Praia do Tonel sits alongside the jutting Ponta de Sagres on the very southwesterly tip of Portugal. This dramatic location is exposed to the full force of the Atlantic Ocean and as such is a popular spot with surfers. If there isn't a wave here then there probably isn't one anywhere.
The beach at Tonel is a generous sweep of golden sand backed by steep cliffs that vary from soft, red sandstone to the hard, sheer rock of the headland. But this is the beginning of the Algarve's west coast and is a far cry from the resort beaches further east. Praia do Tonel has a wild rugged feel to it, as it should being located on what was once thought of as the edge of the World.
In the summer the waves tend to be a little smaller and there is a lifeguard patrol on the beach. Whilst this definitely makes things safer Tonel still isn't ideal for families with young children. The sea can be quite unpredictable here and it is renown for having strong currents.
Just offshore is a small islet known as the Lion rock - at a squint, from the right angle it does look a little like a lion! It is quite common to see anglers sat on top of the rock, even when the tide is in and the surf is up - it is something of a mystery how they get out there (and back!).
Other beaches near Praia do Tonel
Praia do Tonel tide times
Tue 18th FebruaryLow 4:27am (1.27m)
High 10:41am (2.62m)
Low 4:57pm (1.30m)
High 11:13pm (2.78m)
Wed 19th FebruaryLow 5:43am (1.15m)
High 11:52am (2.70m)
Low 6:01pm (1.20m)
Thu 20th FebruaryHigh 12:13am (2.92m)
Low 6:38am (1.01m)
High 12:46pm (2.82m)
Low 6:49pm (1.08m)
Fri 21st FebruaryHigh 1:00am (3.07m)
Low 7:22am (0.88m)
High 1:28pm (2.93m)
Low 7:29pm (0.96m)