On the hunt for the best beaches in Portugal for a day of swimming and laying out in the sun? Then keep reading!
Portugal is one of the best places to visit if you are craving sun, windsurfing, or a good swim after a refreshing cocktail on a sun-lit beach. With a plethora of stunning beach destinations in Portugal, there is no shortage of beaches to discover and fall in love with. This is why Portugal is one of the best places to visit in Europe in summer!
Discover below the best beach destinations and the best beaches in Portugal and get planning your magical sun-filled getaway.
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10+ Best Beaches in Portugal
- Praia de Norte
- Praia de Nazare
One of the most beautiful Portugal beaches to pay a visit to is Nazare Beach. Here you can find not just a cozy seaside town but also two beaches each of which pulls in different kinds of beach lovers.
Praia de Norte is a splendid stretch of sand with a lighthouse looming above it. It is known for its humongous waves, the world’s largest and is where world surfing records are set. You don’t have to ride the giant kahunas or speed through the dangerous-looking barrels but can just witness the mettle of the courageous surfers pulling the trick.
The other great Portuguese beach to visit in Nazare is Praia de Nazare, situated close to the town’s eateries known for their ambrosial seafood and authentic Portuguese fare. Head to Nazare whether to surf or marvel at the surfing exploits of others, take a dip or simply bask in the sun. In all cases, Nazare is a number one beach destination in Portugal and is home to one of the most beautiful Portugal beaches.
- Praia da Coelha
- Praia de São Rafael
One of the best coastal cities to visit in Portugal if you are hunting for beautiful Portuguese beaches is Albufeira. Here you can take delight in the scenic promenade, exquisite townscape, and a premium stretch of white sand lapped by the tumultuous waters of the Atlantic.
A former fishing village, Albufeira is one of the best places in Portugal to do dolphin watching, buy fresh sea produce from local fishermen, and go diving. Head to Albufeira, if willing to unveil the authentic charm of Southern Algarve, one of the most elite destinations in Europe.
- Praia do Pinhão
- Praia do Camilo
Sitting on the southern coast of Portugal, in Algarve, Lagos boasts one of the most beautiful Portuguese beaches. Here you can find an old walled town, scenic cliffs and some of the most beautiful beaches in Portugal. You can reach the water edge from the downtown if you descend the alluring wooden steps leading you down to the stretch of fine sand washed by the limpid waters of Praia do Camillo.
Apart from getting a great Southern Portugal tan you can delight in sightseeing and visit the gorgeous Castelo dos Governadores, a baroque facade castle with watchtowers, and a splendid prayer house, Igreja de San Antonio, with a stunning opulent gilded interior.
- Praia dos Careanos
- La Plage de Alemão
Another Algarve jewel renowned for its gorgeous beautiful Portugal beaches is Portimao. Here you can find the splendid calm of a beach with warm fine sand but also a vibrant town that has been becoming ever more popular with lovers of seaside nightlife.
To add to the pleasure of a beach aficionado on a visit to Portimao there are a number of prime landmarks to be visited like the museum of Portimao housed by a 19th-century cannery, Cathedral Nossa Senhora de Conceição, known for its mind-blowing facade and splendid interior and the medieval fort of Santa Catarina de Ribamar.
- Praia do Paraíso
- Praia do Vale de Centeanes
Washed by emerald green pellucid waters of the Atlantic, Carvoeiro is one of the most scenic seaside towns of Portugal offering one of the most beautiful beaches. The beautiful townscape is emphasized by the great beach situated below the town, which is especially pleasant to admire from the many restaurants studded around the town on the edge of civilization.
- Praia da Ilha de Tavira
- Praia de Cabana
Tavira is located in the famed Algarve region, the Cote d’Azur of Portugal, and is one of the best places to find stunning beaches in Portugal.
Here apart from the old town’s pretty cobbled streets, and its delightful eateries, there are a number of beaches snugly tucked away in the town. One of them is Praia de Cabanas, where you can find a 7-km stretch of sand, all impeccably white. Another great location to bask in the sun and maybe take a refreshing dip in the water is Praia da Ilha de Tavira.
You can get here by boat from Quatro Aguas Dock, but you can skip it altogether by swimming your way to this jewel of fine sand on the scenic Tavira island coast, and take delight in contemplating the soul-soothing sunset.
- Praia Porto de Cruz
- Prainha Beach
Situated on stunning Madeira island known for its verdant slopes, scenic terraces, and tranquil towns, Praia Porto de Cruz is a pebbled beach with a great swimming pool, and an alluring town with nice cafes and a tranquil vibe. Keep in mind that there is a stunning surfing beach at the far end of the promenade. One of the best places to do surfing on Madeira.
A hidden gem of a beach on Madeira, Prainha Beach is located a five minutes drive away from Machico Bay Beach, and is known for its pristine beach setting, and great sand, so perfect for an amorous escapade, into the wilderness and communion with nature.
Don’t miss out on visiting the Machico Beach Bay if travelling to this part of the island, one of the most beautiful beaches in Portugal to swim on Madeira, located within five minutes from the airport of Funchal, the capital of the island.
There are a lot of eateries around Machico Bay Beach and it is also a great place to take a Dolphin Watching tour. Also note that there are many more unique beaches on Madeira, such as Porto Moniz Natural Pools, or Praia de Vigário, the most beautiful pebbled beach on Madeira.
- Santa Barbara
- Agua de Alta
- Formosa Beach
Known as the best beach on the Azores’ Sao Miguel island, Santa Barbara is one of the most beautiful beaches in Portugal to appreciate the magic of the Portuguese seascape. Here you can stroll by a huge beachhead, along a stretch of sand enclosed by a monumental wall of cliffs and resist the formidable might of the Atlantic, which makes it a splendid place to do watersports.
Boasting a wide stretch of fine yellow sand, Agua de Alta is one of the best places in the Azores to bask in the sun and take a deep dip in the rather chilly Atlantic. Situated in Agua de Alta, it is one of the best places to sunbathe on the island of Sao Miguel and is much more chilled than Santa Barbara.
Another great beautiful beach in the Azores is Santa Maria’s Formosa Beach, luring travellers with its tranquil cove, clear waters, and romantic sunsets making it one of the most beautiful beaches in Portugal to travel to with your significant other. Head here at night to see the starry night and the beautiful moonlight on the water.