Close to six kilometers long (about four miles), Praia da Falésia is one of the Algarve’s biggest beaches. It borders the resort town of Vilamoura to the east and stretches all the way to the Olhos d’Água district of Albufeira in the west. Walking from one end to the other takes 90 minutes to two hours! The narrower western end actually has its own name (Praia do Barranco das Belharucas, or simply Praia das Belharucas), but it’s really the same beach. The wider eastern end is also known as Praia da Rocha Baixinha, and since it has a slightly different atmosphere, we’ve created its own guide: Praia da Rocha Baixinha
On some maps, you’ll also see the western side labeled as “Praia da Falésia-Açoteias” and the eastern “Praia da Falésia-Alfamar.”
From east to west, Praia da Falésia is quite beautiful, found below red and ocher cliffs that rise up to as much as 40 meters (130ft) -- the name literally translates to “Cliff Beach.” Many see a resemblance to the Grand Canyon, and the combination of natural beauty and clean sand and water has led to international distinctions. It’s been ranked one of Portugal’s and even the world’s top beaches, and the quality and safety has also given it a Blue Flag certification.
No visit should end without stopping to admire the spectacular view from the top of the pine-covered cliffs. The best spot is at the end of Rua da Falésia. For the breathtaking views alone, this is a place you’ll want to visit even outside the summer or even if you don't enjoy days at the beach. For an especially memorable experience, go for the sunrise or sunset.
Down below are wicker parasols and sunbeds for rent, but also a large area to sunbathe with plenty of personal space. The golden sand is soft and the sea depends on the tides and currents. It can be calm and good for swimming, or have waves strong enough for surfing, especially on the eastern side. There are lifeguards on duty in the summer.
When the tide is low, you might see people collecting bean clams, locally known as “conquilhas,” which are a delicacy of the region. They just might be served at the restaurants on the western end, which offer sea views.
This beach also has some of the best hotels in Algarve (see below), so it’s where many tourists end up basing themselves on a trip to southern Portugal.
Beach for: Couples, Nature Lovers
Bar or Restaurant: Yes
How to Get to Praia da Falésia
The rather infrequent bus number 8, operated by the Vamus company, departs from Albufeira’s bus station to Praia da Rocha Baixinha, and stops by Praia da Falésia in about 20 minutes. The stop is by a roundabout, where there’s a sign pointing to the beach. You then just need to walk down the road (Rua da Falésia). If you’re driving from Albufeira, you can reach the beach in about 15 minutes. There’s a small parking area on the western end, just above the beach, as well as a large parking lot in the middle section at the end of Rua Infante Dom Henrique. You may also be lucky to find a spot on Rua da Falésia, which leads to the viewpoint and the beach. Alternatively, take a taxi or Uber. To know how to get to and around Albufeira, see our transportation guide.
Beaches by Praia da Falésia
In addition to Praia da Rocha Baixinha mentioned above, there’s the very popular Praia de Vilamoura to the east. However, this beach is often quite crowded, so you might prefer to head west instead, to Praia de Olhos d’Água, about a 10-minute drive away.
To locate these beaches, see the Albufeira beaches map.
Hotels by Praia da Falésia
Epic Sana Algarve
One of the best hotels in all of Algarve, it’s conveniently located by the road that takes you to the most beautiful section of the beach. Surrounded by pine trees, it offers direct access to the beach, five outdoor swimming pools, an indoor pool, a spa, a fitness center, two restaurants, and spacious rooms with balconies.
SEE PRICES, AVAILABILITY AND MORE DETAILS HERE: Epic Sana Algarve
Pine Cliffs Village & Golf Suites
One of four “Pine Cliffs” properties by this beach, this one is made up of suites, apartments, townhouses and large villas, some with private swimming pools. It’s for those looking to pamper themselves with luxurious facilities and services like a spa, beauty salon, tennis courts, a golf course, and nearly a dozen restaurants.
SEE PRICES, AVAILABILITY AND MORE DETAILS HERE: Pine Cliffs Village & Golf Suites
Pine Cliffs Hotel
Mixing Moorish-inspired and traditional Portuguese architecture, this luxury resort stands above Praia da Falésia. Guests have the choice of nearly a dozen restaurants (some of them are seasonal), a variety of treatments at the spa, and different types of rooms, all of them with balconies.
SEE PRICES, AVAILABILITY AND MORE DETAILS HERE: Pine Cliffs Hotel
Pine Cliffs Residence
This luxurious resort features double and triple rooms with balconies, two swimming pools, a wellness center, tennis courts, a variety of restaurants, and a 9-hole golf course. A boardwalk takes guests directly to the beach.
SEE PRICES, AVAILABILITY AND MORE DETAILS HERE: Pine Cliffs Residence
Pine Cliffs Gardens
This all-suites hotel is in a stunning location, just above the beach, reached via a boardwalk. Guests have access to all of the facilities of the resort, including the different restaurants, the swimming pools, the wellness center, the tennis courts and the golf course.
SEE PRICES, AVAILABILITY AND MORE DETAILS HERE: Pine Cliffs Gardens
Porto Bay Falésia
It’s a 4-star hotel but offers guests the luxury of a stunning location overlooking the ocean, direct access to the beach, a lagoon-style pool with sea views, two restaurants, and a spa. The rooms have balconies, many with views of the cliffs and the sea.
SEE PRICES, AVAILABILITY AND MORE DETAILS HERE: Porto Bay Falésia
This adults-only hotel is meant for couples. The décor isn’t exactly romantic, but it’s surrounded by large gardens and offers a complimentary shuttle service to the beach, just 5 minutes away (or a 15-minute walk). It has indoor and outdoor pools and a spa.
SEE PRICES, AVAILABILITY AND MORE DETAILS HERE: Falésia Hotel
3HB Falésia Mar
For a more affordable stay at this beach, book one of the apartments with sea views at this 3-star hotel. Most of it overlooks the cliffs and the beach, including the garden with a large swimming pool. The restaurant serves Mediterranean cuisine and also offers stunning ocean views.
SEE PRICES, AVAILABILITY AND MORE DETAILS HERE: 3HB Falésia Mar