Best Places To Live In Portugal For Families, Retirees, And Expats

Last Updated on September 7, 2022

Best Places To Live In Portugal

Thinking of moving to Portugal? If so, then there is nothing you would have better ask for, if not for a good place to live in Portugal. There are many places to live in Portugal, but it can be difficult to find the best place that fits your budget.

In this article, we are going to share some of the best places to live in Portugal. 

Before we proceed to the list, let’s look at some of the interesting things about Portugal.

Interesting Things about Portugal

  • The kingdom of Portugal is one of the oldest nation-state in Europe
  • The most powerful earthquakes in the history of  Europe was struck at Lisbon
  • The half of the new world is owned by Portugal
  • Portugal and England are very good friends
  • The country of Portugal has the longest bridge in Europe
  • It has an exciting and welcoming culture
  • It has lots of entertainment and recreational centers like museums, parks and more
  • It’s a city surrounded by nature and seaside view
  • A city with cold and humid climate during winter
  • The country has 300 sunshine hours per year.

What Makes Portugal A Unique Place To Live?

Indeed Portugal is a good place to live in. Here are some amazing things to look out for

Climate: Temperature falls below zero in the major cities; Portugal has a wonderful climate with more than 300 days of sunshine per year and an average maximum temperature of 20 degrees. It is an ideal place for enjoying winter, spring, summer and autumn.

Economy: Portugal was one of the world’s richest country empire in Asia, however, still remains one of the countries that is still living comparatively cheaper. The price of things is cheaper than in Paris.

Security: Portugal was considered as the third safest country in the world in 2019. Of which Iceland ranked first, followed by New Zealand, and Afghanistan was the last. In 2018, Portugal was considered the fourth safest country in the world. The fact that Portugal keeps improving on its position and showing a positive value on safety makes it a safe place to live.

Education: Portugal offers free and compulsory education until the age of 18 when students usually complete their year 12. The education is regulated by the State through the Ministry of Education. Portugal’s higher education system itself ranked as the 35th best in the world in the first edition of the QS Higher Education System Strength Rankings. Alongside its top universities, Portugal is also home to several reputable polytechnics, which focus on preparing students for a specific career path.

Now that we know some things about Portugal and what makes Portugal a good place to live, let’s consider the best places to live in Portugal.

Best Places To Live In Portugal

Here are the 10 best places to live in Portugal

1. Lisbon

Lisbon is the largest city and also the capital of Portugal. And it is still the best place to live in Portugal. Located in the southwest, the nation’s capital has everything to offer a range of lifestyles in the neighborhoods.

You can also move around the city and enjoy some of the Portuguese beaches that are quite close to the city. Guincho Beach was one of the settings used by James Bond Film back in 1969. You access the beach by using train ride just for 30-minute from the center of Lisbon or a30- minute drive by car.

In 2019 the expat insider Survey by international, Lisbon ranked in the top 10 cities for expats, as in 6th places it came ahead of the other European cities like Barcelona. Still 2019 the Mercer’s quality of living survey, Lisbon was ranked 37th in the world ahead of other countries like Barcelona, Rome, London, New York, Madrid, Chicago and many others. In cost of living survey, Lisbon was 95th; it was ranked cheaper than many European cities, including Frankfurt, Madrid, Barcelona, Rome, and Munich.

In Portugal the average sunshine in all year round is 300 days which contribute to the ways of life in Portuguese living in Lisbon celebrate. And the advantages of living in Lisbon is that its size isn’t as daunting as bigger cities like New York, London, this means it is easier to get around, the city mostly walking by foot to many narrow- cobbled streets.

2. Aveiro

The beautiful city Aveiro is located in the centre of Portugal at the west coast of Portugal which is set along a lagoon called Ria de Aveiro. It’s one of the best places to live in country Portugal, Despite its richness, historically Aveiro receives fewer tourist than other Portuguese cities that makes it more popular with expats; especially those moving in there as retiree.

The main attraction is its network of canals; You can take a long trip to the waterways in a colorful and traditional boat, barcos moliceiros, it’s used to havest seaweed. not even far from  its core,the art is known as nouveau buildings, which is the Cathedral of Aveiro , with the prominent bell tower. Even if in the hot weather, it gives pleasant experience, especially if there is breeze. you will get to the town in a unique perspective way. The locals are welcoming and friendly too, there have many places to eat, relax and shop.

The country has undergone a lot of modernization in recent years, which brings in many pedestrian areas to encourage walkers and the cyclists, this resulting in making the country popular for the expats seeking a quiet, friendly environment with a small traffic, combine with good road links Lisbon and porto, You can also find a better university that is nearer.

3. Porto

Porto is one of the vibrant and fascinating cities that have so much to offer during holidays, the country boasts extensive history like famed tourist attraction, buzzing nightlife, delicious cuisines.

Porto city is located in the northwest coastal of Portugal and it is along the Douro River estuary in northern Portugal it is known for stately bridges and wine production. Portugal is the second-largest city in the country. The city is considered to be the center of entertainment and culture that rivals Lisbon.

