vila do Bispo beaches

Vila do Bispo beaches - Wild and deserted.

 The wild and deserted Vila do Bispo beaches await you along this enchanting coastline.

Stretching along the South and the West of the Algarve, the beaches are part of the Costa Vicentina, the largest protected coastal stretch in Portugal and a paradise for surfers.

The south coast extends to Cabo São Vicente and it’s full of coves and bays that help shelter the beaches from the winds of the West. This side of the coast includes the beaches of Burgau, Cabanas Velhas, Boca do Rio, Salema, Figueira, Furnas, Zavial, Ingrina, Barranco, Martinhal, Mareta, Tonel and Beliche.

The beaches continue to the west side with Praia do Telheiro, Praia da Ponta Ruiva, Praia do Castelejo, Praia da Cordoama, Praia da Barriga and end at Praia da Murração.

Tucked away between cliffs, you will find Praia do Burgau, the first beach on the coast of Vila do Bispo. The beach is the main attraction of the relaxing town of Burgau. When the tide comes in, this sandy stretch usually disappears so make sure to check the tide tables before you go.

Continuing west there is Praia das Cabanas Velhas and Praia Boca do Rio. In the middle of them sits the Almádena fort, a fantastic spot to admire the views of the coast.

Praia das Cabanas Velhas is rarely visited by tourists and it’s mostly used for fishing. Praia da Boca do Rio gets a few more visitors and if you’re lucky you can see otters swimming in the river that converges into the beach. On the west side of Boca do Rio there are also ruins of an old Roman villa, with remains of frescoes, spas and a fish-salting factory.

Next, there is Praia da Salema, the perfect place to contemplate the boats returning from fishing and taste the fresh catch at one of the local restaurants.

Praia do Zavial is one of the most popular beaches for surfing in Vila do Bispo. The beach is backed up by a small eucalyptus forest, which is often used for camping. On the east side, there is another small beach called Praia das Furnas which gets its name from the grottoes set among the cliffs.

For diving, there is Praia da Ingrina, a small bay area with calm waters and beautiful rock formations.

The beaches in Sagres are equally as beautiful. Starting with Praia do Barranco and its stunning valley dotted with scrubs of juniper. Followed by Praia do Martinhal which is ideal for windsurfing and diving, thanks to the persistent north winds and the underwater caves located along the beach. Also good for diving is Praia da Mareta, a small inlet closed off by high cliffs which protect the beach from the winds.

Near the Sagres Fortress there is Praia do Tonel. The beach is set within the Biodiversity Reserve so it’s forbidden to collect any plants from here and finally, marking the end of the south coast, there is Praia do Beliche with its striking rock formations.

Pass Cabo São Vicente and you’ll come across the half-deserted beach of Telheiro. The beach is a bit difficult to access so even in the summer there aren’t many visitors around.

Further north, there is Praia da Ponta Ruiva, which is named after the huge reddish rock located on the south side of the beach. The trail of beaches continues with Praia do Castelejo, where it’s possible to walk to the nearby beaches of Cordoama and Barriga when the tide is low.

Praia da Cordoama is the largest beach on the West coast of Vila do Bispo. The beach is very frequented by surfers and paragliders, thanks to the quality of the waves and the spectacular cliff top views.

Praia da Barriga is much smaller and it’s best to visit it at low tide since the sandy area narrows significantly during high tide. The beach is protected by black cliffs that provide a beautiful contrast with the golden sand.

The last beach of Vila do Bispo is Praia da Murração, which is knowns as the jewel of the Costa Vicentina due to its unspoilt natural beauty. The beach doesn’t have any facilities and is also difficult to reach, so it’s a popular choice for naturism.

Explore this region by following our Vila do Bispo 2 day tour. Also read about Vila do Bispo, Burgau and Sagres.