Algarve Beaches & Water Sports

The beaches on the Algarve coast - images, actual information, weather forecast and maps for almost 140 great beaches from Praia de Santo António near the estuary of the river Guadiana, the eastern border of the Algarve to Andalusia in Spain to Praia to Praia de Odeceixe-Mar on the unspoiled western Costa Vicentina near the border to the Alentejo.

The Atlantic coast of the Algarve with a span of over 200 km and more than 300 days of sunshine per year offers ideal conditions for enjoyable holidays at the seaside with many kinds of water sports. Extremely clear water, spectacular cliffs with hidden creeks, endless sand beaches, protected by dunes and a mild Atlantic breeze make this place so special. The profile of the coast from the Spanish border to the western coast, the Costa Vicentina, is diverse and shaped by the forces of the wind and the Atlantic Ocean. Long and flat sandy beaches, separated by dunes from the hinterland, stretch for more than 10 km from the river Guadiana on the border with Spain to the Ria Formosa near Tavira. This unique nature reserve is a system of lagoons, protected from the Atlantic Ocean by a chain of barrier islands, extending until the Faro International Airport. Endless sandy beaches, protected by dunes, stretch on the islands’ seaside, most of them only accessible by ferry boat from the mainland. West of Faro the “Golden Triangle” with the famous golf and holiday resorts Quinta do Lago, Vale do Lobo and Vilamoura begins This section of the coast with endless sandy beaches is dominated by colorful sandstone cliffs, shaped by erosion, with pine woods on clifftop. The rocky southern coast between Albufeira and Lagos is the most popular and impressive part of the Algarve Hidden rocky bays with small sandy beaches, grottos and bizarre rock formations shaped by erosion are broken up by larger bays with extended beaches and sand dunes. The  beaches of the “Costa Vicentina”, the lonely western coast, between Sagres and Aljezur, exposed to the wind from the Atlantic, are popular with surfers, paraglider and other extreme sportsmen as well as with lovers of unspoiled nature