The soul of the Algarve

Tavira is located in the east coast of the Algarve.

It sets apart for its architectonic approach, which makes it one of the most interesting cities in the region.

With an important heritage and legacy from Romans and Arabs, Tavira assures pleasure in this search.


Architectonically, Tavira has large plazas, narrow streets, surrounded by churches and singular monuments. 

The pavement streets of the historical centre keep the romantic atmosphere of the past. The rooftops of Tavira are unique and interesting, together with the whitewashed fronts and the detailed chimneys,   they build up a clear influence of its past.

In the past, the chimneys revealed the social status of its possessors; the greatness of the detail, geometrical shapes and lacework patterns revealed the social status of the owners.
























Culture and history

Tavira’s origins date back to VIII b.C., when Tavira became one of the first Phoenician settlements of the Iberian West.


Throughout centuries, the city was conquered over and over, by Romans and Arabs, who left their marks behind, such as massive walls built around, unconventional monuments and buildings, some of them still can be seen nowadays.


Gilão River

Tavira is located on the margins of Gilão River’s mouth, crossed over by a bridge of seven arches. This bridge under the warm light of the sunset inspires painters and photographers.

In a setting of light and beauty embedded by the blue sky and sea, is Santa Luzia. Measuring 1062 ac, it’s a small parish and has 1.455 inhabitants. Located ca. 1, 20 miles from Tavira, this village has in its very essence the mores and stories of fishermen.


According with the records, Santa Luzia has its origins in 1577 when the fishermen built a hermitage to a saint with the same name, a Sicilian martyr and protector of those who suffer from the eyes. Santa Luzia became the village’s patroness.


The history of the village has always been related to the sea. In the beginning trough the art of fishing with beach seines and hooks. In later years the fishermen of the village turned their talents wholeheartedly to catching octopus and to this end lower clay pots to the sea bed in the shallower waters to lure the octopus in. Today Santa Luzia is still known as “Octopus Capital”.


Years later, specifically on the 29th December 1984, Santa Luzia detached from its parish and became a village in 1999.


Today, Santa Luzia is still a fishermen village, but also welcomes tourism, boasting accommodation, restaurants and high quality beaches. Known as “Octopus Capital”, Santa Luzia offers its visitors an experience of relaxation and well being.

Barril Beach

Location:Santa Luzia | GPS coordinates: 37.0930, -7.6753


How to get there: In Road N125 follow directions to “Barril/Sta Luzia”, follow the main road trough the complex Pedras d’el Rei until the shore.

Access to the beach: Walking or by touristic train

Parking: Free parking in the entrance


Lifeguarded beach during summer season

Blue flag: since 1987

Services: First Aid, wc and showers, bar, restaurant, shades and loungers for rent, water sports for rent,...


Terra Estreita Beach

Location: Santa Luzia | GPS coordinates: 37.1012, -7.6586


Access to the beach: By boat. Pier is located in Santa Luzia.

Parking: in Santa Luzia’s avenue


Lifeguarded beach during summer season

Blue flag: since 1987

Services: Wc, bar, restaurant, shades and loungers for rent.


Ilha Beach

Location: Tavira island | GPS coordinates (pier): 37.1165, -7.6293


Access to the beach: By boat, Tavira pear, near the old local daily market, or near the Quatro Águas pear.

Parking: For free, in the parkings os the Bowling and in the Quatro Águas avenue. 


Lifeguarded beach during summer season

Blue flag: since 1987

Services: WC, supermarket campsite, restaurants, bars, shades and loungers for rent.

Homem Nú Beach

Official naturist beach

Location: West point of the island


Access to the beach: Through “Praia do Barril”, or by boat (booking needed) pier in front of the Restaurant “Fialho”.

Parking: Free, in front of “Praia do Barril”


Beach not guarded

Blue flag: since 1987

Services: Not available.