Hillside-town-in-portugal

Best Places to Live in Portugal

If you’re looking for a new country to call home, Portugal should be high on your list of options. Whether you’re a digital nomad looking for your next destination, a group of friends yearning for your next trip, or a family looking to settle down, Portugal will have a city that fits your needs. 

Best Places to Live in Portugal for

  • Expats: Lisbon 
  • English Speakers: The Algarve
  • Digital Nomads: Porto 
  • Solo Travelers: Coimbra
  • Couples: Cascais
  • Groups: Portimão

Top 10 Places to Live in Portugal 

1. Lisbon 

Best Place To Stay for Expats

Streetcar-lisbon

Cost of Living: $$

Over recent years, Lisbon has become the preferred destination for expats, and it’s easy to see why. The capital city of Portugal offers many of the amenities that expats are looking for. This includes relatively cheap accommodation, safe neighborhoods, and plenty of quiet working spaces to get work done. 

Tip: Join one of the many expat Facebook groups to help you get acclimated while also meeting new people. 

Who Would Like to Live There: Expats, Digital Nomads

Pros:

  • Warm climate. 
  • The locals are friendly. 
  • Plenty of safe and affordable workspaces.

Cons:

  • Summer can get brutally hot. 
  • The slow pace of life can be hard to get used to.  
  • The language barrier could be an issue.

2. The Algarve

Best Place to Stay for English Speakers 

tavira-street-Algarve-

Cost of Living: $$$

The Algarve stretches along the southern coastline of Portugal and is the ideal place to visit for English speakers. This region of Portugal is blessed with immaculate beaches that’ll make you like you’re at your favorite tropical vacation spot, picturesque little fishing towns, and a perfect climate. Tourists love to visit the Algarve, and English is widely spoken in the region. 

Tip: Invest in a ​​Via Verde Device. It will allow you to drive on national highways without stopping for tolls.

Who Would Like to Live There: English Speakers, retirees.  

Pros:

  • The weather is excellent. 
  • The locals are friendly. 
  • English is widely spoken.

Cons:

  • Summer can get brutally hot. 
  • It can be quite expensive to live here.  
  • Most buildings don’t have air conditioning, so it can get uncomfortably hot in summer. 

3. Porto

Best Place to Live for Digital Nomads 

porto-water-side-view

Cost of Living: $$

Porto has become increasingly popular with Digital Nomads over recent years. The city is home to plenty of affordable, safe and enjoyable workspaces where digital nomads can get work done. The internet speed and price are also amongst the best in the country, so you won’t be missing any deadlines or zoom calls. 

Tip: Be sure to find an apartment with air conditioning and heating. Summer can get brutally hot, and winter can get quite cold. 

Who Would Like to Live There: Digital Nomads, Expats, Students. 

Pros:

  • Internet speeds are great. 
  • The locals are friendly. 
  • English is relatively common in Porto.

Cons:

  • Summer can get brutally hot. 
  • Bureaucracy and seemingly unnecessary paperwork can be quite annoying to deal with.  
  • You’ll have to deal with hordes of tourists. 

4. Coimbra

Best Place to Visit for Solo Travelers

Coimbra-Portugal 

Cost of Living: $ 

While Coimbra might be one of the smaller cities in Portugal, it’s still a top destination for solo tourists. Located on the banks of the majestic Mondego River, Coimbra is filled with stunning art galleries, museums, cathedrals, and even the oldest university in the country. Coimbra is truly a solo traveler’s dream destination. 

Tip: The public transport system has developed significantly over recent years. Leave the car at home and hop on a train or bus when you want to explore the city.  

Who Would Like to Live There: Solo travelers, artists, retirees. 

Pros:

  • The climate is excellent. 
  • The locals are friendly and welcoming. 
  • There are many sites to explore.

Cons:

  • The nightlife scene is not great. 
  • The language barrier could be an issue.  
  • Transportation in and around the city can be quite pricey.

5. Cascais

Best Place to Live for Couples

Store-front-in-cascais

Cost of Living: $

The cost of rent, public transport, and other key amenities in Cascais are relatively cheap when compared to other Portuguese cities. This makes it the perfect destination for couples looking to start their new life. There are also plenty of great entertainment spots and hidden gems. 

Tip: Don’t forget your sunscreen, this coastal town can get very hot during the summer. 

Who Would Like to Live There: Couples, Groups of friends, retirees.  

Pros:

  • Excellent climate. 
  • The locals are welcoming. 
  • Plenty of beachside resorts, bars, and restaurants.

