The tiny fisherman’s town of Trancoso has such a laid-back feel and casual, almost sedate, atmosphere that visitors are instantly made to feel part of the community. This is partly due to the town’s wide and grassy Quadrado (town square), which is the focal point and meeting ground for the locals – plus, it’s a car-free zone, which creates a charming ‘last-century’ ambience. Either side of the square, you’ll find casual bars and rustic restaurants with rickety seats and wooden tables flooding onto the grass, while at the very end, there’s a sloping pathway all the way down to the beach.
In Trancoso, all you'll want to do is sunbathe on the idyllic Espelho Beach and eat, drink and mingle with the residents. There is also an old Jesuit church prominently overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, which is worthy of afternoon exploration. In summer, the town can become quite lively with an eruption of bar festivity and the beach becomes the venue for full moon parties, whereas winters are very much subdued and move to a sloth-like pace. You'll find an eclectic grouping of people in Trancoso – it’s a very popular destination for a wide spectrum of visitors and is, therefore, frequented by backpackers, couples, families and solo travellers, alike.