THE ALGARVE BEACH GUIDE
Looking for the ultimate beach escape?
An authentic beach holiday in the sun is exactly what the beautiful region of Algarve delivers. There are over 133 beaches along the southern coast of the Algarve for you to explore and discover, from wide sprawling beaches to hidden coves.
Some of which are recognized as Blue Flag beaches, for efforts implemented towards keeping sustainable methods for beaches, marinas, and boating maintenance practices; giving you utterly pristine beaches to indulge upon! In these intact blue-flag beaches, you may even have to trek to get there, but that's what adventure is all about! Portugal Homes is here to give you insight into the best of best when it comes to beaches in the sunny Golden Coast of Portugal.
EXPERIENCE AUTHENTIC ALGARVE
We present Portugal Homes Guide to beaches in the Algarve´s Coast
ALBUFEIRA BEACH COASTLINE
A serene beach surrounded by rock formations, this beach is beautiful to visit whether in summer or winter season. Water current at Galé Beach tends to be strong, so best to keep your swimming closer to the coastline. This is a go-to beach day for local Portuguese. Galé Beach is a blue-flag beach for its sustainability, has access to washroom, shower facilities, parking area, sunshade rentals, and it is also wheelchair accessible.
This beach is situated in the old town of Albufeira, considered to be the most visited beach in Albufeira due to its prime location, stretching 225 m in length and during a low tide it is more than 100m wide. Water currents at Pescadores tend to be strong, and be extra attentive with children swimming. Pescadores Beach is a blue-flag beach for its sustainability, has access to washroom facilities, sunshade rentals, parking area, and it is also wheelchair accessible.
Just a few steep steps down to Maria Luisa Beach, to experience a large pristine beach surrounded by pine groves and rock formations. Maria Luisa Beach is a blue-flag beach for its sustainability, has access to washroom, shower facilities, parking area, and it is also wheelchair accessible.
Olhos de Água
Olhos de Água Beach is situated in its village under the same name, which translates to “eyes of water” named for its fresh-water springs that flow onto the beach inlet. This beach also features the famous Algarvian rock formations featuring many marine life species. Olhos de Água Beach is a blue-flag beach with access to washroom, shower facilities, sunshade rentals, outdoor parking, and it is wheelchair accessible.
Barranco das Belharucas
The Barranco das Belharucas Beach is situated west of Falésia Beach, its curious name stems from the surrounding ravine and bee species known to the area. This beach stretches interrupted till Vilamoura Marina, about 5.5km east, surrounded by pine shrub vegetations, and coastal plants. Accessibility to the beach will be by car, and then by foot as it will be on beaten earth. Barranco das Belharucas Beach is a blue-flag beach, with access to washroom facilities, and sunshade rentals.
Falésia (Açoteias, Alfamar Baixinha)
The Falésia Beach extends between Olhos de Água and Vilamoura, which incorporates a number of different beaches, including two sections known as Acoteias, and as Alfamar. The sea at Falésia is calm and a perfect destination beach for children, and water sports. This beach is also recognized as a blue-flag beach, holds an outdoor parking area, includes washroom, shower facilities, and sunshade rentals.
ALJEZUR BEACH COASTLINE
The Odeceixe beach sits in the Seixe River, giving visitors fantastic viewpoints of the surrounding landscape and beach from the hilltops that are great for small hikes, and by the sandy shore offers plenty of watersport fun, and sunbathing. This beach is ideal for children, as the tide is usually low, it is an EEC Blue Flag beach, with parking access, and bars & restaurants nearby to enjoy.
The Adegas beach is adjacent to Odeceixe Beach, in the small bay to the south, and it is an official nudist beach. The surrounding landscape is very calm, and beautiful, filled with local shrubs and greenery that provide a bit of privacy on this nudist beach destination. On a high tide the beach can be reached by a wooden staircase and pathway. This beach is also considered as an EEC Blue Flag beach, with parking access, and bars & restaurants nearby to enjoy.
