Praia da Marinha, Algarve: One of The Most Beautiful Beaches in Europe

Located in Portugal’s southernmost region Algarve, Praia da Marinha (translated Navy Beach), is not only one of the most iconic beaches in the country, but it is also ranked as one of the 10 most beautiful beaches in Europe.

Photos of this beach are widely used in advertisements for the Algarve, but you can only see and feel its real beauty by being there in person.

The beach is surrounded by steep cliffs, which gives it a whimsical feeling from the top when you arrive:

From the crystal clear turquoise waters to the unique rock formations surrounding the golden soft sand,  Praia da Marinha is a place worth visiting when planning a trip to Portugal.

Getting There 

Situated approximately 7 km away from Lagoa, Praia da Marinha is not that easy to reach.

Its remoteness and the fact that you need a car to get there, however, is one of the main reasons, why even during the peak summer season, the area is not as crowded as other Portuguese beaches.

As you are following the N125 road, you will notice a lot of signs pointing you in the right direction. In approximately 15 minutes, you will find yourself standing on top of the cliffs at the parking lot.

Those looking for more than the breathtaking scenery can start making their way down following the long and steep stairs:

The Beach 

Once you dip your toes into the soft sand, you will know that the hike down was totally worth it! Nestled between the massive cliffs, Praia da Marinha usually enjoys calm and sunny days.

As it rarely gets too windy and the waves are never too high or strong, visitors can plan an entire day relaxing and sunbathing on the beach.

The crystal clear waters are so inviting that you will certainly want to go for a swim or try some snorkeling. Make sure to bring your own gear to dive into the refreshing waters and explore the colorful marine species. 

When the tide is low you can walk along the beach and visit the amazingly famous rock structure that looks like the letter M.

There is actually one part on the cliffs where the rocks and the M rock form a heart shape:


Besides water activities, such as swimming and snorkeling, you should also visit the unique rock formations surrounding the beach:

If you are looking forward to embarking on a small adventure of your own and getting a close look at the fantastic cliffs rising high above the waters, you should plan to visit during low tides.

Numerous small caves and grottos can be found beneath the rocks waiting to be explored. 

The best way to immerse yourself into the peace and quiet of the area and enjoy the truly spectacular rock formations, though, is by joining a boat trip.

Some of them will even take you to the truly outstanding Benagil Cave:

The Hike

If you are more of a hiker and would like to soak up the beauty of Praia da Marinha from the top, you can choose the hike along the cliffs.

Percurso dos Sete Vales Suspensos,  also known as the Seven Hanging Valleys trail is a fantastic hike, which expands all the way from Praia da Marinha to Praia de Vale Centeanes:

As the most stunning hiking route in the entire Algarve area, the trail will take you along the rugged coastline, presenting you truly spectacular views of the Atlantic Ocean. 


Before heading to Praia da Marinha you should have in mind that the facilities are extremely limited. For example, you will not be able to find any lifeguards, showers, restrooms or even shops.

There is only one restaurant. A good idea is to bring your own food, as well as, anything that you would need for a great beach day. Do not forget some sunscreen and sunglasses! 

And if you want to stay and watch the sunset, it is one f the best spots in the Algarve:

Are you ready to pack your bags and pay a visit to one of the most stunning beaches in the world – Praia da Marinha? 


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