Praia da Rocha is Portimão‘s main beach, as well as a holiday destination offering very good weather conditions, a great sea, and plenty of bars, lounges, and discos.
It became a tourist town towards the end of the 19th century when the beach became the favorite summer destination of people from Portimão, as well as from the rest of the Algarve and Andalusia; it became also a winter destination for British visitors.
The beach offers a wide choice of activities suitable for all ages, and it is by far one of the Algarve’s most beautiful beaches; it is a huge stretch of soft and golden sand, although the water is incredibly cold.
Praia da Rocha is wide, managing to be spacious even on summer time. Along the coast there are a series of bays and beaches hidden among the rocks, which are perfect for those who want to escape from the crowd.
Praia da Rocha is supervised by lifeguards and there are not dangerous flows around this area, making it the perfect beach for families with kids. Here it is possible to practice all types of water sports and activities, such as water ski, canoe, parasailing.
Tomás Cabreira Boulevard, which runs along the upper side of the beach, is filled with cafes, shops, and restaurant serving international dishes. Of course there are plenty of Portuguese restaurants as well as English, Indian, Chinese, Italian, and Spanish restaurants. This area gets particularly busy at night with its many bars and clubs where to spend the night.
The western end of the boulevard was revalued in 2006 with the addition of new paved pedestrian areas, and benches where to relax and enjoy the sunshine. It is a limited traffic area, therefore it is very safe for pedestrians.
Towards the end of Avenida Tomás Cabreira there is the Santa Catarina de Ribamar Fortress, which was used to protect the city of Portimão against corsairs and pirates. The fortress has a great view over the beach and the cliff on one side, and over the tourist port on the other.
There are a few interesting attractions to visit around Praia da Rocha
Praia da Rocha and the Algarve region are characterised by long and warm summers, while during springtime and autumn the weather is mild. Winters are always unpredictable.
During the high season, which goes from June to August, structures are always fully booked. If you choose to travel around the Algarve during the high season make sure to book your flight and accommodation in advance.
The best time to enjoy the beach goes from half May to the end of September. During the summer season, Praia da Rocha becomes very lively and active.
During the rest of the year, the city is very calm; it is the perfect place for those who are looking for a relaxing holiday at affordable prices.
Praia da Rocha “closes” on winter time – towards the end of October – and “opens” again on Easter time. During this season, the atmosphere around the region is very calm, as there are not many people spending winter time here.
The only winter exception are Christmas Holidays; a number of tourists come to Praia da Rocha on this time of the year.
The place to choose as a base for enjoying the beach is undoubtedly Portimão. However, just off the beach, the village named after the beach offers several accommodation options.