The Sagres to Salema Coastal Walk: A Comprehensive Guide

Embark on a journey along the stunning coastline from Sagres to Salema with our comprehensive guide. Uncover hidden gems, breathtaking views, and plan your perfect coastal adventure.

Whether you’re a seasoned hiker or a nature enthusiast, this guide offers insights, tips, and all the information you need for an unforgettable experience. Get ready to immerse yourself in the natural beauty of this picturesque coastal walk.

Brief Overview of the Sagres to Salema Coastal Walk

Embarking on the Sagres to Salema Coastal Walk is a journey through some of the most picturesque landscapes along the Portuguese coast.

Sagres to Salema Coastal Walk
Sagres to Salema Coastal Walk

This section provides a brief yet enticing overview of what awaits avid hikers and nature enthusiasts. From the rugged cliffs of Sagres to the tranquil shores of Salema, this coastal walk promises a diverse range of experiences.

The Sagres to Salema Route Overview

Category Details
Total distance 20 km / 12.4 mi
Time 5-6 hours
Total ascent 533 m
Total descent 555 m
Difficulty Moderate/Difficult
Starting point The information office in Sagres
Finishing point The parking lot at Salema Beach
Walking route Sagres – Martinhal Beach – Rebolinhos Beach – Barranco Beach – Ingrina Beach – Zavial Beach – Praia das Furnas – Figueira Beach – Salema

Detailed Sagres to Salema Route Overview

How long is the walk?

The journey from Sagres to Salema spans a total distance of 20 kilometers, a delightful trek that typically requires an average of 5 to 6 hours to complete. However, the actual duration may vary based on individual pacing and the extent of pauses taken along the way.

To fully savor the picturesque surroundings and make the most of the stunning beaches lining the trail, it is advisable to allocate a more leisurely timeframe of 7 to 8 hours. This extended duration ensures ample opportunity to appreciate the scenic beauty, take breaks, and relish the tranquil ambiance of the coastal landscapes.

Where does the route start and end?

What is the starting point and endpoint of the Sagres to Salema walking route?

Embarking on the Sagres to Salema walking trail initiates at the information office in Sagres, conveniently situated near Mareta Beach. Here, a wooden board displaying a comprehensive map of the trail and a directional sign pointing towards Salema serves as your guide. Rather than traversing through the town itself, you have the option to embark on a loop.

Sagres to Salema Route Overview
Sagres to Salema Route Overview

From Mareta Beach, venture along the cliff tops by the coast, passing through the Ponta da Atalaia lookout point. While this detour adds approximately 2.5 kilometers to your overall distance, the captivating vistas of Mareta Beach, Sagres Fortress, and the harbor make it a rewarding experience. To return to the official trail, head to Pinóquio Café in Rua Cmte Matoso.

This section of the trail concludes at the parking lot of Salema Beach. For those with an adventurous spirit, the journey doesn’t necessarily end there. You have the option to extend your walk by following the Fishermen’s Trail, leading from Salema to Praia da Luz and onward from Praia da Luz to Lagos, allowing you to explore even more of the stunning coastal landscapes.

How difficult is the Sagres to Salema walk?

What is the level of difficulty associated with the Sagres to Salema walk? The Sagres to Salema walk, encompassing one of the 13 stages of the Fisherman’s Trail, is renowned for being the most demanding, particularly in its latter half.

Sagres to Salema Route
Sagres to Salema Route

The second segment of the trail involves a continuous ascent and descent along the cliffs, presenting a formidable challenge for hikers.

Can the trail be walked in both directions?

Is it possible to traverse the trail in both directions? Absolutely, the trail offers the flexibility of being walked in either direction—whether from west to east or east to west. The signage is in place for both orientations. Personally, I embarked on the journey from Sagres to Salema.

However, it’s worth noting that opting for the Salema to Sagres direction might be advantageous. Commencing the trail from Salema ensures that you tackle the more demanding sections at the beginning of the day, providing a refreshing start before the temperatures rise, and fatigue sets in.

Prospective hikers can confidently choose the direction that best suits their preferences and hiking strategies.

Is the trail well-marked?

