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6.5km (4 miles) N of Cascais; 9.5km (6 miles) N of Estoril

The word guincho is best translated as "caterwaul," the cry that swallows make while darting along the air currents over the wild sea. The swallows stay at Guincho year-round. Sometimes at night, the sea, driven into a frenzy, howls like a wailing banshee -- and that, too, is guincho.

The town lies near the westernmost point on the European continent, known to the Portuguese as Cabo da Roca. The beaches are spacious and sandy, the sunshine is incandescent, and the nearby promontories, jutting into white-tipped Atlantic waves, are spectacular. Wooded hills back the windswept dunes; and to the east, the Serra de Sintra is silhouetted on the distant horizon.