Vale dos Homens
Vale dos Homens is a quaint beach situated in a remote location in Aljezur; the natural landscape of this beach is pristine, bordered by schist cliffs which is ideal for someone who prefers an isolated beach day, enjoying nature in peace. This beach has a descent with a wooden staircase, access to the beach only by foot. Best to pack a picnic basket and enjoy a real beach day in a picturesque scenery.
Carrigem beach is remote, and almost always deserted in Aljezur, and it is part of the Costa Vicentina Natural Park. Best to visit this beach in a low tide, as you can truly experience a beach walk within the rock surrounding rock formations. Be prepared to walk along a wooden staircase to the beach, the beach can only be accessed by foot.
Amoreira (Ocean & River)
Amoreira beach is situated in Aljezur, surrounded by sea cliffs and sand dunes, which has become a popular destination among surfers for its good waves. There are two sides to Amoreira beach, the river side and the ocean side, both are amazing beach destinations. This beach, however, can only be reached during low ocean tides as you will have to walk through the river to reach the Amoreira beach oceanside.
This Aljezur beach is popular among locals, a large beach with cliffs and dunes, with clear blue waters making it perfect for water sports. This beach is a great destination for families as the beach has natural rock pools that form small lagoons, making it safe for children to play in the water. The beach can be reached by car, and then on foot with wooden boardwalks that lead directly to the beach. This beach is also considered as an EEC Blue Flag beach, with parking access, and bars & restaurants nearby to enjoy.
The Arrifana beach in Aljezur is situated near the Arrifana village which offers plenty of local commerce, restaurants and bars. The beach has a long and steep road, which can only be accessed by foot. This is a beach that offers relaxation and nature scenery, there is no access to bars and restaurants at the beach, best to bring your own snacks for the day.
Canal beach is where you can catch a glimpse of the famous needle rock, surrounded by local flora and fauna and known for its rough seas. This is considered a surfer and fishermen beach, peaceful escape to witness but not safe for those who are not avid swimmers. This beach can only be accessed on foot, by a first path leading into the bay.
Vale Figueiras beach is an utterly gorgeous beach destination, remote and offers lots of privacy, popular with surfers but difficult to swim as there are many rocks as you enter the ocean coastline. Beach can be accessed partly by car and on foot through a dirt road, and parking is free.
The Bordeira beach sits along the Costa Vicentina Natural Park, within schist cliffs and huge sand dunes. This rocky beach is great for surfing, offering good waves and wind, and includes a year-round open restaurant and beach bar that offers excellent grilled fish. Access to this beach can be partly by car and foot.
Amado is a large beach in Aljezur, showcasing ochre cliff sides against the buzzing sandy shores. This beach is highly sought after by locals, and can only be accessed partly by car, and on foot. The beach includes a restaurant, washroom facilities, and a surfing school.
FARO BEACH COASTLINE
This beach is situated in Culatra Island, where you can indulge in 7 km of beach featuring a lighthouse surrounded by sandy white dunes that extend alongside the coast. This beach is adored by locals for swimming, snorkeling, and a go-to destination for local fishermen to store their boats at shore. This beach must be accessed by ferryboat from Faro to Olhao, taking you through Ria Formosa; or take a ferry to Culatra and walk to the Farol beach.
LAGOA BEACH COASTLINE
A popular beach near the mouth of the Arade River, showcasing pristine beaches with many attractions for adults and kids. Praia Grande offers access to a surf school, restaurant & bar, washroom facilities, boating, and keep in mind that car access is limited. Best to park your car further away from the beach, and venture by foot.
Carvoeiro beach is a popular beach destination for locals and tourists alike, famous for its grottos, and caves near the coastline that are worth exploring. This is a smaller beach, best to be early in order to grab a good spot for some sun bathing, and sea exploration. This beach also offers restaurants and bars, accessibility by car and foot.
