From the beach to the hills and back

looking through rocky tunnel to beach

This year, Lagoa was chosen to be the first to raise the blue flag on Algarve’s beaches.

Earlier this month saw six blue flags and 9 Gold Quality flags hoisted in the municipality. There are also two beaches that are termed “accessible” which means they are accessible for those with disabilities. 

Carvoeiro and Nossa Senhora da Rocha beaches both offer the ability to access the beach together with amenities that may be needed for those with limited ability.

For current rules regarding beach use, during the ongoing situation of Covid-19, please click here.

Beach Zero

Zero, a Portuguese environmental association, has announced that 14 beaches in Algarve have received the distinction of “Zero Pollution” beaches.

This title is given to beaches that have retained satisfactory throughout the last three bathing seasons. If any microbiological contamination is found the beach is excluded from the list.


2021 is the first year to include surfing at the Olympics. To be held at Tsurigasaki beach, Yolanda Hopkins Sequeira is one of three Portuguese surfers to qualify for the Olympics but the only one from Algarve. She finished second in the ISA World Surfing Games held at the beginning of June in El Salvador.

Baby dolphin

Luna and Neo at Zoomarine

2021 also celebrates the opening of theme park Zoomarine 30 years’ ago. This year the park welcomed three new residents including Neo, a third generation bottle-nosed dolphin, who was born to 23 year-old Luna (now 24) on the last day of December 2020.

Neo is part of a European conservation programme (EEP EAZA) whereby 98% of genetic variability of the species is ensured over the coming 100 years.

WWF in Algarve

Serra de Caldeirão

Over the coming five years Loulé will be planting thousands of trees in Serra de Caldeirão.

Protocols were signed with the Portuguese nature association (Associação Natureza Portugal)working in conjunction with WWF (World Wide Fund for Nature) and also the Portuguese Institute for Nature and Forest Conservation (ICNF).

The idea is to plant native trees including cork, carob and olive, following on from the municipality’s 2017 endeavour when 5,000 trees were planted.

Loulé’s Mercadinho

Mercadinho in Loulé

Usually held twice a year, the spring event was cancelled this year due to the pandemic. Loulé council therefore decided to open the market throughout the summer months.

Showcasing local and regional products, Mercadinho is split into three themes; Tradition, Pleasure and Experiences, Urban Crafts and Design and Recycling, Art and ‘Trunk (chest) Market’. 

Held in three venues every Saturday, from 10am to 2pm, the market will continue until the end of October. To enable current health guidelines to be followed, the market can be found in three locations : Cerca do Convento Espírito SantoRua D. Paio Peres Correia and Largo D. Pedro I.

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