To the north of the resort of Figueira da Foz is a virtually endless stretch of fine sandy beach backed by low dunes and thick pine forest. Whilst much of this coast is equally sandy, the sea is the same blue and the pines smell just as piney there are only a few points where you can actually drive down to the coast.
Praia da Tocha is one of these places, located around 10km to the north of Figueira. If you didn't know about it then you probably wouldn't head down the straight pine-lined road to this charming little resort village. If you do you will be rewarded with near white sand and a bustling beachfront replete with promenade, cafes and all the facilities you need for a day at the beach.
At either end of the main strip the sand dunes appear to threaten taking over, rising above the road level. Further still and you will come across "palheiros" - former fishermen's houses built from weatherboard and perched on stilts.
Also worthy of mention, just for its sheer quirkiness is the beachside library. In fact the little wooden building is actually on the beach itself.