The Algarve’s main event

Albufeira is 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.

25 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 is supplemented by great dining options. At the bottom of the strip, meanwhile, is Praia d’Oura, a 5-kilometre, Blue Flag-winning beach made for watersports fans. Further east is Praia da Falesia, which is sheltered by ochre cliffs. And that’s only scratching the surface.

Old town charm

In the midday sun, light bounces off the whitewashed walls of Albufeira’s old town. You can take refuge in its churches, which date back to the 1500s, or explore the warren of cobbled alleyways that provide a cooling antidote to the heat. Come evening, the main square bursts into life and is the focal point for diners and casual drinkers.

Close to Lagos

About an hour’s drive west is Lagos, the old hub of Portugal’s maritime past. It was from the harbour here that Henry the Navigator lit the touchpaper for the Age of Discovery. 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 past.

Places To Stay In Albufeira View all places to stay »

  • Views of Albufeira
  • State-of-the-art spa
  • Shuttle bus to town

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Prices from £278 per person

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  • Views of Albufeira
  • A trio of pools
  • Softly-lit spa

Prices from £287 per person

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  • Family-run
  • Traditional décor
  • Great location

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Prices from £248 per person

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  • Minutes from Albufeira’s marina
  • Close to sandy beaches
  • Traditional rooms

Prices from £432 per person

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  • Lawned garden
  • Rustic décor
  • 15-minute drive to a beach

Prices from £296 per person

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  • Close to Albufeira
  • Quiet neighbourhood
  • Beaches nearby

Prices from £317 per person

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