We asked a member of the On the Beach team to tell us what they love about the Algarve…
From the dramatic cliff drops at Cape St. Vincent to the golden sandy beaches of Praia de Falesia; from traditional Portuguese Peri-Peri chicken restaurants to the crazy hedonistic vibe of Albufeira Strip; from 5 different water parks to some of the best golf courses in the World; the Algarve is a resort of real contrasts with something to do for everyone….
In 2009 I stayed in a self catering apartment in the 4* Solaqua hotel for two weeks. The hotel was very contemporary and tastefully decorated. It has both an outdoor and indoor pool and is ideally situated between the old and new areas of Albufeira with about a ten minute stroll to either (longer when you stopped for a refreshing Super Bock lager on the way).
Albuferia is a great resort and has a really good split between the two main areas, the old town is full of nice little Portuguese restaurants and swanky cocktail bars whereas the new town has a wider range of cuisine options and nightclubs that are open to the small hours.
The beaches in the Algarve are excellent and have won numerous blue flag awards, the main beach in Albuferia can get a little busy in high season but a short taxi ride to Falesia or Praia de Oura will see you with plenty of space to stretch out. As the coast is exposed to the Atlantic you will find that it can be a little windy at times but this encourages a wide variety of watersport activites. The surfing in the far west of the Algarve is the best in Europe and is complimented with brilliant kite surfing, wind surfing and kayaking.
I hired a car whilst I was there and so got to do quite a bit of exploring, the whole area is rich in things to do and see; Lagos is a haven for beach bums, hippies and surfer-types. Vilamoura is the Cote d’Azur of Portugal with its fashion shops and marina, 5 star hotels and World class golf courses. A little further afield you can visit the Guardiana River, the natural border between Spain and Portugal and perhaps drive up to the city of Seville to look at the incredible Moorish influenced architecture and visit the vinyards.
You definitely have to try Peri-Peri Chicken whilst you are there, you will find lots of excursion companies that offer a night where you go for Peri-Peri then head to the famous sand sculptures that they create each year, they really are amazing pieces of art.
Both families and couples will find that they are not short of things to entertain them throughout their stay and in the summer the weather is generally very warm (this is where the windy bit comes in handy – to cool you down!).
This was one of the best holidays I have had in years and I would definitely recommend anyone to go.
If all that’s not enough to convince you, take a look at our latest deals to the Algarve here.