Where is it?
The Silver Coast, Portugal’s Costa de Prata is one of the treasures of Portugal. Less than an hour north of the capital city of Lisbon with a stretch of spectacular coastline that runs for approximately 150 km up towards the fishing town of Nazaré. Worlds away from the rush and stress of modern life, the Silver Coast is now a second-home destination and lifestyle choice for many buyers in search of “the real Portugal”. A place which offers everything you expect on holiday... except the crowds!
Fly direct to Lisbon in around 2.5 hours then it’s a pleasant drive (less than 1 hour) along a good motorway, head north and follow the signs for the A8 Oeste. If driving isn’t an option take a taxi or metro to Sete Rios bus station and hop on an air-conditioned coach for around €9 and enjoy the scenic ride to Caldas da Rainha in around 1 hour 10 minutes. Why not spend a night in the vibrant capital city of Lisbon at the start and finish of your trip?
The Silver Coast has a combination of elements from the Mediterranean and Atlantic climate which means mild winters and hot and dry summers. Winters are mild with average temperatures of 17 degrees. In the summer cooling Atlantic breezes make for a comfortable 27-degree daytime average. Either way it enjoys almost 275 days a year of sunshine.
Óbidos – one of Portugal’s picturesque gems. Step back in time in a labyrinth of cobblestoned streets and whitewashed houses and a well-preserved castle within the walls, they are a delight to stroll round. Óbidos knows how to host a good festival. Every year, the castle grounds and public squares are taken over by fun events such as the Chocolate Festival, Medieval Fair, Opera Festival or Christmas Village. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to sample some of the town’s local cherry liqueur, ginjinha (or ginja), traditionally served in a small edible chocolate cup.
Foz do Arelho – where Obidos lagoon encounters the Atlantic Ocean. The beach here is a natural wonder. To one side of the large sandy strip is the Atlantic Ocean, to the other side are the tranquil waters of the Óbidos Lagoon. The warm salty waters of the lagoon are ideal for kids and a variety of water sports, they are even said to have therapeutic properties.
Alcobaça – explore the stunning architecture of the monastery, another of the seven wonders of this amazing country.
Berlenga Island – this beautiful unspoilt haven is reachable by boat where you can hike, camp, and explore a fort and lighthouse. It is a natural reserve for the nesting of various species of birds and the preservation of various animals.
Aveiro – with its two canals, is the Venice of Portugal. The cityscape is crisscrossed by canals that you can navigate on painted gondola-style boats known as moliceiros and on the quaysides in the older part of the city are charming Art Nouveau houses in pastel shades.
Why buy here?
As well as giving more of a flavour of the real Portugal, the Silver Coast has another massive advantage over the Algarve - property prices are typically up to 30 per cent lower. The endless stunning beaches boast some of the best views to be had – the coastline remains largely unspoilt, dotted with pretty towns and villages where people actually speak their own language rather than English. If you are considering a permanent move to the Silver Coast it would be wise to be within easy reach of Caldas da Rainha, the hub. This bustling and vibrant thermal spa town has everything you need: an array of shops and cafes, not just one hospital but two, several banks, pharmacies, butchers, schools, large supermarkets and much more. There’s a lively colourful flower, fruit and vegetable market in Praça da República.
What can you buy there?
There are properties to suit most budgets with apartments and small holiday homes starting at around €150,000, good size family villas with swimming pool from €200,000 or large country homes and contemporary villas generally priced around €650,000 upwards.
A five-star golf and beach resort location such as Praia D’El Rey is ideal for a holiday home or rental investment, but also look at the beach and resort locations of Nazare, Sao Martinho do Porto and Foz do Arelho or a slightly inland setting such as Alfeizerão, Óbidos or Caldas da Rainha. Here you can still find homes at very sensible prices with beautiful views of the lagoon.