Comporta, in the Alentejo region of Portugal's west coast.
One of Portugal's best-kept secrets, Comporta is often compared to an undiscovered Ibiza or José Ignacio in Uruguay. Kept under wraps by the cool crowd, a laid-back beach-shack vibe has put it on the map as a summer bolthole for those in the know, who flock here to enjoy the endless white-sand beaches. The entire area, Herdade da Comporta, is a 12,500 hectare protected nature reserve which includes seven hamlets nestled among rolling rice paddies, and is home to wildlife including storks and flamingoes.
When to go?
Portugal has long summers so visit any time between May and October.
Who to take with you?
Someone who can keep a secret.
Most likely to bump into?
Savvy surfer types and a hip Euro set.
Explore the sand dunes and fishing villages of Comporta by kayak, bicycle or on horseback. We recommending using the company Cavalos na Areia, where you can choose from various different tours and truly experience the area's rustic charm.
Essentials to bring with you
Mosquito repellent. Comporta is bordered by the River Sago which is a total breeding ground for the little buggers.
How to get there
Fly to Lisbon then it's about an hour and 20 minutes drive south, with taxi prices varying depending on number of passengers and whether you choose a public or private transfer.