Yall, did you know that there are over 200 beaches in the Algarve? Mind-blowing. As this list will not cover all 200 but it will give you a great start to your trip to the Algarve beaches. Picture yourself lounging on a sandy beach, with picturesque sea stacks all around you. That is exactly what the Algarve is all about.
You can take your pick from bigger party-type beaches to smaller hidden gems. There is also plenty of places around the Algarve for hiking, surfing, and even a few nudey beaches.
You will find the 16 different providences that make up the Algarve listed down below, in ABC order, so no matter where you are staying you can find the most beautiful beaches in Algarve.
This is a perfect guide for you to beach hop and get to see all the beauty of the Algarve coastline. Although the waves may not compete with the nearby town of Nazare, with their 100-foot waves! Grab your beach bag, and sunblock, and be ready to get those toes in the sand.
Up first is the Praia de Falesia, which is known as one of the best beaches near Albufeira. You can come here during the day and walk along the coastline, or catch the sunset, it never disappoints. This is a great beach to check out if you like going for strolls, or just laying in the sun. The seaside cliffs here are incredibly beautiful.
Praia dos Pescadores is one of the best beaches in the Algarve. There is everything you could ever want to do here. The sand bank here is wide and the sand is soft. This is a perfect place to bring the whole family. There are bathrooms, rental chairs, and lots of places to grab snacks and ice cream.
You can walk along the boardwalk a bit and then take the escalator down to the sand. Or stop by one of the many restaurants with a view of the beach. There is a short pier where you can watch the surfers or local fishermen reeling in their catch of the day.
Check out all the best things to do in Albufeira besides the beaches!
Up next is another stunning beach in Albufeira that is Sao Rafael it is the perfect place to watch the sunset. Many people come here and spend the entire day because you can grab your lunch from the restaurant on the beach and when you get bored there are cliffs to climb and walk around on. There are small caves that are accessible when the tide is low and it is a lot of fun to explore. Be sure to put Paria de Sao Rafael high on your list of the best beaches in the Algarve!
This is also known as rabbit beach Algarve, which is funny because there are no rabbits on the beach. Can rabbits even swim? This is a favorite of many travelers for the beautiful blue water, stunning sea stacks, and caves to explore. There are not many rocks in the swimming area so it is safe, To get to the beach you will park in the free parking lot and then walk maybe 5 minutes down the shore.
You will learn quickly that no two beaches in the Algarve are the same, and this one takes the cake when it comes to things to explore. Plus, there is a restaurant so you do not have to worry about packing a lunch. Do yourself a favor and plan to spend a few hours here at the very least.
Find a place to stay in Albufeira!
Aljezur is on the western coast of the Algarve and has a few beautiful beaches to check out. This is one of the best places to visit in the Algarve if you are looking for a laid-back countryside vacation. The population here is small and dates back to the 10th century. There are plenty of secret surfing spots throughout town as well.
Paria do Arrifana is in the town of Aljezur and is one of the top beaches in the Algarve for surfing. You can take a lesson here if you are a beginner or paddle out on your own if you know what you’re doing. The water is crystal clear and the shoreline is long. It does tend to get crowded in the summer but you should be able to find a spot any time of the day.
You can park in the free parking lot and you will have to walk a bit down the bottom, but it walks is worth the reward. And once again if you stay until sunset the sky lights up and shows off.
This next beach is inside the Costa Vicentina natural park and is about 3 kilometers (1.8 miles long). What makes this one of the best beaches in the Algarve is that is a unique area where a lake meets the ocean.
This is also a hot spot for surfers and beachgoers. The landscape is natural and pristine. There are big sandy dunes and plenty of places to lounge in the sand. Try walking up the platform to see the view from above, it is a priceless moment.
You will also find small beach shacks selling drinks and snacks, but not much else for amenities. Sometimes that is the best thing about the beach, is just being there.
When you think of Castro Marim, the first thought may not be the beaches. This is because they are best known for the medieval castle, the big festival in August, and they are one of the closest towns to Spain. But there are beautiful beaches here as well!
The very best beach in Castro Marim is Paria Verde, which translates to Green Beach. There are big trees on the edge of the beach that makes for the perfect shade. You can check out the restaurants on the shore, and rent sun loungers, canoes, or kayaks from the locals on the beach. In more recent years you do have a pay a small amount for parking.
