12 Best beaches in Alentejo

The Alentejo Coast has some of the best beaches in Portugal. Many of them are well-known beaches like Zambujeira or Pessegueiro Island. Others are award-winning beaches like Furnas beach, but some are poorly kept little secrets like Praia da Amália.

So, we have prepared for you a list of the best beaches in the Alentejo, from Sines to Odeceixe. This list is sorted from North to South as we didn’t want to, nor could we sort them by preference. In addition to having a few similar characteristics, there are fabulous beaches in Alentejo, making it impossible to prefer one over the other…

This list of the best Alentejo beaches includes a little bit of everything. We have urban beaches, beaches with some development, beaches without support infrastructure, and even beaches that are very difficult to reach.

Features of Alentejo Beaches

As we were saying, in this list we include beaches of different types, for different types of vacationers, but regardless, Alentejo beaches have some common characteristics:

  • The sand is usually fine and white;
  • The water is quite cold. Not as much as in the north, but much cooler than in the Algarve;
  • Some wind, especially from the north;
  • Many are outlined by cliffs;
Best Alentejo Beaches
The beaches of Alentejo are some of the most beautiful in the country

Best Alentejo Beaches

São Torpes Beach, Sines

São Torpes Beach is less than 10km south of Sines, right after the container terminal. It is also next to the thermoelectric power station in Sines. In fact, the plant is the main reason why this beach is so well known and popular. The water used to cool the plant reaches the beach, artificially heating the seawater. Don’t worry, the water is perfectly clean.

It’s not an urban beach, but it has good support infrastructure. It has easy access, parking, surf school and a cafe nearby. This is where the Natural Park of Southwest Alentejo and Costa Vicentina begins.

This long beach is beautiful, with fine sand and crystal clear water, but the industrial environment of the power station, the port, and the boats constantly on the horizon makes it a little less idyllic than it could be. In any case, it is great for families and children due to the slightly higher temperature of the seawater near the river.

Best Alentejo Beaches
São Torpes Beach- Best Alentejo Beaches
  • Lifeguarded beach: Yes
  • Access: good access, suitable for everyone, especially families

Samoqueira Beach, Porto Covo

Samoqueira Beach is located about 2 km north of the village of Porto Covo and almost 15 km south of Sines. It is also easy to access as the road connecting Sines to Porto Covo goes through next to it, and it has a large car park. However, it does not have any more support infrastructures. Despite being stunning, it is not one of the most popular in the region, which may be great.

Breathtaking and captivating, Praia da Samoqueira invites you to explore the caves, cliffs, and rocks as well as to relax, sunbathe and rest. It is a beach formed by several small bays set between rocky outcrops that create small natural pools when the tide is low.

This beach is a real postcard. If you are looking for a beach that looks like something out of a travel magazine, this is one of your best options. Just don’t be fooled, the sand is white and fine, the water is turquoise but it’s cold…

Beautiful beaches of Alentejo
Samoqueira Beach, Porto Covo – Alentejo Beaches
  • Lifeguarded beach: Yes
  • Access: good access, but not suitable for people with reduced mobility

Pessegueiro Island Beach, Porto Covo

Pessegueiro Island beach is less than 2km south of Porto Covo, but it is more than 7km by car, as there is no direct road. Alternatively, you can walk there by following a small part of stage 2 of the Pescadores trail, it is well worth it as it is a very beautiful route.

Despite its name, Pessegueiro Island beach is not on the island but facing the island, which is about 250 meters from the coast. This is a fine and white sand beach, but it has many rocks, especially in the south. If you want to go to the water, the northern part is much better. As the island is right in front of the beach, it protects it, and at low tide, it is normal to have few or no waves, which is great for children.

During the summer it is possible to visit Pessegueiro Island by boat that does guide tours, where you can see the salt tanks and the old fort from the 17th century. Also, don’t forget the fort of Our Lady of Burnt, located behind the beach and next to the car park. Next to the fort, there is also a restaurant with a terrace.

