Come and discover one of the most famous surf spots in the world: Nazare, in Portugal. Where to eat, where to chill during a weekend? Take your oilskin, it may wet a little bit.
Version française ici.
I am living in Portugal since two and a half years, and I never tire of going to Nazare. I have been there three times, and each time it is a real pleasure. I wanted to devote a small post to it and sharing a real favorite.
NAZARE, ONE OF THE MOST BEAUTIFUL PLACE IN PORTUGAL
Located to the north of Lisbon, 1h30 hours by car, Nazare is a place known above all for its huge waves and its surf spot.
If you come to Nazare, you must understand the wave phenomenon. Why at this specific place, waves of about twenty meters can go ?
You must understand that the geological mapping of Nazare is very specific. Located at the edge of the Atlantic Ocean, the Grand Canyon of Nazare is the main cause of the formation of these large waves. Offshore, the Canyon of Nazare stretches into the ocean floor for a hundred kilometers, going down to 5000m of depth. About 300m off the coast of Nazare, this same canyon rises to a gross height of 50m. The force of the swell is channeled in this canyon forming surges up to 28m high. Seizing!
Thus in April 2018, a Brazilian surfer rode a wave of 24m high. For now, this is the biggest wave surfing in the world.
The best time to watch this phenomenon is between November and February during winter storms. I advise you to visit the Windguru website to know the forecast and the best time to observe the waves.
WHERE TO CHILL IN NAZARE ?
Nazare is a small town, and two days are enough to enjoy. To start, I’d like to introduce you:
- Praia Do Norte
This huge beach is a real playground for playing with a drone. This is also where the waves break and the starting point for all surfers. That’s with a jet ski that the surfers reach the breaking zone 🌊
- the Nazare lighthouse
It’s probably the best known place to visit in the city. The Nazare Lighthouse offers you an incredible view of the ocean, the city and the Praia do Norte. The building houses a museum explaining the wave phenomenon with lots of illustrations. You will also discover the surfboards of surfers who have tamed the biggest waves. The entry price is symbolic: 1 €.
The lighthouse also offers a short getaway below the cliff. When the weather is suitable, the place is open to the public. This is where you will be most close to the waves. Here a video illustration during a sunset:
- Miradouro do Suberco
This site offers a panoramic view of Nazare and its main beach. You will have to go to the heights of the city to observe this view. A car is necessary, otherwise you can take the funicular provided it is open.
- Praia Da Nazare
Yes like any coastal cities, Nazare also has a beach intended for tourists who want to chill away from the big waves. Despite everything, swimming is often prohibited for fear of being swept away by a wave. They are 2-3m high on average near the shore, so be careful. You can also enjoy the walk along the beach, which is very pleasant. If you want to come in the summer, please, you have to know that Nazare quickly becomes saturated with traffic and the tourist influx. This necessarily has less charm.
Sea air dig your appetite. Now is the time to go eat somewhere, and for that I have found the perfect place for you !
WHERE TO EAT IN NAZARE ?
I will only advise you in one place. If you go to Nazare, please have lunch or dinner at A Tasquinha restaurant. It is a tiny place, typically Portuguese family restaurant located in the city-center of Nazare, close to the ocean.
If you are looking for a typical dish of the region or a large variety of fish, this is the perfect place. With an exposed kitchen, this place quickly puts you in trust. It is very busy, the staff speak French and English, and very pleasant. The quality of the dishes is excellent, especially for a price of around € 12 per person excluding drinks.
However, its attendance is variable, go ahead at the beginning of the service to be sure to have a table.
Address: R. Adrião Batalha 54, 2450-162 Nazaré, Portugal
Hours: Continuous service from Tuesday to Sunday: 12:15 p.m. to 10:15 p.m. Closed on Mondays.
To finish this post, here is a video story dedicated to Nazare in 2019. I hope this post made you want to discover this region of Portugal.
Feel free to share your comments under this article, or even sharing your experience. In any case, thank you for reading me !
See ya 👋🏻