FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.
United

Best Family Beaches in Portugal

by Barbara Rogers

Sep 2, 2019

© Luis Costa | Dreamstime.com

Destinations / Europe

The Algarve, on Portugal’s southern coast, is known for its beaches, but those are not the only beautiful beaches in the country. If you’re looking for sand and sea safe for children, and less filled with other tourists than the busy Algarve, Portugal has a lot of options.

 

Near Viana do Castelo
Although it’s on the Atlantic coast, where the surf is notoriously heavy, the beach at Vila Praia de Âncora has a small river flowing across it into the sea, perfect for kids to play in. But older kids will find good waves for surfing and windsurfing on the oceanfront; the beach has lifeguards, showers and nearby cafés and restaurants. The town of Viana do Castelo, in northern Portugal not far from the border with Spain, makes a good base for exploring the region.

The beach at Cordama on the western coast of Portugal, known for surfing. Photo: Stillman Rogers

North of Lisbon
The two-mile-long beach at São Martinho do Porto forms a horseshoe around a beautiful bay, whose waters are protected from the open ocean and its waves. The wave-free waters are good for swimming, safe for young children, and good for canoeing and windsurfing as well. There are lifeguards, restrooms, showers and plenty of places to eat. There’s also a promenade that makes it easy to leave a car at a hotel and walk to the beach.

 

Like Vila Praia de Âncora, the large Foz do Arelho has a sandy place for everyone, with one side facing the Atlantic Ocean and the other the Óbidos Lagoon. The latter is perfect for young children, with warm, shallow water, while the ocean side has big waves and often winds as well, making it a favorite of surfers and windsurfers. You can reach Foz do Arelho from the towns of Caldas da Rainha or Obidos, and it has lifeguards, showers and nearby places to eat.

Luz Beach, Algarve, Portugal

Near Lisbon
Easy to reach by tram from the pretty town of Sintra (which itself is easy to reach by train from Lisbon and makes a good base for families who would rather stay outside of the city), Praia das Maças is popular with local families. If the sea water is too cold, there’s a saltwater swimming pool right at the beach. The village is right there, too, with places to eat.

 

South of Lisbon
Portugal’s Alentejo coast has long been the secret of avid surfers for its wild Atlantic sea and beaches hidden by spectacular soaring cliffs. But at the attractive town of Vila Nova de Milfontes, Praia da Franquia sits at the mouth of the Mira River, with just enough waves to be fun while still being safe for kids. The beach is good for paddle boarding and windsurfing, too. You can walk to the beach from town, and there are lifeguards.

Dunes at Bordeira, popular for walking, sunbathing and surfing. Photo: Stillman Rogers

Another good family beach is Praia de Odeceixe, near the town of Odeceixe. Also at the mouth of a river, the sandy beach has shallow water on one side and surf on the other; there’s a surf school here.

 

At any beach, be sure to pay attention to the warning flags, and if you see red ones don’t go into the water.

#WhereverFamily

Insta Feed
Travel Tips
Feb 16, 2024

How to Prepare for This Year’s Family Spring Break Travels

Prepare for your family’s spring break this year with some advice from TravelInsurance.com. There are a number of reasons why travel insurance is an important consideration for spring break travelers and co-founder Stan Sanberg has some advice about making the important purchase for spring break this year.

Travel Tips to Help Protect Your Health and Your Trip

Five Tips to Help Minimize Potential Travel Problems

Multigenerational
Feb 15, 2024

Book a Family Wellness Escape with Sensei

Family travels don’t necessarily need to be in theme parks or resorts with massive kids’ clubs. In fact, more upscale properties across the world cater to both adults and kids, and wellbeing brand Sensei joins the growing trend of family wellness travel. Sensei’s Wellness Science team, led by Dr. Vishal Patel, emphasizes the importance of family travels and exposing young travelers to wellness pursuits. Developing healthy habits at a young age can have long-lasting effects on an individual’s life, and bonding via family trips alleviates some of the main drivers of loneliness and isolation.

Travel Tips
Feb 14, 2024

Planning a Family Cycling Trip? These Are the Most Dangerous Counties for Cyclists

While the United States offers a plethora of bike-friendly destinations, a recent study by personal injury law firm Bader Scott found some counties across the country are far more dangerous than others. Family travelers might be surprised to find many lie in popular vacation states.

Unearth Seoul’s Hidden Gems

Filled with hidden treasures waiting to be discovered, Seoul invites travelers to unearth its many gems, and Seoul Tourism Organization is here to help travelers do just that. Through thoughtfully created initiatives like the Theme Tourism County Competition, Seoul Tourism Organization works closely with local districts to identify and showcase what makes each district unique and charming in all seasons.

Multigenerational
Feb 12, 2024

Make A Splash on National Mermaid Day at These 2 Resorts

Ever dreamed of being a mermaid? Well, your dreams could come true on your next family trip. With March 29 National Mermaid Day, these two resorts offer experiences for guests of all ages to enjoy.