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Traditional Portuguese Port with Pristine Beaches, and Popular Spot for Maritime Tourism.


Peniche, Portugal, is a small fishing town in the Western region, to the north of Lisbon.

Peniche is located on a peninsula in the Atlantic Ocean, approximately 90 km from Lisbon. According to Peniche history, the first inhabitants here were the Lusitanians, who were hiding from Julius Caesar, settled on the peninsula, and founded a town here.

Typical tourist program mostly includes seeing amazing views of the ocean and landscapes, slow walks through the historical center, and surfing. Fortress of St. John the Baptist is a must-visit historical attraction. In 1557, King João III built defensive walls with 4 meters thickness and a fortress to protect the city from pirate attacks from Africa. During the First World War, it served as a prison, later as a political prison, and as the City Museum since 1984. It exhibits the prison environment, archeology, and shipbuilding of those times. Additionally, there is an incredible panorama of the ocean.

The peninsula does not have many historical and cultural attractions. But Portuguese fishermen are religious, and look for a bright future in faith, and this fact explains the large number of churches in the area. The most significant temples are the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Healing and the Temple of St. Peter.

Sanctuary of Our Lady of Healing (Santuário de Nossa Senhora dos Remédios) is a chapel in the rock, lined with unique tiles from the 18th century. It was built after a carved image of the Mother of God was found on the wall of one of the caves.

The temple complex deserves the attention of visitors, being a favorite place of locals for walking. The protective walls and a courtyard with pine trees, located near Cabo Carvoeiro, open up picturesque views. The 30m high Cape Carvoeiro offers an overwhelming panoramic view of the ocean and cliffs. In 1790, a lighthouse (Farol do Cabo Carvoeiro) 27 meters high was built here. It's active after automation in 1988, and can be seen from a distance of 28 kilometers.

Church of St. Peter (Igrejas de São Pedro) is a main city church, which stands among the narrow streets. It was built in the 16th century and is considered the largest in the area. The building contains a statue of St. Peter and paintings from his life. The main chapel in the Baroque style is covered with gilded carvings.

One of the main associations with Peniche that comes to mind is surfing. For the past years, it has become an integral part of life here. However, the first recordings of foreign surfers date back to the mid-60s. Nowadays, Peniche is the main surfing region of Portugal and, despite its small size, the town is recognized as the real Portuguese surfing capital. In October, the ASP World Championship stage is held here.

Peniche beaches are numerous. Supertubos Beach is famous for its high tube-shaped waves and the right wind. The crests of the waves here are so long that a kind of corridor is formed between them and the bottom of the wave.

A place for those who dream of learning to ride. Peniche surf schools of various levels are located here. The beach has been awarded the Blue Flag for its cleanliness.

One more popular place is the Baleal spot. It has white sand, crystal clear water, and picturesque cliffs, and in the past whale bones were often found on the beach. Residents say that old whales came here to die, so it got the name “Baleia”, which means “whale” in Portuguese.

It's highly advisable to take a long boat ride to the island of Berlengas (Ilha das Berlengas), which is a Nature Reserve. Its clear waters create ideal conditions for divers, who will find here a natural stronghold for marine fauna and flora. The rough sea and seclusion of the island have always provided a good basis for mysterious stories about fishermen and ships that have crashed off its shores.

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All About Peniche

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When to Visit

Peniche weather is comfortable at any time of the year. The region is characterized by a warm mild Mediterranean climate with dry summers and wet winters. 

In summer temperatures range from 20°C to 30°C, making it the perfect time to visit for outdoor activities. In winter temperatures range from 8°C to 16°C, making it perfect for long walks and sightseeing tours. The most comfortable weather in Peniche is from late spring to early autumn, but it's also quite crowded here this time.

Summer is perfect for a trip to the local islands, surfing, beach activities, and active nightlife. While it's not beach weather in winter, there are still plenty of activities to enjoy. It's highly recommended to explore historical sites like Peniche Fortress, try local seafood cuisine, and take scenic walks along the coast.

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Getting Around

There is no public transport in Peniche to move around the city. Most tourists use taxi services or choose the walking route to explore the city. As for the variant with maximum flexibility, there is car rental service. 

To get to the neighboring city or the areas of Baleal or Ferrel, there is a bus. But a taxi is inexpensive and on average it costs 10 EUR to get from Peniche to Baleal.

