Praia Da Rocha Mini Guide
What can you Tell me About Praia da Rocha?
Praia da Rocha is probably Portugal’s best known beach and certainly its most photographed. When you see pictures of towering sandstone stacks against the honey coloured cliffs surrounded by golden sand and an azure sea, that’s going to be Praia da Rocha. What many people don’t know is that it’s actually one of the municipal beaches of the city of Portimao and the resort merges almost seamlessly with the city. You can therefore enjoy the delights of a beach holiday in an attractive resort and still have the amenities of a city within walking distance.
How do I get to Praia da Rocha?
Although there’s a small airport near Portimao
it doesn’t accept commercial flights and so the nearest usable international airport to Praia da Rocha is Faro
, about 45 miles away. You find flights there from all over Europe and North Africa including the UK
where budget airlines operate scheduled routes and all the major tour operators run chartered flights to the airport. Transport options from Faro include a slow but direct train taking ninety minutes, the local buses or a taxi or hire car. Most people choose to rent a car so they can explore a little whilst in the Algarve
What is There to See and Do in Praia da Rocha?
The beach is the main attraction and it is certainly beautiful, although as the most popular beach in Portugal it’s going to get a little crowded in peak season. The beach is long though and, towards its extremities, has quieter secluded coves. If you want quieter still, you need to head to Portimao’s second beach at Praia do Vau which is considered prettier and quieter. For more excitement you can plan your visit to coincide with the Beach Football World Cup which attracts teams from across the globe or visit the Autodromo just outside Portimao where superbike races are held and where it is hoped that Formula 1 races will soon be enjoyed.
What Should I buy in Praia da Rocha to Take Home?
As a beach resort there’s very little of value to be bought there. For more worthwhile gifts, head into Portimao and shop for locally made leatherwear including shoes and bags or stock up on a few bottles of Portugal’s famous tipple, port.
What is Good to eat in Praia da Rocha?
Being a beach resort, the staple of the menu there is fish and a big variety is offered and cooked in many different ways. Sardines are a popular choice in the summer months and these oily fish are delicious served with a hunk of bread and a light salsa to accompany them. if you must have English food, you'll find plenty of take aways and steak and chips outlets but if you're going to eat that, you might as well have stayed at home!
What is the Entertainment Like in Praia da Rocha?
As you’d imagine with a top resort, there are lots of bars and clubs which sadly seem to have stooped to the level of much of their clientele. It’s possible to find some more upmarket places but the price reflects the standards. It’s worth spending an evening in Portimao where the nightlife extends from quiet local bars, where you can converse over a drink, to more upmarket (and expensive) nightclubs where minor celebrities are often found.