Praia Dona Ana is one of the most famous beaches in the Algarve region, Portugal.
With a large sandy area and stunning sea stacks and cliffs, the beach has it all.
Below is my guide to help you plan your visit to Dona Ana beach, Lagos, with map, photos and tips.
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Why visit Dona Ana Beach in Algarve?
Praia Dona Ana is one of the most beautiful beaches in the Algarve and in Portugal.
It is definitively a must see in the region of Lagos as it offers:
- Impressive cliffs and sea stacks
- Golden sand
- Colorful rock formations at low tide
Below is a picture that says it all. One giant stack in the middle, beautiful sand and the larger formations in the background. Photographers love this beach!
Video - virtual visit
And if you need more images to be convinced, check out my short video to see what your visit could look like.
Why is the beach called Dona Ana?
Apparently, the name Dona Ana came from a nun called Ana who lived in a convent in Lagos.
She was the sole survivor of an attack during World War I, thanks to a tunnel leading to the beach.
More photos and details after the planning tips.
Planning tips and Map - Praia Dona Ana, Lagos
Where is Praia Dona Ana Beach in the Algave? Map
- On the West side of the Algarve Coast
- South of the city center of Lagos, Portugal
- Lagos Portimao to Dona Ana beach = 5min drive
- Portimao to Dona Ana beach = 30min drive
- Albufeira to Dona Ana beach = 45min drive
- 5 min drive East of the famous cliffs of Ponta da Piedade.
- Below is a map to help you locate Lagos on the Coast:
This location with its GPS coordinates and planning info is included in my eBooks to help you plan your Portugal road trip:
How to get to Praia Dona Ana Beach
- 2.5km from the center of Lagos
- By car or on foot from Lagos
- Take the bus (line 2),
- In Summer, there is also a touristic train
- In summer, the carpark would get full quickly (very limited spaces).
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- Better to explore at low tide to be able to walk around the formations and see them from various angles
- Facilities and restaurant around the beach
- 93 steps to reach the beach
- Good colors of the cliffs at sunrise
- Safe for swimming and well protected from the wind at the back
- The surrounding coast has lots of rock formations and some caves. It is a great idea to enjoy a boat tour or kayak tour - Check out some water tour options
Accommodations in Lagos Portugal
I strongly recommend to spend at least one night in the area to explore the beaches and watch the sunset at Ponta da Piedade.
There are a many hotels and apartments right next to the Dona Ana Beach and even more just 5 min walk away. It is a great location to have an easy access to some of the most beautiful spots in Algarve.
- I stayed not far from Dona Ana at the beautiful Uma Casa a Beira Sol. If you want a place to relax close to everything but in a garden protected from the tourists, this is what you need. And the breakfast in the garden is amazing! Check out availability and photos
- Right next to the beach, you can find the Carvi Beach Hotel - Check out availability and pictures
- And if you prefer apartments by the beach, there are the spacious Villa Doris Suites - Check out availability and photos
- For Lagos, Portugal, here are the top rated hotels and apartments on Booking.com
Looking for the best place to stay in the Algarve?
Views from the cliffs
As you arrive at Dona Ana Beach from the carpark, there is a platform where you can enjoy beautiful views of the beach, the cliffs and the sea stacks.
Caution: note that the beach loses light 1h to 30 min before sunset.
Praia Dona Ana is 160m long and has all the facilities.
It is a very popular beach being located so close to the center of Lagos and being quite safe with small waves.
Towards the West, you can see the cliffs and sea stacks towards Praia do Camilo, another stunning Lagos beach which is a lot more secluded and smaller.
Access to Praia Dona Ana Algarve
There are 2 staircases to access Praia Dona Ana Lagos.
Like many of the Algarve beaches, there are many steps to reach the sand!
Here, at from the carpark to the beach, I counted 93 steps.
Dona Ana Beach restaurants
There is a small restaurant on the beach called Marisol.
Otherwise you can find cafés and restaurants nearby, at the top of the cliffs.
The rock formations
Once you are down you can explore the sea stacks, coves and cliffs. At low tide, you have access to a lot more!
The rock formations are stunning with colors varying in the yellows, oranges and reds. This was my favorite. It looks so different from whatever angles!
I did not swim, but it is apparently a good spot for snorkeling. There is quite abundant fauna and flora underwater around more rocks.
Sea Stacks at Praia Dona Ana Portugal
The sand at Dona Ana Beach is not the best. I have not found it very soft. But for those who like it, at low tide there are many shells!
At the Eastern tip of Praia Dona Ana Algarve Beach, there is a beautiful rock formation that looks like a wall but with a small arch under it. The proportion is really surprising.
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Other coves and Praia Do Pinhao
At the end of Praia Dona Ana Portugal, has been erected a kind of sea wall.
On the other side you can see the small cave beach which appears only at low tide (did not find its official name).
As you can see there is a small sea cave that is accessible at low tide. Great to protect yourself from the heat. But it gets filled up at high tide!
And in the continuity is Praia do Pinhao, a secluded beach that so far has been protected from tourism.
Want to see more of the Algarve and Portugal?
- 30 Most beautiful landscapes in Portugal - read article
- Best things to do in Portugal - read article
- The best beaches in Portugal - read article
- The best things to do in the Algarve region - read article
- Benagil cave and Algarve boat tours - read article
- The magnificent Ponta da Piedade - read article
- The famous Marinha beach - read article
- The unique Tres Irmaos beach - read article
- The magnificent orange cliffs of Praia da Falesia - read article
Planning a trip to Portugal?
Check out my travel guide to help you plan:
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