In the centre of Portugal’s Algarve region, Albufeira ticks all the boxes when it comes to getaways. You’ve got a charming old town, numerous Blue Flag beaches and renowned nightlife to boot. And thanks to its year-round balmy weather, it’s a great holiday pick whichever month you’re looking to visit.
Not sure what to do in Albufeira? Here are just 10 of the exciting things you should add to your bucket-list if holidaying here:
- Praia da Falésia
- Albufeira old town
- Museu Municipal de Arqueologia
- Praia de São Rafael
- Pau de Bandeira viewpoint
- Praia do Túnel
- Albufeira Marina
- Boat trip
- Albufeira new town
1. Praia da Falésia
You wouldn’t be blamed for mistaking the majestic cliffs that back Praia da Falesia for those found in the Grand Canyon. Teamed with glistening waters and pristine sands, it’s no wonder a day spent here is one of the most popular things to do in Albufeira. It even scooped the number three spot on TripAdvisor’s 2019 Travellers’ Choice list of top 25 beaches in Europe!
Plus, the immaculate sands have consistently earned the beach its Blue Flag status and the stunning burnt-orange cliffs have a unique ombre effect, so no two parts look the same. If you’re up for a long walk, start in Olhos de Água and stroll all the way along the beach to Vilamoura.
You’ll find this action-packed theme park in Guia, just a few miles from Albufeira. It’s pretty much a one-stop-shop for all-round family entertainment. Enjoy a handful of rides tailored specifically for little ones and witness wonderful animal displays, while over in Zoomarine Beach, you can whizz down thrilling water slides and relax in wave pools.
Don’t miss the spectacular Dream and Fantasy dolphin display! You’ll see amazing acrobatics from these magical creatures and witness the unbreakable bond and everlasting relationship they have with their Zoomarine trainers.
3. Albufeira old town
The old town is the best place to go if you want to experience a bit of Albufeira’s fishing village past. Winding cobbled streets lead to a central square lined with leafy trees and benches where you can rest your legs after a day of exploring.
There are hidden gems around nearly every corner, including the Sacred Art Museum, the clock tower and the Church of Santana. After dark, artists and musicians take to the streets to entertain the night-time crowds. Between the souvenir shops and quaint restaurants, you’ll also find a sprinkling of bars serving drinks until the early hours – some as late as 4am in the summer!
If you’re looking for a unique way to experience these charming streets, why not embark on a tuk-tuk tour and cover more of the old town’s highlights than you would on foot?
4. Museu Municipal de Arquelogia
Want to delve deep into the town’s intriguing past? A visit to the Archaeology Museum is one of the top things to do in Albufeira’s old town. Spread over two floors in a building that until the late 80s was the city hall, here there are collections and artefacts from the Roman period, Islamic period and Modern age. Plus, entry is only €1!
5. Praia do São Rafael
Coastal erosion has left Praia do São Rafael with fascinating rock formations and between these there are hidden-away coves, so you can find your own little slice of this beach haven. Think powdery gold sands and glistening shores.
It gets very busy in the summer season, so get down early to secure your spot on the sands. If you’re around in the evening, the stunning sunset is not to be missed!
6. Pau de Bandeira viewpoint
Looking for some of the best views in the area? This hilltop vantage point boasts panoramic vistas of Fisherman’s Beach and the whitewashed old town. You won’t have to worry about the steep walk to get there either, as there are two huge escalators that can take you up and back down.
Grab an ice cream from the nearby café then take it all in from one of the shaded benches. Stop by during twilight hours and you’ll see beautiful silhouettes of the family of statues that overlook the beach.
7. Praia do Túnel
Following the pretty “Portuguese Pavement” along Rua 5 de Outobro will lead you to a manmade tunnel. This 20-metre-long archway links the old town with Praia do Túnel, aptly named due to this unique feature.
The seafront promenade is lined with laid-back restaurants and once you reach the beach, the inviting gold sand is the perfect spot to lay your towel down.
8. Albufeira Marina
The pretty pastel-coloured buildings that line the marina make it hard to miss. You’ll see them in all shapes and sizes, in all the colours of the rainbow. Along one side of the water, there are private villas and on the other, you’ll find casual cafés offering a chilled-out spot to watch the boats bobbing in and out.
Although it’s a around a 30-minute stroll from the old town, it’s certainly worth a visit. There are usually tuk-tuks and taxis waiting to take you back to the centre if you don’t fancy the walk.
9. Boat trip
While you’re visiting the marina, why not head out to explore the waves? Albufeira boat trips offer up a little bit of everything, whether it’s relaxation or full-on adventure you’re after. You could join a group on a dolphin-spotting tour, discover caves on a kayaking trip or simply kick back and feel like a VIP on your own yacht charter.
10. Albufeira new town
Want to experience some of the liveliest bars and clubs in the Algarve? Albufeira has put itself firmly on the map as a nightlife hotspot thanks to the Brit-favourite Strip. The Montechoro Strip sits on Avenida Sá Carneiro, around a 30-minute walk from the old town. Don’t worry though, there are plenty of watering holes along the way!
Through the day, it’s a great place to grab a full English breakfast, while at night it truly comes to life. Matt’s Bar is great for groups, Libertos Lounge Club serves some of the best cocktails and Club Vida’s live DJs will have you dancing until the early hours.
Posted: 20th Apr 2019.