Are there clear markers along the Sagres to Salema route? Certainly, the trail is well-marked, featuring distinct blue and green stripes adorning rocks, wooden poles, and trees to guide hikers along the way. Moreover, as you progress on the trail, you’ll encounter informative wooden signs displaying distances to the upcoming beaches or towns, enhancing the overall navigational experience.

The combination of painted markers and wooden signage ensures that hikers can confidently navigate the path and stay on course throughout their journey.

What is the scenery like?

The scenery along the Sagres to Salema trail is truly captivating. Throughout most of the day, hikers traverse the cliff tops along the coast, treated to breathtaking panoramic views of the sea. The route meanders through a plethora of stunning landscapes, including beautiful beaches, scenic lookout points, and charming small bays.

Additionally, there are two brief stretches along the trail that lead inland, providing hikers with a delightful journey through the countryside. The diversity of the surroundings ensures a visually enriching experience, making the Sagres to Salema trail a feast for nature enthusiasts.

What are the highlights of the Sagres to Salema walk?

Undoubtedly, the entire trail itself stands out as a highlight, with its most remarkable segments being the coastal stretches. The journey unfolds amid rugged cliffs, sandy beaches, dramatic precipices, captivating lookout points, and charming rocky pools.

Highlighted Stops Along the Way:

  1. Martinhal Beach
  2. Barranco Beach
  3. Ingrina Beach
  4. Zavial Beach
  5. Praia das Furnas
  6. Figueira Beach
  7. Salema Beach

These distinctive locations contribute to the trail’s allure, each offering its own unique charm and adding to the overall richness of the Sagres to Salema walking experience.

When is the best time for walking?

Optimal Time for Sagres to Salema Walk

Time Period Conditions Recommendations
April and May Warm, sunny weather; vibrant wildflowers Ideal for hiking and birdwatching
Winter Months Pleasant weather; chance of rain and wind Suitable for walking, generally agreeable
July, August, and first half of September Absence of rain; heightened heat Start early to avoid midday heat; peak tourist season
June, second half of September, and October Warm and sunny; less crowded Optimal alternatives for a serene and enjoyable journey

The prime period for embarking on the Sagres to Salema walk is during the spring months of April and May, offering favorable hiking conditions in the Algarve. These months bring warm, sunny weather, adorning the coastal fields with vibrant wildflowers. It’s an ideal time for both hiking and birdwatching.

Winter months present another suitable window for walking, providing pleasant weather without the intensity of summer heat. While generally agreeable, there is a chance of encountering a few rainy and windy days.

For those considering a summer trek, particularly in July, August, and the first half of September, the advantage lies in the absence of rain. However, the trade-off is the heightened heat. It is strongly recommended to commence the walk early to conclude before the midday temperatures peak. Keep in mind that these months mark the peak tourist season in the Algarve, resulting in increased crowds and higher prices.

The months of June, the latter half of September, and October emerge as optimal alternatives. During this period, the weather remains warm and sunny, providing a pleasant hiking experience. Moreover, the trail is less crowded compared to the peak summer months, offering a more serene and enjoyable journey.

How to get to Sagres?

How to Reach Sagres

From Transport Details
Lagos Bus #47 (Vamus Bus) Multiple departures, 1-hour travel time, 3 euros fare
Bus stops at Sagres bus stop in front of the information office at Jardim de Sagres
Lisbon Direct Bus Approximately 4 hours and 30 minutes travel time
Departures from Sete Rios bus station, frequency varies based on day and season
Approximately 23 euros per person
Check Rede Expressos website for additional details

Accessing Sagres is convenient through direct bus services from both Lisbon and Lagos. Bus #47 (Vamus Bus) operates multiple departures from Lagos throughout the day, with a travel time of approximately 1 hour from Lagos Bus Station to Sagres. The fare for this journey is 3 euros, and the bus conveniently stops at the Sagres bus stop in front of the information office at Jardim de Sagres.

For travelers journeying from Lisbon to Sagres by bus, the commute extends to approximately 4 hours and 30 minutes. Direct buses depart from Sete Rios bus station in Lisbon, with the frequency varying depending on the day of the week and the season. Weekends typically offer more bus options. The cost for this route is approximately 23 euros per person. Additional details can be obtained from the Rede Expressos website.

