Until recently, this beach was the secret paradise of a few who were lucky to have stumbled upon it. Many discovered it on a kayak tour, and that’s how many still get here, when the tide is low. Others find their way down from the top of the cliff. The trail isn’t very difficult, but is not for those with mobility issues or recommended for children. You’ll mostly find young people here, many of them couples.
This is a romantic little sheltered cove, completely surrounded by cliffs and hidden between some of Algarve’s most beautiful beaches. Most people spend most of their time competing for the best angles for selfies, as there isn’t much space for sunbathing, but the crystal-clear water is perfect for swimming. When the tide allows it, some even go under the arch that brings the water here.
Naturally, as an “unofficial” beach, there are no facilities or lifeguards. Due to the risk of rockfall, local authorities sometimes prohibit access. The risk is assessed regularly, and access is only restored after controlled demolition of parts of the cliffs deemed too dangerous.
When you arrive or before you leave, take some time to walk over the cliffs, especially the eastern side (to the left when facing the sea). You’ll have a breathtaking view of the coast, and over a beach only accessible by boat (Praia da Ponta Pequena). You’ll also want to observe and photograph the secret beach from above.
Beach for: Couples, Nature Lovers
Bar or Restaurant: No
How to Get to Praia do Ninho de Andorinha
Steps facilitate the descent to this beach (pictured below), but before you reach them you have to find them from the top of the cliff. When facing west (with the sea to your left), the access and the steps are to your right.
You can only get here by car, and must park on Rua de João Guita (unless you’re staying at the hotel nearby -- see below). The path to the beach (pictured above) is at the end of that street, to the right of a gate of a private residence with a tile panel saying “Quinta dos Falcões.”
There is a bus that departs from Albufeira’s bus station that stops nearby. That’s bus 75 of the Vamus company, but it’s quite infrequent. It stops on Estrada das Sesmarias, a few feet from a sign pointing to Coelha, a beach nearby. Follow that road towards the Baia Grande Hotel (see below) and the road to Praia do Ninho de Andorinha is next to it.
If you’re driving from central Albufeira, it takes just 10 minutes. Another option is a taxi or Uber.
Beaches by Praia do Ninho de Andorinha
The beaches that you see to the east and west of Praia do Ninho de Andorinha, from the top of the cliff, are Praia da Ponta Pequena and Praia da Ponta Grande. Unfortunately, those are only accessible by boat. If you’re on a boat tour of this coast, the bigger Praia da Ponta Grande is especially worth a stop. The nearest “official” or accessible beaches are Praia de São Rafael and Praia da Coelha. These are two of the most beautiful in Algarve, with golden cliffs and rock formations. Praia da Coelha is a 15-minute walk from Praia do Ninho de Andorinha, and Praia de São Rafael about 25.
To locate these beaches, see the Albufeira beaches map.
Hotels by Praia do Ninho de Andorinha
Hotel Baia Grande
This is the only hotel within walking distance of Praia do Ninho de Andorinha (about 5 minutes) and its private parking lot makes it even more convenient for those wishing to experience this beach. It’s also just a 10-minute walk to Praia da Coelha. It has an indoor and an outdoor pool, a restaurant, a piano bar, a spa, and rooms with balconies, some of them with sea views.
SEE PRICES, AVAILABILITY AND MORE DETAILS HERE: Hotel Baia Grande