The Algarve remains a popular holiday destination with its clean, sandy beaches with those amazing rock formations along the coast. Despite its popularity, sleepy towns and villages still exist, where you have no choice but to relax back into their local laid back ways.
Albufeira, has seven beaches and plenty of energy, and wonderful coastal buildings in their bright seaside colours. When it comes to places to stay, Albufeira leads the pack. This southern hub is split in half. Its new town is brimming with thumping nightclubs and open-air bars, while its old town is filled with cobbled squares, colourful markets and laid-back restaurants. Praia de Rocha has wonderful beaches where you can sunbathe and take in the warmth and beauty of the Algarve.
The main attraction here is its wonderful coastline, with its characteristic limestone cliffs and white sandy beaches dotted with unique rock formations. The coastline spans 155km and offers a huge choice of resorts.
Things to do
The Algarve is one of Europe’s top golfing destinations with its top quality courses on offer. The Algarve welcomes professional and amateur golfers to try out their twenty available courses!
However, golf isn’t the only sporting delight available on the Algarve, there is tennis where its great climate allows you to play all year round. Horse riding is another activity particularly enjoyed in Portugal. There are plenty of trails and beginners are welcome to try out for an hours’ ride with experienced riders.
For water lovers, there are excellent water sports to be found along the coast of the Algarve. There is wind surfing, water skiing and jet skiing to name a few! Scuba diving is fun along this coastline, as there are great wrecks, reefs and caves to explore. Also the fish are wonderful because there are so many different species to see.
For the family there is Zoomarine in Guia, to Krazy World in Silves. Also there are water parks, go karting or even a fun boat trip to see the dolphins!
The Algarve has plenty of souvenirs on offer for its visitors to take home. Their local pottery is rustic and colourful and you can even go and visit the original potteries which are scattered along the holiday routes.
Leather belts and shoes are great value here and a change from the usual high street styles. Also there is local cheap knitwear, which is particularly fashionable at the moment.
Loule is a great place to visit as it is the heart of the handicraft industry. You can watch artisans at work in the streets around the market. Rua da Barbaca has the most workshops. You’ll find copperware, wrought iron, clogs and candles to add to your Shopping bag.
For those in search of a lively holiday with plenty of
Nightlife, the main resort of Albufeira is the place to be with its full strip of bars, clubs and English style restaurants. Dancing night owls will find clubs in all the larger resorts. Praia da Rocha and Albufeira being the main ones.
If you prefer a cocktail and some jazz, then you’ll find those kind of evenings. ‘Fado’ evenings are popular and uniquely Portuguese. You can listen to nostalgic love songs accompanied by traditional guitars. Alternatively there are your happening and loud clubs where you’ll find celebrity DJs and themed nights to enjoy.
The Portuguese pride themselves with hearty and wholesome food, made from fresh produce. Grilled sardines is a favourite, which are crisped over the charcoal at most everyday restaurants. You can enjoy them with plum tomatoes, crisp salad and fresh bread. Being on the coastline, there are no surprises what you’ll find on most menus – seafood and fish! Fishy dishes include cataplana, which is a tasty stew sizzling in a heavy metal pot. Arroz de Marisco is a Portuguese version of paella, or there is caldeirada which is a lovely fish soup. For those who like their meat, there are plenty of meat stews also.
In the Algarve, you’ll find healthy, hearty and home cooking like Mum used to make – a welcome addition to anyone’s diet!