When it comes to history the city has delight famous history center that was classified as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1996 As a result, meanwhile, the district of Ramalde continues to expand as the population grows, and many expats with generous budgets settle in Foz do Douro, an up market but expensive beachside area.

The rich culture available makes the city a good and busy place for retirement.  the city is surrounded by elegant parks with exotic plants, statues, fountains, leafy boulevards, and cobbled streets lined. Porto’s has a the average temperature of 65F That cool, mild climate and, the dry summer season, is 50 F in winter, which lasts from December through March. The population of  the city is less than 240,000 and has a small city’s feel and friendly people.

The Church of São Francisco, Porto’s most important Gothic monument, is another impressive site.  It’s 17th and 18th century Baroque interior is filled with spectacular gilt-covered wood carvings and features a polychrome altarpiece from 1718 depicting.

4. Madeira

Madeira is a well known town in the country of Portugal because of its wonders, its’ Portuguese island, and is the largest and most populous city. Famous for its wine, it’s a popular tourist destination.

The country receives more than 6 time its population in tourists each year. Madeira is a self contained island; the city has everything you could need for a amazing life.  Amenities and Infrastructure are great, the cost of living is quiet low, This Island is known worldwide for its cuisines. The landscape of Madeira is amazing, so much so that its forests are UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Its incredible scenery is thanks in part to the climate: it’s sub-tropical and rarely drops below 20 degrees all year.

Madeira is an oasis of green within the Atlantic Ocean. The island has its permanent spring like climate. This country is not your typical beach holiday destination its environment for exploration, in local culture to find solitude while hiking one of the magnificent trails which crosses the island.

5. Tavira

Tavira is among the best places to live in Portugal, and also known for being famous and vibrant. Tavira is a Portuguese town and municipality, capital of the Costa do Acantilado, situated in the east of the Algarve on the south coast of Portugal.

Its located close to the Spanish border straddles the Gilão River, which reaches the sea through the inlets and lagoons of Ria Formosa Natural Park. Tavira Island has a long, sandy beach, plus salt pans that attract flamingos, spoonbills and other wading birds. In the center, medieval Tavira Castle has city views.

This is one of the few Islands in the region that you can pitch a tent, andthe designated campsite near the jetty is packed during the summer. It is 28 kilometres  17 miles of Faro and 75 kilometers, and47miles west of Huelva across the Río Grande (Rio Guadiana) into Spain. The Gilão River meets the Atlantic Ocean in Tavira. The population in 2011 was 26,167, in an area of 606.97 km². Tavira is the Portuguese representative community for the inscription of the Mediterranean Diet as a Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity of UNESCO.

Throughout the high season, you can catch ferries direct to the island from the riverfront in Tavira. Alternatively, there is a year-round ferry that departs from the jetty (weather permitting) at Quatro Águas, two kilometers east of the town center. It’s also possible to explore the beautiful Ria Formosa by joining one of the sightseeing cruises that operate from Tavira’s riverfront.

The Ilha de Tavira (Tavira Island) has a well deserved reputation as one of the best beaches on The Algarve. Forming part of the Ria Formosa Natural Reserve, the island is an 11 kilometre long sand spit, which varies in width from 150 to 1000 metres.

6. Azores

The most convenient and unique place to live in is Azores; it is one of the cities that has it all. This is one of the cities that have apeaceful living, and fascinating culture. Well, the Azores have all this and more

The Azores are Portugal’s second autonomous region. The region consists of 9 islands, nearly 900 miles away from Lisbon. The 9 islands come in 3 clusters, but they all share great weather and an incredibly low cost of living. Despite there being so many islands, most of the region’s population centers on Terceira, Santa Maria, Sao Miguel.

 The government of the Azores employs a large percentage of the population directly or indirectly in the service and tertiary sectors. The largest city of the Azores is Ponta Delgada. The culture, dialect, cuisine, and traditions of the Azorean islands vary considerably, because these remote islands were settled sporadically over a span of two centuries.

The services and activity in the region are dairy Farming, livestock, fishing, and tourism. Although the islands are far away from mainland Europe, there are decent connections. There are also ferries to mainland Portugal. In this country English is fairly widely spoken on the larger islands, but learning some Portuguese would take you a long way.

The climate of the Azores is very mild for such a northerly location, being influenced by its distance from the continents and by the passing Gulf Stream. The climate of the Azores is very mild for such a northerly location Because of the marine influence, temperatures remain mild year-round. Daytime temperatures normally fluctuate between 16 and 25 °C depending on season. Temperatures above 30 °C or b elow 3 °C.

7. Silver Coast

Silver Coast city has a lively culture and a vivid history. The city makes it to the list as one the best places to live in Portugal as an expat. Living in the silver Coast with thousands of foreigners already here life can be jam-packed easy-going or laid-back.

Portugal country was rates number 12 in the world to-notch, in healthcare, private and public hospitals,  clinics can be found almost everywhere on the Silver Coast. Shopping is abundant here with large shopping malls, local’s farmer’s markets, and small mom-and-pop stores too.

