Imagining Southern Portugal conjures images of endless beaches and luxury resorts enjoying a wonderful fabulous climate; mild in winter and yet cooled by sea breezes in the heat of summer. However, there is much more to the Algarve than sun, sea and sand. It has a unique charm which derives from the warmth of its people and the rich diversity of its majestic landscapes.
Destinations in Algarve
A Little More About Algarve
A tapestry of landscapes, the Algarve plays host to expansive golden stretches, scalloped bays and dramatic limestone cliffs, while in the background are verdant hillscapes, abundant valleys and lazy rivers. Each setting comes with its own distinctive perfume, from the salty fresh fragrance of the coast to the sweet, sticky aroma of orange trees that meanders intoxicatingly through the countryside.
When it comes to things to do in the Algarve, you are spoilt for choice. Whale and dolphin watching are a must, and tours of the Ria Formosa lagoon or the Benagil Caves are picture-perfect. Tee time is world-class with more than 40 golf courses spanning more than 150 kilometres of coastline, or you can sample the flavoursome wines amid hectares of vineyards in Lagos, Portimão, Lagoa or Tavira.
For families, high energy water sports and aqua parks are in abundance, while the Algarve’s glossy resorts offer child-friendly activities and superb facilities to entertain all ages.
A taste of the Algarve
The southern region of Portugal is also lovingly referred to as ‘farm country’, and the Algarveans have truly mastered the farm-to-table philosophy. Fruits of the fertile landscapes and bountiful sea are celebrated in the richness of the menus. Local delicacies include frango assado (piri piri chicken), feijoada (a thick stew of beans, pork and sausage) and cataplana, a seafood stew named after the copper pan in which it is served.
For a more sophisticated culinary experience, Michelin-starred restaurants and fine dining establishments are right on course to provide all manner of dishes, from contemporary Mediterranean fusion to ambrosial tasting menus.
Although famous for its exclusive resorts, sparkling shores and majestic natural landscapes, these elements are only part of the Algarve’s draw. With more than 300 days of sunshine each year, visitors flock here for the weather but return year-on-year for the culture, cuisine and the exceptionally warm Portuguese hospitality.