The best cheap places to live in Portugal

FeaturedHome BuyingMoneyTravel

Written by:

Are you dreaming about starting a new chapter of your life in the beautiful Portugal? Well, you’re not alone. Portugal has been gaining popularity as an expat haven, and for good reason. The beauty and affordability of Portuguese cities make them enticing destinations for those seeking a move abroad. In this article, we look at six of the best cheap places to live in Portugal, each with its unique charm and appeal. 

Why choose Portugal?

Before we dive into our list of cheap places to live, let’s explore why Portugal is such an attractive destination for expats in general. One of the most compelling reasons is its low cost of living. Compared to many other European countries, Portugal offers a more affordable lifestyle, from housing to dining out. This makes it an ideal choice for anyone looking to stretch their budget while enjoying all the perks of European living.

But it’s not just about the money. Portugal’s welcoming culture and friendly locals make it a great place to call home. The Portuguese are known for their hospitality, and you’ll find yourself easily integrated into the local communities. With a pleasant Mediterranean climate, diverse landscapes ranging from stunning beaches to rolling hills, and a rich history, Portugal has something for everyone.

Now, let’s explore six fantastic places in Portugal where you can live comfortably without breaking the bank.

Six best cheap places to live in Portugal

1. Porto – Where tradition meets modernity

Porto, Portugal’s second-largest city, is a treasure trove of culture, history, and affordable living. This vibrant city, famous for its port wine, offers a unique blend of old-world charm and modern amenities.

Although not one of the cheapest cities in Portugal, Porto offers a lot for the money. Its cobblestone streets are lined with colorful buildings that exude character. It is such a beautiful city, that any visitor can’t help but fall in love with it right away. 

What makes Porto a good option?

In addition to it’s unmatched beauty, Porto is a fantastic choice for singles and young professionals. It’s a city that effortlessly combines affordability with a thriving job market. The city’s port wine industry and growing tech sector provide ample employment opportunities. Plus, its lively arts and music scene means there’s never a shortage of entertainment options.

Porto offers a high quality of life, with mid-priced rental and housing options. The average price of a property in Porto is $698,000, compared to $1,094,000 in Lisbon. The cost of living, including dining out and entertainment, is also considerably lower than in many European cities. In fact, Porto is about 9% less expensive than Lisbon.

For whom is it best?

Porto is ideal for singles and young professionals looking for a dynamic urban environment with a reasonable cost of living. The city’s compact size also makes it suitable for families, offering a safe and friendly atmosphere for children. It’s also quite popular with retirees who enjoy an active urban lifestyle with opportunities to socialize. 

2. Coimbra – The city of academia and culture

Coimbra, home to one of Europe’s oldest universities, has a youthful and vibrant atmosphere. Nestled alongside the Mondego River, this charming city boasts a rich cultural heritage and a slower pace of life.

What makes Coimbra a good option?

The city’s affordability and proximity to the university make it a haven for learning and culture. English-speaking expats will find a welcoming community, particularly around the university. The city has a decent infrastructure and good public transportation, making it easy to navigate.

Coimbra offers an excellent quality of life, with affordable housing and a reasonable cost of living. The average property price in the city is $376,000, while the cost of living is 12% less expensive than in Lisbon.

For whom is it best?

Coimbra is perfect for students, academics, and anyone seeking an intellectually stimulating environment

3. Faro – Relaxed lifestyle in the Algarve

Faro, the capital of the Algarve region, is a beautiful coastal town with a Mediterranean vibe. It’s known for its beautiful beaches, historic architecture, and delicious seafood. If you’re attracted to the gorgeous but expensive region of Algarve, Faro is arguably the best affordable place in the region you could choose to settle in. 

What makes Faro a good option?

Faro is a great choice for those who crave the Portuguese coastal lifestyle and want to settle in the Algarve region. With its warm climate and stunning coastline, it’s a paradise for beach lovers. The city’s charming old town offers a taste of traditional Portuguese life.

