Things to do in Albufeira
Albufeira is one of the largest and most popular holiday destinations in the Algarve (in the south of Portugal) and it’s not difficult to see why! A perfect balance of tourism and culture, great nightlife, beautiful weather and some of Portgual’s most spectacular beaches. Sound tempting? We thought so.
Things to do in Albufeira… for culture lovers
The Archaeology Museum and the Municipal Art Gallery are two places worth mentioning, both of which provide fascinating glimpses into the history of Albufeira and regular exhibitions for you to enjoy. There are the remains of a Roman castle (sadly destroyed in a 1755 earthquake) to see, marked by the Torre do Relógio clock tower which still stands tall and is one of Albufeira’s most famous landmarks. St Anne’s Cathedral is a beautiful piece of architecture, with intricate carvings and sculptures inside; it’s is as lovely on the inside as it is on the outside. Albufeira’s Old Town has been developed with tourist shops and places to eat and so isn’t quite the simple fishing village it used to be, however walking around the cobbled, narrow streets you can glean an essence of its charming history.
Things to do in Albufeira… for families
Albufeira is packed with activities and attractions for families to enjoy. One of the most famous is the Zoomarine park, which is an aquatic attraction that provides family fun and the opportunity to learn more about marine life. There’s a wave pool surrounded by beautiful white sand, lots of slides and pools, a cool pirate-themed acrobatic show, an aquarium, the chance to swim with dolphins and the Oceanus exhibition centre, which showcases some of the scientific and conservation projects supported by Zoomarine. A second famous Albufeira attraction is Aqualand, which is another fantastic aquatic attraction. There are rides and slides for every member of the family, from big to little, including a Kamikaze slide, the lazy Congo river, Surf Beach and Rainbow Park. It’s a great all-day attraction which is perfect for enjoying the sunshine away from the beach, with places to eat and a gift shop too! If you’ve got children that love animals then take them to Krazy World, which is home to lots of animals such as snakes, goats, birds, lemurs, llamas, giant tortoises and more! With animal feeding and petting on offer, the interactive element of Krazy World makes it well worth a visit. Throw in a swimming pool with tube slide and inflatables, crazy golf, pedal cards, mini quad bikes and tree climbing, plus a restaurant with lots of tasty treats on offer, and you’ve got yourself a fantastic family day out.
Things to do in Albufeira…. for beach lovers
Albufeira is famous for its beautiful beaches – it was impressively awarded 20 Blue Flags in 2012. There are a variety of beaches dotted along the coastline and they’re all different but equally charming. We’ve picked our top five but we strongly urge you to go exploring and discover as much of the Albufeira coastline as you can!
Praia do Peneco (also known as Praia do Túnel) is located to the west of the Old Town, which you can access via a lift or through a tunnel in the cliffs. It’s a lovely stretch of golden sand with bars and restaurants that are perfect for rounding off a day’s sunbathing!
Praia da Falesia is a beautifully clean beach, unspoiled with miles of golden sand. It also has fantastic reviews on Trip Advisor and has been voted Trip Advisor’s Travellers’ Choice® 2014 Winner in the Portugal beaches category … well worth checking out!
Praia da Galé Oeste and Praia da Galé Leste are 2 parts of a lovely long beach: the western sandy side and the eastern side, which is much more rugged with enchanting caves, rocks and rock pools. Gale beach is an extremely popular place to watch the sun set and there are a couple of bars and restaurants so you can enjoy some food/drink whilst you do so.
Praia de São Rafael is a long beach with golden sand and crystal clear water that is sheltered by surrounding cliffs. Hire a pedalo and pedal out into the ocean to the beautiful Albufeira coastline from afar.
Praia do Salgodos is unlike other beaches on this list in that it isn’t sheltered by cliffs or rock formations. Instead it is a beautiful, wide stretch of sand that has a sand-dune backdrop. There is also a lagoon close by which is home to flamingos and turtles.
Things to do in Albufeira … for adventurers
The Parque Aventura tree-top adventure park in Albufeira is perfect for an exciting day away from the beach and is rated #1 on Trip Advisor’s list of attractions in Albufeira. It offers courses that are accessible for children from the age of 4, making it a great activity for all the family to enjoy. There are zip slides, ropes, nets and tree trunks to climb over and swing from.The Albufeira adventure park also includes a paintball area. There are several places that offer horse-riding, which is a great way to enjoy the spectacular Albufeira coastline. A more airborne adventure is a hot air balloon ride, which will take you across Albufeira and treat you to amazing views across the area. A very popular, less adventurous but still very enjoyable activity is golfing! Lots of holiday makers travel to Albufeira for golfing and there are several great courses to choose from.
Things to do in Albufeira … when the sun goes down
Albufeira is on the western outskirts of the town and is easily recognisable with its candy-coloured buildings in pink, blue, yellow, orange and green. Visit in the evening and browse the shops, eat in one of the lovely restaurants and then finish off the evening in one of the sophisticated bars, watching all of the different boats bobbing in the marina. Albufeira’s main nightlife spots are The Strip and the Old Town.
The Strip is usually extremely busy, attracting a younger crowd of tourists looking to spend the night partying. The Strip is packed with bars, restaurants, tattoo parlous and clubs, making it ideal for a great night out. The Old Town is a little quieter with a more relaxed vibe however there are still lots of bars, restaurants and a great after dark atmosphere.
Where to stay?
Want a closer look around some of the hotels in Albufeira? Here are 2 amazing, panoramic videos of the Hotel Grande Real Santa Eulalia and the Villa Petra Aparthotel.
*Prices based on 2 adults sharing for one night 20/07/2014. Prices correct when checked on 23/06/2014