Holidays in Albufeira give you a clear choice between enjoying the old and the new – the resort is actually split into two main sections, called the Strip and the Old Town. The Strip is where you’ll find your British restaurants, lively bars and some tourist-focused shops. It’s a pleasant home-from-home environment where you’ll find plenty of English speakers and spacious outdoor terraces.
In contrast, the Old Town is a dense cavern of narrow streets that open out into atmospheric squares. It’s here that you’ll discover a more authentic impression of the Portuguese way of life. Traditional restaurants waft the aroma of fresh herbs and spices in the air, whilst the bars are generally more sedate and feature quaint wooden interiors.
One of the biggest attractions of holidays in Albufeira is undoubtedly the choice of beaches. The main beach, Praia do Pescadores, is a perfect example. Lined with ochre-coloured cliffs, the beach still has a working section for fishermen. So whilst you laze on the golden shores you can catch a glimpse of the daily life of the locals.
And as Albufeira has retained its Portuguese culture, it’s still possible to see plenty of attractions within the Old Town, from elegant clock towers to myriad little white churches. There are great activities to keep the kids occupied too, as waterparks and zoos are all within easy reach of the resort. Holidays in Albufeira bring you all the convenience of the new, whilst still holding on to the history of the old.
Being based on the coast of a large city, holidays in Albufeira have a range of things to do and see nearby. Cultural landmarks and attractions add an impressive air to the seafront streets, whilst the huge themed zoo here will captivate your kids. And you can’t imagine holidays in Portugal without a golf course nearby, and Albufeira has just that. It’s a stunning one too, set in the leafy paradise of a nature reserve.
It’s easy to explore the major landmarks of Albufeira, as they’re all based close to the coastal road of Bernadino Sousa. There are no less than twelve points of interest in this area, including churches, statues and the remnants of medieval castle. Of those, the ones that you should really take the time to see during your holidays in Albufeira are the Clock Tower, the Chapel of Mercy and the Museum of Archaeology. The locals are rightly proud of the elegant metal spire of the Clock Tower, and it is often recognised as the most prominent landmark in Albufeira. The Chapel of Mercy is one of the most interesting churches in the region largely due to its age. Decorated in typically understated, whitewashed style, it dates back to the Arabic occupation of the city in the 10th century. Based right across from the Clock Tower, the Museum of Archaeology is worth a visit as it details the history of Albufeira, from prehistoric and Roman times to the present day.
If you’d prefer an activity that’s a little more family-focused, the Zoomarine is fantastic fun. Located in Guia (in the municipality of Albufeira but 6 miles from the coast) this amusement park combines two attractions in one. It has a water park with super-fast slides, three swimming pools, a playground and a small fun-fair. But it’s not just a theme park; it’s also a fully functioning zoo displaying dolphins, sea lions and crocodiles among others. Zoomarine even offers the chance to swim with the dolphins safely in a swimming pool.
There are lots more for families to do at the Monte Choro Fun Park, just 2 miles inland from Albufeira. All within the clean, enclosed grounds, you’ll come across sports bars, swimming pools, a bouncy castle and even an 18-hole mini golf course. The Hotel Montechoro is just opposite the fun park, so if this all sounds like your idea of fun you should book your holidays there with Jet2holidays.
Plus, around 14 miles west of Albufeira you can visit the Aquashow in Quarteira. Combining all the colourful slides of a water park with a fully-fledged theme park of rollercoasters and rides, plus a fun zoo and an ice-rink you pretty much get four attractions in one! There’s so much to see and do here that enjoying the park to its fullest will take more than one day. Luckily, you can stay at the on-site Aquashow Park Hotel with Jet2holidays.
Venturing a little further out, CS Salgados Golf Course is just three miles from the centre of Albufeira. Set in a protected nature reserve, this stunning course follows the coastline and features huge lakes and rivers, trimmed fairways and thousands of palm trees. Sounds like a great game of golf? Here’s even more great news – you can stay at the CS Salgados Grande Hotel with Jet2holidays and you’ll be right next to the golf course! You’ll also be close to the beautiful shores of Salgados Beach.
And if you’re up for venturing out on an excursion, the sprawling ruins of the 12th century Paderne Castle are just eight miles inland. The multi-coloured, cobbled textures from endless years of baking in the sun castle give it an aged, weathered style. But of even greater interest is that the castle is one of just seven that are actually featured on the Portuguese National Flag.