Faro offers a very high quality of life, with reasonable real estate options and a cost of living that won’t break the bank. For example, rent in Faro is, on average, 40% lower than in Lisbon. The average price to buy property is $598,000. The overall cost of living in Faro is 6% less expensive than in Lisbon.

For whom is it best?

Faro is perfect for retirees and expats looking for a relaxed lifestyle near the water in a warm and sunny climate. Families can also enjoy the slower pace, excellent schools, and safe environment.

4. Braga – Historic town close to nature

Braga, one of Portugal’s oldest cities, is a hidden gem in the north of the country. With its historic architecture, lush parks, and rich traditions, Braga offers a unique blend of the old and the new.

What makes Braga a good option?

Braga is a fantastic option for anyone who appreciates history, culture and understated beauty. The city is known for its religious festivals and vibrant local traditions, and it is located in the midst of green hills and great natural beauty. 

Property and cost of living are relatively affordable in Braga. The average home price is $348,000, while rent in Braga is, on average, 47% lower than in Lisbon. The city’s general cost of living is also much cheaper compared to other locations. For example, Braga is up to three times more affordable compared to a big city such as Lisbon.  

For whom is it best?

Families will find Braga to be a welcoming and family-friendly city with excellent schools and healthcare facilities. Retirees seeking a slower pace of life and cultural experiences will also feel at home.

5. Setúbal – Coastal living near Lisbon

Setúbal, located just south of Lisbon, is a coastal town with stunning beaches, fresh seafood, and a relaxed atmosphere. If you’re looking to be close to the capital of Lisbon, on the Atlantic coastline, but are working with a smaller budget, Setubal is one of the best cheap places to live in Portugal. 

What makes Setúbal a good option?

Setúbal is perfect for anyone seeking a tranquil coastal lifestyle and a high quality of life. The expats living in Setubal appreciate the wide range of outdoor activities available nearby, from hiking in the Arrábida Natural Park, sailing on the Atlantic Ocean, to enjoying dining by the sea.

While not as international as Lisbon, Setúbal is becoming more welcoming to English-speaking expats. The city has adequate infrastructure and it is well-connected to Lisbon. 

Property prices are slightly more expensive in Setúbal because of its amazing location, around $472,000 on average. The cost of living in the city is similar to that of Faro, and around 6% less expensive than Lisbon. 

For whom is it best?

Setúbal is ideal for retirees, families, and anyone who values a connection to nature and the sea. It’s a short drive from Lisbon, making it convenient for professionals working in the capital.

6. Vila Nova de Gaia – Riverside living near Porto

Vila Nova de Gaia, located just across the river from Porto, is famous for its wine cellars, stunning riverside views, and affordable living. Vila Nova de Gaia is the more affordable alternative to Porto. 

What makes Vila Nova de Gaia a good option?

This city is a paradise for wine enthusiasts and anyone who appreciates a riverside lifestyle. You can enjoy wine tastings and breathtaking views of Porto’s historic center.

Vila Nova de Gaia offers a high quality of life with affordable housing options and a cost of living that allows you to indulge and enjoy life abroad to the fullest. Property prices average $446,000, while the general cost of living is around 10% less expensive than Lisbon.

For whom is it best?

Vila Nova de Gaia is a great choice for singles, couples, and retirees looking for a serene riverside life. It’s also conveniently located for professionals working in Porto.

Portuguese cities offer some of the best affordable European living

Portugal, with its low cost of living, welcoming communities, and diverse landscapes, is a dream destination for those seeking an affordable and enriching life in Europe. Whether you prefer the lively urban scene of Porto, the historic charm of Braga, or the coastal paradise of Faro and Setúbal, Portugal has many great locations waiting to be discovered. So, why wait? Start planning your move to one of these best cheap places to live in Portugal and embark on a new adventure filled with culture, beauty, and savings. 

This article originally appeared on MyDolceCasa and was syndicated by MediaFeed.

Like MediaFeed’s content? Be sure to follow us.