For all that it offers besides the sand and sea, this is one of our favorite beaches in Alentejo and Portugal.

Information about the best beaches in Alentejo
Beautiful Alentejo beach – Pessegueiro Island Beach, Porto Covo
  • Lifeguarded beach: Yes
  • Access: good access, suitable for everyone, especially families

Malhão Beach, Vila Nova de Milfontes

Malhão beach is located in Vila Nova de Milfontes parish but relatively far from the village. Both by car and on foot it is about 9 km to the north. This beach is a little far from everything, but it is possible to go there by car. The last 2 km are on unpaved land, but it has a large car park and easy access via walkways. If you want to go on foot, you have to follow the fishermen’s trail, it’s marked, but it’s pretty tough. Going and returning is a project for almost all day and not advisable in summer due to the sun and heat.

Malhão beach is huge and impressive for its natural beauty. One of the best ways to appreciate its beauty is to explore the viewpoints built on the cliffs at the end of the walkways. It is a relatively large walkway system, which gives access to the two main beaches and even some smaller bays. Take the opportunity to explore the area well, as there is a little bit of everything here, from hidden beaches, natural pools, and sands to lose sight.

Despite being quite popular, with lifeguards, having walkways, viewpoints, and even a surf school (where equipment can be rented), there is no cafe or permanent restaurant by the beach. There may be a temporary one on days with more people, but it is not guaranteed, so take everything you need. There is a campsite relatively close, but not exactly on the beach.

which are the best beach of Alentejo
Malhão Beach, Vila Nova de Milfontes- One of the most beautiful beaches of Alentejo
  • Lifeguarded beach: Yes
  • Access: good access, but not suitable for people with reduced mobility

Angra da Cerva Beach

The beach of Angra da Cerva is a few km south of Malhão beach but still 4 or 5 km from Milfontes. Unlike the beaches explored so far, this one has no access by car, no parking, no infrastructure whatsoever.

It’s a wild beach located between two huge cliffs that protect it from the wind. The sand is fine, and the water is crystal clear, as almost always in this area. To get there, you will have to walk a few km through dunes and cliffs. You can go from Malhão beach and go south or from Porto das Barcas to the north. In both cases, you will have to follow the signs of the fishermen’s trail. It’s not difficult as it’s well signposted, but it’s tough because the route is mostly sand.

On the other hand, it is a walk that presents us with wonderful views of the cliffs and a final destination worth the effort. Note that the descent to the beach is dangerous, as it is very steep and narrow. We do not advise doing it with children or people with any mobility/agility issues.

In short, this is a natural, wild beach for adventurous people in good physical shape. Interestingly, it had a hippie camp whenever we went there, so we usually affectionately call it the “hippies beach.”

Best beaches in Alentejo
Best beaches in Alentejo: Angra da Cerva Beach
  • Lifeguarded beach: No
  • Access: difficult access, not recommended for children and people with limited mobility

Praia das Furnas, Longueira/Almograve

Officially Furnas beach is in Longueira/Almograve; in practice, it is in Milfontes. Why? Because it’s literally on the other side of the river Mira. To go there, you can take one of the many ferries that cross the river Mira in Milfontes; you can walk across the bridge (3km one way); or you can drive abound 8km.

In Milfontes you obviously have everything you need and more, but the south bank of the Mira is completely different. It is not developed at all, with only one restaurant and one beach cafe. Despite this, this is a very popular beach, as in addition to the good and varied accesses, it has something to offer everyone.

Furnas beach is right at the mouth of the Mira river, which is why it is both a river beach and a sea beach. On the other hand, if you like to do water sports, you can use the wonderful river Mira and have fun canoeing, SUP, etc. Furthermore, facing Milfontes, it also offers a spectacular setting for one of the most beautiful Portuguese coastal towns.

So, it’s no surprise that Praia das Furnas has been nominated and won the contest of the best Portuguese beaches in the 7 Wonders of Portugal competition.

