Praia de Monte Gordo – the complete guide
Monte Gordo is a popular holiday seaside resort in the eastern Algarve. The town comes alive in the summer, when many tourists come here to enjoy their holiday on the beach called Praia de Monte Gordo. It is located only 4 kilometres from the Spanish border. Monte Gordo is visited mainly by Portuguese and Spanish tourists, but you will find plenty of other nationalities as well. The beach of Monte Gordo has good facilities and you can find plenty of restaurants within walking distance. If you want a nice beach and a warm climate, come visit Monte Gordo.
Watch it in HD
If you wonder how the beach of Monte Gordo looks like, then watch the short video below to find out.
Monte Gordo has a big beach, known as Praia de Monte Gordo. It stretches for about 1,5 kilometres. In the east it is bordered by Praia de Santo António, and to the west of Monte Gordo you can find Praia do Cabeço (and then Praia Verde). You can recognize Monte Gordo by the high-rise hotels and apartment blocks in the background.
The sand here is fine and golden. It feels good to walk on it barefeet. Both the beach and the sea are clean. The sea is generally calm, but can be rough on some days. When you are visiting with children, it is good to keep an eye on them. The sea is shallow at first and gets deeper only slowly.
Although the sea water is warmer than in other parts of the Algarve, the sea water can still be cold, especially outside the summer months. In the summer, the average sea water temperature reaches about 22 degrees Celcius. There are no rocks in the water.
Praia de Monte Gordo is very wide and flat. The beach is big, so you can always find a spot.
The beach is backed by dunes, in contrast to some of the cliff backed beaches that you can find in other parts of the Algarve.
In the summer, the beach attracts quite a lot of visitors. But due to the size of the beach, there is always plenty of space for everyone. Monte Gordo attracts a lot of tourists from all over Portugal, who want to spend their summer holidays there. Since the beach is not far from Spain, you can find a lot of Spanish tourists as well. The beach is also popular with English, Dutch and German tourists, but you can find other nationalities as well of course. Praia de Monte Gordo is especially great for families with younger children and couples. Families with teenagers may prefer the excitement of the central Algarve, with more nightlife options and water parks.
Sometimes you can also see yoga lessons on the beach.
Along the length of the beach of Monte Gordo you can find a wooden boardwalk. The boardwalk is relatively new. It is great to have a walk here, and it walks faster than on the sand.
Along the boardwalk you can find many bars and restaurants. This makes for a very lively part of the beach. You can also find some shops here to buy clothes and holiday equipment. The boardwalk is accessible by wheelchair as well.
There is one part of Praia de Monte Gordo where you can see a lot of fishing boats and local fishermen working on their nets. You can also see nets drying in the sun. If you are here early in the morning, you might even see fishermen bringing in the catch of the day. It is a very typical image of the Algarve.
Praia de Monte Gordo is one huge stretch of beach. This makes it perfect for taking a long beach walk.
If you want to escape the crowds, just walk east in the direction of Praia de Santo António. You will find that this beach is much more quiet. Another option is to walk to the west, in the direction of Praia Verde. If you want, you could walk west, all the way to Cacela Velha. This beach walk would take about 2-3 hours.
On the beach of Monte Gordo there are several water sports available. The emphasis here lies more on relaxed water sports, instead of the fast and extreme. For example, you can hire a canoe, a pedal boat or go stand-up paddle boarding.
Mata Nacional das Dunas de Vila Real de Santo António
Monte Gordo is surrounded by beautiful nature. There is a path from Monte Gordo to Vila Real de Santo António, through a big pine forest called Mata Nacional das Dunas de Vila Real de Santo António. The path is very popular for hiking and biking and the smell of pine trees makes you happy.
In Monte Gordo you can find plenty of restaurants. You can already find more than 10 restaurant right on the beach, but there are also some really good restaurants only a few minutes of walking away. Since there are many Portuguese tourists coming here, you will find that restaurants in the area have excellent value for money.
