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Portugal

On Portugal’s southern coast, the Algarve offers everything from sandy beaches and lively bars, to cobbled streets, gypsy markets and seafood restaurants.

The coastline is glorious with its standout beaches. Hidden coves and crescent shaped bays with many child safe Blue Flag credentials make this area perfect for holidaymakers.

With its beautiful climate the Algarve boasts more sunshine per year than California, so visiting can be whenever you like!  The winters are certainly not cold, but the most sun tends to be between June to October.

By choosing the Algarve you will find friendly, welcoming people; excellent local wines, at superb prices and discover delicious food, such as its regional dishes like capalana, a tasty medley of pork and clams served in a traditional copper pan.

Algarve Weather Chart

RESORT INFORMATION   

Currency: Euro    

Time Difference: (from UK) Same as the UK

Flight Time: (from UK) 2 hours 30 mins

Voltage: 240V, 50Hz

Shop Opening Times: From 9:00am to 1:00pm and 3:00pm to 7:00pm Monday to Friday and until 1:00pm on Saturdays. During peak summer season most of them will stay open all day on Saturdays and will be open later at night in the main resorts. Supermarkets are open 7 days a week from 8.30am to 9am

Bank Opening Times: Monday to Friday: 8:30am to 3:00pm. Closed on Saturdays and official holidays

Eating out: A lot of restaurants and shops still operate on cash only basis, so make sure you always have cash to hand. Dining hours are similar to the UK.

Loule And Almancil

Close proximity to our villa stay holidays

General Description:

Loule is a vibrant and typically Algarvean market town set right in the middle of Portugal's Algarve. It is an ancient town still surrounded by its Moorish castle walls and an intact 13th century castle thrown in. Every Saturday a famous gypsy market is held here and the town is lined with cafes, bars and restaurants.

Almancil is a chic town retreat acting as a market town servicing the prosperous holiday areas just south of the coast. It's a fabulous visit as it is teeming with high-end restaurants and stylish boutiques which attract well-heeled visitors from around the world.

Location:

Loule is a 15 minute inland drive from Faro. In Faro orange trees line the narrow streets and it is enriched with Roman walls and a 13th century cathedral. It is also our entry airport gateway into the Algarve. Just 20 minutes drive from Loule is Quarterira beach, a long and wide stretch with calm waters, a long promenade dotted with cafes and restaurants, with a free car park about 100 meters away from the beach itself.  Vilamoura is great to visit. Wonder around ts 1000 berth marina, a celebrity hotspot, or visit the  free wetland reserve, or the ruins of a Roman fishing village, all just a minute drive away.

Almancil is a 10 minute drive south of Loule with the pristine beach of Vale do Lobo only a few kilometers away. The neighboring village of Sao Lourenco has a famous little white church with an amazing interior of floor-to-ceiling blue-and-white azelejo tiles.

Shopping:

With the market towns of Loule, Almancil and Quarteira offering local and tourist goods as well as the city of Faro with its open air forum Algarve mall, makes the Algarve a shopping paradise.

Eating Out:

Restaurants are in an abundance, from quaint cafes in narrow streets, to beachfront seafood restaurants. Casual, fine dining and Michelin restaurants, offer locally sourced menus with local specialaties along with British and international cuisine.

For the less mobile traveller:

All villa stays will require standard or accessible car hire if you wish to get out and about, as they are located in very small hamlets with narrow sandy, or tarmac roads with limited pavements and grassy verges making them inaccessible for a wheelchair user. The old towns of Loule and Almancil ooze charm with their narrow cobbled streets, but not so charming for  wheelchair users. The kerbs tend to be high, so when visiting make sure you park your car in a central area. The coastal towns of Quarterira and Villamoura are very accessible, with long promenades to freely wheel along.

The Algarve coastline is flat and accessible with the majority of its golden sandy beaches being accessible for wheelchair users. Sun loungers and wooden cladded areas are sign posted well. The picturesque hilltop towns do have their limitations, but with car hire included with all our villa stays allows you the freedom of exploring this magical destination.

Vilamoura

General Description:

Vilamoura resort is a must-see place to visit or to holiday in. It is glamorous and upbeat and it has something for everyone to enjoy. The main focal point revolves around the 1000 berth marina that's filled with stunning yachts and lined with elegant bars and authentic Portuguese restaurants. In comparison to this modern vibe, there's the ruins of an ancient Roman fishing village and the protected wetlands which are free to explore.

Vilamoura has two sandy beaches, Praia da Marina, to the east of the marina and Praia da Falesia to the west with umbrellas dotted along both. If you enjoy a walk, Praia da Falesia runs all the way to Olhos d' Agua or stroll along Praia da Marina into Quarteira.

If golf is your thing you've got 4 championship golf courses to the north of the town, plus over 50 outdoor tennis courts in the club next to the marina.

Location:

Vilamoura is 29km from Faro, a historical city where its city walls surround the old town and its cathedral and Bishop's Palace in a central square. A 30 minute drive from Vilamoura is the pretty town of Loule famous for it's Saturday gypsy market and to the west of Loule is a pretty village, Alte, at the foot of the hills - it is a very typical Algarvean village, with the church in the centre and narrow, cobbled streets with whitewashed houses spilling down the hillside. Nowhere in the Algarve is very far away so you can explore as much or as little as you want.

Shopping:

If you want to treat yourself or buy some souvenirs, Vilamoura is the place to be. It has numerous shops with everything from Cristiano Ronaldo's designer store to local craft shops.

Eating Out:

There are many resturants in Vilamoura with menus to make your mouth water and styles to suit everyone. Fresh seafood is in abundance and the traditional Portuguese restuarants will almost certainly have grilled sardines, served with boiled potatoes and vegetables or salad on the menu. As well as restaurants serving traditional Portuguese food, Vilamoura has a huge choice of resturants serving food across the world, Chinese, Italian and English being particulary popular.

For the less mobile traveller:

Vilamoura is very flat and easy to wheel around. The majority of pavements have tarmac and if you do come across the fashionable local Portuguese cobbles a smoother pavement can usually be found as an alternative. The marina is fabulous allowing a flat and even surface to get around. The majority of shops, bars and resturants have outside seating or ramped access to get inside.

The sandy beaches have wooden cladding and 3 or 4 sections of bedded areas reserved for disabled users and are spread out with sun loungers and parasols. Some lifeguards do have beach wheelchairs available and you are allocated a one hour time slot when using these.

Vilamoura really is a very accessible town to get around for general exploring, shopping, eating out and going to the beach.

 

 

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