Tudo sobre as melhores praias do Sudeste Alentejano
Praia das Furnas in Milfontes- winner of the contest of the best Portuguese beaches
  • Lifeguarded beach: Yes
  • Access: good access, suitable for everyone, especially families

Brejo Largo Beach, Longueira/Almograve

Brejo Largo beach is about 3 km north of Almograve and about 5 to 6 km south of Vila Nova de Milfontes. It’s a beach without any development and very difficult to access. There are dirt and sand roads that go there, but they are not advisable due to the risk of jamming. If you want to go there with a vehicle, we strongly advise you to do so with a 4×4.

We got to know Brejo Largo Beach when we did the fishermen’s trail as it passes right in front of the beach. But even reaching when taking the trail is not easy as it involves a hard stretch of sand walking. On the other hand, after several kilometers of walking on the sand and under the sun, this beach of fine white sand with turquoise water looks like heaven on earth. I don’t think I was ever so happy to see and go to a beach.

Brejo Largo is a beach for adventurers. As we said, it’s hard to get there, but it’s not much easier to enter the beach. The only access is via ropes and ladders dug into the cliff. It’s not extraordinarily difficult but it’s technical and inadvisable to do with young children. On the other hand, we saw people there with thermals and sun hats, so… what do we know…?

Anyway, this is a beautiful beach, with a long sandy strand and few people. It’s the kind of beach we love, but don’t forget to bring everything you need, as there’s nothing there… really.

Top beaches of Alentejo
Brejo Largo Beach – Alentejo beaches for adventurers
  • Lifeguarded beach: No
  • Access: difficult access, not recommended for children and people with limited mobility

Almograve Beach

Almograve Beach is an urban or semi-urban beach, as the village of Almograve is about 500 meters inland. In addition to being one of the best-known business cards on the Alentejo coast, it is naturally one of the most popular beaches on this list.

Such a popular and busy beach typically has excellent access and a huge car park. It also has an excellent beach bar, WC, lifeguards… For all these reasons, this is a perfect beach for families, children, and seniors. Almograve has an excellent mix of natural and tourist development.

All the beaches in Alentejo have a phenomenal sunset, but the one in Almograve is special. In addition to the natural beauty, one can have a drink at the beach bar while marveling at the warm colors of the sky, the cliffs, and the reflections on the sea.

Witch are the best beaches in Alentejo
Almograve Beach
  • Lifeguarded beach: Yes
  • Access: good access, suitable for everyone, especially families

Tonel Beach, Almograve/Longueira

Tonel beach is about 4 km north of Zambujeira (6, if you go by car) and 1 km from Porto das Barcas. It is possible to walk directly from Porto das Barcas to the beach as there is a small walkway and bridge that crosses the river that flows into Porto das Barcas.

The beach itself is a perfect postcard of what are the best beaches in the natural park of Southeast Alentejo and Costa Vicentina. A long stand of almost white, fine sand, surrounded by nearly vertical ravines, water with endless shades of blue, and very few people…

However, of all the beaches in the southeast of Alentejo that we propose here, this was the one that caused us the most doubts. Why? Honestly, we didn’t go down to the beach because we couldn’t any entrances that we felt safe enough. It is possible to take the car very close, but the beach is a few dozen meters below, with ravines almost steep.

We gave up (we were also tired of walking 15km from Almograve), but the truth is that some people descend to the beach using a rope system. So, it is possible! We leave the decision to go down to the beach at your own risk, but don’t shy away from at least seeing it from above. If you end up deciding it’s better not to descend, you can always go for lunch at Sacas and/or go to the beach in Zambujeira.

beaches in Alentejo that you can't miss
Best beaches in Alentejo: Tonel Beach
  • Lifeguarded beach: No
  • Access: difficult access, not recommended for children and people with limited mobility

Zambujeira Beach

There are some iconic beaches on this list, but none like Zambujeira do Mar. Located next to the village of Zambujeira do Mar, surrounded by cliffs a few tens of meters high, this is one of the hallmarks of Alentejo. The natural beauty of the Zambujeira area is awe-inspiring, both for the soft sandy beaches and for the huge rocks and ravines.

