Holidays to Albufeira are all about variety. You can try a different beach every day, laze away afternoons in the old town, and spend nights bar hopping on The Strip.
The Algarve’s main event
Albufeira's the place that put the Algarve on the map. The picturesque old town teems with pavement cafes and boutiques, and the modern resort is lined by a main strip, which sparks into action at sundown. The whole scene is framed by a 30-kilometre coastline of unspoilt beaches and little bays.
A bevy of beaches
Albufeira’s supersized coastline notches up no less than 25 different beaches. The old town is home to Praia dos Pescadores, otherwise known as Fisherman’s Beach, where family-friendly bathing comes with great dining options. At the bottom of the strip, meanwhile, is Praia d’Oura, a five-kilometre, Blue Flag-winning beach made for watersports fans. Further east is Praia da Falesia, which is sheltered by ochre cliffs. And that barely scratches the surface.
Old town charm
In the midday sun, light bounces off the whitewashed walls of Albufeira’s old town. You can seek out some shade in its churches, which date back to the 1500s, or explore the warren of cobbled alleyways that provide a cooling break from the heat. Come evening, the main square bursts into life and becomes a hub for al fresco eating and drinking.
Close to Lagos
About an hour’s drive west is Lagos, the epicentre of Portugal’s maritime past. Henry the Navigator lit the touchpaper for the Age of Discovery at Lagos' harbour. Another must-see is the site of Europe’s first slave market. It’s set under the arches of Customs House and acts as a reminder of the town’s more sombre history.
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