Take the village bus to Sintra, to visit fairytale castles in the mountains. Or hop in the car for lovely Guincho beach. One of the wildest surfing spots in Europe, it’s a ten-minute drive.
This sleepy village in the Sintra National Park is beautifully placed for touring, and 2km from the most westerly point of Europe. As for the house, which dates from the 1800s, it has been recently renovated and stylishly put together. Settle down to lunch in the peaceful courtyard garden, where the apple tree gives plenty of shade. For rainy days, there are books, games, and a piano.
The kitchen is great but if you fancy a night out, family-run restaurants are a two-minute stroll. Start with the friendly Refúgio da Roca, where delicious highlights include steak on skewers and squid and octopus on the grill.