With fabulous weather, calm sea views, great wine and golf courses galore, it’s no wonder that holidays to the Algarve are always in demand. Situated on the southern tip of Portugal, the Algarve boasts more sunshine per year than California. So there’s a few reasons travellers come here year after year after year…
Holidays to Algarve are perfect for relaxing and unwinding on amazing beaches. Meanwhile, a lazy stroll into one of the region's picture perfect towns is a great way to spend a sunny afternoon. And we mean picture perfect, turning around every corner offers a new world of sunbaked landscapes and buildings straight out of the postcard you send home.
However, if you are looking for a more active holiday, the Algarve has it all. It’s ideal for surfing, dolphin watching, cycling, and off-road safaris. Whatever type of break you are looking for, there are plenty of great choices in the Algarve.
If a day down the golf club is relaxation bliss, then the Algarve is up to par. There are 35 different golf clubs in the Algarve area, each providing players with their own unique charm and challenges. And the endless blue skies and perfect weather are just an added bonus.
The area's Mediterranean sun-drenched climate is a perfect escape throughout the year. The Algarve averages eight hours of sunshine per day, or 3,000 hours of sunshine each year! Thanks to all that sunshine, you will definitely need to pack your swimming trunks and hiking boots to make the most of all the great outdoor activities.
Like to stretch your legs? Unpack those hiking boots and take a walk along the Via Algarviana to truly get off the beaten track and explore the region. If your legs start to ache on the rugged route, stroll down to the beach, kick off your shoes and take a dip in the sea.
Life is a beach when visiting the Algarve.
If you are looking for a party, then look no further than Albufeira. The area is the largest of Algarve's resort towns and is perfect for cheap drinks and late nights. In fact, nights out in the town usually don’t end until the sun comes up. In Albufeira it’s a marathon, not a sprint. Located in the southernmost region of the Algarve, Albufeira never disappoints partygoers.
Those seeking a slice of traditional Portuguese life can find exactly what they are looking for in Tavira. The area has kept its traditional charm and historic feel despite other parts of the Algarve changing over the years. Situated on the banks of the slow-flowing Gilão River and the edge of the Ria Formosa natural park, Tavira is all about relaxation. With a pretty harbour, narrow cobbled streets and gorgeous beaches, Tavira is filled with Algarve beauty. If you want to explore further afield, Tavira also makes for a great starting point to explore the eastern Algarve.
Often seen as the Algarve's best beach, the Praia da Dona Ana Beach can be found just outside Lagos. Although small, the beach is gorgeous and full of life. Take in the great views on the sandstone coloured cliffs or stroll along the golden sands to the crystal clear water. If that all sounds too relaxing, then why not get your adrenalin pumping by hopping on a jet ski or surfboard, as you make the most of the best watersports in the Algarve.
Vilamoura is coastal paradise. It’s not your usual sun and sand. It’s breath-taking beaches. It’s stunning weather. And on top of that, it’s a tourist’s playground. Whatever you love to do on your holidays, you’ll find it in Vilamoura. Top-notch golf courses might be right up your street, or you might fall in love with the local culture and immersive history.
Exploring the Algarve...
The Algarve has several well-known golf courses, and finding the perfect 18 holes to play will be easy. The Sir Henry Cotton Championship course at Penina Hotel and Golf Resort was the first course built in the Algarve. Golfers continue to bring their clubs from all over the world to play on the famous course. Whatever your level or budget, there are plenty of other courses to choose from.
Thanks to the hours and hours of sunshine you’ll soak up in the area, you should plan to get outside as much as you can. The Via Algarviana is a perfect day out and gives you a chance to hike one of the best routes in the area. The 186-mile walking route runs from Alcoutim, near the Spanish border, across the interior of the Algarve. The route finishes at Cape St. Vincent in the far west. The hike will take you off the beaten track as you take in its amazing views. Don’t forget to take lots of photos. Although you’re not likely to forget these views.
Praia da Marinha
The picture perfect Praia da Marinha looks like something out of a photograph. Eight kilometres east of Lagoa, the Praia da Marinha is often voted as one of the best beaches in Europe. Visiting it leaves little doubt as to why. Its orange and brown coloured rock formations are a gorgeous backdrop to the sound of waves lapping onto the shore.
Algarve food is often fresh, and the region loves fish and seafood dishes. So, close to the sea, it’s little wonder why seafood is eaten most days. Many of the Algarve's dishes also incorporate vegetables and fruit into their ingredients. Clams, oysters and cockles are all favourites of locals, and many of the local restaurants will serve items caught earlier in the day. If you want to eat like a local, try the stew based clam xerem or the bread casserole seafood acorda.
Add in the locally produced red and white wines of the region, and you will have delicious dinners produced to perfection.
Restaurants in the Algarve
The entire region prides itself on its seafood dishes and wines. The central Algarve has a number of great eateries, including one of only two Michelin star restaurants in Portugal. While the region is full of chic, trendy places to dine, there are still plenty of locally owned, family cafes to find your next meal in. You’ll dine on seafood dishes featuring items caught, plucked or picked that very day. Fresh is the name of the game in the Algarve, and you’ll be eating the freshest foods available.
Stunning beaches and hours of endless sunlight, that is the Algarve in a nutshell. The area has something for everyone and provides kilometres of coastline to relax upon. Whether you’re looking for an all-inclusive deal or a self-catered stay, our array of holidays, flights and hotels means your ideal Algarve holiday is just a click away with easyJet holidays.
Is the Algarve not quite sealing the deal? Have a read of our other Portuguese destination guides for further inspiration and temptation!