Sagres, situated at the extreme western tip of the Algarve region in Portugal, is a small town with dramatic natural scenery of high cliffs, raging seas, fabulous beaches and a working charming fishing harbour. And on top of these all, the famous End of The World Cabo de Sao Vicente is situated here.
Though Sagres has been associated with rich nautical history, there is nothing much to see about its glorious past. There are no special tourist attractions or historical buildings and monuments inside the town center. However, its location is so dramatic, plus it is home to Cabo de Sao Vicente and its lighthouse and Fortaleza de Sagres that the town becomes a major tourist destination in the Algarve.
A. CABO DE SAO VICENTE
The Cabo de Sao Vicente is the most westerly point of mainland Europe and till 14th century, believed to be the End of the Known World. The cliffs where the Cape is (maximum height of 75 meters) is home to ferocious and dangerous waves of the Atlantic ocean.
The lighthouse which is constructed in the mid-19th century is open to public on Wednesday afternoon. No entrance fee, but a tip is appreciated. We were fortunate to be here on a Wednesday so we were able to climb up to the light house under the guidance of the Light house Guard who also gave us interesting information about it.
We learned that the lightbeam from the light house is one of the brightest in Europe and can be seen as far as 60 kilometers . Located at the light house compound is a café, a museum and souvenir shop.
B. FORTALEZA DE SAGRES
It is a site where Prince Henry the Navigator established his navigation school. It offers breathtaking views of the cliffs and of the Cabo de Sao Vicente. There is a pleasant 1.5 kilometer walk along the Cliffside, where you get to see the light house, a grotto/cave where waves crash, a large wind compass, an old chapel, and the fort itself.
The cliff sides are popular spots for local anglers who defy death as they show their courage or carelessness in standing so close to the cliff edges just to catch a fish or two! Entrance to the fort is 3 euro per person (1.50 for 65+).
C. BALEEIRA FISHING PORT
It is a working fishing harbour in town, where fishing boats, big and small , come and go, and where fish auction is held daily in the afternoon. It is possible to watch the fish auction from the snack bar above the fish hall. We were however late with the activity as we spent too much time walking from our campsite to the harbour.
The beaches of Sagres are simply beautiful. They are ideal for children and for beginning surfers. We have visited 4 beaches at the time that we were in Sagres. These are Praias Mareta, Tonel, Baleeira and Beliche.
The beaches of Mareta and Tonel are located on opposite sides of the Fort. The first one is a very nice one with mild waves and ideal for children , while the second one is smaller and has wilder waves.
Praia Mareta has Sagres Port on one end and the Atalaia Point on the other end. Baleeira beach is a small beach located just next to the fishing harbour.
Praia Beliche is a very wide beach very popular for surfers. It can be accessed via a steep wooden steps.
Mix- Parking, Fortaleza de Sagres
Coordinates : N : 37.00448 W : 8.94486
It is a big mix-parking at the foot of the Fortaleza de Sagres, with easy access to both beaches of Mareta and Tonel. The town is about 1.5 kilometer. Camper facilities are available at the Intermache supermarket located at the entrance to the town.
Our customary pictures together 🙂