Praia do Almargem - Natural sandy beach at the mouth of a river
Praia do Almargem beach lies on the Portuguese Algarve at Quarteira, roughly half way between Albufeira and Faro, and is also known as Cavalo Preto. It's part of an approximately 17 kilometre long area of sand that stretches from the harbour in Quarteira to Faro airport, and where one beach flows seamlessly into the next. Compared with the two beaches to the east, which lie closer to Quarteira, things are more peaceful and less touristy here.
At the back of the beach there are some dunes with wooded areas of cork oaks and pine trees. Ribeira do Almargem river flows between them, although in dry seasons it forms a lagoon landscape here rather than reaching all the way to the sea. It's not suitable for bathing, but the flora and fauna here do lend extra appeal to Praia do Almargem beach and provide a world full of little attractions, especially for nature lovers. The conservation area is particularly good for bird watching.
Despite being largely unspoiled, Praia do Almargem does offer its visitors a bit of infrastructure: sun loungers and straw beach umbrellas are available to hire and there is a sophisticated restaurant with a large outdoor area, which serves superb fish dishes in an unpretentious setting. There is also a volleyball pitch and a friendly water sports operator with plenty to offer.