Silver Coast Retirement

Hi, my name is Jo. I'm looking to move to Portugal from the US in the next 3-4 years.  I would like to get some suggestions for places along the Silver Coast good for a single female.  Towns large enough for social activity, etc. and close to the beach but small enough not to attract the major tourist hoards. Preferably where a car won't be absolutely necessary.   I'm thinking somewhere along the train line south of Caiscais (and a little cheaper).  Suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

HI JO. I would like to follow this stream, if you don't mind. Kindly ley me know should you find such a place, it sounds ideal.

Best regards

Sure will. My research keeps bringing me back to Caldas da Rainha. Other possibilities that have come up Peniche, Oeiras, Parede and Caixas. Would love feedback on these locations

We have just moved to Lourinha. We have been here two weeks and are pretty blown away by everything here.  Compared to Peniche or Caldas this is paradise. There are a number of beautiful beaches, and a town center with many lovely cafes and restaurants. 20 minutes to Peniche and 30 to Caldas. 25 to Torres Vedras.

What has impressed us the most is the readiness of everyone to help us. Within just a couple of days we were registered with the municipality as residents, and that enabled us to enter the national health system. Then I was immediately able to visit a local doc to get my medical prescriptions. (Total cost, 4.30 E). We were advised to talk to the immigration services office at city hall, and two sweet women helped arrange our SEF interview. It took us exactly 30 minutes to get the gas connected and the rest of the afternoon to get water and electric and cell phone service.

Like many beach towns on the silver coast, Lourinha is a surfing center so there is surf tourism. But the beaches are not crowded. Lourinha is also a center of dinosaur discoveries in Portugal, so there is a dinosaur museum.  One thing that particularly attracted me is that in addition to the attractive and modern municipal library there is a branch library at the BEACH! How is that for keeping priorities straight.

In closing on our house we worked with a lawyer who went way beyond the call of duty to bring us to the utility companies and municipal authorities to make sure everything was working for us. His name is Rafael Crespo; I recommend him highly i you plan to buy a house.

Living in Lourinha you will not really need a car. You can walk or take a local bus to the beach. You can also take intercity buses to Caldas and Peniche; you can get the direct bus to Lisbon (oine hour) for 7E. Lourinha is closer to Lisbon and more convenient. We are a bit less than an hour. Peniche and Caldas would add another 20-30 minutes.

Feel free to contact me here.

Thanks so much.  I really appreciate the time you took to answer in depth.  Lourinha sounds lovely and will go to the top of my list to research as a possible new home.

Hello, Jo

Have you considered a smaller town such as Caldas da Rainha. A small city where you can find anything for your daily needs. In case you don't want to use your car you can buy a 100 square meters flat for 100/150 k. In case you prefer to grow your own vegetables you can look for a house outside the city, closer to the shore - foz do arelho, são martinho.... - or closer to serra dos candeeiros - santa catarina, benedita..... the temperature in this area is quite comfortable all year round, it is a safer place than near bigger cities such cascais, sintra or lisboa.
1 hour away from the airport of lisbon and 2 highways a dozen km away.
In case you need some assistance looking for a house, or with any bureaucracy, or even with the process of learning the language, I can help you with it.
I live in a small village near Caldas and I love it!
best regards,

HI, Luis. Thanks for your addition to this topic. I like Caldas for shopping. I love the park. We considered it. Lourinha simply offered more. Right at the beach, closer to Lisbon. Where are you?

Thanks, Luis. I keep looking at Caldas and it's definitely high on my list.  I'm not quite ready to make the move, but I'm trying to get some ideas.  My intention is probably to move in 3-4 years and I'm thinking a year rental on an apartment possibly in Caldas at that time. That would give me some time to look around before fully committing. If/when I get to the area, I would love to meet up if you are still in the area. Glad to hear that's a good place to live. Thanks again.

Hi Jo,
It is a good idea to rent for a while and, calmly, do all the paperwork  necessary to move and at the same time feel the area and then choose the right spot to settle. Another advantage in not buying immediately is that the prices have risen a little lately and I believe that in 3 or 4 year the prices might start to come down again.
It is not my intention to go anywhere, so,  in case you need any help, I will be glad to assist you.
I case you want to take your first steps with the language I can help you to choose the right books and give you some lessons through skype or any other platform you are comfortable with.
Best regards,

One disappointment we experienced in Caldas is the sorry shape of some of the most important historical sites. The famous Natural medical hospital is a wreck. Entering, I felt like I was inside a chamber of horrors from a 1920s silent movie. All of the windows in the large historical building next door facing the park have broken.  A friend in Caldas informs me that Caldas is Rome and the historical center and thermal hospital are the Vatican. No end of effort by Caldas has improved the situation with these beautiful ruins - they are under the control of an impervious bureaucracy of their own. This is a great shame, as Caldas, as a center of thermal therapies with a long and distinguished history, could thrive from a modern naturalistic medical facility. Imagine all of those expats from the UK and the Northern climes coming to Portugal not only to enjoy the beach and the beautiful weather, but also to 'take the baths' in a  lovely modern facility.  In the event, no one who visits once will dare return.

