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Algarve Destination Guide

Exclusively Elegant Travel Since 1988

For more information, please call our Travel Consultants on:01244 897 771

Your guide from the Luxury Travel Experts


Welcome to the Elegant Resorts Destination Guide for Algarve , created to help make your choice of luxury holiday as easy as possible. Here, you will find more detailed factual information about the destination you have selected.

If you require further information, not featured on this page, please call one of our Travel Consultants.

Overview+

Capital Faro
Language Portuguese
Time Difference 0 hours
Currency Euro
Voltage 220V

The Algarve offers a fantastic mix of relaxed cities, exquisite cuisine and beautiful, sandy beaches. Unique towns in the region include Lagos and Tavira, while the municipality of Silves presents a sense of history and tradition, in a calm setting. The laid-back culture and slower-paced way of life of the Mediterranean is very much translated in the Algarve. Visitors can relax and unwind, whilst experiencing this lovely Portuguese region. The Algarve is a ninety-five-mile coastal strip, with many natural areas considered UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Naturally, the numerous beautiful beaches are a highlight, with the Albufeira area, in particular, boasting glorious beaches, replete with soft, white sands and clear-blue waters. Perfect for watersports, visitors can enjoy surfing, sailing and windsurfing.

The Algarve is also known for its plentiful and popular golf courses, ideal for golf enthusiasts. The stunning Ria Formosa Natural Park is a sight to behold, featuring wetlands replete with aquatic birds and flamingos, and offering opportunities for bird-watching and boating. In the west of the region, Lagos was an important naval centre in the 15th century and offers superb beaches in an historic, fishermen’s village. Moving east, Tavira is also a fishing town, with an elegance, style and character that has been retained over centuries of tradition. Faro is the region’s capital, comprising an historic old town, picturesque plazas and parks and a gorgeous marina, resulting in a distinctly Portuguese feel. Quite simply, the Algarve is regarded as one of the best tourist destinations in Europe.

Highlights+

Beaches
The primary attraction of the Algarve is the region’s stunning beaches. Lovely, soft white sand combines with gorgeous blue waters to create some of the finest beach locations in Europe and even the world. The large number of beaches creates superb variety and choice, with broad stretches of sand and smaller, sheltered coves. There are around 150 named beaches to choose from, with the golden Praia do Anção being popular with families, while the picture-postcard Praia do Camilo has a spectacular shoreline and plenty of grottoes and coves to discover. Many of the beaches offer a vast range of watersports, including snorkelling, surfing, kayaking, bodyboarding, windsurfing, water-skiing and sailing.

Towns and Cities
Lagos features everything a luxury traveller could want, in a town that conveys both the traditional and the modern. The Old Town is picturesque, thanks to cobbled streets and attractive plazas, while Lagos’ nightlife is lively and bustling. The capital, Faro, is an underrated gem, boasting an historic harbour, pretty marina and lovely parks. For visitors seeking charm, Tavira is perfect, featuring historic attractions, castle ruins and shaded plazas. The town also has a modern market and an active fishing port.

Dining
Lovers of fine local and traditional cuisine that is passionately prepared and exquisitely simple will savour dining in the Algarve. Two Michelin Star Vila Joya Restaurant (at Hotel Vila Joya) serves the finest gourmet cuisine and is on the World’s Fifty Best Restaurant’s list. The Ocean (at Vila Vita Parc) is also a two Michelin Star restaurant, where luxury diners can enjoy the finest cuisine, along with stunning views of the Atlantic Ocean.

Ria Formosa Natural Park
This beautiful natural park, recently pronounced one of the Seven Natural Wonders of Portugal, comprises a large collection of islands and lagoons. It spans sixty kilometres along the coastline, and features creeks, salinas, marshes and dune islands. The park is a perfect bird-watching destination, featuring an impressive variety that includes ducks, gulls, shorebirds, terns and the rare Purple Gallinule.

Travel Gems+

Caves and Dolphin-watching Cruise
From Albufeira marina, visitors can embark on a Caves and Dolphin-watching Cruise. This takes passengers past stunning rock formations and the lovely Algarve coastline, stopping to allow swimming in the beautiful waters. En route, it searches for playful pods of dolphins, including Common and Bottlenose Dolphins, which are regularly spotted.

Climate+

The Algarve has a stable climate, with the summer months enjoying very warm temperatures.

Temperature Guide

These figures show monthly average maximum temperatures and monthly average rainfall for Algarve.

  Temp °C Rain mm
January1285
February1325
March1540
April1638
May1832
June2111
July245
August241
September2358
October1957
November1672
December14117

Getting There+

Please contact our Travel Consultants for flight details.

Travel Documentation+

Travelling With Children or Without an Adult

Children travelling without both parents should be aware that some countries require documentary evidence of parental responsibility before allowing lone parents to enter the country (for example, South Africa) or, in some cases, before permitting the children to leave the country. Please contact the relevant Embassy for the county you are travelling to for further information.

Visa and Advance Passenger Information

All passengers must ensure they have a valid, acceptable passport, any required visa and any other documentation for both the final destination and any stop-off points en route. Please make sure that Advance Passenger Information is submitted in advance to travel for all destinations. Failure to hold correct documentation or submitting incorrect details with Advance Passenger Information or Visa applications may result in refusal of carriage or entry into a country. Please check with the relevant Embassy regarding visa requirements well in advance of your travel date. Charges may apply for some visas.

Passengers not travelling on a British Passport are advised to contact their relevant Foreign & Commonwealth office for individual Visa requirements.

For up-to-date resort information, visit www.fco.gov.uk

Health+

Health facilities, hygiene and disease risks vary worldwide and you should take health advice about your specific needs from your general practitioner or a specialist clinic as early as possible before travel. Those planning to become pregnant should discuss their travel plans with their healthcare provider to assess their risk of infection with Zika. For information about Zika, other mosquito-borne diseases (such as Dengue fever and Chikungunya), Lyme Disease (caused by tick bites), and to receive advice on mosquito bite avoidance measures, please visit http://travelhealthpro.org.uk/insect-tick-bite-avoidance/

In addition, we highly recommend that you seek specialist advice from your doctor and, where recommended, obtain vaccinations or tablets for protection against, for example: Malaria, Hepatitis A, Polio and Typhoid. In some cases, treatments for Malaria should begin well in advance of travel. Travellers may also be required to show Yellow Fever Certificates on arrival in certain destinations ie, some African countries. Please note that you are strongly advised against scuba-diving for 24 hours before travelling by air. We would also like to draw your attention to the risk of DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis) and recommend that you consult with your doctor before travelling.

Visit the FCO website and select your destination country for the very latest travel advice: https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice. Additional sources of information include: www.hpa.org.uk, http://nathnac.net, www.fco.gov.uk, www.hpa.org.uk and www.nathnac.org, your General Practitioner or a specialised clinic.

Talk to our Europe & North Africa Experts

Our dedicated Europe & North Africa Experts are ready to help you design your luxury holiday to Algarve. Furthermore, we have 11 Travel Consultants who have personally visited Algarve and can offer you their first-hand knowledge and experience.

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