbeds and wicker parasols on the sand. The dunes behind it are well preserved and have some vegetation. You shouldn’t walk over them -- always follow the boardwalks.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: Yes
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: No


Praia da Nova Vaga

Praia da Nova Vaga Beach in Costa da Caparica

It tends to be rather windy on this section of the coast, which explains why it was Portugal’s first “kitebeach” and why you’ll see kitesurfers (who get lessons and support from the Boarder Club Portugal school). For that reason it tends to have fewer sunbathers, but if you like to be almost by yourself, this could be your spot -- just don’t forget to bring a windbreaker.
It’s number 16 on the train route.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: Yes
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: No


Praia da Bela Vista

Praia da Bela Vista Beach in Costa da Caparica

When you reach beach number 17, you’re far enough from the center of Caparica, so it’s where many have traditionally found enough seclusion for nude sunbathing (walk about 400 meters from the restaurant, A Casa da Praia). It officially became a nude beach in 1995, one of the first in Portugal.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: Yes
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: No


Praia 19

Gay Beach in Costa da Caparica

Just a 5-minute walk from Praia da Bela Vista is "Beach 19," Europe’s largest gay beach. But don’t expect Mykonos -- this isn’t a beach for parties, it’s for sunbathing (with or without your bathing suit) and to meet people (apparently it works better than dating apps). For more details (and to know how to get there), see the Beach 19 guide.

Lifeguards: No
Rentals: No
Bar or Restaurant: No
Accessible: No


Fonte da Telha

Fonte da Telha Beach in Costa da Caparica

When you see the “20” sign by the train tracks, you’ve arrived at the last beach of Costa da Caparica. Home to a fishing community, it has a more developed area with a number of bars and restaurants, and a wilder area where nudists sunbathe. The southern stretch (known as Praia da Adiça) was officially declared a nude beach in 2015. For more details (including how to get there by bus), see the Fonte da Telha guide.

Lifeguards: Yes
Rentals: Yes
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
Accessible: No


How to Get to Costa da Caparica and the Beaches


Costa da Caparica promenade

The beaches in the center and north of Costa da Caparica are connected by a promenade


Regular buses operated by the TST company connect Lisbon to Costa da Caparica, ending at the northern side of the coast. There’s also a bus departing from Cacilhas across the river from downtown Lisbon that ends at Fonte da Telha, to the south. For complete details, see the guide to getting to Costa da Caparica by bus.

Once in Costa da Caparica, you can walk to all of the beaches on the northern end. For those to the south of the town (the more recommended ones), you may take the Transpraia tourist train that operates in the summer and goes down the coast, past the different beaches. An alternative to the Transpraia (and the only option when it’s not in service) is Uber.

If you’re driving, take 25 de Abril Bridge, and follow the signs to Caparica or “Praias” (“Beaches”). From there, each beach is signposted off the road, and most have parking.
From mid-June to early September (especially on weekends), leave the beach early or stay until past sunset, or you’ll find yourself stuck in traffic on the way back to Lisbon.


Hotels by the Beaches of Costa da Caparica


Tryp Lisboa Caparica Mar Hotel

Tryp Lisboa Caparica Mar Hotel

The only non-budget option right by the beach, this 4-star hotel features 352 rooms with balconies, about one-third of them facing the sea. It’s located on Caparica’s main avenue, just steps from the sand, and includes an outdoor swimming pool, a bar and a restaurant. The bus from/to Lisbon is about 10 minutes away, as is the tourist train that passes by all of the beaches.

More Details and Prices

Hotel Maia

Hotel Maia

A renovation has given this 2-star hotel a more contemporary interior, which, together with the central location, makes it a good value.

More Details and Prices

Real Caparica Hotel

Real Caparica Hotel

This beachfront hotel features classically-styled rooms, some of them with sea views. The room to book is the double with balcony.

More Details and Prices

Hotel Praia do Sol

Hotel Praia do Sol

It’s perfectly located on the main pedestrian street of the center of Costa da Caparica, but unfortunately it’s a little dated and in need of refurbishment. Still, if you’re on a budget, this 2-star hotel could be an option for you.

More Details and Prices

Aroeira Lisbon Hotel - Sea & Golf Resort

Aroeira Lisbon Hotel - Sea & Golf Resort

This is the closest to a beach resort as you’ll get on the Caparica coast. It’s a contemporary hotel built with natural materials (mostly wood), with large windows and balconies in every room. It’s located just 2km from the beach of Fonte da Telha, where it has a beach bar and restaurant offering parasols and lounge chairs to those staying at the hotel. Guests may also rent bikes or take a shuttle to the beach or to the golf courses in the area. For relaxation at the hotel, there’s a swimming pool and yoga classes.

More Details and Prices

Villa Caparica Hostel

Villa Caparica Hostel

The highest-rated budget accommodation in town is by the central and northern beaches, so very popular with surfers. It has a mixed dorm as well as private rooms with private or shared bathrooms. The modern kitchen is equipped with everything you need, and outside is a swimming pool available to all guests.

More Details and Prices

Costa da Caparica Beaches Map


The map below shows the beaches of Costa da Caparica. The most central ones are Praia do Paraíso and Praia do CDS, and from there you can walk to the other beaches to the north, following a promenade. The beaches to the south with parking lots are Praia da Mata, Praia da Riviera, Praia da Rainha, Praia do Castelo, Praia da Cabana do Pescador, Praia do Rei, Praia da Morena, Praia da Sereia, and Praia da Bela Vista. We recommend parking at Praia do Rei, from where you can walk to the other beaches with popular bars to the north and south.

Costa da Caparica Beaches Map