Our favourite restaurants near Praia de Monte Gordo are:
- Vale do Douro. This Portuguese restaurant offers tasty fish and meat dishes. Even the tourist menu offers a good taste of the local cuisine. Good service as well.
- Wow sushi bar. If you like sushi, go here. The quality of the fish is excellent and the flavours are very rich. One of the best sushi restaurants in the eastern Algarve. Good cocktails as well.
- Maharaja Patiala Tandoori Restaurant. This Indian restaurant has delicious food at relatively low prices. Good blend of spices, which can be served according to your preference. The curry in particular is very tasty here.
There are many good hotels in Monte Gordo. All of them are within a short walking distance from the beach. Below you can find our absolute favourite hotels in Monte Gordo:
- Hotel Alba. This four star hotel has spacious rooms with a private balcony. There is also a nice sun terrace with an outdoor swimming pool. Good service as well. Located 500 metres from Monte Gordo beach.
- The Prime Energize. This luxurious four star hotel offers everything you need for a great holiday in the eastern Algarve. There is a rooftop swimming pool, a good restaurant, an outdoor terrace and several spa facilities as well. It is possible to rent a bike, so you can explore the area on two wheels.
- Casa da Praia. This guest house is located right near the beach. It offers simple, but clean and comfortable rooms. Very good value for money.
After the busy summer season of last year, we recommend to book your hotel now, as it will probably sell out. Below you can find a map with the location of hotels in Monte Gordo. By changing the date of your holiday, the map will show you the current prices.
Monte Gordo was originally a fishing town, but has turned into a resort for tourists since the second half of the 20th century. In the town you can find many restaurants, bars, shops and even a casino. The main road of Monte Gordo divides the beach from the rest of the town. The streets in the town are wide and you can find a couple of small squares. Everything in the town is within walking distance.
Monte Gordo is not a town with a lot of history. It is a seaside resort, with the purpose to accommodate tourists. At the same time, there is no hectic tourist vibe here. The atmosphere is pretty relaxed. The buildings are relatively new, compared to other towns in the Algarve. If you are looking for culture, it is better to go to Tavira or Vila Real de Santo António.
If you would like to go on a day trip, you have several options. You can go to the historic town of Tavira, which is one of the most beautiful towns in the Algarve. Or you could go to Vila Real de Santo António, which is the town that lies at the Guadiana river, which is the border with Spain. You could even go to the Spanish town of Ayamonte, just across the Guadiana river. Another option is to go to Castro Marim. In this picturesque small town you can find a historic castle, church and fortress. It is a beautiful small village, with a lot of history. Great to visit for a couple of hours.
Monte Gordo is a nice seaside resort, but there are much more things to see in the eastern Algarve. Going on an excursion is a great way to discover this region and learn more about it. For example, you could go on a boat trip along the Guadiana river. Or you could go to the Sapal nature reserve. Or take a tour through the countryside and visit small towns that you wouldn’t go to otherwise. Below you can find our favourite excursions in the area.
How to get there
The easiest way to move around in the Algarve is by car. If you don’t have one, make sure to rent a car. Monte Gordo is easy to reach by car. Just follow the N125 national road in the direction of Vila Real de Santo António, and take the first exit on the roundabout to M125-7. You will see signs indicating Monte Gordo. There is a big car park behind the beach. Parking is free. From the car park it is only a short walk to the beach.
Monte Gordo has all the facilities you need for a great beach holiday in the Algarve. There are lifeguard overlooking the beach. You can rent two sunbeds and an umbrella for 16 euros per day. And there are plenty of restaurants, bars, toilets and shower facilities around the beach.
Facilities in Monte Gordo:
- Restaurants: yes
- Bar/club: yes
- Toilet: yes
- Shower: yes
- Water sports: yes
- Sunbeds: yes
- Free parking: yes
- Lifeguards: yes
- Blue flag beach: yes