1 December, 2021       LISBON - MAX. A blend of sun and clouds with a couple of showers late this afternoonº, MIN. 14º

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Folders  |  Praia da Ursa, the most beautiful beach in the Lisbon area
Praia da Ursa, the most beautiful beach in the Lisbon area
Luis Matos
Praia da Ursa, the most beautiful beach in the Lisbon area
Lisbon is a very lucky city: it has a gentle and pleasant climate and is also close to some lovely beaches, many of outstanding natural beauty. One of these is the Praia da Ursa, close to the Cabo da Roca (Cape Roca), equally worth a visit for its magnificence, splendid never-ending views and because it is the most western point in Europe.

Enough digression… To reach Praia da Ursa you will need to walk… quite a lot in fact (you have been warned!). Take the road that ends at Cabo da Roca then continue on foot by the dirt track to the right, or indeed any path that goes north from the Cabo da Roca point. If you pay attention, between spring and summer, you will find some rare examples of cravos romanos (also called Armeria pseudarmeria: a flower typical of this part of the coastline) along the paths. You will then arrive at the first creek — the charming Praia da Aroeira with its strange, almost hand-crafted, arch-shaped Pedra do Cavalo at its northern end. However, as this is hard to get to and the sand is rarely uncovered, we recommend continuing your journey to the next beach, Praia da Ursa.

When you arrive, access the beach by the south side, where there is a slightly tricky but totally feasible ramp.

On this stunning, practically deserted beach (where I regularly walk my Golden Retriever called Lana), nude bathing is allowed and there is never any problem in finding space to lie down in the sand.  In fact, there is an abundance of space here: it is one of the only beaches in the area where you will not trample on other people’s towels, nor rub shoulders with other bathers when in the water…

The walk to the beach is about 3 km (30/40 minutes at normal pace). A small price to pay for paradise! As well as being nearly deserted and magnificent, the beach is protected from the waves, which makes it one of the best beaches for swimming.

If you are adventurous, you can continue walking northwards by climbing the rocks that seem to have steps worn into them on the north side (it’s not easy to pass: if you get stuck we recommend you go via the south side, the same way you came down). You then pass by a narrow river that arrives on the beach as a waterfall. Continue northwards, along the cliff, skirting Praia do Cavalo, then follow the paths that lead to Praia da Adraga – another beautiful beach (but very busy, because it has a car park), where you will find the wonderful Restaurante da Adraga, always serving fresh fish and clams you can never get too many of (best to book ahead).

Don’t forget to wear sensible and comfortable shoes (avoid sandals and flip flips), take lots of water with you as well as fruit, sunscreen, a hat, and if you want to spend the day at the beach, a picnic!

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