• Pat

Baleal - a must on a nomad list in Portugal




Almost 2 years ago I visited Baleal for the first time. Still a student, desperate to surf, not having enough money to go to tropical countries, decided to catch some waves in the winter in Portugal. Googled winter surf camp Portugal, got among the results Peniche surf camp (Peniche is like 4-5 km from Baleal), booked my stay and started counting days.





Now, having lived there over half a year, I can say that Baleal is a definite must on a nomad list. If you're a surf freak the answer to why is obvious. But I'm sure that the rest, who has also freedom at choosing their office space, might find a few reasons to come to Baleal.





Why do I love Baleal?

Awesome surf spots, there's always at least one working. In the autumn/winter time a car can come handy (due to the wind). In the summer you're good almost everywhere.





Awesome food. There is one restaurant that I absolutely love - República das Lagostas. It's the only place I go to if I want to have really good food and for sure I will have a separate article about it. But pizza fans or sushi enthusiasts will find something decent too.





Office at the beach. Who wouldn't like to have sea as their view from the office? Yeah, I know many people would be more likely to space out instead of work. Have heard that many times already. I need to say, that I find a bar at the beach a perfect place to focus. Generally, the less the place I work at resembles a typical office, the more productive I get. If you're same, you might like Bar da Praia. Good internet, available socket to charge your laptop, awesome view from the window, good food (seafood, fish, meat burgers), the best french fries I've had in Portugal, salads), reasonable prices (lunch for 5 -6 EUR), and super friendly stuff.



If you're active person, there's a lot to do in Baleal/Peniche. I've already mentioned surfing, but there are so many other sports you can practice. Body boarding, kite surfing, cycling, jogging, going to the gym, swimming pool, there are capoeira and brasilian jiu jitsu schools. Also, if you're into diving, Berlengas islands might interest you. I enjoy hiking.





Downsides?


Baleal is a touristic place so prices are also higher that in other less touristic places (including Lisbon). Also, July and August are the busiest months so expect extreme crowds in the water. It was then, when I decided to experiment more with sunrise sessions instead of sunset ones. The cultural offer is not the widest, or shall I say nonexistent? No galleries, no museums, no cinema, no gigs. Only dj sets in bars/surf camps. So if you find yourself missing that, you can hop on a bus and head to Lisbon. 1,5 hour drive and you'll have whatever you can't find in Baleal.





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