Peniche (p(ih)-NEE-sh(ih), /pɨ.ˈni.ʃɨ/), with its scenic harbour, white windmills, chapels and long sandy beaches has inspired famous artists like Maurice Boitel.
Since ancient times Peniche has been an important fishing harbour. Besides fisheries, the economy of the Peniche municipality relies on agriculture, services and tourism. The city had a population of 16,000 in 2011, with 28,000 living in the metropolitan area.
Peniche has a warm-summer Mediterranean climate greatly moderated by the Atlantic ocean, with mild wet winters and cool dry summers. Its low day-time temperature variation and little seasonal temperature variation make it remarkably mild year-round.
Despite its latitude in central Portugal, the city has one of the mildest winter night-time temperatures in mainland Europe.
- Circuito Urbano de Peniche. This bus loop makes six trips daily on weekdays. €1.35, day ticket €1.75.
- 1 Peniche Fortress (Fort of Peniche, Praça-forte de Peniche, Fortaleza de Peniche). A notable example of Portuguese coastal defences. During the authoritarian rule during the 20th century, known as the Estado Novo, or Second Republic, it was used as a prison for communist and other opponents of the regime.
Peniche is known for its long beaches, which are popular for recreational activities and sports such as windsurfing, bodyboarding and kite surfing. These beaches are consistently windy and have good surf breaks with Supertubos, i.e., waves forming fast and powerful tubes, considered among the best in Europe. The area has been called the "European Pipeline", after the Banzai Pipeline in Hawaii.
Peniche is one of the best surfing locations in Europe. It has beaches and breaks facing three distinctly different directions, making it a consistent destination for surfers. Home to many surf camps/schools, it annually hosts the MEO Rip Curl Pro Portugal from the World championship tour of the World Surf League (WSL) at the Supertubos beach.
- 1 Baleal Beach & Island. Attractive little island with a beautiful beach that acts as a causeway to the mainland. Surfing is popular here.
- 2 Arquipélago das Berlengas (Berlengas Archipelago) (You may get to main island by taking either a speed boat or a (slower) ferry. Be advised that you'll get splashed with water by taking the speed boat.). This chain of small islands lies 10–17 km (6.2–10.6 mi) off the coast of Peniche. The archipelago lacks any permanent residents and its nature reserve is home to unique plant and animal life on land and in the water. In summer, the islands can be visited by taking a ferryboat from Peniche.
- 1 Lola Gastrobar, Avenida Monsenhor Bastos 55, ☏ . W–M 19:30–23:00, Tu closed. A Spanish tapas bar in Portugal? Sure, why not...
- 2 Marisqueira Mirandum, Rua Heróis do Ultramar 23, ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. M Tu F 13:00–15:00 & 19:00–21:30, Th 19:00–21:30, Sa Su 12:30–15:00 & 19:00–22:00, W closed. Good seafood restaurant. €12–€17.
- 1 Marazul, Largo Padre José Cândido da Costa Leal 1, Serra d'El-Rei, ☏ , ✉ email@example.com. Check-in: 14:30–20:00, check-out: 00:00–12:00. A two-star hotel 8 km (5.0 mi) outside Peniche in an area called Serra d'El-Rei. €30–€48.
- 2 MH Peniche, Avenida Monsenhor Manuel Bastos (on the N114 road), ☏ , ✉ firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 15:00–00:00, check-out: 07:00–12:00. This three-star, 120-room hotel is steps from the beach. There are indoor and outdoor pools. €60–€130.
- Caldas da Rainha – Charming, unassuming city to experience authentic daily Portuguese life.
- Nazaré – A picture-postcard beach town, renowned for its surfing. Don't miss the funicular ride to the upper town and the excellent seafood restaurants serving the local catch.
- Óbidos – A walled medieval hilltop town.