Of the nasopharyngeal cultures recovered from 942 day care center (DCC) attendees in Lisbon, Portugal, 591 (62%) yielded Streptococcus pneumoniae during a surveillance performed in February and March of 1999. Forty percent of the isolates were resistant to one or more antimicrobial agents. In particular, 2% were penicillin resistant and 20% had intermediate penicillin resistance. Multidrug resistance to macrolides, lincosamides, and tetracycline was the most frequent antibiotype (17% of all isolates). Serotyping and molecular typing by pulsed-field gel electrophoresis were performed for 202 out of 237 drug-resistant pneumococci (DRPn). The most frequent serotypes were 6B (26%), 14 (22%), 19F (16%), 23F (10%), and nontypeable (12%). The majority (67%) of the DRPn strains were representatives of nine international clones included in the Pneumococcal Molecular Epidemiology Network; eight of them had been detected in previous studies. Fourteen novel clones were identified, corresponding to 26% of the DRPn strains. The remaining 7% of the strains were local clones detected in our previous studies. Comparison with studies conducted since 1996 in Portuguese DCCs identified several trends: (i) the rate of DRPn frequency has fluctuated between 40 and 50%; (ii) the serotypes most frequently recovered have remained the same; (iii) nontypeable strains appear to be increasing in frequency; and (iv) a clone of serotype 33F emerged in 1999. Together, our observations highlight that the nasopharynxes of children in DCCs are a melting pot of successful DRPn clones that are important to study and monitor if we aim to gain a better understanding on the epidemiology of this pathogen.