Next up is Praia de Altura. This is a popular beach in Castro Marim with a big wooden boardwalk. Families love this beach for the soft gentle waves and for how clean it is. In the summer they also have lifeguards on duty to help keep everyone safe. Stop in one of the bars or restaurants on the shore when you get hungry because you could easily spend an entire day here.
Faro is the capital region of the Algarve and has a beautiful old town and you guessed it, beaches! Many people decide to make this their home base when exploring the region. It has its airport and great transportation all around the Algarve! Take a look at a few of the best beaches in Faro down below!
Praia de Faro is for sure one of the best beaches around Faro, and it is also one of the most popular. During the summertime, you can expect to find hundreds of beachgoers out enjoying their day. No matter how busy it gets you will easily find a spot for your stuff.
You can find everything along the shoreline from snorkeling tours to book, snack bars, and restaurants. Reaching this beautiful beach in the Algarve is easy with trusty public transportation, or if you rent a car there is plenty of parking.
Without a doubt, Ilha Deserta is one of the best beaches near Faro. Hop on a cheap ferry from Cais das Portas do Mar, near the marina. You will have two options, a slower boat that takes around 45 minutes and costs less, or try the speed boat and you will get there in like 15 minutes. Up to you! There is always the option to book a private boat and explore a few different islands in Faro!
When you arrive you will find a secluded beach with very few people on it. There is a place to rent umbrellas or you can buy the delicious Estaminé Restaurant on the island. It takes most people a few hours to walk around the whole island. This is the perfect escape from the busy city life in Faro.
Up next is Barrinha Beach in the list of the best faro beaches. When you arrive you will find a large shore full of white sandy and gorgeous blue water. This is a great beach to visit all year round for a nice walk down the beach to clear your head. You can find parking nearby and there are shops just before the beach where you can stop for your supplies.
If you are traveling with your furry friend they are always welcome on Barrinha Beach, and they will most likely meet some friends as well. Portugal is very laid-back about pups in the first place!
Lagoa is a popular town in southern Portugal that is best known for its wine-making, white-washed old town, and its famous beaches. When you visit Lagao you must try the Vinho Verde wine.
No, the wine is not green, the Verde is used to describe its youthfulness of it. It is meant to be drunk within the year it was made and is a popular hit in Lagoa. Here you will find a bunch of the best beaches near Carvoeiro as well!
Praia de Senhora da Rocha is one of the most beautiful beaches in the Algarve. It used to be a small fishing village, but once word got out about how pretty it was it is now a hot spot for European beach vacations. After parking your car in the lot find the steps and make your way down. If you can get there early as it does get crowded in the summer, if you are visiting Portugal in the winter it will be almost empty.
It has a small beachfront but it is oh-so dreamy. Be sure to check out the little church on the hill it has an amazing view and is worth a visit. But the best thing about visiting here is there is an old tunnel that leads to the next beach! Explore going back and forth before picking your favorite spot.
Albandeira is one of the most popular Portugal beaches in the Algarve. Here you will see a huge rock formation in the water and plenty of caves to explore. You have to swim through the cave and see the beach from the other side, it gives an amazing perspective of the beach.
The Ocean current is almost always calm and relaxing. Praia Albandeira is known for not having great cell service so be prepared for that. This is also one of the most popular beaches to rent kayaks and explore the ocean. Many of the tours will take you to this formation and the famous Benagli Caves.
Up next is a Praia de Cavoeiro. This is a relatively small beach measuring only 150 meters. Don’t let this deter you from visiting it is totally worth a trip. Once a small fishing village Carvoeiro is now a bustling beach town, but still has the same town charm.
This is a popular spot for beachgoers because it has ample shade with restaurants, cafes, and bars. Make a pit stop on your day of beach touring before you head to the Bengail caves. If you are brave this is also one of the best beaches in the Algarve for cliff jumping.
Praia da Marinha is the best beach in the Algarve, and maybe all of Portugal! It is always voted as one of the best beaches in the world. Have you seen all the adorable photos of the heart-shaped cliff? Praia da Marinha is where you will find it. To get there you will walk along the path until you find the double arch out in the water. Then find the right angle to make the heart and you are all set.
