The Algarve is located in Portugal, southwest of the European continent. It is a region with a mainly sunny climate, enchanting landscapes, and beautiful architectural richness. Whether you go there for a relaxing holiday or to discover the country, visiting the Algarve is likely unforgettable.
Between the cliff-lined beaches in the west, the long stretches of sand in the southeast, and the three mountain ranges covering almost half of the territory, you have a great choice of activities. So here are some ideas of what you can do in the Algarve to help you choose.
Places to Visit in Algarve
Although the Algarve’s beaches are its main tourist attraction, with 200 km of coastline and some 90 blue flag beaches, its historic towns and villages, countryside, caves, and mountains are also among the exciting places to see in Algarve. There is much more to this part of Portugal than these postcard beaches with turquoise waters and golden rocks.
Formed by 450 km of hiking trails, the Rota Vicentina runs along one of Portugal’s most beautiful natural parks, the Southwest Alentejo and Costa Vicentina Natural Park. In the Algarve, you can explore part of the historic trail, the Fishermen’s Trail, or walk one of the circular trails. Whichever path you choose, you will be guaranteed to discover some of the most beautiful natural landscapes, with beautiful beaches and very authentic localities. The best months to hike these trails are from September to June. Avoid the hottest months, leave your accommodation very early in the morning, and always carry a water bottle.
Sagres is the most southwestern city in Portugal. It has two must-see points of interest: the Cabo de São Vicente and the Fortress of Sagres. Ideal for nature lovers, Cap Saint-Vincent, was classified as a nature reserve in 1988, which is not surprising given the number of species that have chosen this site as their habitat: sea otters, herons, eagles by Bonelli, etc. This part of the coast also has its history, and in the Middle Ages, this tip of Europe was known as “the end of the world.” The fortress of Sagres is located on the cliffs of the tip of Sagres and was built in the middle of the 15th century to protect this part of Portugal. Inside the fortress, you will find the small Church of Nossa Senhora da Graça, a compass rose, and you will be treated to some of the best views of the Atlantic Ocean. Sagres is amongst the best places in Algarve.
The city of Faro is undoubtedly one of the things to see in the Algarve. It is a city on a human scale of around 65,000, which is particularly pleasant to live in. The center of Faro is made up of small streets, many pedestrianized streets. You can start your visit to Faro with the historic center of the city, surrounded by ancient walls still present here and there. This historic center, essentially pedestrian, is well preserved. There are small cobbled streets lined with colorful houses. Do not miss Sé Cathedral (Igreja de Santa Maria), and do not hesitate to climb to the top of its bell tower to enjoy a lovely view of the city and the Ria Formosa. Still, in the historic center, go to the city’s archaeological museum in a former convent. With its beautiful spots, Faro is the best town in Algarve.
The small town of Olhao is part of the Ria Formosa Natural Park. Border to Faro and very easy to reach by car, this village is made up of small narrow streets with white houses, typical of southern Portugal, where it is easy to get lost, making it so charming. Please do not panic; we always find our way with the smell of the sea or the cry of the seagulls. This seaside resort offers beautiful beaches, and we quickly understand why it is the most authentic fishing village in the Algarve. Obligatory passage on the Olhao port where you can access the islands of the Ria Formosa, such as Hermosa, a calm and radiant island.
Lagos is a very touristic city in the Algarve. Still, unlike other cities in the region, it has managed to keep an authentic and picturesque side. During your visit, lose yourself in the historic center’s narrow streets to appreciate the city’s charm, then visit the authentic municipal market (Mercado Municipal). After visiting the historic center, discover the Fort of Ponta da Bandeira built in the 17th century. It would be best to see the small chapel of Santa Barbara covered with Azulejos and the beautiful sea view. Located just next to the port city of Lagos, the Ponta da Piedade is an exceptional natural site. The point offers a privileged view of the Cabo de São Vicente. It is endowed with extravagant cliffs, eroded here and there, with arches and caves.
Best Places to Stay in Algarve 🏨
If you plan a stay in the Algarve, you will surely ask yourself, “Where to stay in Algarve?” This question is very sensible because the Algarve is a relatively large region and the accommodation options are diverse.
In this article, you will first find all the things to do in the Algarve, but also the different places where it is the most interesting to stay or even some good places to sleep.
Luxurious Places to Stay in Algarve 💰💰💰
Suppose you want to pamper, rejuvenate and rejuvenate while discovering new places on vacation. In that case, plenty of luxury hotels in the Algarve can do just that. You can breathe the fairy-tale Portuguese air in the rooms decorated with glamorous elegance. These are the luxurious places to stay in Algarve.
