The best independent guide to Albufeira
Albufeira is the premier resort town in the Algarve and is situated on a coastline of picturesque beaches. These beaches range from bustling and energetic (water sports, sea inflatable and activities) through, to secluded sandy coves in pristine natural settings.
There is a vast sandy beach lining the Albufeira shoreline, which boasts golden sands, clean and safe sea waters along with a buzzing atmosphere. For a more tranquil experience, visit the hidden cliff beaches beyond the harbour or the rolling sand dunes near Galé.
This article will detail the best beaches in Albufeira and the surrounding region.
Related articles: Albufeira introduction
Below is a map of the Albufeira coastline displaying the location of the main beaches of the Albufeira region. The busiest sections of beach are highlighted in orange
The beaches are: 1) Praia da Galé 2) Praia da Coelha 3) Praia de São Rafael 4) Praia dos Três Penecos 5) Praia dos Pescadores 6) Praia do Peneco 7) Praia do Inatel 8) Praia dos Alemães 9) Praia da Oura 10) Praia da Oura (east) 11) Praia de Santa Eulália 12) Praia Maria Luísa 13) Praia dos Olhos de Água 14) Praia da Falésia
Further to the east is the charming resort town of Olhos de Água and the vast Praia da Falésia beach which extends all the way to Vilamoura.
Spanning the shoreline of Albufeira’s Old Town is a 2km continuous stretch of golden sands and turquoise waters, which is divided into three separate beaches; the Praia dos Pescadores, Praia do Peneco and the Praia do Inatel. Around the Oura headland is the Praia da Oura, which is the main beach for the New Town area of Albufeira.
The Praia do Peneco is often referred to as Praia do Túnel, as it is accessed by a tunnel from the town.
The Praia da Oura typically attracts a younger crowd and is separated from the Praia do Inatel by a sandstone headland. The beautiful Oura beach is found at the end of The Strip and is often filled with visitors recovering from a big night out. To the eastern side of the Praia da Oura are distinctive sandstone cliffs and offers a pristine natural setting.
The coastline stretching east and west from Albufeira offers further stunning beaches, but a car, taxi or Uber is needed to reach them if you are based in the town.
Praia São Rafael
Praia São Rafael is one of the most beautiful beaches close to Albufeira. The beach is surrounded by golden sandstone cliffs, is lapped by turquoise waters, and maintains its pristine natural setting as situated within the Reserva Natural Caminho da Baleeira. This beach is beautiful, but is well known so in the summer expect to share the idyllic setting with many other tourists.
Praia dos Arrifes/ Praia dos Três Penecos
The Praia dos Arrifes is on the same section of beautiful coastline as the Praia São Rafael and is similar in every way apart from being slightly smaller. Jutting from the sea are three rock pills and this gives the beach its common name, Praia dos Três Penecos, (the beach of three rocks). This is a great beach for snorkelling, but be wary of the weak rocky outcrops
The weather is suitable for spending time on Albufeira’s beaches from May until the end of September.
The sea waters are surprisingly cold as they are fed from the Atlantic Ocean instead of the much warmer Mediterranean sea.