Cons:

  • It gets brutally hot in the summer.  
  • The language barrier could be an issue.  
  • Finding a permanent residency can be tricky.

6. Portimão

Best Place for Groups 

City-of-portimao-

Cost of Living: $$ 

With an abundance of affordable accommodation dotted all around the city, Portimão is perfect for groups of people in search of their new home. From spending the day at the beach to partying the night away at one of the many bars or nightclubs, you’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to things to do.

Accommodation and transportation are also relatively cheap, so you won’t have to break the bank in order to find a suitable place for you and all your friends. 

Tip: Get to know the locals. They usually know where all the best spots are without too many tourists. 

Who Would Like to Live There: Groups  

Pros:

  • The climate is excellent. 
  • Easy to find a permanent residency. 
  • Plenty of white sandy beaches to enjoy, but remember not to forget your beach essentials.

Cons:

  • You’ll have to deal with a lot of tourists during the holiday season.  
  • The language barrier could be an issue.  
  • Getting used to the slow pace of life can be challenging.

7. Praia da Luz

Best Place to Live for Families

Beach-in-Praia-da-Luz 

Cost of Living: $$$

Located in the southwest of Portugal, near Legos, Praia da Luz is perfect for families looking to relocate somewhere with a warmer climate. 

There are plenty of high-quality schools to choose from, and the tight-knit community means it’s very safe. The beaches are also closely supervised by trained lifeguards during summer, meaning your kids will always have a watchful eye keeping tabs on them.  

Tip: While it might be warm in the summer, winter can get extremely cold, so be sure to find a place with good heating. 

Who Would Like to Live There: Families, retirees.  

Pros:

  • A very safe place to live. 
  • The locals are friendly. 
  • Plenty to do during the school holidays.

Cons:

  • Dealing with tourists during the holiday season can be a challenge.  
  • Not many locals speak fluent English.  
  • There isn’t much of a nightlife scene. 

8. Braga 

Best Place to Live for Students

Lake-in-braga

Cost of Living: $$

There are many reasons why students adore Braga. Not only is it home to many prestigious educational facilities, but finding affordable yet cheap student accommodation is much easier when compared to other cities in Portugal. Public transportation in Braga is also relatively inexpensive. 

Tip: Public transport is excellent in Braga, so leave the car at home and use the bus to get around. 

Who Would Like to Live There: Students, Artists.   

Pros:

  • A very safe place to live. 
  • Great public transport. 
  • There are plenty of fun things to do.

Cons:

  • It can be challenging to find a permanent job.  
  • The language barrier could be an issue.  
  • The way of life is much slower than other European countries.

9. Sintra

Best Place to Live for Artists

Shops-in-sintra-

Cost of living: $$

The small town of Sintra is an artist’s dream. The architecture was inspired by the Roman, gothic, and Renaissance eras, and you can still feel that influence today. Taking a stroll around town will certainly awaken your inner artist. There are also many galleries and museums to explore and draw inspiration from. 

Tip: Brush up on your Portuguese; English is not widely spoken in Sintra.

Who Would Like to Live There: Artists & retirees  

Pros:

  • Low crime rate. 
  • Great public transport. 
  • There are plenty of galleries and museums to explore.

Cons:

  • English is not widely spoken.  
  • There is not much of a nightlife scene.   
  • The way of life is much slower than other European countries.

10. Ferragudo

Best Place to Live for Retirees 

ferragudo-bay-

Cost of Living: $$$

The quaint little fishing village of Ferragudo is perfect for those who are ready to settle down and enjoy retirement. Spend the day soaking up the sun on the beach or explore one of the many hidden gems that Ferragudo has to offer. 

When you’re ready to call it a day, enjoy the sunset while sipping on a cocktail at one of the many beachfront bars and restaurants.

Tip: Invest in a good air conditioning unit when you first arrive. It can get very warm in summer and very cold in winter. 

Who Would Like to Live There: Retirees & families. 

Pros:

  • Low crime rate. 
  • Excellent weather. 
  • The relaxed pace of life is perfect for those who are ready to settle down and take things a bit slower.  

Cons:

  • It can become a tourist trap during the holiday season.  
  • There is not much of a nightlife scene. 
  • The cost of living is slightly higher than in other cities in Portugal.  

FAQs

1. Is It Safe in Portugal?

Yes. Portugal is regarded as one of the safest countries in Europe.

2. What Currency Do They Use in Portugal?

The Euro.  

3. What Language Do They Speak in Portugal?

Portuguese is the most common language.

4. How to Travel Around Portugal? 

Public transport like trains, buses and taxis are standard. However, simply driving a car around is also common practice.

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