Faro: Travel and tourism

Praia da Galé
Praia da Galé
The climate, scenery and culture of Algarve make it different from the rest of Portugal. For the past decades, it has become a favourite holiday resort both for world tourists and the portuguese themselves.

The results are obvious: the region still displays a privileged climate, fine beaches and warm seawater, but the coast has been invaded by tourist resorts, with their hotels, restaurants and crowds that little respect the still surviving customs of Algarve.

However, if you enjoy cosmopolitan sites, the district offers you a large choice in that area: sun nearly all round the year, beaches of white sand and an enormous variety of tourist facilities and entertainments, from water sports and golf to sophisticated discotheques and casinos.

Yet you can still explore less touristical destinations: the market in the fishing town of Olhão, the caves and transparent waters of Lagos, the still unspoilt beach and town of Aljezur, with its 10th-century Moorish castle, or the isolated peninsula of Sagres, overlooking the Atlantic Ocean and surrounded by little-known beaches.

The Algarve is enclosed by ranges of hills to the north; there lie other surprises. The small picturesque village of Alte, for example, with its views over rolling hills, or the town of Alcoutim, with its 14th-century castle and idylic setting.

Whatever you do in the Algarve, you can always choose between sun-baked beaches and the wilder sceneries of the mountains. The international airport sits at Faro, the district capital.
Hotel Crowne Plaza Vilamoura Hotel Crowne Plaza Vilamoura
Vilamoura, Loulé
$$$$$ (>150 euros)

Crowne Plaza is situated in Vilamoura's centre, just a few minutes' walk from the marina and a ten-minute drive from four golf courses, with free private parking.

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