Praia do Castelejo: A Blue Flag Beach on the Costa Vincentina

In this short post we’ll introduce you to a few more areas in this corner of our Algarvian home. The Parque Natural do Sudoeste Alentejano e Costa Vincentina stretches from Burgau in the Algarve all the way north along the Atlantic coast to Porto Covo in the Alentejo. It is a region of extensive cliffs, surfing beaches, numerous hiking opportunities and is regarded as one of the best preserved coastlines in Europe.

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Typical hilltop views along this part of the coast

On a sunny September day we spent a very pleasant afternoon at the Blue Flag beach of Praia do Castelejo. The town of Vila do Bispo is about a 20 minute drive from home and is where you will find the road to Castelejo. Following the signs from the center of town you drive across the tops of the windswept hills where you will see a signpost for the road to the beach.

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We knew we were on the right track

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The sign for Castelejo is easy to miss

As you begin the winding descent down the mostly one lane road to the shore, glimpses of the Atlantic open up and you soon arrive at one of the two parking areas. From here it is a short walk to the beach. There is a restaurant here specializing in fresh seafood which we tried for lunch. A cold drink or coffee in one of the most picturesque spots you can imagine can’t help but bring on feelings of contentment and peace.

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First glimpse of the beach

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What a view!

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No crowds on this day

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Only surfers in the water

Dominated by immense black schist cliffs the backdrop is breathtaking. Best known by locals for fishing and surfing it is an excellent location for walking or just relaxing and watching the surf roll onto the golden sand. At low tide you can walk around the point to the adjoining Praia da Cordoama  which is equally beautiful.

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The two beaches are joined at low tide

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Tide pools make for great exploration

This coast is exposed to winds directly off the Atlantic so it can be cooler than the southern beaches but it is proportionately less crowded as well. So bring along a windbreaker, your sense of adventure and just enjoy the magnificent setting – we certainly did!

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A sheltered spot in the sun

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Beginner’s surf lesson

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Just relax and enjoy a sense of being!

About Tim & Anne Hall

We sold almost all of our belongings and left our home in Nova Scotia in April 2016 to experience as much of the world as we could. We spent over a year slow traveling in Latin America and Europe, and are now living happily in the Portuguese Algarve, Portimao to be specific. We are gradually chnging the focus of our site to feature images of Portugal. Stay tuned - its a work in progress.
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6 Responses to Praia do Castelejo: A Blue Flag Beach on the Costa Vincentina

  1. Wow! Great photos and I can see now why you were raving about this beach. I love the rock work around the restaurant and, of course, fresh seafood is always a treat. Looking forward to tagging along when you want to do a repeat visit to this gorgeous gem! Anita

    Liked by 1 person

    • timannehall says:

      Thanks Anita. This one was particularly nice and the views from the restaurant were spectacular. We were fortunate to be there at low tide so we could walk around the point. We will definitely be going back. The restaurant is open all winter so it sounds like a nice lunch destination later on.

      Like

  2. Gilda Baxter says:

    Great waves here for surfing. With most of the tourists gone you had this little gem almost to yourselves😄

    Liked by 1 person

    • timannehall says:

      Hi Gilda. We enjoy the end of the tourist season best of all. With all of the people in the summer, parking can be a bit of a challenge at some of these small beaches. This one was great though and we will be returning. On the exposed west coast they can be cooler but that is perfect for walking all year round.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Joe says:

    This beautiful post makes me long for secluded beaches and the sounds and smells of the ocean. Thanks for bringing the sands of southern Portugal into my world, here in central Mexico. I hope to find these places someday, hopefully in the not-too-distant future.

    Liked by 1 person

    • timannehall says:

      Thanks Joe. We are quickly discovering that there are many many beaches here and we can usually find one that isn’t too busy, especially now that the summer is winding down. We are enjoying this end of the Algarve where it is a little less busy and developed than farther east. Hopefully you will get a chance to experience it some day. Let us know.

      Liked by 1 person

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