The Best Holiday Guide to the Algarve

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The Algarve, a Tourist Guide

The Algarve is the beautiful coastline that extends along the southern side of Portugal and the region provides stunning beaches, historic towns and numerous enjoyable holiday activities. The Algarve is blessed with a fantastic climate, with beach weather temperatures from May through to mid-October. Southern Portugal provides exceptional value for money and the variety of different towns means that the Algarve is suitable for all types of tourist, be that families, couples or party goers. This article has been written to provide a summary and introduction to the major towns of the Algarve, and to aid you choose the ideal destination for your holiday.

Praia de Faro

The stunning beach of the Praia de Faro

Practicalities for The Algarve

The Algarve is served by Faro airport and the airport is connected to the whole of Europe, with flights provided by the regular and low cost airlines. Flights tend to be significantly more expensive during the summer so always book well ahead of your holiday. The majority of tourist who visit the Algarve will be based in the section of coastline from Priaia de Rocha through to Vilamoura, all of which are to the west of Faro airport. Outside of this area more traditional and quieter Portuguese towns can be found.

Ponta da Piedade lagos

The Ponta da Piedade coastline, near Lagos

Summary of the Finest and most Popular Towns in the Algarve

Tavira – The Algarve’s Hidden gem

Tavira is a delightful town that extends along the banks of the slow flowing Gilão river, from which streets of traditional tiled houses lead up to the castle. Tavira boasts both charm and character while the peaceful atmosphere is infectious. Tavira is our personal favourite town in the Algarve but may not be suitable for all visitors as it has not succumbed to demands of modern mass tourism and a ferry is needed to travel to the beaches!

tavira algarve

The river front of Tavira

Tavira Quick Summary
Ideal For - Couples who wish to discover the unaltered side of Portugal or want a peaceful relaxing holiday in a wonderful town.
Not suited For - Party goers, Tavira is a traditional and calm town.
Families with older children, Tavira is a long way from the water parks, zoos and adventure that most children want from a holiday.
To read an extensive guide about Tavira please visit (link opens new window)

Albufeira – The Algarve’s Most popular resort

Albufeira is by far the most popular resort town of the Algarve, and this is because it excels at everything wanted for a holiday destination. The beach is massive, there are numerous holiday activities and the pretty old town is crammed full of restaurants, shops and bars. For groups and party goers there is “the Strip”, a road full of themed bars and outrageous clubs, which is just far enough (2km away) from the Old Town not to annoy other tourists.

Albufeira the algarve

The massive beach of Albufeira

Albufeira Quick Summary

Ideal for – Generally most visitors. There are great facilities, fantastic hotels and well over a 100 different places to eat out at.
Not suited for – Visitors who wish to escape the summer crowds, Albufeira gets very busy in the summer and prices sometimes reflect this.

tavira beach

A deserted beach near Tavira

The Algarve dose not refer to an individual resort town but to the entire region. Each of the towns has its own unique and distinct characteristics that will appeal to different groups of tourists. Albufeira is the lively town for those visitors who wish their home comforts on holiday and generally attracts a younger crowd. Sagres is the complete opposite to Alberich, head here for deserted beaches that are wild and rugged. Portimão and Lagos are the most developed towns of the region with great restaurants, bars and nightlife. To the west, sleepy Faro is often over looked and Tavira is quieter and more traditional.

Faro portugal

The historic centre of Faro

Between each of the major towns are purpose built resorts designed for families, couples and fun hunting groups. The Algarve as a holiday destination has it all, stunning scenery, great beaches and is much cheaper than other Mediterranean countries. So let us at help you to discover this beautiful region of Portugal.

The best guide to the Algarve

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