The Carvalho beach in Lagoa is small but famous for its picturesque scenery, and crystal clear water. This beach is also famous for cliff jumping, as it has many steep cliffs. Access to this beach is made partly by car and on foot, with long stairs that take you directly to the beach.
The Benagil beach in Lagoa, is famously known worldwide for a cave called Algar de Benagil, which can be visited only by sea on a boat or paddle boarding. This beach can get quite crowded during the summertime, best to bring your own parasol as there are no lounger rentals. The beach can be reached via car and on foot, parking is free and best to park away from the beach, and walk towards the beach.
Marinha beach is considered to be the most beautiful beach in the world, with many beautiful images captured of the Algarve region on this very beach.
A secluded beach featuring a rock formation arc, small and quaint making it perfect for a day of sea and sun exploration. This is a great beach for swimming, diving, and snorkelling with calm seas, which is great for children. Access to Albandeira beach can be made by car, and by foot as there is free parking nearby.
Nossa Senhora da Rocha
Nossa Senhora da Rocha beach is a small beach in Lagoa, with an old chapel overlooking the sea and sand. Waters at this beach are calm, which is great for swimming, boating and snorkelling. This beach can get crowded very quickly, as it is highly popular with locals; the easiest way to access it will be partly by car and on foot.
LAGOS BEACH COASTLINE
A fishing village originally, which has now become a tourist hub for the holidays. This beach offers a lively side to beach bumming, features restaurants, bars, beach bars and access to water sport activities, washroom facilities, and parking.
Porto de Mós
The Porto de Mos is considered to be the second largest beach in Lagos, which offers beach seekers every activity by the sea imaginable, from surfing, bodyboarding, to boating and more! Access to this beach can be made by car primarily, there is a service bus that takes you nearby, and then proceeding to the beach on foot. This beach is also considered as an EEC Blue Flag beach, with parking access, sunshade rentals, shower, washroom facilities, and bars & restaurants nearby to enjoy.
The Canavial beach is an isolated beach in Lagos, and difficult to get to due to its low signage. This beach, however, can be reached on foot by walking from Ponta da Piedade where you can indulge in a bit of hiking. Might have to park far away from the beach to access it on foot. Note, this beach is unofficially a nude beach as well.
Balança beach is close to Ponta da Piedade, a small beach with difficult terrain to access the beach itself. The best way to visit this beach is by sea, boating, kayaking or paddle boarding.
Boneca beach is a small beach sitting pretty between cliffs, also known as Pinheiros beach. This beach has no facilities, best to access by car at ponta da piedade and making your way down the steep stairway to the beach. It is advised to use caution, as the pathway and surrounding stone is prone to rocks falling due to erosion.
Camilo beach in Lagos, is a secluded beach destination that features beautiful scenery, simply by taking about 200 steps down to venture into calm seas and golden sands. Access to this beach is best by car and foot, and there are no restaurants or bars near the beach, so best to pack some snacks.
Dona Ana beach is surrounded by sandstone cliffs, featuring grottos, sea stacks that are worthy of exploration. This blue flag beach features restaurant, bar, and washroom facilities. This beach is best accessed by car and on foot.
A small and quaint beach that is perfect for swimming and snorkeling, this beach is popular for families and relatively calm waters. There is a long staircase to take you to the beach, during a high tide you can jump straight into the sea. This beach is best accessed by car and on foot.
Estudantes Beach is situated adjacent to Batata Beach in Lagos; famously known for its Roman style bridge. This beach is loved by families, not too crowded and a great beach for children. Access to the beach is also best on foot, parking your car away from the beach and strolling down towards the beach. Restaurant and a bar is available at the beach, along with washroom facilities.
Batata beach in Lagos is small, sitting on sheltered cove surrounded by rock formations, next to Estudantes Beach. This beach tends to be crowded very quickly, as it is loved by locals due to its close proximity to Lagos city center. Easiest way to arrive at this beach will be on foot, parking your car away from the beach.
