The Algarve is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Europe, and certainly in Portugal. It is visited by around 10 million visitors each year, 7 million of whom come from outside the country. A lot of them come from the UK, but the region is also very popular with other northern European nations.
It is situated on the southernmost tip of Portugal, and was originally the centre of trade when the country was occupied by the Moors; in fact its name originates from the Arabic word for West. As a result the Algarve has a very rich history and culture.
However it’s attractions that extend far beyond this, as it has around 155 km of coastline along its southern edge, and some truly beautiful beaches. The western edge of the region has around 88 km of coastline that are home to picturesque rocky coves.
The climate makes it easy to take advantage of all these beaches year-round, as even in the winter the temperatures can reach as high as 25°C, while in the summer they can peak at around 48°C. These factors mean it is a very popular winter holiday destination.
The tourism boom originally began in the 60s, and since then this region has seen substantial investment into facilities. There is a huge range of facilities and amenities including excellent golf courses and water parks. Some resorts are more family oriented while others are aimed at couples looking for a quieter holiday. Although many of the results are busy, Portugal does have a laid back atmosphere, and its huge ex-pat population means English is widely spoken and understood.
According to golfholidays.com, who are one of the leading golf travel firms on the Internet, Portugal tops the list of places in which to enjoy the best golfing holiday experience, beating France into second place.
Apparently it achieves this accolade thanks to the excellent value and easy access offered, as well as the enormous choices of outstanding courses and accomodations. This probably won’t come as a surprise to many people, as golfing holidays in Portugal are often considered to be something of a tradition.
The Algarve is synonymous with great golf courses, especially as the region benefits from a temperate year-round climate that is perfect for the sport. This is something that has enticed buyers to the region for many years, as no matter where you buy a property, is unlikely to be far away from a world class golfing facility.
One of the most popular areas is in Vilamoura as there are no less than the 12 golf courses in the locality. Some properties are on the golf courses and offer access to numerous amenities, while others are situated nearby. These kinds of properties are always in demand for golfing holidays, and are usually very easy to rent out.
Although Portugal does have problems, the country is taking substantial steps to return to financial health, and there’s probably never been a better time to buy. The Algarve has excellent flight connections to the rest of Europe, and is close enough to the UK for long weekend breaks. It’s also perennially popular amongst those looking to escape the winter weather.
The Algarve has traditionally been a popular destination for second home owners, and it’s easy to see why. It has a temperate year-round climate, and more than 3,000 hours of sunshine annually. The Algarve offers a great lifestyle to visitors and residents, and can offer just about every outdoor activity you can think of; one of the most popular is of course golf.
It has around 155,000 m of sandy coastline, and endless coves and bays to explore. There’s even a mountain range just 30 km away from Lagos. The region is rich in history, and one of the nicest places to visit is Silves which is the former Moorish capital of the area. It has its own castle complete with 11 turrets and impressive battlements. Next door to the castle is a cathedral, complete with ancient tombs and Gothic monuments.
Much of the economy in the Algarve centres on agriculture and fishing, with wine production and seafood being especially important. However the area is still quite reliant on tourism and this is responsible for providing much of the local income. Although Portugal is currently undergoing some financial difficulties, the Algarve will always remain perennially popular making it one of the safest places in which to invest in property.
The area is served by the main airport at Faro which is able to handle up to 6 million passengers annually. The airport is currently operating at full capacity and there are plans to expand the terminal to enable it to deal with 8 million passengers. Some of the most popular routes originate from the UK, coming in from Manchester London and Dublin airports.