Beautiful places in Algarve - from Faro to Sagres

Beautiful places in Algarve - from Faro to Sagres

One of the other places we saw during our visit to Portugal was the southern Algarve region. What’s there to see in this eye-catching place? Which places did we like the most? Today we’ll answer these and many other questions.

Algarve coast - what is it and where

Let’s start with a few basic facts that may not be obvious to everyone. First of all, Algarve is a region that covers the entire southern edge of Portugal. After Lisbon and Porto, it’s where the most tourists come each year. They’re attracted by the phenomenal cliff coast, lots of small and large sandy beaches, as well as the atmospheric towns. You can definitely relax there, laying in the sun or soaking in the ocean (although the water is not the warmest), but also go sightseeing. The easiest way to get here is by flying to Faro, the largest city in the region.

What to see in the Algarve

We started our trip along the coast in Faro and moved towards the west. We left the eastern part, apparently also very interesting, for the next time. The following places are our next stops on the way to Cape Saint Vincent.

Armação de Pêra and the Church of Nossa Senhora da Rocha

In Faro, we did only the necessary shopping and immediately hitchhiked along the coast. The first stop came out spontaneously, because it was recommended by the driver who gave us a lift, and we didn’t have a precise plan anyway. This is how we got to the village-resort Armação de Pêra. The place itself didn’t seem very interesting, but the cliffs nearby definitely were. Over the course of several kilometers, we were in awe of the landscape, especially that we’ve seen the amazing rock formations of Algarve for the first time. The most postcard-worthy place was the church Nossa Senhora da Rocha and the surrounding beaches.

The Trail of the Seven Hanging Valleys

Another beautiful part of the Algarve coast turned out to be Percurso dos Sete Vales Suspensos, the Trail of the Seven Hanging Valleys. We didn’t count how many of these valleys there were, but it was enough to put on shoes better than flip flops. The route goes from Praia da Marinha to Praia de Vale Centeanes which is almost 6 km one way.

Benagil Cave

It’s hard to answer the question of what to see in the Algarve without mentioning the Benagil cave. It’s probably the most famous rock formation in Portugal, which we were not particularly tempted by, but it was still on the route of the Trail of the Seven Hanging Valleys described earlier. This is a typical “see and forget” attraction, because how long can you stare at the leaky roof of a seaside grotto? Importantly, Benagil is only accessible from the sea, so you cannot simply enter it. Right next to the beach, you can buy a short motorboat trip, rent a canoe or a funny paddle board. What the rental companies will not tell you is that you can simply swim to the grotto. The distance to travel is not long, but the waves can be quite big, so it’s an option for relatively fit swimmers.


A very popular city, deservedly so in our opinion. The old town is not one of the largest - just a few churches, plenty of pubs and historic fortifications, including the main fort Ponta da Bandeira. The best, however, awaits outside the city center, at the Ponta da Piedade. Rocky islands, columns and arches create a truly unique landscape. Sunset is like from a fairy tale, we definitely recommend going there in the evening. It’s best to come from the central part of Lagos on foot, as there are also beautiful places like Praia do Camilo.

Sagres and Cape St. Vincent

We ended our trip through the Algarve coast in a place that is not so spectacular, but very symbolic. Cabo de São Vicente (Cape St. Vincent) has the status of the most southwestern part of Europe. In practice, it is a high cliff with a raw, menacing appearance, in our case exaggerated by foggy weather. This cape is also special because it was literally the end of the world for medieval Europeans. When they looked at the Ocean from this place, they did not know that far, far away, the whole New World was waiting …

The nearest town is Sagres, which didn’t impress us with anything, but we remembered it anyway, because firstly, a very positive, interesting driver drove us here, and secondly, this is where we finished the first leg of our journey through Portugal.

A little summary

Touristic corners of the world as the Algarve coast sometimes disappoint because they don’t actually look as magical as they do in the photos. Fortunately, this wasn’t true in this case! The region has much more to offer than just a few photogenic spots. The Atlantic has done a great job forming such a fancy coastline.

Practical information