Portugal offers a pleasant laid-back lifestyle, wherever you choose to reside. Even the country’s cities manage to refrain from feeling too frenetic. However, if a bohemian lifestyle is what you crave, there are some locations that really deliver an alternative lifestyle, alongside Portugal’s usual charms. Here are three of the country’s chilled out creative gems:
As you stand surrounded by the super yachts in its sparkling marina, you’d probably question how Lagos ended up in a roundup of Portugal’s best bohemian locations. Take the time to scratch the surface of this town in the western Algarve, however, and you will soon discover that it has a bohemian undercurrent. Especially around the backstreets surrounding the old town. Here you’ll find arty bars, artisan food joints and a diverse collection of people from all over the world. When you hear English spoken in Lagos, it’s as likely to be spoken by a backpacker from New Zealand, Australia or Canada as someone on holiday from the UK.
Lagos is home to a thriving arts scene.
As well as boasting some of the Algarve’s finest beaches and an enviable surf scene to go with it, Lagos is home to a thriving arts scene with plenty of pop-up galleries and music festivals. Yes its location means it has a touristy feel at times, but if you want to live somewhere that combines boho with bustling, this could be the place for you.
Costa de Caparica
When thinking about beach resorts near Lisbon, most peoples thoughts immediately turn to upmarket locations like Cascais and Estoril. One destination that offers a more bohemian vibe near the capital is the surf town Ericeira. Another option is Costa de Caparica, just over the water from central Lisbon, where you’ll find almost 30 kilometres of seemingly endless beach, lined with chilled beach-shack cafes, bars and surf clubs along its promenade. The area is also known for its book, literature and arts and crafts fairs and festivals. And all within easy reach of cosmopolitan Lisbon.
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The university city of Coimbra isn’t as well-known as Lisbon or Porto, but is packed with art and culture. The city’s large student population – around 25,000 – ensures there’s a vibrant bar and cafe scene full of style-savvy students. Street art also thrives around here, particularly on and around the student accommodation which is often covered with political graffiti. While the music scene caters for everything from dubstep to traditional fado. More chilled surroundings can be found in the old town, with its pretty squares and winding alleys.