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Top hidden gems in the Algarve

Do you really know the Algarve? Not the crowded white sandy beaches, but the genuine, untouched, secret south of Portugal. If you don’t know what we are talking about, Estrela da Luz has collected a list of secret paradises from the Western Algarve for those who enjoy exploring nature and escaping the crowds:

Vale dos Homens Beach - Rogil

The Aljezur area is full of lesser known beaches and, is therefore not as crowded. The beach of Vale dos Homens is difficult to access, because it is hidden between the cliffs, but it compensates with its beauty. For those who like to explore, the low tide invites you to discover the nature in the numerous rock-pools of refreshing water. Here is a suggestion for nature lovers that enjoy tranquility.

Murração Beach - Vila do Bispo

Located in Vila do Bispo, Murração Beach is known for its cliffs and extensive sands which present a unique beauty of practically untouched natural landscape. This is one of the rare beaches where you can see the vegetation of the dunes extending to the sea line.

Paul de Budens - Budens

Paul de Budens or the Lontreira is an ancient rice paddy area with enormous diversity of waterfowl and flora, near Vila do Bispo. To get there follow the sign "Boca do Rio", next to Budens.

Ria de Alvor - Alvor

Located between Portimão and Lagos, Ria de Alvor is an area of marshlands and dunes which, in addition to its natural beauty, also hosts several species of birds. Its wildlife, both resident and migrant, has been recognized for its importance as the Natura2000 label, giving it environmental protection and conservation.

Leixão da Gaivota – Estômbar

Located next to the mouth of the River Arade, Leixão da Gaivota is the place to be discovered by all bird lovers. This is one of the most important places for nesting birds, defined as IBA (Important Bird Area).

Sítio das Fontes de Estômbar - Estômbar


Sítio das Fontes de Estômbar is also located on the bank of the River Arade. It offers fresh water sources and an important local ecosystem. It is an interesting place to have a picnic near nature, to discover the ecological importance and the cultural heritage.

Serra de Monchique - Monchique

In addition to joining tradition with the flavours of the land, Monchique presents a wonderful scenery of flora diversity, cliffs and streams of fresh water. Experience the Monchique thermal baths or a climb to the natural viewpoint of Foia.

Parque Natural do Sudoeste Alentejano and Costa Vicentina


The South West Alentejo and Vicentine Coast Natural Park covers 4 councils: Aljezur, Odemira, Sines and Vila do Bispo. It extends from Sines to Burgau. In the area there are several types of landscapes and natural habitats such as cliffs, beaches, islets and reefs (like the Ilha do Pessegueiro).

The natural landscape is complemented by several protected animals and birds.


These are just some of the places to discover close to here. We invite you to experience a different Algarve while on holiday!

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