The coastline at Leça da Palmeira has long and wide beaches with ideal conditions for sports such as surfing, body boarding and kite surfing, especially at the Northern end on the Praia do Aterro. There's a youthful atmosphere here with plenty of bars and nightclubs. Despite the busy Porto de Leixões seaport to the south and the oil refinery in the north, Leça da Palmeira and its beaches retain a certain amount of charm. 41° 11' 22.6" N | 08° 42' 19.9" W
The 17th-century fort at the southern end by the port isn't usually open to the public, albeit for the odd festival. Hidden within the cobbled streets around the fort are several traditional restaurants. The Farol da Boa Nova lighthouse stands tall at the northern end of Praia de Leça da Palmeira. Standing at 45 metres, it's Portugal's second tallest and the first electrified lighthouse in the North. It's possible to go inside and climb the 213 steps to the top and admire the incredible views. To save your knees, you can take the lift. The experience is free of charge. If the entrance is closed, ring the doorbell.
For families, the waters have been calmed by the saltwater swimming pools carved out of the rocks halfway up the beach. Constructed in the 1960s and designed by leading Portuguese architect Siza Vieira they offer a safe and controlled environment for bathing. The site consists of two pools;- one for adults and one for children, changing rooms and the Boa Nova teahouse.