The Algarve offers some of the best coastlines within the whole of Europe, making it the perfect destination for beach lovers. Its caramel coloured sands, bright blue waters and stunning hidden coves attract beach-loving Irish people year upon year.
If you’re tempted to pack your bags and jet off to this popular European destination, here you’ll discover our top picks for some of the best beaches to head to when booking Algarve holidays.
Meia Praia Beach, Lagos
Situated east of the beautiful marina, you’ll find one of the most famous beaches in Lagos, the Meia Praia beach. This 4km sandy beach manages to maintain a low-key ambience in a peaceful location; providing a striking contrast from the extensive tourist development which has taken place in much of the Algarve in recent years.
Due to its sheer size, even in peak tourist season you’ll easily be able to find a peaceful spot to relax and soak up the sun. There’s also plenty of quaint beach bars and restaurants dotted along its edge providing much-needed refreshments throughout the day.
Looking for a luxurious place to stay on your Lagos beach break? Check out the SENSIMAR Lagos resort.
Praia de Gale, Albufeira
The spectacular Praia de Gale beach near the beautiful town of Albufeira, is split into two parts. Its eastern side boasts dramatic rock formations and a narrow stretch of sand, giving it a more secluded feel. In contrast, its western side is wide open, providing plenty of room to soak up the sun’s rays. It also has a range of water sports the whole family can get involved in.
It’s an especially great place to take the kids, thanks to its shallow waters and natural pools located between the rocks. If you head to the east side of the beach, you’ll also be able to partake in numerous cave tours.
Praia do Camilo, Lagos
Another Lagos beach high on our list is the striking Praia do Camilo. Rated as the #2 thing to do in Lagos on TripAdvisor, this breathtaking beach is accessible via long, steep stairs. This means it may not be suitable for the elderly and young children. However, for those who can make the climb, the view from the bottom is outstanding.
It’s actually split into two sections, divided by an artificial tunnel. The emerald green waters contrast beautifully with the caramel coloured sand, providing a stunning photo opportunity. It’s also the perfect spot for snorkelling, though due to its small size the beach can become crowded quickly. Therefore, if you’re looking to beat the crowds, you’ll want to visit during low tide.
Stay in the nearby Cascade wellness & lifestyle resort to complete your relaxing beach getaway.
Prais de Falesia, Acoteias
Looking for a beach break with a difference? The outstanding Prais de Falesia beach located in the Acoteias region of Portugal, offers a dramatic backdrop, similar to the Grand Canyon. This Blue Flag beach is an impressive 6km long and it’s even considered one of the best beaches in the world.
Its rust-coloured cliffs provide a magnificent backdrop to its golden sands and crystal-clear waters. It does draw in a high number of tourists each year. However, thanks to its size, you’ll always be able to find a quiet spot to retreat to, even in the summer months. You can also head up to the clifftops where you’ll discover a great hiking trail, allowing you to take in the magnificent views of the beach below.
Searching for the perfect place to stay? Book the Falesia hotel, just a 20-minute walk from the beach.
Praia da Rocha
If you want to stay within the heart of the Algarve’s beach scene, you’ll want to head to Praia da Rocha. This popular beach resort has been delighting guests since the 70’s and it’s experienced heavy development over the years. As well as the stunning beach, you’ll also find a wide range of entertainment for the whole family dotted along its coastline.
You’ll find three main beaches within walking distance, with the Praia da Rocha remaining the most popular. It’s a wide beach with shallow waters making it ideal for families. However, it is worth noting that the waters here are very cold, even in summer, due to the sea being fed from the Atlantic, rather than the Mediterranean Ocean. In the summer, lifeguards patrol the beach and you’ll find a range of great water activities such as jet skis and banana boat rides.
Make the most of your Praia da Rocha getaway by staying at the Jupiter Algarve Hotel.
Praia da Marina, Vilamoura
Enjoy an upmarket beach getaway at the luxurious Praia da Marina beach in beautiful Vilamoura. One of two glorious sandy beaches in the area, Praia da Marina has been rated the number one beach in the world by Lonely Planet and its stunning, dramatic cliffside has even been highlighted by CNN.
This pretty beach boasts breath-taking, picture-postcard views and beautiful calm waters. It’s a particularly great snorkelling spot thanks to its crystal-clear waters, although you will need to bring your own snorkelling gear as there are no shops nearby.
Away from the beach, Vilamoura has it all. The area boasts a glamorous, upbeat vibe with plenty of bars, restaurants and luxury boutiques to be explored.
Make your stay extra-memorable by booking in at the Vila Gale Marina Hotel Vilamoura.
These are just a small selection of the best beaches to visit in the Algarve. Tempted to see why so many fall in love with this popular region? Take a look at our current holiday deals and grab yourself a bargain Algarve beach getaway.