There is plenty more to see and do here though. You will want to walk along the path, relax in the sand, or grab a drink at the cute little bar in front. If you are visiting in the summer get here as early as you can if you want a photo alone. The word is out and this is for sure one of the prettiest beaches to visit. The sunset here is also amazing.
No trip to Portugal is complete without visiting the famous beaches in Algarve! And Praia de Benagil is one of the most recognizable ones. Getting to the Benegil cave can be done in a few different ways. The fastest way is by boat. If you are a strong swimmer you can go from the shore, or rent a kayak. Once inside the cave, you will the remarkable light shining through the hole on the top.
If you only book one tour on your trip to Portugal, the Benagil Caves should be it!
Speed Boat Tour To the Caves– Experience life on the water for this 1.5-hour tour. You will be able to explore the caves and maybe even run into super cute dolphins.
Kayaking Tour – Kayak through more than just the Benegil caves and discover hidden coves along the way! This route will take you from Golden Beach of Marinha to The Benagil cave.
Lagos is one of Portugal’s more popular beach towns. But there is so much more to do in Lagos than just the beaches. You will love the castle walls that surround the old town. And the Igreja de Santo António is a century-old church that is also worth a visit. Below are the very best beaches near Lagos!
One of the very best beaches in Lagos is Praia da Dona Ana. If you are looking for a quiet beach without surfers, rentals, or big crowds of partiers you will love this beautiful beach. Plus it is very walkable from the center of Lagos!
The sand is soft and the water is clear but the beachfront is not very big. In the summer you can rent a chair and umbrella in the sand Like a lot of the beaches in the Algarve you do have to walk down a set of stairs to reach the beach. For your convenience, there are bathrooms and a small vendor selling snacks and drinks. You will want to check out Praia da Dona Ana which is one of the best beaches around Lagos Portugal!
Have you seen the beautiful photo of the beach in the Algarve with the stairs? That is Praia da Camilo! There are so many reasons to love this amazing beach. It has some of the very best snorkeling in the Algarve with colorful fish to see swimming along with you.
Plus there are the epic yellow sea stacks are so beautiful against the clear water. This is one of the more popular beaches so you will want to get there before 11 am to grab a good spot. If you are traveling with kids or people with limited mobility you may want to skip this beach as the wooden staircase can be a challenge to get up and down. There are bathrooms near the parking lot and plenty of places around to grab your essentials.
Next up for the Lagos best beaches list is Praia do Pinhao. This beach is a lovely cove that is a bit less crowded than some of the other beaches in the area. Explore the caves on the shore and walk through a few. This is a great alternative to the Benagil cave tour because you do not need a boat or kayak to get there when the tide is low.
But when the tide is high you can actually through it. Take your pick and plan accordingly. Both ways are amazing and make or you can stay all day and do both. There are also wooden stairs here but not as intense as the Praia da Camilo. The views from the top of the stairs are incredible and it really shows off the area. You are going to love Praia do Pinaho one of the best beaches in Lagos.
Check out all of these amazing restaurants in Lagos with a view of the beach!
The town of Loulè in the Algarve is best known for the medieval castle built back in the 13th century. If you are considering doing a beach tour in Loule you will want to tour the castle as well.
When it comes to beautiful beaches in the Algarve, Garrao Beach is one of the best. It is located inside the Ria Formosa National Park which is divided into two separate parts.
Garrao Nascente is on the eastern side and on the western side is Garrao Poente. Garrao Nascente is known for its calm waters and family-friendly atmosphere, while Garrao Poente is more popular with surfers and water sports enthusiasts due to its strong waves and winds. You can also book a massage right on the beach for the ultimate relaxation.
You can rent all the things you need to have a perfect beach day! Plus, there are always lifeguards on duty in the summer to keep you and your family safe.
The Praia do Trafal may be the last hidden gem in the Algarve. This quiet beach is usually never crowded and is in the middle of the forest kind of. To get there you will head down a dirty, dusty path and finally reach the free parking lot. Follow the path down to the pristine clean beach with clear water.
You will find one beach bar and not much else here. If you are wanting a clean, calm beach that is perfect for walking and sunbathing Paria do Trafal is the perfect place to spend your afternoon.
On the western side of the Algarve is where you will find the beach town of Portimao. On top of the stunning beaches, Portimao is also known for the nightlife and festivals they hold throughout the year. Be sure to check out the modern marina and cobblestoned streets in the old town.