The Meia Praia is the longest beach in the Algarve, a favorite beach by locals and tourists all year round. This beach is great for swimming, and has amenities such as sunshade rentals, washrooms, restaurants, and bars. Meia Praia beach can be reached on foot from Lagos, or by car, bus and train as it is very close to the city center.
LOULÉ BEACH COASTLINE
Falesia beach is known for its red cliffs, and considered to be one of the best beaches in Algarve. A 6 km long beach with a great ocean for swimming, and pristine sands where it earned its Blue Flag Beach recognition. Falesia has access to restaurants, bars, washroom facilities, showers, parking and sunshade rentals.
The Vilamoura Beach is known as a luxury resort town beach, popular among tourists staying in the nearby resorts and hotels. The beach is pristine, offering plenty of watersport activities, boating, and clean waters, earning Blue Flag Beach recognition. Beach amenities include: washrooms, showers, restaurants, bars, and parking.
Quarteira beach, situated within the fishing village of Quarteira is a long beach of 2 km sitting on a beach boardwalk. Offering a calm sea for families, and plenty of local commerce nearby in case you want to grab a snack at the beach. Easily reached on foot from Quarteira, or by car. This beach is a Blue Flag Beach, with access to showers, washrooms, sunbed rentals, and parking.
Quinta do Lago
Quinta do Lago beach is luxurious, normally visited by upper class resort and hotel, and gated community members living nearby. This 3,5 km beach is surrounded by sand dunes, and almost always less crowded.
PORTIMAO BEACH COASTLINE
Alvor OESTE (West)
The Alvor beach has a long boardwalk taking you along the shoreline to Ria Alvor Nature Reserve. This beach is pristine, crystal waters that are great for swimming, kitesurfing, jet skiing and kayaking; a good beach for families as well. As the Alvor beach is close to the city center of Alvor, you can reach it on foot, or by car. This beach offers restaurants, bars, washroom, shower facilities, sunbed rentals, parking and it is a Blue Flag beach.
Alvor ESTE (East) Três Irmãos
The Tres Irmaos beach situated east of Alvor beach has great caves to explore, also very beautiful and clean. The sea here tends to be a bit rough, and has many rocks so best to take caution. As the Alvor beach is close to the city center of Alvor, you can reach it on foot, or by car. This beach offers restaurants, bars, washroom, shower facilities, sunbed rentals, parking and it is a Blue Flag beach.
Prainha is a small beach in Portimao, nestled between rock formations that are prone to fall and erode. Here you can experience sightings of marine fossils, imprinted in the rocks, most famously at Ponta João d'Arens. A wooden ramp leads into the beach from the Tres irmaos beach, and a stone staircase to the east. This beach offers washroom facilities, and a restaurant. Best to visit Prainha on foot, as parking nearby will be difficult.
Barranco das Canas
Beach with ochre cliffs, and calm waters, small in size but yet popular with locals and known as the German Beach (Praia do Alemao). This beach offers a beach bar, and sunshade rentals, a great beach for pure relaxation. Best to reach this beach by car and walk towards the seaside.
Vau beach is loved by locals, as it tends to be less crowded, and it showcases beautiful red cliffs, with fine sands, and calm seas that are perfect for swimming. This beach features restaurants, bars, sunbed rentals, parking access, watersport rentals, and it is also a Blue Flag beach.
Careanos Beach is a small beach, surrounded with rock formations, hidden coves, and caves that are a treat to explore. A wooden kiosk sits on the beach offering refreshments, and sunbed rentals. Keep note there is no washroom or shower facilities at this beach.
The Amado beach is a surfers beach with amazing waves, surrounded by cliffs and accessed by a wooden staircase. This beach has a restaurant nearby, access to water sports, sunbed rentals, and parking. However, it does not have a washroom or shower facility available.
Três Castelos beach is large, with a paved boardwalk sitting alongside the shore with plenty of caves, and tunnels to explore. The beach has access to restaurants, bars, showers, washrooms, water-sports, sun-bed rentals, parking , and it is a Blue Flag beach.
