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“The beaches in Sintra are a surfer’s paradise, and I wanted that as part of my daily routine. I discovered this city by researching locations for Boundless Life, which allows families to travel the world while working and keeping their children in school. We had a number of requirements for the destinations we operate in: basic amenities, healthcare, distance to the airport, weather, real estate, closeness to nature, availability of moderate and regular physical activities and walkability.
The startup ecosystem drew me in, as well. Portugal is booming with startup accelerators. My company partnered up with Startup Sintra to offer mentoring opportunities to the early-stage businesses in its portfolio, and I can attest to revolutionary ideas taking shape here. Portugal has always been on the top of my list, but Sintra was a clear winner for me.” - Marcos Carvalho, the Co-founder of Boundless Life, currently based in Sintra
Sintra's cost of living is more favorable for remote workers, with lower expenses than most European capitals. Less popular with digital nomads than neighboring Lisbon, Sintra has a diverse range of activities and sports, coupled with a robust remote work infrastructure. It’s an ideal destination for remote workers seeking a balanced, active lifestyle while staying productive. As the price of accommodation in Lisbon increases, locations like Sintra could offer a more local experience without the expensive price tag dictated by tourism. It is important to note that the cost of living in Sintra can be higher compared to other Portuguese towns, but many residents and digital nomads find that the high quality of life in is well worth the additional expense. Its proximity to Lisbon gives you an international airport, as well as quick access to other European destinations.
With high-speed internet readily available throughout the city, Sintra offers an unparalleled quality of life while working remotely. Because of its favorable climate, there are numerous sports and activities you can incorporate into your everyday life - hiking, mountain biking, surfing, paragliding and more.
Despite its proximity to Lisbon, Sintra's cost of living is substantially lower, averaging €1076 for an individual. However, this might differ for digital nomads, mostly because of more expensive short-term rental options.
Long-term leases on two-bedroom apartments start at €600, while short-term stays come at a premium due to tourism-focused platforms like Airbnb that digital nomads default to. However, if you're flexible with dates and okay with being based in residential areas, you can find some options that get very close to the local average.
Sintra Papyrus Guest House - This Airbnb offers a big monthly discount that lowers the price down to a reasonable €694/month. Look for options that offer a monthly discount, and message the hosts if not already provided. They are often willing to give a discount if you book for longer.
Vivenda Felicidade - A coworking & coliving farm stay for €700/month.
Idealista - This is a local rental website for long-term rental agreements. It’s still worth inquiring with hosts about 1-2 month rentals, although expect to pay a month's deposit. If you want to stay in Sintra for at least 6 months, this website is a great option.
Options if you’re willing to pay €1000/month and more: Housing Anywhere, Home to Go, Vrbo.
Price estimate of other necessities
Utility bill: €77-86/month for a small apartment Internet: Around €50, depending on your provider Coworking space: €100/month Gym: €35/month Transportation: Around €36 if you’re using public transport Groceries: These can be as little as €100/month if you shop at local farmer markets. Restaurants: You'll need an average of €55 for 2 people in most middle-class restaurants.
Remote workers and digital nomads can expect fiber-optic connections with speeds up to 1 Gbps, although more common packages are in the range of 100-200 Mbps. This is usually what you would get in a standard apartment rental, and should be enough for any remote work or video calls.
Coworking Although the coworking landscape in Sintra has dwindled to a single space, the town has numerous alternative spaces you can work remotely from.
Other places to work remotely from
Café Saudade - A relaxed, local cafe with a homey feel to it. Fast Wifi, breakfast & lunch menu, outdoor seating available, but not many available plugs.
Raíz - Plenty of comfortable indoor & outdoor seating, available Wifi, some tables have plugs, and they have vegetarian options on the menu.
Biblioteca Municipal de Sintra - Town’s municipal library is a quiet place to work from with free Wifi.
The quality of life in Sintra, Portugal, is generally considered to be quite high. You will enjoy Portugal's modern amenities and services like good internet connection, public transportation options, and well-equipped healthcare facilities. Portugal is generally a safe country with low crime rates, and Sintra is no exception.
The proximity to Lisbon gives easy access to the cultural, economic, and entertainment options of a larger city, while still enjoying the charm and tranquility of Sintra. Sintra enjoys a Mediterranean climate, characterized by warm summers, mild winters, and a comfortable year-round temperature. This makes it an ideal location for those who appreciate pleasant weather.