The route map

Navigate the Sagres to Salema Coastal Walk with confidence using our detailed route map. This section of the guide provides an interactive map with key waypoints, trail markers, and points of interest.

Walk Description: Sagres to Salema Coastal Trail

Embark on the picturesque Sagres to Salema Coastal Walk, commencing from the information office in Sagres. The trail begins by following the main street, Rua Cmte Matoso, leading to a left turn onto Rua Jaime Conde, just before Pinóquio Café.

Key Trail Highlights:

  1. Praia do Martinhal (1.7 km/1 mi): Start your journey at this beautiful beach. After a 300m walk on the beach, the trail loops past Nortada Beach Bar. Martinhal Beach is renowned for its excellent swimming conditions and is the first beach on the way from Sagres to Salema.
  2. Praia dos Rebolinhos (2.7 km/1.6 mi): Encounter a small rocky beach on your coastal exploration.
  3. Inland Fields (Between 2.7 km/1.6 mi and 6.5 km/4 mi): Traverse through scenic fields as the trail briefly goes inland.
  4. Barranco Beach (7.5 km/4.6 mi): Discover a hidden sandy beach, popular among campervans.
  5. Ingrina Beach (10 km/6.2 mi): Visit a small sandy beach with a restaurant, though it only accepts cash. Note its 10 am opening time, closed on Tuesdays.
  6. Zavial Beach (10.7 km/6.6 mi): Explore a busy surfing beach with a restaurant that opens at 11 am, closed on Mondays. Opt for the beach descent or the trail on the cliffs to conserve energy.
  7. Praia das Furnas (13.6 km/8.4 mi): Encounter a challenging part of the walk with a steep descent to a beautiful sandy beach. The route continues with non-stop ascents and descents along the cliffs.
  8. Inland Gravel Road (Between 13.6 km/8.4 mi and 16.6 km/10.3 mi): Traverse inland on a gravel road over the hills.
  9. Figueira Beach (17 km/10.5 mi): Experience a steep descent to Figueira Beach, followed by an ascent past the ruins of a small fort.
  10. Praia Santa (17.5 km/10.8 mi): Navigate a steep and tricky descent to Praia Santa, succeeded by another ascent.
  11. Salema Arrival (19 km/11.8 mi): Reach the first houses of Salema on this segment of the trail.
  12. Salema Beach (20 km/12.4 mi): Conclude your coastal journey at the beautiful Salema Beach.

From Sagres to Salema: Fishermen’s Trail section 11

What is the Fishermen’s Trail section 11?

The Fishermen’s Trail section 11 is a captivating segment of the larger Rota Vicentina network, known for its stunning coastal landscapes and cultural richness. This particular section, spanning from Sagres to Salema, offers hikers a unique perspective on the Algarve region.

The trail winds along the cliffs and shores, revealing breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean and showcasing the traditional fishing heritage of the area.

Our guide provides an in-depth exploration of the Fishermen’s Trail section 11, delving into its historical significance, natural beauty, and the cultural elements that make this hike a truly immersive experience for adventurers seeking a deeper connection with the coastal environment.

Hiking from Salema to Sagres

Embarking on the Fishermen’s Trail section 11 from Salema to Sagres promises a memorable journey through diverse terrains and coastal wonders. This section of the guide outlines the specific highlights, challenges, and key points of interest as you trek from Salema to Sagres.

Whether you’re fascinated by the geological formations along the cliffs, the local flora and fauna, or the remnants of traditional fishing communities, our guide ensures you’re well-informed and prepared for the unique experiences that unfold during this hike.

From the moment you set foot on the trail in Salema to the triumphant arrival in the historic town of Sagres, this section provides a comprehensive overview, making your Fishermen’s Trail adventure a truly enriching and unforgettable experience.

Elevation and Track Types

The Sagres to Salema Coastal Walk offers a diverse terrain, making it a captivating journey for hiking enthusiasts. The track types encompass a variety of landscapes, providing a rich and dynamic experience throughout the trail.

