The small archipelago of the Berlengas is located approximately 10km west of Peniche, and consists of the main island Berlenga Grande and the adjoining riffs Estelas and Farilhões-Forcados. They are declared Natural Reserve since September 3, 1981. The Natural Reserve of the Berlengas is a unique spot, due to the transparency of the waters and the high concentration of different species. It is a marine reserve also nominated as “Biosphere Reserve” by the Europeam Council andsince 2011, it is protected as “World Biosphere Reserve” by UNESCO..
The archipelago consists of the main island Berlenga Grande and the two smaller and rocky granite riffs Estelas and Farilhões. They are located about 7 miles offshore from Cabo Carvoeiro to the Northwest of Peniche. Berlenga Grande can be seen from the main land on days without fog. Endemic plant species can be found there and it is also a place marine birds choose to nest. On Berlenga Grande stands Fort São João Baptista, a military fort from the manueline era, dating from 1502. It is connected to the island through a small bridge. Beautiful small beaches and transparent waters make it an ideal spot for good taking a dip.
The island is accessible by boat, for example the Cabo Avelar Pessoa takes passengers from and to the harbour in Peniche. To reach the main island, Berlenga Grande, it takes about 30 minutes. It is possible to go back in the afternoon or spend the night on the island, there are also a restaurant and a camp site on the island.
*The information on this page was taken from the site of ICBN Turismo de Portugal e Candidatura das Berlengas a Reserva da Biosfera da UNESCO.