A Destination Guide to the Algarve

Portugal offers a charming mix of traditional cultures mingled with modern-day entertainment and the country’s natural beauty will leave visitors feeling captivated.

Explore stunning coastlines with dramatic cliffs hiding secluded coves and picturesque villages nestled amidst olive and orange groves. Discover ancient cities featuring cobbled streets and intricate architecture. Visit fascinating UNESCO Heritage sites and learn about Portugal’s rich history. Bustling holiday resorts provide fun-packed entertainment on award-winning beaches and enjoy delectable cuisine made from traditional recipes in restaurants looking across the Atlantic Ocean.

Destinations

The Algarve region is one of Portugal’s most popular holiday destinations with approximately 200km of stunning coastlines, championship golf courses, and picturesque fishing villages.

Absorb the history and culture in Lagos and Faro or enjoy the bustling nightlife and chic restaurants and bars in Albufeira and Praia da Rocha. Families can relax and enjoy great facilities in Alvor, Praia da Luz, or Carvoeiro, whilst Vilamoura welcomes golf enthusiasts to play on superior courses with breathtaking scenery.

Food & Drink

The Mediterranean climate produces some of the finest ingredients including olives, fruits, and red wine. The Portuguese boast of their excellent cuisine using a wide range of fresh dishes with soups and stews being the most traditional. The rich flavoured Caldo Verde soup is cooked with potatoes, kale, onions, and a touch of garlic and olive oil.

The mouthwatering Feijoada stew with thick black beans, pork, bacon, and sausage is served with rice and complimented by a locally produced red wine.

Fresh fish dishes are enjoyed throughout the Algarve, including Cataplana, a stew using clams slowly cooked in a copper pan. Another favourite is grilled fish, typically sardines and squid are enjoyed with olives, cheese, and a crisp white wine.

Top Sights

The alluring Algarve offers endless entertainment from outdoor activities, historical tours, and watersports on fabulous beaches. Falesia Beach was voted as the No.1 beach in all of Portugal by TripAdvisor’s Travellers Choice (2017) voters, for its wide sandy coastline stretching below high red rock cliffs dotted with pine trees.

The beautiful town of Vilamoura includes a 1,000-berth marina where visitors can peruse designer shops before settling down to fine cuisine at the many local restaurants. Those seeking a more active holiday can enjoy the region’s famous Championship golf courses as well as experience watersports from the two great beaches lying east and west of the marina.

The city of Faro is well worth a visit. The stunning capital city of the Algarve features an array of wonderful sites, including the Cathedral of Faro built in 1251. Climb the stone stairways to the tower bell to admire the sweeping views of the city. Visit the old town and pass the Arco da Vila, the 11th-Century horseshoe archway leading to a maze of cobbled streets and intriguing architecture.

Family Activities

There is so much to do to suit all ages, from enjoying lazy days on blue flag beaches and teeing off on world-class golf courses to swinging in the treetops at Parque Aventura. Explore the rugged coastlines and hidden caves on a guided boat tour, spot whales and dolphins on a sea safari or take on the slide and splash in Lagoa.

History & Culture

Portugal boasts a rich and fascinating history, which can be discovered by visiting their museums or admiring Arabic engravings on the architectural buildings.

To experience a taste of Portuguese history and culture it is worth visiting local festivals with traditional folklore music and dances. Explore the traditional markets of Faro, Loule and Portimao that are held monthly or perhaps enjoy the festivities and fireworks over New Year.