Track Types:

  1. Dirt Road (1.6 km): Traverse through a rustic dirt road, adding an authentic touch to the coastal walk.
  2. Forested/Wild Trail (2.4 km): Immerse yourself in nature as you navigate a forested or wild trail, surrounded by the beauty of untouched landscapes.
  3. Path (3.8 km): Follow designated paths, enhancing the guided experience and ensuring a structured route through various scenic elements.
  4. Road (0.9 km): Encounter sections of the trail that lead through roads, offering a different perspective and perhaps a glimpse into local life.
  5. Unknown (7.1 km): Embrace the element of the unknown as a substantial portion of the trail ventures through unmarked terrain, adding an element of exploration and adventure.

Elevation Profile:

  • Distance: Covering a total distance of 15.8 km, the walk spans through a range of track types, ensuring a diverse and engaging hiking experience.
  • Duration: With a total duration of 4 hours and 38 minutes, hikers have ample time to absorb the scenic beauty and appreciate the various track types along the way.
  • Ascent: Ascend through the coastal landscapes with a total ascent of 325 meters, providing both a physical challenge and rewarding views from elevated vantage points.
  • Descent: Descend through the trail with a total descent of 305 meters, allowing for a balanced and varied terrain experience.
  • Highest Point: Reach an elevation of 71 meters, offering a high point that showcases panoramic vistas and marks a significant milestone in the coastal journey.

The combination of different track types, elevation changes, and a variety of landscapes make the Sagres to Salema Coastal Walk an enticing adventure for those seeking a diverse and scenic hiking experience along the Algarve coastline.

Hiking Trip Checklist – Sagres to Salema:

  1. Comfortable Hiking Shoes: Ensure sturdy, comfortable footwear suitable for varying terrains.
  2. Weather-Appropriate Clothing: Dress in layers and consider weather conditions, including a waterproof jacket and a hat.
  3. Backpack: Carry a lightweight, well-fitted backpack for essentials and personal items.
  4. Water and Hydration System: Bring an ample supply of water and a hydration system for convenient access.
  5. Snacks and Meals: Pack energy-boosting snacks and a packed meal for sustenance during the hike.
  6. Navigation Tools: Include a map, compass, or GPS device to navigate the trail.
  7. Sun Protection: Apply sunscreen, wear sunglasses, and carry a wide-brimmed hat for sun protection.
  8. First Aid Kit: Carry a basic first aid kit with bandages, pain relievers, and any personal medications.
  9. Mobile Phone: Ensure your phone is fully charged and carry a portable charger.
  10. Identification: Carry identification, emergency contact information, and relevant permits.
  11. Weather-Appropriate Gear: Pack a lightweight jacket, gloves, and a hat for unexpected weather changes.
  12. Multi-Tool or Knife: Include a small multi-tool or knife for practical uses.
  13. Headlamp or Flashlight: Bring a headlamp or flashlight with extra batteries for low-light conditions.
  14. Camera or Smartphone: Capture the scenic beauty along the trail.
  15. Trash Bags: Follow Leave No Trace principles; pack out all trash.
  16. Emergency Whistle: Carry a whistle for emergency signaling.
  17. Hiking Poles: Consider trekking poles for added stability, especially on challenging terrain.

Practical Tips for Hiking Sagres to Salema:

  1. Check Weather Conditions: Monitor weather forecasts and plan accordingly. Be prepared for sudden changes.
  2. Start Early: Begin your hike early in the day to avoid midday heat and allow sufficient time to complete the trail.
  3. Inform Someone: Let someone know about your hiking plans, including your expected return time.
  4. Stay Hydrated: Drink water regularly to stay hydrated, especially in warmer weather.
  5. Follow Trail Markings: Pay attention to trail markings and signs to stay on the designated path.
  6. Respect Nature: Adhere to Leave No Trace principles; avoid disturbing wildlife and stick to established trails.
  7. Emergency Contacts: Save emergency contact numbers and local authorities’ information in your phone.
  8. Wildlife Precautions: Be aware of local wildlife and take necessary precautions, especially in forested areas.
  9. Rest and Pace Yourself: Take breaks to rest and enjoy the surroundings. Pace yourself to avoid fatigue.
  10. Carry a Trail Map: Even with GPS, having a physical trail map is a useful backup.
  11. Stay on Designated Paths: Avoid shortcuts or creating new paths to protect the environment.
  12. Check Gear Beforehand: Ensure all gear is in good condition before starting the hike.
  13. Trail Etiquette: Yield to other hikers, and be courteous on the trail.
  14. Be Mindful of Terrain: Watch your step, especially on uneven or rocky terrain.
  15. Leave Information: If possible, inform the information office or someone reliable about your hiking plans.

