Algarve Portugal - beaches, places & hidden gems
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Algarve Portugal - my hidden gems

Algarve Portugal - my hidden gems

By Sibylle Nuessli

As some of you might know, I lived in Lagos/Luz in the Algarve in Portugal for a few months and worked at the best surf camp TSE - The Surf Experience. Every year, I return to my favorite place for an extended Algarve work-vacation. I've visited Portugal's Algarve now during all seasons. Even in winter, you'll find shelter near the cliffs, where you can perfectly tan in your bikinis. Remember to always bring a light jacket for the evenings as it can be windy. 

Portugal's Algarve might be famous for the Benagil Caves, Albufeira, Portimao Faro, and Alvor. But I didn't see any of them yet ;). The western part between Sagres and Lagos to me is the most beautiful part of the Algarve. Here are a few of my favorite places in my almost second home.

Algarve Beaches 


If you're on vacation at the Portugals' Algarve, you must visit the beach of Bordeira. What else is there to say but share the pictures? Lonely beach days for two? This is definitely one of your spots. Accessible via parking lot or directly from it's stairs above.


Praia do Camilo

It is one of the many beaches close the the town of Lagos. Tip - go early when it's low-tide in the morning to avoid the crowds. 

Port Mos

Another Algarve beach in the city of Lagos, Portugal. A long sandy beach that is also a great place to be combined with a walk along the coast. You'll see hikers and runners already when reaching the parking lot.

Zavial & Ingrina

Two beaches further west, which are only a 3-minute drive apart. Zavial is slightly more crowded but still stunning beach that can be busy when the surf is working, and Ingrina usually is super chilled, with a nice place for a glas of vino or some snacks at the restaurant.

Praia do Amado

Depending on where you're based, Amado is a longer drive but well worth it. You will be rewarded with a breathtaking view already on the way down.


A bay in the south of the Algarve. This beach is not busy at all and is the perfect place to tan, read, and dip in the water. I usually enjoy time on my own there.
Ps: A sunset in the south is magical with the different pastel shades. In Cabanas you can also watch the stars at night. Make sure to bring jackets. 


Burgau is the place to be if you want to escape the European winter. Small, narrow streets full of cafés, bars, and restaurants invite you to stay. Beautiful long beach - slightly sheltered from the wind during colder days. From the cliffs above on the right and the left side, you enjoy a perfect view of the village. Insider tip: Café do Burgau for coffee, snacks & the best sourdough pizza.

Vila do Bispo

What can I say - my absolute favorite place to stay in the south of Portugal. A small village located close to the west coast beaches with probably the best, most authentic fish restaurants you can find. Another insider tip: Pisco has the best chocolate mousse in the world with only 2 ingredients. Probably the best hand poke tattoo artist in the Algarve, Cloé - Discowitch - has her studio there. Be sure to make a reservation.

Town of Vila do bispo in Portugal with houses

Sunset in Vila do bispo algarve, sun and beaches

Sagres Beaches: Tonnel & Beliche

With its lighthouse, Sagres is one of the most famous places in the western Algarve. The two impressive beaches of Tonnel & Beliche are surrounded by cliffs and sheltered from the wind. On warm winter days, you can easily work on your tan-line at Beliche beach. If you're in town, make sure to visit to the best ice cream place at Izzys or Picnic for a coffee & sourdough bread. Also, check out The Laundry Lounge for live music and Three Little Birds for dinners.

Algarve coastal walks

Probably the most beautiful hiking trails in the world, the network of trails of the Rota Vicentina has gradually developed and now covers the entire region of the Alentejo and Vicentina coasts, along the whole coast and inland, with magnificent views of the villages, beaches, and sea of the Algarve. I often meet my friends for a "walkie" just right before sunset. Luz to Burgau or starting from Cabanas or Ingrina are some of my favorite hikes.

Arrifana - (Aljezur Portugal)

A place with an impressive beach in the Aljezur region, it's well worth a trip as the beach is one of the most beautiful. Countless small restaurants and bars on the cliffs, such as the Sea You Surf Cafe, invite you to linger after a rather busy day on the beach.

Aljezur beach with surfes

Praia da Cordoama

Although I mentioned some beaches above, I would like to dedicate a few more lines to this one. One of the most beautiful places in the Algarve - an endless sandy beach on the west coast of the Algarve, connected to Praia do Castelejo. Far away from everything, you can find offline time all to yourself - as this beach has no reception. You can eat the fish the chefs catch in the restaurant in the morning. The look-out on top of the beach offers the most stunning view of the entire Algarve. If you want to avoid the crowds at the lighthouse in Sagres for sunset - this is your place. 

Praia do Cordoama - beach with sand in Portugal surrounded by cliffs

For more tips about where to stay with or without kids, AirBnb's, surf camps, surf guiding - Nils is your go to source here - happy to assist. 

Xoxo Sibylle

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