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Algarve is one of the most popular holiday destinations in Europe. situated in the Southern most region of Portugal it receives year round sunshine and has many attractive activities. Read our highly detailed Algarve holidays travel guide for more details on exactly what's available. You could also pick up a bargain holiday by travelling at certain parts of the year. Find out exactly when these times are in out cheap Algarve holidays guide.
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|Please note, prices were updated on November 30, 2023 at 17:19. For up-to-date prices, click through to the offer results.|
Situated in the southernmost region of Portugal, the Algarve is one of Europe's favourite holiday destinations enjoying year round sunshine. The Algarve with its coast, its hills and its acres of fertile orchards provide an immense variety of activities from water sports to dolphin watching, from off-road jeep safaris, to 'big game' fishing in the Atlantic. From exploring the ancient towns and villages to a round of golf on world class courses, the Algarve can truly be said to have something for everyone.
With its hot summer sun and its mild winters the Algarve is an ideal destination for a summer holiday or a winter break to escape the short days of winter at home. The beaches of the Algarve are as varied as its regions, and even in the midst of the high season, it is possible to discover a secluded sandy paradise, away from the bustle of the larger resorts.
The Algarve is an ideal family destination with amazing beaches complete with a range of watersports, as well as fantastic waterparks. Krazy World, near Algoz, is a fun park with two mini golf courses and the Zoomarine near Albufeira should not be missed. Restaurants are renowned for the warm welcome they give to children. For those who like a more active holiday there is tennis, jet skiing, waterskiing, windsurfing, fishing, golfing and horse riding. Holidaymakers who like to party into the early hours will find a vibrant, cosmopolitan nightlife mainly in the coastal resorts, particularly Albufeira.
In April the average temperature is in the low twenties rising to thirty degrees in July and August and returns to the low twenties again in October. November to March, the average daytime temperature is fifteen degrees. Spring is a beautiful season, when the orange and almond trees blossom splash the landscape with their colours and fill the air with their scent. Summer is a glorious season of sunshine sand and sea. Autumn is a great time to visit the wineries to sample the local produce. Winter offers a warm, sunny refuge from the dark, damp days at home.
The Algarve boasts long swathes of golden sand with watersport facilities, secluded coves offering privacy and the wild beauty of the rugged cliffs in the southwest at Cape Saint Vincente. Inland in the narrow streets and alleyways of the whitewashed villages, the pace of life is very different. Take in the delights of the Moorish architecture and the houses with their brightly coloured mouldings and lace patterned chimneys, or take a walk in the hills and picnic in the cooling shade of the pine forests. Explore the cobbled streets of Silves, once the ancient capital of the region and visit its ancient castle and medieval bridge. The influence of the many cultures which have occupied the area throughout the centuries is evident in the architecture, music, food, dance and handicrafts. Typical Moorish architecture can be seen in the old towns.
The family is very important in Portugese culture and this is reflected in the child friendly atmosphere of the holiday resorts. The people of the Algarve are easy-going, welcoming and friendly, willing to go out of their way to help. In most places there is a relaxed cafe culture where people will sit for hours over a cup of coffee gossiping and setting the world to rights. The influence of the Moors can be seen in their Fado music and dance.
The Algarve caters for all tastes, and the pace varies between resorts. If you wish to dance the night away there are clubs and bars and lively discos in the coastal resorts of Praia da Rocha and Albufeira. Waterfront bars and restaurants offer alternative entertainment often with plenty of live music and street entertainment. The resort of Vilamoura has an impressive range of restaurants to suit all tastes and budgets, arranged around a modern, bustling marina.
Loule is the town to visit if you are looking for handcrafted items. There you can find articles being made from iron, copper, leather and wood. There are many potteries in the small villages where brightly coloured dishes and plates are made. Other specialities are rich osier weaving, embroidered linen, woven baskets and candles.
Eating out in the Algarve is a delight. The food is fresh and wholesome. As expected, with an Atlantic coastline there is always a good variety of fish on the menu including shellfish. Especially tasty are the grilled sardines and the fish stews. The local wines make a good accompaniment to the meal. For meat eaters chicken piri-piri is a popular spicy dish. For small children and those with less adventurous taste buds there is the usual variety of holiday food and fast food outlets. Look out for the fig pastries and the marzipan pastries that are shaped like fruit and small animals.
Visitors to churches, particularly in rural areas, should keep shoulders and legs covered in order to avoid offence. Although it is not compulsory, tipping is generally expected in restaurants.
Cheap Algarve holidays aren't too difficult to get hold of if you look at the right times. It's very unlikely that you'll find a good deal in the peak summer season, however looking just outside of the summer, in May or October, as well as in the winter will certainly lower the costs of your holiday. Be sure to avoid all major public holidays and events however, such as Christmas, New Year, Easter and school half term holidays.
The Algarve enjoys year round sunshine and is one of Europe's most popular holiday destinations. With all kinds of different attractions, ranging from dolphin spotting to off-road jeep safaris and golfing, there is without a doubt something for everyone.
The temperatures vary throughout the year and are considerably lower in March compared to the peak summer season, however they never drop too low and are more than likely warmer than the temperatures in the UK at the same time. If you're looking for an out-of-season cheap holiday, you'd be looking at temperatures of around 15°C or higher.
The nightlife features good entertainment all year round for families and clubbers. Restaurants will give a very warm welcome to children, and the food features plenty of fresh fish and other local ingredients.
If it's a cheap Algarve holiday that you need, you will most likely have to travel outside of the peak summer season. Temperatures will be slightly lower, but there will still be plenty to see and do to make your cheap Algarve holiday extremely enjoyable.