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Algarve Beaches to explore
The Algarve boasts some of the most beautiful beaches in Europe for you to explore while you at your villa rental. The province can be characterised by two district area: Barlavento and Sotavento
Baravento - (Western part). Situated between Albufeira and Cape St Vincent. Along this coast, lovely rock formations are found and, nestled in the rocks, beautiful sandy beaches.
Sotavento - (Eastern part). Situated between Albufeira and Vila Real de Santo Antonio. Along this area of the coast are long golden stretches of sandy beaches.
The Algarve is made up of hundreds of beaches. The following is just to give you an insight into a few of the most popular and interesting beaches. Click here for our extra page dedicated to the Lagoa district beaches and coves
(Details supplied by 3rd parties. Beaches may change with coastal errosion)
Left from the main road or cliff road from Praia da Luz. Parking and turning is not easy. It is best to leave your car at the entrance of the village. It is a fishing port, so the beach is cut in to two by a boat launching ramp. Sandy, quiet surf, narrow and 300m long
Praia da Luz
Best road is from left of Espiche. Again parking at the beach is limited. Best to walk down. 200m and very wide with fishing boats. Quiet surf, excellent for children, with good water sports centre just off the beach
Just west of Lagos. Park near the hotel Golfinho and then long steps down to the beach. 200m long medium width and sandy, sheltered, quiet surf, Perfect for children, but dont let them wander
Directly out (east) from Lagos or any turn off from Odeaxere to Lagos Bridge. Plenty of parking. One of the longest stretches of beach in the Algarve, Medium-wide with dunes, good surfing but take care with children as the currents can be quite strong.
Praia do Alvor
Either through Alvor Village or just outside Portimão follow the “Praia da Rocha” sign and then follow the “Alvor & Torralta” signs. Long sandy stretch, which is a continuation of Meia Praia, separated by an estuary. At the Portimao end is small cove of the “Tres Irmãos”. The beach is quite wide and sandy with safe surf. There is now a nice wooden walkway to the south west of the town.
Praia do Vau
Drive from Portimão to “Praia da Rocha” then west along the cliffs towards Alvor. It is reached by a straight path , but to the west of Praia do Vau are a series of coves. Good conditions for children
Praia da Rocha
Well sign posted on Portimão. Good parking with steps and ramp onto the beach. Can get crowded, but the beach is long and wide and can take it. Lots of activities for children and mild surf. Paths around the cliffs separating the long eastern stretch from smaller coves and some tunnels
Praia Grande, Ferragudo
This a long beach within the harbour walls which makes it much safer for young children. There are a number of beach bars and also watersports. You can learn to windsurf here. The beach bar on the main steps down is well known for its great views and food.
Praia de Molhe
Follow the coastal road from Ferragudo to Carvoeiro and signposts to Pintadinho, then you will see at the end Praia de Molhe. There are about 151 steps down, with two beaches. The left is open sea and popular with surfers. To the right is inside the harbour walls and much calmer. This is a favourite place for me to go and walk the Molhe (jetty) and take photos, especially at sunset.
This is a popular beach just outside the breakwaters, with some afternoon shade. You can walk straight onto the sand from the parking area. Great beach bar.
Praia dos Caneiros
Fair sized and popular beach which is between two cliffs. There is limited parking and during the summer there is a beach bar
Praia do Paraiso
To the west of Carvoeiro before you get to Monte Carvoeiro is Paraiso, a small beach to watch the world go past. Down a number of steps you will find this beautiful beach.
Praia do Carvoeiro
In front of the square in Carvoeiro is the beach. It has easy access, but gets very crowded during the summer and parking is limited. Great if you are staying near the centre though.
Praia de Vale Covo
This is a small beach down with no less than 113 steps and by the side of the Tivoli Almansor.
Praia do Centianes
A very popular beach that has had the surrounding area redeveloped with new parking and picnic areas. This beach offers some shade in the afternoon, and becomes small at high tide
Praia do Carvalho
A very popular beach that has had the surrounding area redeveloped with new parking and picnic areas. This beach offers some shade in the afternoon, and becomes narrow during high tide. There is also a beach bar/restaurant.
Praia de Benagil
Popular for beach goes and people wanting to see the famous cave. Recently the surrounding area redeveloped with new parking and picnic areas. This beach offers some shade in the afternoon, and becomes narrow during high tide. There is also a beach bar/restaurant.
Praia da Marinha
Warning there are over 100 steps to go down. This is a long beach on a spectacular part of the coastline. Some shade in the afternoon.
Praia da Albandeira
Beautiful beach, great crepes at the beach bar and if you get the tide right, a great adventure. Down the steps there are two small beaches and a further beach through the hole at low tide.
Nossa Senhor da Rocha
To the east of Carvoeiro and before Armacao de Pera are two beaches connected by a 50m tunnel through a cliff spur. Beautiful location
Praia da Armação de Pera
This is a long beach that services the resort of Armacao de Pera which is a popular holiday resort for both foreigners and the Portuguese. As a result this beach gets very crowded.
Praia de Gale
Adjoined to Armacao de Pera beach but separated by a river, access can only be gained by car crossing the river and down the side of a nature reserve. Even in the summer this beach is quiet and very long. A perfect getaway to relax and watch the boats sail by.
Praia do Castelo
Take the turn off for Castelo, coming from Albufeira and turn left at the ´Por do Sol´ Restaurant. Then take the first turn to the right and follow the road, then track, down. Tiny beach surrounded by ´gingerbread´ rock formations. Very protected and calm. Good for walking and climbing.
Fishermans beach, Albufeira
This is a large popular beach right in the front of the old part of the town and is reached through a tunnel next to the tourist information office. From here, the sand stretches away to the east
Other Notable Beaches
Other notable beaches are at Faro, on the way to the airport, you come to the roundabout with the petrol station, take 1st exit and over the bridge. Ilha de Tavira - There are two access points to this long island with its excellent beach fronting the ocean. Cabanas - This is a lovely beach and is separated from the mainland by the river and is accessible by a regular boat service. Peaceful and isolated