Clustered with whitewashed houses, Aljezur is one of the most beautiful towns in the western Algarve. On one side of the Ribeira de Aljezur is the oldest part of the town, which was established in the 10th century by the Moors, while the other side was settled in the 18th century following a malaria outbreak.
Things to do in Aljezur
Dominating the main square of Aljezur is the Igreja de Nossa Senhora da Alva, a white church built following the 1755 earthquake that destroyed much of the town. Step inside to admire the gilded altarpiece depicting Our Lady of the Dawn and the Manueline-style baptismal font, then relax in one of the alfresco cafes surrounding the church.
Perched on a hilltop overlooking the Ribeira de Aljezur are the ruins of a medieval castle believed to date from the 13th century. It was constructed on the site of a Moorish castle, which was taken by forces commanded by the Master of the Military Order of St. James. Marvel at its soaring tower, imposing walls and two silos while enjoying the sweeping views towards the Monchique highlands.
Aljezur is close to spectacular beaches, several of which lie within Parque Natural do Sudoeste Alentejano e Costa Vicentina. Follow the steep trail that descends to the golden beach of Praia da Arrifana or relax on Carrapateira’s wide crescent of sand. You can also visit the Cape of São Vicente Lighthouse. Parque Natural do Sudoeste Alentejano e Costa Vicentina is also a popular birdwatching destination.
Getting around Aljezur
Aljezur is a 30-minute drive from Lagos and just over an hour from Faro Airport, which has seasonal flights to destinations across Europe. Buses connect Aljezur to towns and villages across the Algarve region and the centre of the town is compact enough to explore on foot.