The Algarve is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Europe and, for many, the temptation to just switch off and relax on the beach is strong. But, for those tourists who want to explore and see the sights of the Algarve, there are plenty of things to see and do in this area of Portugal.
Whether you choose to delve into the history and traditions of the Algarve, or explore the endless beaches and coastline, you’re sure to love what the Algarve has to offer. With that in mind, here are 5 of the best things to do in the Algarve during your holiday.
Visit A Medieval Town
Believe it or not, the Algarve has a strong Medieval history. During the Moorish occupation, Silves was the centre of culture and is a town which lies inland, with a red sandstone castle and surrounded by orange groves. A visit to the castle is a must, as is a trip to the Cistern of the Enchanted Moorish Girl.
The neighbouring cathedral dates back to the 13th century and is one of the main Gothic monuments in Portugal. Before you leave Silves, be sure to head down the river and see the old Roman bridge. Constructed in the 14th century, it is still perfectly formed, with 5 arches spanning across the River Arade.
Go Wine Tasting
The Algarve is also famed for its wine, producing red, white, rose and port to be sent all over the world. Thanks to its sunny climate, which is influenced by the different mountain ranges and the Atlantic ocean, the Algarve is considered the perfect place to produce wine. There are numerous different tours which you can go on, depending on where it is you are staying and there are many wineries across the Algarve where you can go for speciality tasting.
If you are staying in a luxury Algarve villa or apartment and don’t want to leave the comfort of your holiday home, then you can even arrange for a local sommelier to come to you for an evening of wine tasting.
Play a Round Of Golf on a Famous Course
The Algarve is renowned for its golf and courses, which a huge selection spanning across the Algarve region. One of the most popular is the Sir Henry Cotton Championship Course, which was the first 18-hole course in the Algarve.
It is regarded as the finest course on the Algarve by many and was built and designed by three-time British Open Champion Sir Henry Cotton. The course is as challenging as it is beautiful and boasts streams, ditches and water hazards to challenge even the most professional golfer.
Explore The Beaches
With almost 100 miles of coastline, the Algarve is a must-visit destination if you love being beside the ocean. From family-friendly beaches to rugged caves, there is something for everyone to explore. If you’re looking for coastal treasures, then the caves are a natural attraction which must be explored.
The Benagil caves are one of the most popular spots, which can be reached by a boat tour and a short swim. If you’re looking for secluded beauty, then a visit to Praia do Camilo in Lagos is highly recommended. This beach can be reached by descending down 200 wooden steps and, although this beach is quite small, it is often deserted, meaning you can relax in the comfort of an almost private beach.
Try Fresh Seafood
You won’t struggle to find amazing seafood on the Algarve. Fish and shellfish form a huge part of traditional Portuguese culture, and is one of the Algarve’s delicacies. There is a huge range of fresh seafood which is available all year round, meaning that you’ll only ever try the best.
Whether it is seabass which has been simply grilled over charcoal or fresh oysters plucked straight from the ocean in front of you, there are plenty of experiences and restaurants which you absolutely must try.
The Caso do Lago restaurant in Quinta do Lago is a lakeside restaurant, offering amazing views across Ria Formosa and even more amazing seafood. There are also regular boat tours from Ria Formosa where you can learn all about oysters from a local seafood producer, try fresh oysters picked straight from the ocean and enjoy a crisp, cold glass of white wine.