Looking to visit Portugal's Algarve region? Albufeira was were we choose to base ourselves while exploring the area, and we absolutely loved it! The Algarve, which is known for it's scenic cliff lined beaches and numerous resort towns, is in the southernmost region of Portugal and has become one of the most popular vacation spots in all of Europe! Albufeira is the largest of the resort towns found along Portugal's Algarve coast and offers something for everyone - from beautiful beaches, to Albufeira's historic Old Town to the more party-centric New Town. In addition to enjoying the town of Albufeira, day trips abound along the Algarve coast - spend some time exploring the nearby towns of Silves, Lagos or Faro. Below is how we spent two days enjoying the beautiful town of Albufeira:
TABLE OF CONTENTS
We spent five nights at the highly recommended Alfagar Village and absolutely loved this area! Starting off our time, we spent the morning exploring the grounds of Alfagar Village. This stunning resort sits along the top of the cliffs overlooking the Atlantic Ocean providing breathtaking views, access down to Santa Eulalia beach and multiple swimming pools that makes this a wonderful choice for families.
MIRADOURO DO PAU DA BANDEIRA
After we were done exploring our resort, we headed into downtown Albufeira to explore the area. For our first stop, we headed to the Miradouro do Pau da Bandeira, this overlook provides a great viewpoint over Old Town Albufeira and Praia De Pescadores (Fisherman's Beach). Take some time and take in the breathtaking views! This was our absolute favorite spot in Albufeira!
PRAIA DE PESCADORES & PRAIA DO TUNEL
From the Miradouro do Pau de Bandeira, we grabbed the escalator to head down to the Praia de Pescadores (Fisherman's Beach). Visiting in the shoulder season meant the beach weather was hit or miss, and unfortunately, the day we were visiting Albufeira it was just a bit too chilly to swim in the water, but we still had fun playing around in the sand and sticking our feet into the water! Named for the fishing boats that used to fill this beach, today you will find very few fishing boats but hordes of sunseekers enjoying this beautiful beach.
One of main draws to visiting Albufeira is the beautiful beaches and Albufeira provides two beaches right in the center of town. In addition to the Praia de Pescadores which is located right in front Old Town Albufeira, to the left is Praia do Tunel also known as Praia do Peneco and is accessed via a tunnel from the Rua 5 de Outubro pedestrian street in Old Town. Penedo is the Portuguese word for boulder and the beach is named for the huge sandstone boulders that surround the beach. After having spent some time walking around the Old Town it was fun to be able to walk thru a tunnel and pop out onto another beach!
OLD TOWN ALBUFEIRA & RESTAURANTE TRES CORONAS
Old Town Albufeira is the family-friendly portion of Albufeira that is full of restaurants, bars and tons of shops. Losing yourself along the cobblestone streets and alleys is a great way to spend an afternoon. Stop by the main square, the Jardim Publico de Albufeira and grab a drink, soak up the sun and spend some time people watching. While Albufeira is no longer the quaint little fishing village it once was, you can still find the original charm of this seaside village by wandering thru the streets of Old Town.
For lunch we stopped at a wonderful restaurant looking out to the sea called Restaurante Tres Corona. We thoroughly enjoyed our meal of delicious petiscos (Portuguese tapas), Cataplana (which is a seafood dish that is named for the cookware it's cooked in) and of course some refreshing Sangria!
SANTA EULALIA BEACH
For our second day in Albufeira, we spent some time enjoying the beach at our resort - the Santa Eulalia Beach. Located down a long scenic flight of stairs along the cliff-side this beach was a great way to enjoy some down time and soak up a bit of that wonderful Algarve sunshine!
EXPLORING NEW TOWN AND 'THE STRIP'
For those wanting to add a bit of the party scene to their time in Albufeira, "The Strip" is the place to be. Similar to the Old Town area - New Town is full of restaurants and shops and lines a beautiful beach named the Praia da Oura but at night as the Neon lights come on, the nightlife kicks in, creating quite the lively atmosphere - much different that what you will find over in the Old Town. This 2km strip is lined with bars and clubs and makes Albufeira almost as well known for it's party scene as for it's beautiful beaches. For us, we didn't spend a whole lot of time here, but it was fun to see the street all lit up at night and to get a peak at all the activity!
Interested in planning your own trip to Albufeira, Portugal? Below is our summarized itinerary for you to follow or adjust to your own preferences. ENJOY!
Day 1: Miradouro do Pau de Bandeira, explore Old Town Albufeira with beachtime at Praia dos Pescadores & Praia do Peneco
Day 2: Relax by spending some time at Santa Eulalia Beach, evening out at 'The Strip'