 Some expat groups and organize dinners, dances, and socials or gather to play board games, go bowling, hiking, biking, or horseback riding. While others enjoy surfing, playing golf, or volunteering at local animal shelters and book clubs. Ladies’ groups meet for coffee and to socialize, while friends gather at local cafes to sip wine and people watch as the hours pass by. Fitness buffs will delight in the local gyms that offer classes in spinning, kickboxing, Pilates, yoga, Zumba, and more. Many organize beach-side bootcamps or group classes held at local parks too.

The nearby beaches provide a welcome break on a hot summer day. The lagoon offers a safe place for those of all ages to enjoy tranquil waters or relax with friends at a waterfront cafe. Summer temperatures here are spring like while winters are cold and rainy. Other seaside  include São Martinho do Porto, with its scallop-shaped bay and calm waters and Salir do Porto with its colossal, captivating sand dunes to bring out the kid in everyone.

The Atlantic Ocean Is in a distance but perhaps living in the shadow of a medieval castle is more to your liking? From rolling hills of vegetation to acres of orchards and vineyards, cathedrals, castles, and alluring legends galore make up the history, mystery, and splendor of the

Silver Coast along the western side of the country between Porto and Lisbon this 93 mile stretch of rugged coastline extends inland to include traditional rural villages packed with Portuguese charm and affordable living. . Colorful boats cruise the canals of Aveiro as they have for centuries. Once they used to carry seaweed, today they transport tourists past art nouveau homes along the bustling waterfront.


Obidos is glamour and shining city that attracts the rich and the famous from all over the world.

The Obidos is a town municipality in the Oeste regio, historical province of Estremadura, and the Leiria district. The town proper has approximately 3100 inhabitants. The municipality population in 2011 was 11,772.

The region surrounding Obidos is equally as fascinating from the fishing town, pristine beaches of the Lagoa de Obidos, the largest collection of Buddha statues at the Buddha Eden Obidos is one of the fantastic cities to explore. A museum on the town’s attractive square includes rare works of art by the 17th century painter, Josefa de Óbidos.

An assortment of whitewashed cottages, cafés, and handicraft stores lining a series of narrow, cobbled streets are completely enclosed by sturdy medieval walls. And tthis makes Obidos the city of artist’s dream.

There’s also the Igreja De Santa Maria, which features a wonderful interior of blue and white 17th-century azulejos. Walking along the top battlements for a nice view over the lush terra cotta rooftops and the plain beyond. The fortifications form part of the landmark castle, whose keep looms guardian-like over the charming scene below. The castle itself is now a pousada, an upscale period hotel.

9. Sintra

Sintra is one of the incredible places to visit, it’s a beautiful country on its own with amazing offers That’s because even smaller destinations like the town of Sintra are able to completely overwhelm you with their charm and wonders.

The city is also located in western Portugal and it is about 15miles 24km west-northwest of Lisbon. It constitutes three parishes of Lisbon São Martinho Santa Maria e São Miguel São Pedro de Pennaferrim which is the municipality.

The country Sintra is the moon hill is a mystery environment full of magic places, where Nature and Man have combined in such a perfect symbiosis that UNESCO has granted it Word Heritage Site status.

Sintra possesses a beauty that was celebrated by Lord Byron in his poem childe Harold’s Pilgrimage, and English author Robert Southey referred to Sintra as “the most blessed spot on the whole inhabitable globe.” Sintra was designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1995.

In sintra there is a rippling mountain, exotic garden with glittering palaces dewy forests thick with ferns and lichen, Sintra is a beautiful page torn from a fairy tale. Its UNICCO World Heritage–listed centre, Sintra-Vila, is dotted with pastel-hued manors folded into luxuriant hills.

On the square, you will see Vila Palace with its two distinctive cone shaped chimneys, which are useful landmarks for helping you find your way back to this spot. From the  late 14th century. when  resort summer start  the Kings throughout the history of Portugal, will  decorate differently each room, that  his  own way to record  history to be learned  its interior is also a surprise since it is a veritable tile museum, with examples from the 16th century, when tiles began to be used in Portugal.

10. Faro

Faro is the main city of the Algarve which is the southernmost region of Portugal. And also one of the best places to live in Portugal, which lies on the Atlantic Ocean coast close to Cape Santa Maria. It is considered a place of sun, sea, and delicious seafood where expat have chosen to settle down.

The good news about this city is that they have wonderful weather all year long, a very relaxed lifestyle and slow pace of living. It’s also a university city, unlike the tourist areas to the west. Faro is a very comfortable city to live in. The rent prices are cheaper than Lisbon, while Faro is only a two-hour drive from the capital.

 This city is well-developed with infrastructure, including a public transportation system and healthcare facilities, convenient shopping, and proximity to some of the most beautiful beaches in Portugal.


Portugal is an amazing country with so many offers. The city has its own glamour that makes it incredible and spectacular. Portugal is among the richest region in Europe. The country’s culture and its geographical area make it such an attractive location for people from all over the world.

 There are numerous and wonderful places to live in Portugal depending on your needs and interests. The choice is huge, and there are so many locations with their own character, vibe and lifestyle, that almost everyone can find the right place to call home in Portugal.  If you’re thinking of moving to Portugal, don’t hesitate it’s a wonderful place to live! Enjoy your new life while in Portugal.

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