Portugal Top Retirement Destinations: Where to Settle Down

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Many people often talk about Portugal as one of the best places to retire in the world. In light of the fact that this so-called “golden age” is the ideal time to enjoy a well-earned life of leisure and escape the workforce, we’ll look at the top retirement destinations in Portugal.

In 2022, a number of nations are still dealing with a severe pension problem on top of the additional challenges posed by Brexit, the cost of living crisis, and growing inflation. But retirees aren’t giving up on their dream of a carefree retirement; becoming a British expat is still a very alluring alternative for retired people. For those who have already retired or anticipate retiring soon, the possibilities are virtually limitless. If you’re thinking about moving to Portugal, we can assist you with your decision. 

One of the many potential obstacles for people thinking about moving overseas is deciding where to retire. You have too many options, and the thought of a lot of paperwork or legal procedures might turn you off. In addition to examining some additional crucial concerns with retiring in Portugal. Let’s explore some of the most significant retirement locations in Portugal for 2022 and 2023 and discover why Portugal is genuinely one of the greatest nations to retire to.

Why retire in Portugal?

In specific Portuguese locations, you may retire with as little as $1,400 and yet lead an excellent quality of life. Many areas in the south of Portugal enjoy over 300 days of sunshine each year, and the folks in the northern regions are famous for their friendliness.

Portugal has the best cuisine and several of the world’s best wines.US News’ yearly best diets ranking consistently names the Mediterranean Diet as the top choice for good health.

According to the Vision of Humanity’s 2021 Global Peace ranking, Portugal ranked fourth in the world for peace. The nation as a whole has low crime rates, with the majority of crimes being non-violent. 

The Portuguese government has implemented a number of initiatives with substantial benefits aimed at luring international retirees, professionals, and investors to the nation.

Is Portugal an excellent place to retire? 

Portugal

Portugal is among Europe’s top retirement destinations. Residents of the nation, which includes East European countries, enjoy an excellent standard of living at a meager cost of living. Though we at Portugal Homes may have a biased opinion, the data is unfakeable! Portugal really is a great spot to retire. 

Portugal has a plethora of attractions and things to do for everyone, especially outdoors lovers, given the pleasant weather. Blessed with almost 300 days of sunshine a year, Portugal is a timeless destination. It is a beautiful place to retire to, mainly because of the abundant sunshine each day that will increase your vitamin D levels while providing you with lots of peace whether you live in the city, on the beach, or in the countryside. 

Portugal has beautiful and intricate buildings, a long history that UNESCO has acknowledged as a World Heritage Site and essential traditions that have been handed down for generations. This country is ancient, so there’s a lot of history to discover here. It is expected to come across significant Roman ruins or even a stronghold dating back to the Morish era when traveling. The nation is appealing in every way. 

Many people consider Portugal the top choice for retirement because it offers a relatively low cost of living. For instance, a couple can easily live there for €2,500 per month. This amount varies depending on the region; in all fairness, it all comes down to maintaining a balanced lifestyle and acting as an authentic Portuguese in the community. The cost of living can rise slightly the closer you are to popular tourist destinations like Lisbon, Porto, Cascais, and the Algarve. 

Portugal, the 4th Best Country to Retire 

The Retirement Index performs extensive survey research every year to identify which nations throughout the world provide the best places to retire. In the 2022 Annual Global Retirement Index, Portugal ranked as the fourth-best country in the world for retirement living. The index bases its score on hundreds of observations and first-hand accounts gathered from reliable sources. The index evaluates the top retirement destination using the metrics listed below: 

Best places to retire in Portugal 

Silver Coast

Portugal

The stretch of coastline between Lisbon and Porto is called the “Silver Coast,” but it doesn’t have an official starting or ending point, so different definitions of its boundaries exist.

People like this area because it’s cheaper than the Algarve, it’s close to towns like Lisbon and Coimbra, and it has fewer tourists and expats than the Algarve. Depending on where you live along the Silver Coast, the airports of Lisbon and Porto are both nearby. 

The villages and towns all have a scattering of foreigners. The university town of Coimbra or even Aveiro might be worth considering if you’re searching for somewhere a little bigger. 