Rocha beach was an old fishing town turned modern, sitting alongside hotels and apartments within close proximity to the seashore. The beach has access to restaurants, bars, showers, washrooms, water-sports, sun-bed rentals, parking , and it is a Blue Flag beach.
Marina beach in Portimao offers plenty of cave exploration, cliff walks, and access to amazing views of rock formations along the coast. The beach has access to restaurants, bars, showers, washrooms, parking may be difficult, best to access the beach partly on foot.
TAVIRA COASTLINE BEACHES
Insel de Tavira
A beach island near Tavira, stretching about 11 km with white sands, and calm crystal clear waters, ideal for families with children. The best way to reach this beach will be by ferry boat from Tavira, or a water taxi from Quatro Aguas, around 2 km from Tavira. Insel de Tavira is recognized as a Blue Flag beach, with access to restaurant, bar, sun-bed rentals, water-sports, and washroom facilities.
VILA DO BISPO BEACH COASTLINE
Murração beach is most often deserted, it has a rocky shore and it is considered a nude beach among locals. Keep note that this beach also does not feature any facilities or lifeguard duty. A great isolated beach if you want to be in complete peace.
Barriga Beach in Vila do Bispo, nestled between cliffs is a difficult beach to access, on a low tide you can reach the Castelejo beach. It's a good beach to explore, as many locals and tourists avoid this beach due to its remote location from busy city centers.
Cordoama Beach is a large beach within the Costa Vicentina Natural Park, surrounded by cliffs and a wild beach atmosphere. This beach is worth visiting, especially if you enjoy a peaceful escape, and even indulge in a bit of surfing as this area tends to have good waves, and a large amount of wind. There is only one bar nearby, and access for parking, and washroom facilities, and it is recognized as a Blue Flag beach.
A quiet beach situated within the Costa Vicentina Natural Park, surrounded by black schist cliffs and golden sands, best known for fishing and surfing.. This beach features a parking area, coffeeshop, and washroom facilities.
A small beach in Vila do Bispo that is best known for surfing, within the Costa Vicentina Natural Park. This beach may be a bit difficult to find, and it definitely needs to be accessed by car, and then on foot to reach its rocky shores. The Ponta Ruiva beach has no facilities available, only a parking area.
Telheiro beach is situated with the Costa Vicentina Natural Park, a hidden beach with amazing scenery, and wildlife.This beach is great, if you are looking to connect to nature. Telheiro beach has no facilities available, only a parking area.
Beliche beach features 40 m cliffs, pristine beach that surfers love, with rough waves and uncrowded most of the time. The west side of the beach is unocially a nude beach, nicely secluded away from the surf scene. There is one restaurant on the beach, and the easiest way to reach Beliche will be on foot, and by car with access to a free parking lot. Beliche is also a Blue Flag beach, with sunbed rentals, and washroom facilities.
Tonel beach is a popular surfer beach, golden sands and steep cliffs near Sagres, a soft sand bed and clean beach. A great spot for sunset watching, and there is one small beach bar nearby to grab a drink and snacks. Getting to Tonel is easiest by car, and on foot, take advantage of the free parking access, washroom facilities, and Tonel is also included as a Blue Flag beach.
Mareta beach, situated close to Sagres, and recognized as a great surf beach with three main restaurants nearby, shower and washroom facilities. Mareta beach is a Blue flag beach that is great to explore, as it is less busy than most beaches in the Algarve region.
Martinhal beach is one of the biggest beaches with over 650 m of white, fine sand and blue views of the oceanside, with surrounding sand dunes welcoming you to explore. This beach is loved by locals, less crowded and great for families, with access to restaurants, washroom, sunbed rentals, and parking area. Martinhal beach is also recognized as Blue Flag beach.
Rebolinhos beach in Sagres is made up of small pebbles, with high cliffs and small shrubs, making a different perspective to what a beach is. You can find sunbeds for rent, washroom facilities, restaurants, and bars, and the Rebolinhos beach is recognized as a Blue Flag beach.
