Here is a natural sanctuary in which the seashore is interrupted by steep cliffs, beaches and sand dunes. In the interior there is a succession of hills which rise up to the Serra de Espinhaço de Cão.
This nature park is the longest stretch of protected coastline in Portugal, covering an area of 76,000 hectares, around 80 km of which, located between the Odeceixe beach and the fishing village of Burgau, are part of the Algarvian coastal region.
There is a great variety of marine plants and the fauna comprises the greatest diversity of living organisms on the west coast of Portugal, including 750 identified plants and 200 species of birds throughout the Nature Park.
The vegetation changes from the coast to the interior, with more than 100 recognised species native to this protected zone. With respect to marine plant life, there are 460 species of algae along the coast.
Among the great diversity of animal species that live in the park are otters, foxes, wild boars, badgers, wild cats and the Iberian lynx. However, it is the birds that are the great attraction of the Costa Vicentina. The streams are home to herons, storks, kingfishers and moorhens, while the coastal rocks shelter ravens, seagulls, magpies and birds of prey.
The cliffs are an important stopping-off point for migrating birds and a superb nesting place for white storks, the Bonelli eagle, egrets, the peregrine falcon and the osprey.