Cascais is known primarily for its beautiful beaches and romantic coastline, and as a result much of the city's cultural life revolves around the sea. During the summer, you will find the beaches and promenades buzzing with people and excitement, although during July and August the number of tourists can be overwhelming for residents. Watersports are also an extremely popular pastime for people living in Cascais, as the calm seas, low wind, and great weather make it the perfect location. Likewise sailing, boating, and yachting are also very popular in the city, and many of its citizens are part of the Cascais Yacht Club or one of the local boating clubs. Fishing is also very popular during the summer, and many excursions are organized from the beaches.
Expatriates living in Cascais will be able to use the Portuguese public healthcare system. However, although many of the doctors speak English, the public system is often overcrowded, and you can encounter long waiting times for treatment. As a result, many expatriates living in Cascais will instead use the private healthcare system, taking out comprehensive private medical insurance to cover the costs.
The standard of care and the quality of the facilities in the private system is much better than in the public system, and almost all of the staff will speak English. However, should you wish to use the private medical system whilst living in Cascais, you are advised to take out comprehensive medical insurance, so as to avoid incurring massive costs.
Portugal has a free public education system that provides for children between the ages of five and 17. Expatriates and foreigners living in Cascais will be able to use this system for free, and can register their children at the local authority. However, as the language of instruction is Portuguese, and due to the fact that the standard of education varies drastically between schools, many expatriates living in Cascais will send their children to international schools instead of using the public system.
Cascais has a handful of international schools, including the International Preparatory School and the International Christian School of Cascais, and there are plenty of other options in nearby Lisbon. Although Cascais currently has no institutes of higher education, there are colleges and universities located in nearby cities, including Lisbon.