Top 5 Best Holiday Destinations in Algarve with Local Advice

Last Updated on January 1, 2022

Here you can read our traveler guide on the top best holiday destinations in Algarve, Portugal, including what to expect in Faro, Lagos, Tavira, Sagres, and Monchique. The Portuguese Algarve is diverse. Although it is only one region, the east, west, north and south areas differ incredibly.

While it is also a popular tourist destination, there are plenty of off the beaten track opportunities in every area, whether you’re looking for unspoilt wildlife, hustle and bustle or simple fishing villages. Much of the region’s popularity derives from its mountains, breath-taking cliffs and sandy beaches. So where’s best to go?

Top 5 Best Holiday Destinations in Algarve

1. Faro

Faro is the capital of the Algarve and feels a lot more Portuguese than most of the other popular towns. Faro is quite underrated purely because it is sometimes defined by its student nightlife. Not so, the students give the town a real vigorous feel and good atmosphere.

The Algarve

There is an attractive marina here as well as well-kept parks and plazas. The old town is steeped in history and there is a strong theatre and music scene here. Some of the medieval quarters are stunningly preserved and it’s here that you’ll find Faro’s historic past with plenty of churches and museums. There’s also beaches, lagoons, natural parks and little just off the coast that you can reach by a short boat ride.

2. Lagos

Lagos sits on the bank of the Rio Bensafrim. It is quite an old city, with roots stretching back to the 16th century. The city walls are particularly impressive and they completely encircle the city, protecting its quaint little streets, beautiful plazas and churches. Lagos is also a cultural metropolis, the city literally sprawls over the vast countryside and it’s a great place to spend your holiday in.

The Algarve

It’s everything that you could want: great restaurants with great food, great local wine, amazing weather, buzzing nightlife (if you want it) and stunning beaches. There are often crowds in the popular months but there’s enough space here to find something to call yours.

3. Tavira

Tavira sits on the Rio Gilao is as pretty as a picture. Anyone looking for a charming and quite rustic trip to The Algarve should head here first. The town is simple just that – completely charming.

There’s plenty to see and do including the ruins of a hilltop castle, Gothic churches, Renaissance architecture and beautiful parks. The restaurants in Tavira are particularly good, and there’s a wide variety to choose from. Tavira is the perfect walking holiday as its easily accessible and best seen on foot. The cobbled streets lead into many lovely plazas and gardens and there are a few calm and idyllic beaches.

4. Sagres

Sagres boasts some The Algarve’s most attractive scenery. It is a small village with dramatic cliff tops that is surrounded by an old fortress. While Sagres used to buzz with a real nautical scene, there isn’t much of that spirit left today.


Instead, Sagres is now much quieter and is the perfect place for a refreshing holiday. It’s very laid back and is packed full of holiday villas, fantastic restaurants and quaint cafes. You can go lobster fishing in the marina or spend your days lazing in the plazas.

5. Monchique

If you want to explore The Algarve’s beautiful, rugged scenery then Monchique is the place to come. Located high above the coast in the mountains, Monchique is often used in holiday brochures to sell the whole of The Algarve.


Monchique is a great place to enjoy some walking, cycling, kayaking and even canoeing and there are plenty of well-trodden and safe routes that include going through the mountains.

Top Selling Tours in Algarve

Here we only suggest the proven ways and top rated ones with travelers’ comments. You can feel free to book one of the below top selling tours.

Free cancellation up to 24 hours before activity starts