This post was most recently updated on January 6th, 2023
Tap water is drinkable in Portugal, but it’s suggested to drink only after boiling and filtering it. The water may be safe to drink when it leaves the source, but it might collect pollutants (dirt, dust, and other stuff) on its way to your tap. Also, note that different cities have different water mineral contents. So tap water in each city is different.
Tap water has to abide by strict EU standards, and it is put through a variety of filtration and purification systems before distribution.
Is it safe to drink tap water in Portugal?
Water quality in Portugal is monitored by the Health Inspectors of the Medical and Public Health Services of the Ministry of Health and the Local Authorities. As per them, tap water in Portugal is safe to drink.
How clean is Portuguese tap water?
Portuguese tap water is clean, but your water pipes may not be clean. If your water tank and plumbing pipes are not cleaned enough, it’s not suggested to drink tap water directly. Always take extra precautions. Drink only after filtering and boiling the water.
Most people also don’t like to drink bottled water because they think bottled water is subject to contamination by impurities from the bottle’s materials which I believe is not true.
People also say, “tap water and bottled water in Portugal come from the same source, then why do you want to pay extra?”
Why does tap water in Portugal have a bad reputation?
Before Portugal joined the EU there were lots of issues with the water infrastructure and therefore many people still prefer bottled water. Another thing is the taste of water. Chlorine is usually used in tap water in Portugal to keep it safe from bacteria and viruses, which gives a different taste.
Are Water Filters Necessary in Portugal?
No, water filters are not necessary for Portugal because the tap water meets or exceeds quality standards in most areas. The only time water filters are necessary is if you were to live in or visit an area where the water falls below quality standards.
Can I ask for tap water in Restaurant?
Yes, you can ask for tap water in Restaurant. The majority of Portuguese people always use tap water for cooking/beverages and ice cubes. When you visit a restaurant or a cafe, you would usually be provided with tap water until you order a sealed water bottle.
Bottled water is very expensive in Portuguese restaurants and often costs around €4-5 per large bottle. The same bottle probably costs less than €0.65 in the supermarket.
How do I order tap water in restaurants?
You can simply ask them in English, “Can I get a glass of tap water, please?”. If the waiter doesn’t understand English, you can say, “Posso pegar um copo de água da torneira, por favor” in Portuguese.
Is the water in Portugal hard or soft?
The tap water in Portugal is mainly soft and medium hard. Tap waters exhibit a varied hardness distribution: 13.3 % are hard, 20 % are very hard, 28.9 % are soft, and 37.8 % are very soft. The median and average hardness of these waters are, respectively, 80.2 mg/L and 123.78 mg/L of CaCO3.
Related article: Can you drink tap water in Cyprus?
Can you drink the tap water in Faro?
Yes, you can drink the tap water in Faro, but you are suggested to drink it only after filtering and boiling it.
Is Porto water safe to drink?
Yes, Porto tap water is safe to drink. You can use it for cooking, drinking, washing, and bathing. However, you are suggested to drink it only after proper filtration.
Is tap water free in Lisbon restaurants?
Yes, tap water is free in Lisbon restaurants. They won’t charge you for tap water. But, you are suggested to order bottled water, as it’s more clean and safer than tap water.
Is Algarve water safe to drink?
Yes, you can drink the tap water in Algarve, but you are suggested to drink it only after filtering and boiling it.
Can I brush my teeth with tap water in Portugal?
Tap water in Portugal is safe to brush your teeth, or even take a bath. You can also put tap water from Portugal in your food while cooking. As per the Ministry of Health, tap water is 100% safe.
Is it ok to drink tap water in Lisbon?
Drinking tap water in Lisbon is absolutely fine. However, you are suggested to drink it after filtering and boiling it. Bottled water is the best alternative to tap water in Lisbon.
Where does tap water in Portugal come from?
The Portuguese Ministry of Environment and Regional Development is responsible for establishing water quality policies and legislation.
Tap water in Portugal comes from groundwater and the sea, and 70% of the tap water supply comes through water desalination. Desalination is the process by which the dissolved mineral salts in water are removed. Currently, this process, applied to seawater, is one of the most used to obtain fresh water for human consumption or agricultural purposes.
Groundwater may be fresh, but it can also become easily contaminated by pollution. Treating groundwater can sometimes be more expensive and laborious than treating surface water sources.
If you are a tourist and visiting Portugal, it’s better to stick with bottled water. You wouldn’t want to get sick while traveling, would you? 5 liters of bottled water costs you around 0.65 Euro.
If you live in or visit Portugal, it’s perfectly safe to drink tap water in most areas. However, you may find that you want to use bottled water or filters instead of drinking directly from the tap.
I am the kind of guy who drinks bottled water by boiling it. It’s totally up to you which water you want to drink.
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