The southern region of Portugal is the Algarve holiday region. It is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, bordering Spain to the east and the Alentejo region to the north.
Tourism is mainly concentrated in the coastal region, which is about 200 kilometres long. Less visited are the mountain ranges of the Serra de Monchique and the Serra do Caldeirão.
The coastal region is divided into the “Rock Algarve”, the “Sand Algarve” and the secluded area on the west coast.
The “Rock Algrave” is characterised by a rugged rocky coastline with grottos and sandy bays. The towns of Lagos, Portimão and Albufeira are located here.
The “Sand Algarve” runs from Faro to the Spanish border. The coastal region is flat and here you will find kilometres of sandy beaches and dunes. A dream for a successful beach holiday.
On the west coast, travellers will find rugged rock formations and the Parque Natural do Sudoeste Alentejano e da Costa Vicentina National Park.
The tourist areas with the big centres like Albufeira, Silves and Loulé belongs to the richest areas of Portugal but unfortunately also to the most overbuilt areas. Here you will find large hotels and apartment buildings for tourists. Especially in summer, this can lead to problems with the drinking water supply.
Travel information about the Algarve
There is an international airport in Faro. Many airlines fly to this airport, especially during the holiday season. In the winter months, air traffic is more limited.
From Lisbon you can reach the Algarve in about 2.5 hours via the A2. The motorway is subject to tolls!
From Spain, take the A49 to the A22.
From Lisbon, the EVA bus takes about 3:15 hours to Faro.
The train takes about 3.5 h from Lisbon to Faro.
On the way in …
There is a toll motorway which is one of the main routes through the Algarve. A national road runs parallel to it, which is free of charge but always very crowded!
EVA Transport buses connect the towns in the Algarve. In the larger cities there are also city bus connections.
In 1912, a single-track railway line was put into operation between Lagos and Vila Real de San António. The line is still in use, but today with modern trains.
Best time to travel
The Algarve offers a mild climate all year round. The region is one of the sunniest areas in Europe.
From December to February, the average temperature is 16.6 degrees and there are an average of 9.7 rainy days per month. The number of sunshine hours is about 6 hours per day.
Spring arrives in the Algarve in March, April and May. The air temperature averages 20.3 degrees and there are about 8.7 hours of sunshine per day. The chance of rain drops to an average of 7 days a month.
June to August is the warmest and driest period in the Algarve. In summer, it rains on average only a little more than one day per month, and the sun shines an average of 12.3 hours per day. Maximum temperatures sometimes reach over 30 degrees, but a constant blowing Atlantic breeze provides refreshment.
From September to November, the Algarve is a good place for a holiday. The maximum temperatures still reach 26.3 degrees. The number of hours of sunshine is about 8 hours a day. It rains an average of 6.3 days a month.
Holidays in the Algarve – our tips
The Cape St. Vincent is located near Sages in Portugal. It marks the south-western tip of the European mainland. Here, the European continent ends on a 70-meter high cliff.
We would like to introduce our Top 5 of the most beautiful excursion destinations in the Algarve. The Algarve is a region on the south coast of Portugal. It is one of the 7 Portuguese regions. In the north, the landscape is characterised by the mountain ranges of the Serra de Monchique. The touristy costal…
We hired a car to drive through the surrounding areas for a bit. We chose Faro as the main destination, but on the way back we spontaneously stopped off at Loulé.
Lagos is a port town in the Algarve about 30 km east of Cape St Vincent. On our way back from the south-western point of Europe, there was time for a flying visit.
The Monchique Mountains are located in the west of the Algarve and have been named after the main town of Monchique.
Silves is a relatively small town. It is situated on the picturesque river Arade. Silves is the oldest town in the Algarve, where the existence of colonies of the Phoenicians and Kathagers from the fourth century B.C.E was proven. The Romans transformed the city with their fortifications and built an important inland harbour and thus…
Only sitting around in the hotel is too boring. The surrounding area can be explored on long walks along the coast of the Algarve
Algarve holiday – a video:
Watch a video and discover the Portuguese Algarve coast. We have summarized small impressions of our trip.
The Hotel Pestana Viking is located on a plateau above a small bay which is ideal for swimming. From here you have a beautiful view over the coast of Portugal.