Originally a sleepy little fishing village, Carvoeiro has grown in recent years to become a well-loved destination for many travellers and holiday makers. The surrounding area boasts some of the finest beaches in Europe as well as one of the most stunning coastlines in the world.
Although the village has been transformed over time to cater for the influx of tourism, it still retains its traditional charm and addictive personality, bringing visitors rushing back year after year.
Eating out offers something for everyone, from the ubiquitous “chicken piri piri” to the finest in high end dining, there is a huge choice of restaurants. Nightlife can be as lively or as laid back as you want, with a great selection of bars with live music to more sophisticated wine bars. During the summer months (June – September), a stage is erected next to the beach in the square and live music is played every night.
With no shortage of things to do, recreational activities range from boat trips, water parks, golf, tennis, scuba diving, wine tasting tours, horse riding and so much more. Bicycle hire has become increasingly popular in recent years as a way of discovering the surrounding area.
Algar Seco & Carvoeiro Boardwalk
Located on the east side of Carvoeiro, Algar Seco is a stunning natural creation. Nibbled out of the sandstone by millennia of winds and waves, the weird and wonderful rock formations invite you to explore the multitude of rock pools populated by starfish, urchins, colorful anemones, barnacles and small fish.
A set of steps leads into a picture-perfect green and turquoise lagoon, great for sightseeing and snorkelling. Spanning the cliff-tops between Algar Seco and Nossa Senhora da Encarnação Fort, Carvoeiro boardwalk takes you out across the cliffs in a safe, easy and distinctively pleasurable manner.
The all-encompassing panorama is delightful to the senses, especially as the sun goes down.
Silves is an enchanting town littered with orange and lemon trees, sitting on the banks of the Arade River. There is history everywhere you look in Silves, to remind you of its affluent and bold past as a Moorish capital.
The most prominent monument is Castelo de Silves, which is now the best preserved castle in the Algarve. The castle offers spectacular views from the battlements.
The Cathedral of Silves, one of the Algarve’s few remaining gothic monuments with ancient tombs, sits alongside the castle and a network of narrow, cobbled streets take you down into the town.
Caldas de Monchique, Algarve
Caldas de Monchique is a small village in the Serra de Monchique, which is a thickly wooded mountain range separating the Algarve from Alentejo. This is where the Romans built baths to utilise the natural spring waters which are still in use in the current ‘thermal treatment centre’ for treating rheumatism and respiratory illnesses. The journey up (and down) to Monchique offers spectacular views and is totally different from coastal Algarve.
If the day is clear it is well worth continuing to drive to the highest point in the Algarve – Foia – which is 902 metres high. The view from here is fantastic – you can see from Cape St. Vincent in the west, to Faro in the east and to the Serra da Arrabida, near Lisbon, to the north!
Lagos is a fantastic town full of historical interest with it’s origins dating as far back as 2000 years BC. Lagos was the base for the ‘voyages of the Discoveries’ instigated by Henry the Navigator when trade between Africa and Portugal brought a great deal of wealth into the town.
Lagos boats a 450+ berth marina and has a variety of shops, bars and restaurants to enjoy, all with a great view of the boats.
Lagos has some stunning views. From the Ponte da Piedade (a renound area of rock formations and caves in front of the lighthouse) you get a fantastic view of the sweeping sands of Lagos bay with the Monchique mountain range as a backdrop, and you can see all the way to Sagres to the west and past Albufeira to the east.
Sagres & Cape St Vincent Algarve
Sagres is the most south-westerly resort in the Algarve and in Roman times was part of an area called the Promontorium Sacrum (from whence the name, Sagres, derives). At this time it was believed to be the most westerly part of the world and it was thought that the setting sun off the point made the waters of the ocean boil.
Sagres is particularly popular with visitors coming to see the place where Prince Henry the Navigator, built his famous school of navigation. Sagres is also home to Henry’s fortress, Fortaleza de Sagres, which was originally built in the 15th century and rebuilt in 1793 after it was destroyed by Sir Francis Drake in 1587.
The Ria Formosa Nature Park is a unique lagoon system of approximately 18,000 hectares. This internationally recognised wetland is an invaluable habitat for wildlife: flamingos, buzzards, woodcocks, chameleons and kingfishers.
This is a micro-environmental world, which can only be discovered by following walking trails or going for slow boat trips to observe the wetland, fresh water pools and ancient Roman salting tanks. Uncover and learn the secrets of the forests, and see the restored tide mill up close.