What to do in the Algarve: the most luxurious things to do in the Portuguese region

It’s a top holiday hotspot for a reason…

Holly Willoughby and Victoria Beckham are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to celebrities who love holidaying in the Algarve. And from the sandy white beaches, dolphin-spotting potential and picturesque whitewashed villages, it’s easy to see why holidaymakers flock to Portugal’s southernmost region. Here’s how you can holiday like an A-lister in the Algarve.

What to see in the Algarve

If playing castaway is your thing, the creamy white sands of Barra Nova are just a whoosh away on Vila Monte Farm House’s boat, and the sleepy fishing villages of Tavira and Santa Luzia couldn’t be lovelier for a sun-dappled meander. Get in touch with nature on a dolphin watching tour or a visit to Ria Formosa Natural Park, a paradise for birdwatchers.

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Where to stay in the Algarve

Sitting pretty in sprawling, citrus scented gardens, Vila Monte Farm House is a delightful haven. With a peaceful adults-only pool as well as a splash-friendly option for little ones, it’s ideal for families as well as for couples and there’s an abundance of beautiful sandy shores close by. The thoughtfully designed rooms are airy and comfortable with glazed terracotta floors and gauzy drapes and the two restaurants serve delicious local dishes. The open-air cinema, complete with striped deckchairs, is a delight and there’s an honesty bar in the lobby should you fancy impressing fellow guests with your mixology skills.

Where to eat in the Algarve

Devour fabulously fresh fish dishes at Casa Corvo, a low-key spot on Fuseta’s waterfront. Just as tempting are the traditional dishes (from meaty picanha com arroz de feijão to sweet sericaia) at Adega Nova in Faro, the region’s capital. At Michelin starred Henrique Leis in Almancil, the five-course tasting menu showcases a carefully considered blend of French and South American flavours.

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Where to relax in the Algarve

Hit the dazzling Conrad Algarve Spa in Quinta do Lago for a morning of out-and-out spoiling. The glow-restoring Intraceuticals Oxygen Wash is a saving grace for tired, sun-parched skin, and the soothing vitality pool will banish flight-induced aches and pains quicker than you can say “aah”.