Up first is the Praia da Rocha which is always voted as one of the best beaches Portimao has. The shore is long and has golden sand with pretty rock formations all the way down. You can take a walk to the cute red and white lighthouse or set up shop for the day and relax in the shade.
Early birds enjoy watching the sunrise here or sleeping in and hitting the affordable beach bars. During the summer they pull out all the stops and have a big inflatable raft for the kids to play on. This is a windy part of the Algarve so sometimes you are not able to swim, but most days it is totally fine.
Praia dos Tres Irmaos is also one of the best beaches in Portimao, just south of Praia da Rocha. During low tide, you can explore the caves and tunnels or enjoy a peaceful one. Try to plan your trip around the tides because the shore does get a bit lost when it is high tide. The lot is paid to park, but street parking is free.
You will have your pick of restaurants and bars near making it the perfect place to spend a few hours. If you can make it to sunset the sky will light up beautiful purples, blues, and oranges on most days.
Quiet, peaceful, and clean are the best ways to describe Praia do Vau! On your way down to the beach make sure you take in the beautiful sites, not only the view but keep an eye out for the beautiful succulents growing about. Once you make your way down walk along the large stretch of sand as you pass large sea stacks shooting for the Atlantic Ocean.
The beach rental chairs at Praia do Vau are a bit cheaper than some of the more known beach towns like Lagos and Albufeira. You will want to check this beach out if you are looking for the best beaches near Portimao!
If you are staying in Silves, you will not find any of the beaches in the Algarve but head to the Portimao or Lagao sections. This is where you will find the closest beaches to you! While you are in Silves be sure to check out the castle!
Once again, none of the Algarve Portugal beaches are in Sao Bras de Alportel. But you can head to Faro or Loule for a perfect beach day. Whichever way you decide to go it will only take you about 30-45 minutes.
Tavira is a beautiful city in the Algarve that sits on the Gilão River and the water eventually makes it out to the Atlantic. You will also find the Ria Formosa Natural Park here, salt fields, Tavira Island, and a beautiful Medieval Castle.
Praia do Barril is one of the best beaches in Tavira, plus you take a cute little train to get there. Well, you don’t have to take the train, you can walk but the train is cheap coming in at around 2 Euros per person. Once you arrive turn left and you will walk straight to Praia do Barril. This is a perfect beach for people who can’t sit still because there is an old anchor cemetery and a tuna conservatory to check out.
The water is crystal clear with nice soft sand as well. Bring your own supplies or rent a few beach chairs for the day. You will find public bathrooms and showers making it a perfect spot for a family beach day.
The best way to reach Paria da Ilha de Tavira is from the ferry port in Tavira or Quatro Aguas, it is cheap and fast. Plus on the ride, you may spot a few pink flamingos on the way, depending on what time of year it is. A clean, large beach is waiting for you. You can rent beach chairs for a reasonable price or relax at the fresh seafood restaurant.
The sandy shore seems to stretch on forever making it the perfect place for a lovely walk along the Atlantic. If you head to the east side of the beach you will see a big pier connected to a seaside restaurant that is a perfect place to explore. Come early and stay all day, you are going to love the vibes at one of the best beaches near Tavira.
Praia do Hemom Nu may be the last hidden beach in Portugal. In English, it translates to the beach of the naked man, so keep that in mind, but all beaches are pretty loose with their sunbathing rules. The best way to reach Praia do Homen is to first go to Praia do Barril from the train, and then head right. The walk will take you around 5 minutes after you depart the train.
It’s not marked but pick your spot where the boardwalk stops. Or if you are feeling adventurous keep venturing out until you see where the water ferry stops. To walk all the way down to the beach takes over an hour, so it is best to just a pick spot in the middle. If you are planning on spending the entire day here you will want to be aware that there are no rental spots, so you will need to bring your own shade. But what is a little umbrella carrying compared to an entire beach to yourself?
Sagres is one of the most popular surfing areas in Southern Portugal. Here you will find barren landscapes with windblown waves and stunning seaside cliffs. Picture a laid-back beach town with perfect sets rolling in all year round and you have Sagres. Surfing is not the only outdoor adventure here, there are also amazing hikes and National Parks that are perfect for birdwatching.