If you are looking for a place where to stay near Faro, Pousada Palacio de Estoi is one of the best hotels you can choose. Your dreams will come true with its modern designed rooms, green gardens, and restaurant that prefers local products. The hotel’s eye-catching exterior will fascinate the visitors before they even step into the hotel. After experiencing the riches of the Algarve, you can visit Pousada Palacio de Estoi’s spa and calmly end a whole day.
Pestana Vila Sol Golf & Resort is the correct address to start the day while having breakfast in front of a wonderful view, enjoy the pool and the sun, try different local flavors, and having a holiday you have never experienced. You can enjoy your holiday with the golf course view while tasting delicious snacks at the Green Pines Restaurant inside the hotel. Within walking distance of Vilamoura Beach, the hotel offers you an unforgettable experience. If you want to stay only in the best places to stay in the Algarve, you should consider staying in Pestana Vila Sol Golf & Resort.
Tivoli Carvoeiro is a hotel that will appeal to your 6 senses. With its perfectly decorated rooms and common areas, it is a place you will have a hard time leaving. The Med Food & Wine restaurant on site offers fresh seafood from the Atlantic Ocean. You can enjoy the moment with breathtaking ocean views while eating seafood from the best chefs with a bottle of excellent Portuguese wine. The One Gourmet and The Mare Bistro are other options where you can experience local delicacies at the hotel. If you want to spend some time for yourself and discover new places on your holiday, the hotel’s spa center is the right place to do it. One of the best places to stay in the Algarve is to explore both the city and yourself.
Budget-Friendly Places to Stay in Alvarge 💰💰
In the Algarve, it is possible to stay in a more budget-friendly place but still enjoy the holiday instead of staying in overly luxurious hotels. Moreover, there are many places where you can do this. Here are the best budget-friendly hotels where to stay in the Algarve.
Lagos Atlantic Hotel is the one of the best places where to stay in the Algarve, Portugal, to enjoy the stunning blue sea, taste delicious local dishes and sip world-famous Portuguese wines. The hotel has an outdoor swimming pool and a poolside bar within walking distance of Porto de Mos beach. You can also benefit from the barbecue areas in the hotel and enjoy a fun night. If you are someone who likes to explore the surroundings by bike, you can take advantage of the hotel’s bike rental service.
If you want to reduce the budget you have allocated for the hotel but not lose too much in the services you will receive, Hotel Marina Rio is like heaven on earth for you. It is pretty simple to reach the must-see places of Lagos from the hotel, which is located in the city center. One of the best parts of the hotel is the golf course. The Almares and Boavista golf courses can be used by amateur players within 10 minutes.
Falesia Hotel is one of the best choices to leave the city life and what it brings behind and think about nothing but pleasure and relaxation on holiday. Surrounded by lush gardens, you can experience a unique holiday at the hotel. One of the most significant advantages of Falesia Hotel is that it is only for adults. The best place to stay in the Algarve, in the heart of picturesque Albufeira. You can feel the garden’s peace and the inner lake while enjoying fresh ocean fish at the O Lago on-site restaurant. If you’re into golf, you’re in luck because right next to the hotel is Pine Cliffs Golf Course. You can reach Vilamoura and Vila Sol, which took part in various championships, with a 15-minute drive.
Cheap Places to Stay in Algarve 💰
If you want to enjoy the city and the holidays but only find a place to stay, you can consider the cheap options in the Algarve. Moreover, there are many options that can surprise you with the richness of their services, although they are low-priced. These are the cheap yet great places where to stay in Algarve, Portugal.
The ibis brand, which is found all over the world, is also available in the Algarve. For a cheap but luxurious and dazzling hotel experience, you can choose Hotel ibis Faro Algarve. You can taste exotic cocktails or local wines at the bar on the hotel’s terrace. If you’re looking for a place where to stay in Faro and want to do it without getting too expensive, you’ve come to the right place. You can enjoy the tennis court next to the hotel, and if you want to play golf, you can use the golf course 10 km away.
Located in the city center of Portimao, Hotel Made Inn is a short walk from the city’s main attractions. You can enjoy the panoramic city view while tasting local wines on the hotel’s terrace. Hotel Made Inn is located in an ideal location for those who want to experience the nightlife of the city. You can spend a fun night in the famous nightclubs around the hotel. One of the most essential features of the hotel is that you can reach the International Race Circuit of Algarve within a 20-minute drive. It is a fun and brilliant place where to stay Algarve.
If you are not looking for more than a place to stay in the city center, Hotel Sol Algarve by Kavia is the right choice for you. If you want, you can choose different options from the world cuisine in the hotel’s restaurant, or you can experience different tastes in the city’s famous restaurants. You will find more than a cheap hotel experience at Hotel Sol Algarve by Kavia in its spacious and bright rooms with warm colors.