Tavira Island in Algarve – Top Tips for 2021!

There are many attractions on Tavira Island (Ilha de Tavira)! Magnificent sand that stretches along the natural park of the beautiful ria. Crystal clear, calm waters and a perfect beach for families with children!

TAVIRA ISLAND

The beach of Tavira Island is near the bar, between the Atlantic Ocean and the Ria Formosa. There we find a humanized area with holiday homes, a campsite, and some bars and restaurants. The island is located south of Tavira and is 12 kilometers long. It belongs to the natural park of the Ria Formosa and during the high season, it is much sought after by national and foreign tourists.

tavira island ilha de tavira

The beach has a blue flag and is famous for the quality of its surroundings. Those who like to do seabird watching will find the Ria Formosa’s channels a perfect option. It is formed by 4 beaches: Tavira Island beach, Terra Estreita beach, Barril beach, and Homem Nu Nu beach. The beach, for being quite long (7 kilometers), is always enough for everyone to find a wide and little frequented space. A 5-minute walk is enough to get away from the area where more people gather. The sand has surveillance during the high season.

WHERE IS TAVIRA ISLAND?

Tavira Island is just 8 kilometers by car from the center of Tavira. A distance you can cover in less than 10 minutes (if you drive) to the pier. It is separated from Cabanas Island (to the east by Tavira’s bar) and from Fuzeta Island (to the west by Fuzeta’s bar). The current Tavira island is what remains of the old island, a tongue of sand that connected the Fuzeta bar to Cacela and that today has two strands of sand. This separation happened in 1926 (when the Tavira bar was opened). If you’re leaving from Lisbon, get ready for 305 kilometers that can be done in 2h50.

HOW TO GO TO TAVIRA ISLAND?

The connection to the beaches on Tavira Island can be made by boat or with the help of a small tourist train.

BOAT (DEPARTURE FROM TAVIRA CENTRE AND FROM THE 4 WATERS (4 ÁGUAS TOWN))

The connection to the island of Tavira can be made by the Ferry boat. You can use two connections. The first route departs from the center of Tavira. The second option departs from the renovated 4 waters quay (a small town 2 kilometers from the central area of Tavira). Both routes end at the same quay. After leaving the ferry, you will have to take a 400-meter walk to reach the beach (the route is between pine trees).

FERRY BOAT TAVIRA ISLAND
FERRY BOAT TO TAVIRA ISLAND

We suggest you take the boat to the city center as it has a pre-defined schedule (from June to September there are departures every 30 minutes). The crossing takes 20 minutes and the Ria Formosa Natural Park is very pleasant. During the low season, the times are intermittent. If you choose the 4 waters wharf, know that the crossing only happens when there is sufficient demand.

PRICE – BOAT CROSSING
ADULT: 1,90 (round trip)
CHILDREN: $1.30 (round trip)

TRAIN CROSSING

If you are staying at Pedras Del Rei, you have a train at your disposal that you can use to the pedestrian bridge that connects you to the continent. To know everything about this option consult our article about Barril beach.

WATER TEMPERATURE IN TAVIRA ISLAND

The temperature of the seawater in this area of the Algarve is almost always higher than in all the other beaches of the country. The temperature varies (usually) between 16 degrees (winter) and 23 degrees (summer). In the graph that follows, the yellow line represents the average of the registers since 1984. The black lines represent the most extreme records (bottom and top).

WATER TEMPERATURE TAVIRA ISLAND

MORE INFORMATION ABOUT TAVIRA ISLAND

HIKING IN TAVIRA ISLAND

The coast of the island of Tavira connects with two other beaches and are perfect for a walk. Praia da terra estreita (a quieter beach because it is less frequented) is about 20 minutes away and has a connection (by ferry) to the village of Santa Luzia.

HIKING ON THE ISLAND OF TAVIRA
HIKING ON THE ISLAND OF TAVIRA

DOGS IN TAVIRA ISLAND

Dogs are not allowed on the beaches (just like on almost every beach in the country). Animals are only allowed to go to beaches where this specific authorization is clearly displayed. On the remaining beaches in the country, it is forbidden to take animals (either for walking or to stay there). Violation of this rule leads to a fine of up to 2500 euros.

DOGS ON THE ISLAND OF TAVIRA
DOGS ON THE ISLAND OF TAVIRA

NATURISM AT TAVIRA BEACH

If you like naturism, know that the beach of the island of Tavira is very close to a beach that is called “Praia do homem Nu Nu”. To get there you have to take a GOOD walk from Tavira Island beach to the “Terra Estreita” beach, then to the beautiful “Praia do Barril” beach, then to the naturist beach and finally you will find the “Naked man’s beach”. Here is the map to guide you!

VIRTUAL TOUR TO TAVIRA ISLAND

ACTIVITIES NEAR TAVIRA ISLAND – RIA FORMOSA

As you know, the island of Tavira is bathed to the north by the Ria Formosa, a natural formation with 18,400 hectares (an extension of 60 km between Ancão and Manta Rota). The ria has unique characteristics regarding its fauna, flora and geology. In 1987, it was made official as a protected area and became a natural park or, in other words, a natural habitat for numerous animal and plant species.