Yes pleas your post is most helpful to me and especially the information provided by followers. Thank you to all please keep me too in the loop

Good day everyone

We are also considering to move to Portugal during se second half of next year. I have a 5 year old daughter. Are there good international schools in Lourinha?


If one is thinking about the Silver Coast for retirement, I see from the following link that there is a chance to set up a lovely retirement village in this area. Would anyone be interested to part of a retirement village here? … t-Village/

What is your opinion of Leiria vs Caldas da Rainha for retirees?  Trying to live without a car and like the small town feel?

Leiria is much bigger and, consequently, crowdier - check the number of inhabitants of both cities. It is also further from the beach as well as the airport of Lisbon. The weather is also a bit colder in the winter and hotter in the summer because it is a bit further north and further frim the coast. The house prices are also a bit higher.
Best regards

Ps: I live in caldas and I love it.

Are you still in Lourinha? Do you still love it? I am single, 60 years young, looking to move there but only if I can make friends with other expat and English speaking bilingual friends. Would it be a good place to run a small B&B for about 4 months a year during surfing season?

Hello All,
We are in the process of negociating a house near Lourinha. We have been visiting dozens of properties and finally found the right fitting shoe.
I believe Lourinha is a great zone, 3,5kms away from Praia de Areia Branca which is a lovely family beach with beach Supervisors for safety which is quite seldom around.
The Costa de Prata is way more preserved of the Tourists/Retirees wave. There is always a risk on mid/long term that consecutive immigrating populations alter the original state of premises.
Lisbon is within a hour drive which is perfect for Airport commuting and large city dazzles.
Do not worry about looking for expats once you are there : there is a sort of invisible magnetization that pull foreigners together  wherever they are.
Bom dia !

I was thinking of Lourinha, too.  But someone suggested Foz do Arelho as a better alternative.  Did you look there?  Any comments on comparing the two?  Thanks.

well the nearer the beach the higher costs and nuisances. We personnaly like a bit of seclusion and this is why we chose Reguengo Grande

Thanks. I will keep RG in mind when I start seriously looking for a place.

I am so happy for you to have found a sanctuary away from other expats wishing to live in this country. dont get too lonely and please learn the language first or you will end up the same as most other expats dependant on other expats for socialising. have fun!

To retirement455
That sounds rather like you are advertising for free!

If you think of a small business, in my opinion, you should also consider Baleal. There you have surfers all year round and the Peniche Supertubos championship held in October/November brings a lot of fans. Before you buy go to some of those Baleal beach bars for a beer and a walk around the beach and see for yourself. In case you want to make some investment in an apartment I have some connections there.
Good luck ;)

Hello Jo,

The Silver Coast includes the 3 main districts of Aveiro, Coimbra and Leiria. I don't think Cascais is included in this designation. If you want to skip the use of car you I would surely recommend Aveiro, Figueira da Foz or Coimbra.

Caldas da Rainha is much closer to Lisbon, but not as diverse as the ones above mentioned.


Thanks.  I'll check the spots out.  Appreciate your help.

je suis de la région de Caldas , je vais souvent à Foz parce que c'est très joli mais je ne pense pas que l'on puisse y vivre sans voiture, on est vite limité pour tout. C'est surtout agréable d'y passer quelques heures sans plus
bien à vous


As this is an Anglophone forum please post in ENGLISH only. Thank you.

Just following up to see if you are still happy with your choice to settle in Lourinha. Have you run into any major snags? Do you feel isolated or a comfortable commute to get homegoods and groceries, or perhaps do something touristy?
Is there much real estate available? How is the local economy doing?

hi,  we were looking at silver coast a couple of times in the past; in your town Reguengo Grande, are there lots of derelict buildings? graffiti on old ruins or even newer buildings?  because google street view is not up to date so one can not get a better picture of the areas. it seemed that many towns & villages in this region do have beautiful nice houses or apartment blocks, but right next to them are derelict old houses or unattended no man's land grass wild growing with rubbish or bad roads, it is a shame.  I guess that is why community tax is low as no one cleans the public area unless it is in a big city.......that is why we are still looking for a clean neat town

hello, I would love to hear from you about health care issues, are all doctors, nurses and medical staff speak English? which hospital is the nearest to your town? thanks

V helpful reply to the original Poster.

Can I ask how the places you mention compare to O'BIDOS ?

I have heard very good things about that town from both English and Portuguese nationals.

I need to visit , esp. as I am undecided about the comparative merits of a 100 sq metre flat ( or house, maybe, but I would want sunshine so was thinking a top floor flat or a house with  large  sunny, roof terrace, not overlooked )  in the town itself, or somewhere with view over the Lagoon or sea even ?

Your thoughts on all the above and related issues  / suggestions would be most welcome !

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