Bus schedules from Peniche to another locality can be found on the Internet.

The bus system is quite comfortable for tourists as it presents an opportunity to explore Peniche and its surroundings without the need to drive or navigate unfamiliar roads. Whether you're heading to the picturesque Baleal Beach or the scenic cliffs of Cabo Carvoeiro, you may find an option.

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Travel Information

You can get an unforgettable experience while traveling in Peniche if you consider a few simple Peniche travel tips:

1. How to make the first trip to Peniche unforgettable?

Peniche has a rich history. Various archaeological finds indicate that people have lived here since ancient times.

In the last decade, Peniche has emerged as one of the main centers of European surfing. Due to its geographical location, you can ski here all year round. Every surfing enthusiast, from beginner to professional.

As for visiting the city for the first time, you should see the São João Baptista Fortaleza fortress. Fishing continues to be an important industry in Peniche. Watch the ships loaded with fish enter the port - it's a magnificent sight.

And of course, take a walk along Baleal Beach, which stretches between two seas like an island (by the way, it was once an island), which, along with Consolosan Beach in the south, is very popular among surfers.

2. What is a list of Peniche hidden gems?

To make your trip to Peniche an unforgettable experience, you can take a ferry or boat from Peniche Harbor to the Berlengas Islands, a nature reserve surrounded by crystal-clear waters. Berlengas consists of several islands, and the island of Berlenga Grande is open to visit. The ferry to Berlenga Grande is available from June to September due to rough seas, but it is also possible to hire a private boat.

The island is great for a beach holiday and is also home to a picturesque 17th-century fortress. Various types of active recreation are available on the island, among which diving is worth highlighting.

If you decide to spend the night on the island, there are three options for Peniche accommodation. You can stay in a hostel inside the fortress, in a campsite, but the most convenient option is to book a room at Mesa da Ilha.

3. What dishes are the must-try in Peniche?

Peniche is a coastal resort and fishing harbor, so it is not surprising that the basis of the local cuisine is fish and seafood. Peniche restaurants offer famous sardines, tender sea bass, crabs, shrimps, and shellfish. This is a paradise for fish gourmets. However, in Peniche you can easily find restaurants serving any European cuisine, so meat-eaters and vegetarians need not worry either. You can't leave the island without trying caldeirada, a dish of mixed varieties of fish and potatoes, rice with shrimp, arroz de marisco or charcoal-grilled sardines, which are always served with wines from the Western Region. For dessert, we recommend trying sweets with almonds, for example, bean cake, friend of Peniche, (“amigo de Peniche”) or biscuits called “esses”.

Top Attractions Near Peniche

Explore Peniche's excellent selection of attractions, from ancient historic wonders to vibrant cultural sightseeing

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Explore the list of the best things to visit in Peniche with the most appropriate options for all categories of tourist

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Portugal's most famous surfing spot with the highest waves for professional sport, this authentic fishing village attracts surfers from all over the world. Nazare is a must-visit place to feel the vibe of coastal paradise and walk by the walls of the anci

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The charming, wonderful open-air museum of white houses surrounded by a medieval castle is also home to a great religious spirit. Obidos' cultural heritage is expressed in its churches and shrines, emphasized by their scale and architecture.

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An ancient Portuguese city with a magical atmosphere and rich history, surrounded by lush greenery, Sintra showcases colorful castles with breathtaking panoramic views. Pena Palace, one of the well-known landmarks, is a must-visit attraction.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Get clear and useful insider tips for the most common queries about Peniche

What are the must-visit beaches in Peniche?

The list of top beaches in Peniche includes Supertubos Beach, especially popular among surfing enthusiasts, scenic Baleal Beach with a cozy family-friendly atmosphere, and Consolation Beach, famous for its natural rock formations and natural hot springs.

How to get to Berlenga Island from Peniche?

Berlengas Island is easily accessible with a boat tour from Peniche harbor. There are several tour companies, which offer regular ferry services to the island, providing options for guided tours, snorkeling, and hiking.

Is Peniche a good choice for surfing?

Yes, Peniche is one of Europe's best surfing destinations. Its waves and consistent swells are perfect for both beginners and professional surfers. An iconic spot is Supertubos Beach, known for its hollow barrels and challenging breaks.