By following this checklist and practical tips, you can make the Sagres to Salema hike a safe and enjoyable experience, surrounded by the natural beauty of the Algarve coastline.

Discovering the Coast

Embarking on the Sagres to Salema Coastal Walk is a journey of discovery, where every step reveals the breathtaking beauty of the coastal landscape. From rugged cliffs offering panoramic views of the Atlantic Ocean to hidden coves with pristine sandy beaches.

Points of interest are scattered along the coast, each with its own story and significance. Whether it’s the historical Fortaleza de Sagres, charming fishing villages, or geological formations, our guide provides insights into these landmarks. Learn about the cultural and natural heritage that defines the Sagres to Salema Coastal Walk, enriching your journey with a deeper understanding of the region’s history and ecology.

Getting from Sagres to Salema

Getting from Sagres to Salema offers multiple transportation options, each catering to different preferences and budgets. Here’s a breakdown of the three available choices:

**1. *Recommended Option: Line 47 Bus*

  • Duration: 25 minutes
  • Cost: €2 – €7
  • Description: The recommended option is to take the Line 47 bus, a convenient and cost-effective choice for travelers. This option provides a scenic journey, covering approximately 17 km from Sagres to Salema. With buses running regularly, it offers flexibility for your travel schedule.

2. Alternative Option: Taxi

  • Duration: 19 minutes
  • Cost: €20 – €24
  • Description: For a more direct and private travel experience, the taxi option takes you from Sagres to Salema in approximately 19 minutes. This is a suitable choice for those who prefer a quicker and more personalized transportation method.

3. Alternative Option: Drive

  • Duration: 19 minutes
  • Cost: €3 – €5
  • Description: If you prefer the freedom of driving, you can take your own car from Sagres to Salema. This option allows you to enjoy the flexibility of your own schedule and explore the route at your own pace.

Additional Information:

  • Bus Details: The bus journey, operated by VAMUS – Transportes do Algarve, takes around 25 minutes, with 53 buses running weekly. While the average duration is 25 minutes, it’s advisable to check for any schedule variations, especially on weekends and holidays.

Choosing the transportation option that suits your preferences and schedule is key to ensuring a smooth and enjoyable journey from Sagres to Salema. Whether you opt for the scenic bus ride, the convenience of a taxi, or the flexibility of driving, each choice offers a unique travel experience along the beautiful Algarve coastline.


Choosing the right accommodation is a crucial aspect of planning your Sagres to Salema Coastal Walk adventure. This section of the guide provides insights into various places to stay in both Sagres and Salema, catering to different preferences and budgets. In Sagres, you’ll find a range of options, from cozy guesthouses and boutique hotels to beachfront resorts.

Places to stay in Sagres

Sagres offers a diverse selection of accommodations that cater to the needs of hikers and travelers. From budget-friendly hostels for solo adventurers to family-friendly resorts and charming bed and breakfasts, our guide provides a curated list of places to stay in Sagres.

Places to stay in Salema

As you approach the endpoint of your coastal walk in Salema, the village offers a charming array of accommodations overlooking the picturesque coastline. Our guide details the places to stay in Salema, providing information on seaside resorts, family-run guesthouses, and cozy apartments.

Explore the options that suit your preferences, whether you’re seeking a beachfront retreat, a cozy spot in the heart of the village, or a secluded escape surrounded by nature.


In conclusion, the Sagres to Salema Coastal Walk is a captivating journey that seamlessly blends natural beauty, diverse landscapes, and cultural exploration. This comprehensive guide equips adventurers with essential information, from trail details and elevation profiles to practical tips and transport options. Whether you’re drawn to the rugged cliffs, hidden beaches, or charming villages, this guide ensures that every step of the coastal walk is enriched with insights and guidance. Embark on this coastal odyssey, where the Algarve’s stunning scenery unfolds, creating lasting memories for those who traverse this picturesque trail from Sagres to Salema.

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