Alentejo Coast

Though the Alentejo coast is farther south and has more dramatic, rocky beaches, it hasn’t gained the same popularity as the Silver Coast as an alternative to the Algarve. Still, this area would be ideal for anyone seeking a secluded location near stunning, undeveloped beaches. 

It is a peaceful, rural area of Portugal. While tourism is increasing in the Alentejo region, it mainly focuses on activities like walking, cycling, wine tasting, and staying in rural areas. Though it never gets as hot as places in the Alentejo Interior like Évora and Beja, the summers in the Coastal Alentejo are relatively cool due to the sea wind. 

If you have extra money to spend, consider driving a bit further north to Comporta. It’s an up-and-coming beach area that is advertised as a luxurious place to live and visit. In this area, properties usually cost more than €1 million.

Madeira

Madeira’s cooler climate has made it a favorite retirement destination for many years. Madeira is famous for its mild climate, where it never gets excessively hot or cold. It doesn’t mean that the weather is perfect all year round. Although the island has experienced landslides and flooding in the past, it’s usually an excellent choice for people looking for a fantastic place to be. 

While Madeira used to draw primarily retirees and guests from docking cruise ships, it is becoming a more popular destination for foreigners. It has also become a trendy spot for digital nomads in recent years.

Outside of Funchal, the island’s capital, there are many more stunning landscapes to explore. Madeira is famous for its beautiful wildlife and hiking trails.

Though stunning, there are drawbacks to living in Madeira. The main reason is that you are far away from the rest of Portugal and the rest of the world. It might be challenging to get anything delivered, even from Portugal’s mainland. After a few years, some experience island fever and decide they want to move, while others see it as a necessary cost of living remotely. 

Braga

Similar to numerous other cities in Portugal, Braga experienced Roman rule in its history, and the city’s architecture and natural environment still show clear traces of that period. Perched on a hill, the magnificent Bom Jesus do Monte Sanctuary is a respected pilgrimage spot accessible either by the world’s oldest water-powered funicular or a stunning staircase. About 20 miles to the east of Esposende, a well-liked place for windsurfers, you’ll find this northern city, considered the oldest in Portugal.

Nearly 200,000 people live there; most of them are Portuguese, but there are also some people from Brazil, Africa, China, and Eastern Europe. With Erasmus students from all across Europe and the Far East, the University of Minho further diversifies the population.

The youthful influence adds a lively touch to an otherwise quite traditional city, and many of the younger residents here speak English quite well. It, together with the fact that a lot of merchants and restaurant owners serve tourists, makes Braga a convenient place for foreigners to settle down.

The weather in Braga is moderate. Summertime highs often reach 69 degrees Fahrenheit, while winter lows hover around 47 degrees. With almost seven inches of rain falling in December, it’s the wettest month—much like the neighboring Porto.

Despite its wealth, Braga is a reasonably priced place to live. A couple can live comfortably for $2,200 per month or $26,000 per year by renting a two-bedroom apartment and taking advantage of the city’s youthful atmosphere.

What you need to know if you want to retire to Portugal

2009 saw modifications to Portugal’s retirement tax legislation that made it even simpler and more alluring for expats, mainly EU nationals, to retire there. There are crucial factors you must take into account if you intend to retire in Portugal in 2022 or later, including the retirement residency law, healthcare, tax information, and visa requirements. Visit our guide on retiring in Portugal for foreigners for more details.

What will happen to pensioners in Portugal after Brexit?

Now that Brexit has become a reality, one of the most common queries from British nationals who have retired abroad or who intend to do so is what the ramifications will be.

First and foremost, the UK government has declared that, notwithstanding Brexit, conditions for foreign nationals residing in the EU should stay the same and that it will keep paying the State Pension to those who qualify in the EU after Brexit. If you lived in Portugal on December 31, 2020, which marked the end of the transition period. The Withdrawal Agreement will protect your rights throughout your residency in Portugal. As a result, the best recommendation for retired British citizens residing in Portugal is to apply for residency status as soon as feasible.

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