Praia do Tonel is one of the best beaches in the Algarve for surfing. With that being said, the wind can be a little brutal. Be sure to check the wind report if you are going here to relax. The beach atmosphere is rugged and natural and never draws big crowds. You can rent surfboards to try your hand at surfing, or grab a bit to eat at the restaurant facing the sea.
Back in the day, the Portuguese believed that Praia do Tonel was the edge of the world. The waves and currents are strongest in the winter, but in the summer when the tourists roll in, there are always lifeguards on duty. Be sure to look out for Lion rock. It is right offshore and if you catch it at the right angle it looks just like a lion’s head.
Located in between two big cliffs is where you will find Praia da Mareta. If you are visiting Portugal when the winds are whipping this is one of the best beaches in Sagres to head out to.
Try your hand at surfing with one of the surf schools on the beach, or set up shop and root for them from the safety of your towel. During high tide, the sand strip gets very narrow. If you find yourself there during this time it is the perfect excuse to head to the beach bar and enjoy a refreshing treat.
There are ample free parking spots and beach chairs with umbrellas to rent. If you are thinking of renting a camper van and doing the beach route, there is a parking lot right up the road where you are allowed to park!
Praia do Martinhal is best known for drawing in windsurfing crowds. If you have never seen this in person it is reason enough to head out to Praia do Martinhal. Getting here is very straightforward with a huge parking lot that is close to the sand.
On top of the hill, there is a small resort and a few cafes and restaurants where you can stock up for your beach day. The water is a perfect shade of blue with golden soft sand on the shore. Do not plan to go here went the wind is whipping, it will not be very enjoyable.
Vila do Bispo is a quaint beach town in the Algarve that is best known for its cute white-washed building and as a fishing village. During the autumn months, they also have a reputation for being a hunting town and you can find wild hog, quail, and duck on their restaurant menus. When visiting be sure to check out the 16th-century church on the eastern side of the town.
It is hard to say what is better, the road down to the Praia do Castelejo or the beach itself. Just kidding, this is one of the best beaches to visit in all of the Algarve. To get here you will have to go down a very steep road until you reach the car park. Once you arrive you will see the gorgeous suggest landscape and be able to hear the washes crashing into the cliffs.
Many people make the trek out here to see the amazing sunset. You can come empty-handed and rent surfboards, and chairs, and grab food at the small restaurant on the sand. When the tide is right you will be able to walk for days down the shore. Do not hesitate to go to Praia do Castelejo it is a breathtaking area in the Algarve.
Praia do Cordoama is an oasis between two big mountains that shoot out of the water. There is something for everyone to love here from surfers, and fishing enthusiasts, to beachgoers. When you arrive head over to the smaller cliff, it has an easyish trail that you can walk up to the top.
There are never large crowds, making it a serene place to stop and listen to the white noise of the waves. If you are lucky you catch a few dolphins playing out in the water. On the way out from one of the best Algarve beaches you will want to make a pit stop at the Miradouro da Cordoama for sunset!
Praia do Zavial is a surfer dream. During the high tide, the waves here are perfect. But with that being said, at high tide, the beach virtually disappears. Keep your eyes peeled for the back natural area if you’re traveling with children. Many families bring small beach tents for the children to relax in. Or heck adults use for them to relax as well.
Check out the small bar for drinks and ice cream. All in all, this is an amazing surfing beach for all skill levels and is always on the list of the Algarve’s beaches to visit in Vila do Bispo.
There is something special about Vila Real de Santo Antonio, and it may just be that they used the same blueprints as Lisbon did when the earthquake hit in the late 1700s. Another thing that makes Vila Real de Santo a great place to visit is that it sits on the Guadiana River, which is the border with Spain as well. Plan to stop here for at least a day before heading to Spain.
When you are in Vila Real de Santo all you have to do is follow the wooden boardwalk down to Praia de Monte Gordo. Be sure you are following the right path though, they have many! When you arrive, you will have everything you will ever need at your disposal. From fancy restaurants to beach shacks serving up burgers and fries.
You can have an amazing swim here and Praia de Monte Gordo has some of the warmest waters in all of Portugal. You will not find many of the limestone cliffs that the Algarve is most known for, this beach has more sand dunes and is flat. There are plenty of hotels and accommodations in town as well making it the perfect place to stop if you are planning on doing both Spain and Portugal in one Vacation!
best beaches Algarve map