Fringed with seemingly endless sands and sapphire blue seas, the Algarve is home to some of the most spectacular beaches in the world. Along its 200-kilometre coastline, these beaches vary from picturesque sheltered coves, with dramatic cliffs and caves, to broad stretches of sun-bleached sand. Algarve Addicts have compiled a list of our favourite Top 5 Algarve Beaches…
Praia das Cabanas
Located off the coast of Tavira and accessible only by boat, Ilha de Cabanas is the smallest island in the Ria Formosa, and home to the beautiful white sands of Praia das Cabanas. The long and narrow peninsular is situated in front of the town of Cabanas de Tavira. A round trip journey by water taxi from Tavira is relatively cheap (around € 1,50 per person) and takes only a couple of minutes. There are several restaurants and cafes where food and drink can be purchased. At 7km long, this pristine Blue Flag beach is perfect for walking, and ideal for those looking for peace and tranquillity.
Praia da Falésia
Flanked be impressive red rock formations, Praia da Falésia is a simply stunning beach on which to while away the long sunny Algarve days. This popular spot is ranked number 12 on TripAdvisor’s “World’s Best Beaches” list! Stretching from Vilamoura in the west to Olhos do Agua in the east, these golden sands extend an impressive 6km. Easily accessible by public transport and with numerous amenities close by, it isn’t hard to see why Praia da Falésia has received such amazing accolades.
Praia da Marinha
Located near Lagoa, the tranquil Praia da Marinha is nestled between the busier Armação de Pêra and Carvoeiro. This iconic and much photographed vista has long been synoptic with the Algarve. The soft-sands are surrounded by steep cliffs and magnificent rock features, giving rise to spectacular views as you descend the steep winding steps, to the bay below. The waters are relatively calm and transparent here, making it an ideal location for snorkeling and bathing. Popular with the Portuguese, Praia da Marinha remains relatively uncrowded – certainly one not to miss!
Praia da Amoreira
Close to the town of Aljezur, in the Western Algarve, lies the natural and untamed sands of Praia da Amoreira. The beach lies at the mouth of the Aljezur River, in the Vicentine Coast Natural Park, and is popular with surfers, walkers, and sunbathers. Backed by sand dunes and dotted with rock pools, this beach is ideal for families looking for a relaxing retreat. Currents can be strong but low tide leave a beautiful lagoon, ideal for splashing. Facilities are limited, but an excellent restaurant provides a variety of meals and snacks.
Algarve’s Hidden Secret… Praia de Albandeira
Just east of the much-publicised Praia da Marinha lies the blissfully beautiful and somewhat secluded cove of Praia de Albandeira. Etched into the yellow limestone cliffs, this quaint sandy beach with its crystalline waters, is ideal for swimming & snorkelling. Approached by a narrow, single track lane, culminating in a small car-park, this jewel in the Algarve’s crown is well off the tourist radar. This is the quintessential setting for relaxing in the sun or lazing in the shadows of the towering cliffs. Cold beers can be found in a rustic bar, lying half-hidden among the rocks above, alternatively a ramble across the cliff-tops will bring you to the fine cuisine of the sophisticated Suites Alba.