Of course, it is an urban beach, where you can find everything you need on the beach itself or nearby (bars, restaurants, cafes, lifeguards). There are car parks, but given the popularity, it is likely to be full in summer.

Anyway, Zambujeira is great for all types of travelers, more or less adventurous, of any age, and with different tastes.

If you feel that Zambujeira beach is too crowded, you can always try Alteirinhos beach about a km to the south. It’s also beautiful, watched over, and even has a waterfall.

Most iconic beaches in Alentejo
Zambujeira Beach is one of the most iconic beaches in Alentejo
  • Lifeguarded beach: Yes
  • Access: good access, suitable for everyone, especially families

Carvalhal Beach

Carvalhal beach is 3 km south of Zambujeira do Mar and is easily accessible by car. It has a huge car park, it is supervised and even has a beach bar and a surf school. For all these reasons, it is great for families, especially with children, but also teenagers. Despite being very popular, it doesn’t even come close to the level of Zambujeira do Mar beach.

The sand strand at Praia do Carvalhal is not very long, but it is wedged between two high cliffs and with a small stream winding through the sand to the sea. This creates an idyllic setting worthy of one of the most beautiful beaches in Alentejo.

During low tide, the sea uncovers some small caves that you can freely explore. However, at high tide, the beach is much smaller as it is almost flat. One of the great advantages of this absence of slope in the sand is that it is possible to enter the sea for a few meters without dropping quickly.

Next to the beach, there is a private ranch with some unusual animals in Portugal, such as zebras, ostrich, buffalo, and deer. As far as we know, it’s not possible to visit the farm, but it’s not necessary. If you want to have a look, just go up the fishermen’s trail, and you’ll go directly to the fence from where you can see everything.

how to go to the best beaches in Alentejo
Carvalhal Beach, one of the best lesser-known beaches in Alentejo
  • Lifeguarded beach: Yes
  • Access: good access, suitable for everyone, especially families

Amália Beach

Almost in the Algarve, only about 5km from Odeceixe, we have the last beach in the southeast of Alentejo to make the list, Amália beach. It has received this name for being one of the Portuguese diva’s favorite destinations. In fact, the only building on the beach is called Herdade Amália, where she lived and currently serves as local accommodation.

Maybe that’s why this beach is almost a secret, very poorly kept, but maybe still a secret. The beach is wonderful, it has a long beach of fine and soft sand, is protected by high cliffs in all directions, and by the property of Amália.

The access to the beach is easy, as you just have to go towards the estate and stop your car there. From there, there is a small path that leads directly to the beach. This path is extremely beautiful, passing through a vegetable tunnel where we have to squat down to cross. Upon reaching the beach, there is a stream on the left side that falls directly onto the sand forming a beach waterfall.

Amalia beach is a destination you can’t miss and one of the best beaches in Alentejo. Furthermore, as it is quite hidden and considerably large, it’s never too crowded. Despite not having any support infrastructure, access is relatively easy so it is suitable for the whole family. Note however that this is not a watched beach.

The best beaches in Alentejo
The best beaches in Alentejo: Amália Beach
  • Lifeguarded beach: No
  • Access: moderate access, but not suitable for people with reduced mobility

The best beaches in Alentejo

These are our favorite beaches in Southeast Alentejo, and in our opinion, any of them could be part of the list of the best beaches in Portugal. Although some are wild and others developed, a few are for adventurers and others for the whole family, all of them possess extraordinary beauty that is worth knowing.

This article has 12 beaches, but it could easily have 15 or 20 beaches because we excluded some beautiful beaches in Alentejo. Finally, note that we did not include the wonderful beach of Odeceixe in this list for purely geographical reasons. As it is located on the south bank of the Ribeira de Seixe (which divides the Alentejo from the Algarve), we decided that it belongs to the Algarve and will definitely be included in the best beaches in the Algarve list.

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12 best beaches in Alentejo

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