Curious about water sports? Come to Portugal and discover paradise!

Here we are at the beginning of summer, one of the most anticipated seasons of the year, especially for those who like to combine vacations with water sports.

Portugal has one of the longest coastlines among European countries, more than 800 km, and extraordinary beaches, allied to good weather and excellent infrastructures for water sports, tourism, and leisure.

The country has achieved good performances in international competitions in this area, such as being European and World Bodyboarding Champion and European Surfing Champion, in addition to Olympic medals in modalities such as canoeing.  

Besides the Atlantic coast, the remaining waterways, such as rivers and streams, are also used for this water sports throughout the interior of the country.  


The 8 Nautical Stations in the Center of Portugal

The central region of Portugal has excellent natural conditions for water sports. But the Nautical Resorts make up the most recent trend in the quality of nautical tourism. In Portugal, there are a total of 26, but you can start by taking a look at the 8 Nautical Resorts in the Center of Portugal.

Besides water sports such as wakeboarding, water skiing, canoeing, rafting, kitesurfing, stand-up paddle, boat trips, diving, canoeing, and kayaking, the Nautical Stations include accommodation, catering, and entertainment activities in the surrounding areas. 

Another great advantage of this type of practice is that it is a segment of tourism that makes sustainable use of the cultural heritage, encourages its conservation, and helps form an environmental conscience. It also promotes the well-being of the populations involved and facilitates the practice of various ecological tourism and adventure sports.


Remember some of the sports at your disposal

Surfing and Bodyboarding: these are among the most recognized, practiced, and sought-after modalities in Portugal, along with the offer of numerous schools to start this practice. The most known waves in Portugal are the giant waves of Nazaré, for their unique geography, but there are other beaches with excellent conditions, such as Peniche, Ericeira, or Algarve.  

Canoeing and Rowing: Rowing is a sport of great importance in the country's centre, enhanced by the High-Performance Centre in Montemor-o-Velho, a sports centre with all the conditions and infrastructures, including a rowing track of European level with about 2200m. Anyway, it can be practiced a little bit all over the territory. Canoeing is practiced with a canoe or kayak, and there are many associated modalities, such as Freestyle, Speed, Marathons, Slalom, Whitewater, and others. It is implanted in our waterways and beaches and is sought after by amateurs, families, and tourists in general. 

Diving: one of the best diving areas in the country is at the limit in the West area, off Peniche. The tiny archipelago of the Berlengas islands, a natural reserve in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, has priceless biological wealth. You can also choose other recognized diving sites such as Figueira da Foz, and Ílhavo, in Aveiro. That is without forgetting the islands, namely the Azores archipelago.

Windsurfing, Kitesurfing, and Sailing: Wind is an essential element in these sports. Kitesurfing is surfing with paragliding incorporated and is a more recent and radical sport. You can try this sport, for example, in the Óbidos Lagoon, in the Ria de Aveiro, or in the Mondego River estuary, which is an ideal practice place due to its excellent natural characteristics.

Windsurfing has existed for decades and has been an Olympic sailing sport since the 1960s. It is practiced in the sea, rivers, dams, or lagoons, with a surfboard and a sail between 2 to 5 meters high. It is easier to practice than surfing and faster than sailing. 

If you are not a fan of surfboards, try a sailboat powered by the force of the wind and currents. You can practice it all over the country, on the Algarve coast, Lisbon, Aveiro, Porto, or even in the Mondego River.

Wakeboard and Ski: for those flat days with no waves, Wakeboard is one of the best water sports to practice. This activity is perfect for training balance and strength at the same time. Full of adrenaline, this sport challenges your courage, balance, and coordination and is often practiced on river beaches and near dams. 

Stand Up Paddle: Stand Up Paddle is also known as stand-up paddle boarding, stand-up paddle surfing, or SUP. It is practiced on a long, stable board, in fluid, calm movements. In addition, practitioners use a long paddle to move underwater. It has been recently introduced in the country, and because it does not depend on waves or a boat and does not require great physical fitness from the practitioners, it is very versatile and can be practiced in the sea, rivers, or lakes.

Rafting: Rafting is an adventure and team sport involving going down fast rivers in inflatable boats. Throughout the descent, the idea is to overcome the natural obstacles of the river (narrows, eddies, rocks, etc.). It requires special safety equipment, so an activity guide gives all participants detailed safety instructions before starting any rafting descent. In Portugal, the most emblematic places for this practice are the Minho, Paiva, and Tâmega rivers.


In a recent study by the fitness platform Gymcast, Portugal is among the 12 best destinations in the world for active vacations and, in Europe, is considered the 7th best.

Portugal is also the second-best choice for water sports enthusiasts Europe-wide and ranks 10th internationally, with 321 water sports facilities. In addition, Portugal is the 7th most searched active vacation destination in Google search and 6th in terms of Yoga vacation destinations.

International organizations such as the World Bank claim that the so-called 'blue economy' represents the sustainable use of ocean resources for economic development, improved livelihoods and jobs, and the health of the ocean ecosystem. Enjoying this ecosystem is also helping to defend it. 


Want to enjoy your vacation? Come with Move Sports.

Move Sports organises sports experiences and events for companies of all sizes and small groups. 

Get to know one of the most exciting and safest tourist destinations in Europe, ask for a quote, and find out everything we can organise for you