Barranco beach is usually less crowded as it is viewed as a nude beach, hidden in its surrounding cliffside, and reached only by a dirt road. Locals love visiting this beach for swimming and snorkeling, as the crystal clear waters make it easy to see existing marine life. This beach does not offer any facilities due to its remote location.
Ingrina beach is near the Raposeira village in Vila do Bispo, considered to be a quiet and small beach of 100 m in length with a small cove, featuring the Costa Vicentina Natural Park. Ingrina is a Blue Flag Beach with access to sun-bed rentals, washroom facilities, showers, bars, and restaurants.
Zavial beach is a surf beach, pristine, unspoiled, where you can enjoy nature, and a beach day. Reaching Zavial beach by car will be the best option, and on foot through a wooden boardwalk to reach the shore. This beach is recognized as a Blue Flag Beach, with access to washroom facilities, restaurant, sun-beds for rent, and parking.
Furnas beach is a nude beach in Vila do Bispo, loved by nature lovers who want to tan in peace and freedom. Furnas has many caves and grottos to explore, and is absolutely pristine; keep in mind this beach has no available facilities, only access to parking areas.
The Figueira beach in Vila do Bispo features wonderful beach and nature trails, showcasing the natural flora and fauna within the colored cliffside that are signature to the Algarve region. This beach has no available facilities, only access to parking areas.
Salema beach sits within Salema village, a small quaint beach with fine golden sand, great water quality and beach access, which grants its Blue Flag recognition. A great beach for families, and a quiet beach day in this charming region. This beach offers access to sunbed rentals, restaurants, and cafes, along with washroom facilities.
Cabanas Velhas (Almadena)
This Blue Flag beach is medium-sized, about 500m in length surrounded by eroded cliffs, and rock formations with a mixture of both sand and pebbles. Swimming shoes will be a must on the beach, and locals love fishing at Cabanas Velhas (Almadena). This beach offers access to washroom and shower facilities, sunbed rentals, parking, and restaurant.
Burgau beach has picturesque scenery, sitting alongside the white washed houses of Burgau village on the edge of the Costa Vicentina Natural Park. Burgau is a medium sized beach of 350 m in length, surrounded by high cliffs which protects against winds, creating a calm sea that is perfect for swimming and water-sports. Recognized as a Blue Flag beach that has access to restaurants, washroom and shower facilities, sun-beds, parking area.
VILA REAL DE SANTO ANTONIO BEACH COASTLINE
The Monte Gordo beach is considered a beachside resort destination, where many locals and Spanish tourists choose to spend their summer holidays. A large beach surrounded by apartment buildings,hotels, and sand dunes, with access to numerous amenities such as washroom facilities, showers, watersport rentals and sunbeds, many restaurants and clubs, and free parking. Just a short walk to the beach from the parking area, supported by wooden ramps, making it wheelchair accessible as well., along with its Blue Flag beach recognition.
This Santo Antonio beach is the beach destination closest to Spain, featuring views of Ayamonte on the Spanish coast, next to the Guadiana River. The beach is pristine, clean waters with a long stretch of sand that goes all the way to Tavira. Access to Santo Antonio beach, however, may be difficult, and has no nearby restaurants or bars.
Algarve Coast & Beaches
The Best Beaches in the Algarve, TOP 5
As you can see, the Algarve region has exquisite beaches to explore featuring the ever-enchanting cliffsides, caves, and grottos that invite you to explore closer to nature, whether it is at a busy beach spot with plenty of commerce or a secluded nude beach where you feel completely alone sitting at the edge of the world. Portugal Homes has selected the TOP 5 beaches in Algarve that are worthy of a visit, to make your initial beach bumming adventure easier!
1.Praia do Camilo - Lagos
2. Praia de Dona Ana - Lagos
3. Praia da Falésia - Loulé
4. Praia de Odeceixe - Aljezur
5. Praia da Marinha - Lagoa