About the area
The South West Alentejo and the Costa Vicentina National Park is one of the finest preserved stretches of European coastline, covering over 100 km, from Porto Covo in the Alentejo, to Burgau in the Algarve. The Park includes various unique species of animal and plant life, and is visited by many zoologists and botanists from all parts of the world.
The landscape is marked by steep cliffs, that have been given various forms and colouring by centuries of erosion.
Many bird species can be seen, such as rare fish eagles. The rarest species is the white stork, given that this is the only place in the world where they build their nests in the seashore rocks. Another rarity is the otter, since this is the only place in Portugal and one of the last places in Europe where it is possible to find otters in a marine habitat.
The beaches are highly popular amongst surfers, and are some of the finest in the country. There are a tremendous variety of beaches, including long stretches of sand and small beaches nestled between the cliffs and rocks. The closest beaches to Paraiso Escondido are between 15 – 25 mins by car and these include Zambujeira do Mar, Carvalhal, Odeceixe and Vila Nova de Milfontes. It’s possible to discover many other beaches that have been preserved in a virtually unspoiled state.
A short drive inland you will find the beautiful Alentejo countryside. This mainly undiscovered area is often referred to as the Tuscany of Portugal, with its beautiful sun drenched rolling landscapes dotted with sleepy villages surrounded with cork trees and olive groves. This is a region where you will find some of the most delicious food in Portugal. Some of the delicacies include Porco Alentejano (perfectly seasoned and spiced pork, cooked with clams), Secretos de Porco Preto (thinly sliced pork from locally bred black pigs). If you are a fish lover, this is the place to be, with a wide variety of delicious fresh fish and shellfish from the cold and unpolluted Alentejo coastline.
For all wine lovers, the Alentejo region offers some of the finest wines you could wish to drink. The wines from this region are a hidden gem, with many wonderful Wineries producing world-class wines.
If you are searching for nature, sun, relaxation and amazing food, this is a place where all your senses will be stimulated and satisfied.