For the fifth year in a row, The Algarve remains the best place in the world today to retire overseas.
But what is it that makes the Algarve so special? The weather is a good place to start. There is sunshine throughout the year and the winters are short and mild. You will never have to shovel snow again. The Algarve receives over 3000 hours of sunshine per year. From May until the end of August there are 12 hours of glorious sunshine per day. The expat community is well established and welcoming.
The medical facilities and health care are affordable and high quality with two major hospitals close by. There are undervalued properties, including ocean views available to suit all budgets. English is widely spoken, thanks to the longstanding British presence. The infrastructure is first class, and you can easily get around the Algarve. The well maintained roads allow for easy access to the rest of Portugal and into the rest of Europe. Portugal’s retiree residency program rolls out the welcome mat for foreign pensioners who they are attracting in greater numbers each year. The Golden Visa process has also been made. Source: Liveandinvestoverseas.com
The Algarve West Coast. Some of the best coastal scenery in Europe awaits you here, pristine, deserted beaches and rugged cliffs will captivate you.
Fishing villages, deserted beaches, rugged cliffs and views, views and more views!
Some of the best coastal scenery in Europe awaits you here, pristine, deserted beaches and rugged cliffs will captivate you. Take the A22 or EN125 to Lagos, Lagos is a day trip all on its own so don’t include it on this itinerary there is simply not the time. Continue west along the EN125. At Vale Verde turn left on the EN537 to visit Praia da Luz and Burgau. Don’t turn north at Burgau keep going west along a much smaller coast road to Salema. These are all small fishing villages that are popular but not swamped with tourism. Great fish restaurants in all of them.
Changes in Scenery and landscape
Head north again until you hit the EN125 again and head west in the direction of Villa do Bispo and Sagres. You will notice that the landscape has changed drastically, very few trees and quite windswept, not unlike Cornwall in the UK, for much the same reason. At Sagres visit the Fortaleza de Sagres and the Cabo de Sao Vicente light house. The cliffs here are spectacular albeit dangerous, don’t go too close to the edge! You are also at the most South Western corner of Europe.
Retrace your steps to Vila do Bispo and find the north west corner of the village near the market, head out on the M1265 to Praia do Castelejo, this is one of the best unspoiled beaches in the Algarve, if not Portugal. Back to Vila do Bispo and then head north on the EN268. There are about a dozen small tracks that head west off this road to some spectacular and remote beaches, each about 4kms long, you may need a 2nd day to try some of these. Head north and (don’t miss this section), just 2-30 meters before the quaint village of Carrapateira there is a turn to the left that goes south west to Praia do Amado and from here a wonderful cliff top road that runs north, don’t take a right turn to Carrapateira but continue along the cliff road. There are some great cliff top board walks you can go on. Eventually this road will look down on Praia do Bordeira which is a kite surfers paradise and end up back on the EN268.
Head north again. The EN268 will join the EN120 continue north in the direction of Aljezur which is an old village to explore with a castle and some excellent traditional restaurants. Drive through the narrow streets and keep going uphill to the castle (to save your legs). A few kms before Aljezur you will have passed a turning to the coast, if you have time, track-back and take the M1003-1 to Praia da Arrifana, a surfers haven with stunning scenery, fishing harbour and a small fort that was badly damaged by a tsunami in 1755 which stands atop a 200 foot cliff, yes a tsunami, seriously.
At this point you can turn back on the EN120 to Lagos about an hours drive. Or from Aljezur take the EN267 in an easterly direction towards Monchique. This is a delightful route via the village of Marmelete and then along a contour road to the EN266 just south of Monchique, turn right in the direction of Portimao, this route will take about one hour 15 minutes.
300 days of sunshine each year make holidays in the Algarve very popular and driving a convertible a real pleasure. No better place to get your top down! Sightseeing couldn’t be better, secluded coves along the coast or panoramic views from Foia.
Honda S2000 in the Algarve
300 days of sunshine each year make holidays in the Algarve very popular and driving a convertible a real pleasure. No better place to get your top down! I have to say though when we lived in the Algarve full-time, during July and August, the top only came down for half an hour or so then up it went and airco on. Those months are just too hot to drive without airco! The rest of the year though is perfect and now that we only spend winters here we take every opportunity to zip around the twisties here in Monchique with the wind in my (grey) hair! (Weather Statistics)
We also try to get away for a few days here and there, New Year in Cadiz Spain, the weather was glorious with temps in the high teens, no rain and blue sky, a great trip, only spoiled by the rudeness of the local Spanish people. Well there you go symptoms of Brexit perhaps?
We love to tour Portugal there are so many interesting places to visit, stacked with culture, history and excellent food, any excuse and we off to somewhere and above all the people are polite and friendly, Portugal is England’s oldest ally!
One of our favourite places to visit is Tomar, it has a Monastery and castle of the Knights Templars well worth seeing, the town is picturesque with great restaurants.
Algarve Road Trips
There are plenty of day road trips from our Villa Rental in the Algarve and also into the Alentejo, the next province north of here. We often explore and redo trips to Sagres the most south-western point of Europe and from there the west coast right up to the Alentejo border. Easily done in a day with a stopover at one of the many restaurants along the way. Spectacular unspoiled scenery around every corner.
Our Honda is popular with the wildlife too, this Javali, (wild boar) was inquisitive and kindly left his muddy nose print on my pride and joy, bless him!
Slalom at one of the Portuguese Honda S2000 weekends in the north of Portugal.
The vote for Brexit hit British travelers in the wallet, but trips to Portugal soften the blow. Yes, it takes the euro, but the country remains one of the most affordable destinations on the Continent, offering visitors the elegance of Western Europe at Eastern European prices. In fact, in its 2017 Holiday Money Report, the Post Office Travel Money declared The Algarve the cheapest of 44 European destinations. Families can find particular savings in the shoulder seasons, at October half term, for example, when family hotels still have great sports and kids’ clubs, but at lower prices than in the summer months. Why not check out our rates: Villas in Algarve for rent (rates)
Portugal is officially one of the sunniest countries in the world, and at the height of the summer visitors to the Algarve can expect temperatures of 28C and 11 hours of sunshine daily (and about one day per month of rain).
Even if you go for October half term, you are likely to find appealing weather: 22C, with seven hours of sun daily (which beats the 14C and three hours of sunshine you’ll find in Blighty at the same time of year).
May half term is an even better bet: the crowds are fewer, you can expect temperatures of around 25C, and 10 hours of sunshine each day, with little chance of rain. Check out Algarve weather temperatures and rainfall statistics.
Holiday makers with children are pretty much restricted to school holidays, however the rest of us can pick and choose when we want to go on vacation, often beating the hottest weather in the summer months and the crowds as well. Have a look at our availability and see if there are dates that night suit you. Also look at our special offers you might be in for a bargain.