If you are planning your visit to the beach on the island of Tavira, you can not miss some of the many activities that the Ria Formosa has to offer you. Houseboat rental, boat tours, dolphin watching, seahorse watching, bird watching (stilts among many others), sport fishing, massages on a sailboat and much more. See all the options through the site of tours in the ria formosa.

FLAMINGO WATCHING

OTHER ATTRACTIONS NEAR TAVIRA ISLAND

In the vicinity of the island of Tavira there are many villages and many interesting places to visit. If you’re going to spend a little longer on the island of Tavira, accept our challenge and also visit: Tavira, Cacela Velha, Vila Real de Santo António and Castro Marim. So that you can gauge distances and plan your trips more efficiently, we have prepared a map for you. We hope it will be useful!

TAVIRA
TAVIRA

There are 10 minutes between the island of Tavira and its town. Tavira is a different city, a place to revisit history! Here you will not find the same Algarve as in Albufeira, Vilamoura or Armação de Pera. A land that in times gone by was home to Phoenicians, Romans, Moors and Christians. Take your time because the town has a lot to offer. Here are some of the (many) attractions: castle, Roman bridge, historic center of Tavira, Islamic museum, church of santa maria do castelo, church of santiago, Tavira saltpans and much more.

CACELA VELHA
CACELA VELHA

From Tavira Island to Cacela Velha is a distance of 18 kilometers (21 minutes by car). Cacela Velha is still an oasis in an Algarve increasingly turned to mass tourism. A small village on a hilltop. Perhaps its discreet personality explains why it is still a place rarely visited by Portuguese and foreigners. Even so, Cacela Velha has several things of interest to see: its white houses, the fortress, a fabulous viewpoint and several restaurants offering unique delicacies (oysters in particular).   

VILA REAL DE SANTO ANTÓNIO
VILA REAL DE SANTO ANTÓNIO

31 minutes and 29 kilometers separate the island of Tavira from Vila Real de Santo António. Few people know that the city of Vila Real de Santo António was destroyed by the great earthquake of 1755 (the same one that decimated the city of Lisbon and was also felt in the Algarve). Who rebuilt it was the (barbaric) Marquis of Pombal in 1774 (in only 6 months). For this reason we find there streets with a Pombaline layout. There is a lot to visit in this city. Here are some suggestions: lighthouse of Vila Real de Santo António, Santo António beach, Monte Gordo, crossing the Guadiana.

CASTRO MARIM
CASTRO MARIM

From Tavira to Castro Marim is a 30-minute drive (and 36 kilometers away). A county that starts from the Atlantic and moves inland, with the Guadiana River serving as the border with neighboring Spain. If you visit Castro Marim, don’t miss the main church, the castle, the São Sebastião fort, the marshland nature reserve, the magnificent Salino Spa, Praia da Alagoa, Praia Verde and Praia de Retur. Take your time and enjoy! Three days is a good amount of time to calmly get to know Castro Marim’s main attractions.

TAVIRA ISLAND RESTAURANTS

When we recommend restaurants that we don’t know, we do so after a thorough online search. To “pass our test” the restaurants have to have an online rating (given by customers) above 4 stars and also have to have a minimum of 50 reviews on Google. None of the restaurants on the island of Tavira meet the requirements we have set. For this reason, our suggestions are based on restaurants in the surroundings of Tavira island.

RESTAURANT “A CARPINTARIA

Located 3.5 kilometers from Tavira Island. It has more than 220 reviews on Google and an overall rating of 4.7 stars (out of a maximum of 5). Customer praise focuses on the welcoming atmosphere of the restaurant, the friendliness of the staff and the excellent quality of the cuisine. The value for money is also often mentioned (be prepared for around €25 per person).

RESTAURANT "A CARPINTARIA" TAVIRA
RESTAURANT “A CARPINTARIA”

HOTELS IN TAVIRA ISLAND

Near the island you will find several accommodation options: hotels, camping (with bungalows) and local accommodation are the options at your disposal. We suggest you to spend some of your time analyzing the following accommodation option.

COUNTRY HOUSE TAVIRA MONTE

The Coutry House Tavira Monte is a 3 star hotel. It is, in our opinion, a balanced solution between quality and price. It has an overall rating of 4.7 stars (out of a maximum of 5) and has more than 70 guest reviews. Among the compliments are the cleanliness of the place, the friendliness of the staff, the breakfast area and the quietness of the space. It’s a little far from the center (8 minutes by car and a distance of 5.9 kilometers). A good option if you have a car and like tranquility.

 COUNTRY HOUSE TAVIRA MONTE
COUNTRY HOUSE TAVIRA MONTE

RIA FORMOSA CAMPING

There are 56,000 m2 of the area and 500 trees planted in this magnificent campsite. Very close to the natural park of the Ria Formosa and the beaches of Tavira Island. If you stay here, you can observe a magnificent and unique fauna and flora. Perfect for nature lovers! The park is open between May and September. It has individual spaces for tents, motorhomes, bungalows (up to 4 or 5 people), and spaces (plots) for mobile homes.

RIA FORMOSA CAMPING

The access to the park is good. If you want more information about these possibilities consult the site of the camping of the ria formosa.

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