Portimão – the best of everything

In Portimão the sun shines for around 300 days a year down on eight kilometres of the Algarve’s most beautiful beaches. But if you think a visit to Portimão is all about soaking up the rays, then think again. There are world-class golf courses, high-adrenaline sports and some of the best dive sites in Europe, and that’s just for starters.

Portimão offers the very best of southern Portugal. You can enjoy the finest, freshest seafood, before sailing along the gorgeous Praia da Rocha to the fishing village of Alvor.

Alternatively, there is no better way to start the day than a boat trip along the River Arade and out into the Atlantic. The meeting points from which to depart on are the Vasco de Gama pier, the Portimão marina and Alvor waterfront. There are several tour companies dedicated to offering excellent trips that reveal the many secrets of this incredible area. Fishing, visiting caves and dolphin watching are just some of the activities on offer.

In the afternoon, relax on a sun-lounger and enjoy a good book, getting up only to take a refreshing dip in the sea. When the sun goes down it is time to go out and enjoy the hot summer nights. Everything begins as the sun sets on the river-front esplanade and carries on until sunrise the next day.

Portimão is also a destination for spending time together as a family and the atmosphere is welcoming and fun for all ages.

Portimão offers exceptional conditions for sailing and is a favourite destination for sailors from all around the world.

The harbour is especially secure and is rarely closed for sailing; there are also excellent conditions offered by Portimão Marina. Guarded by the forts of Santa Catarina and São João, the facility is situated on the estuary of the River Arade and has enough capacity for 620 boats up to 50 metres in length. Such are the excellent facilities and conditions that Portimão has become a popular meeting point for a wide range of major water sporting events.

Mooring your boat at Portimão Marina really brings the world of sailing to life. The sea here is also perfect for swimming, surfing, scuba diving and fishing.

Tee off

Between the blue of the sea and the sky, there is another colour that catches the eye in Portimão: green, the green of the town’s four golf courses. The warm climate combined with these world-class courses makes Portimão a golfer’s paradise; indeed, combined with the great lifestyle, a visit to Portimão is a true hole in one!

Playing golf in Portimão is to enjoy playing golf to the sound of the sea, the birds singing and a warm breeze rippling through the trees. Every day buggies await the players across these magnificent courses, which are the birthplace of golf in the Algarve. Golf is a great way to spend time with family and friends, and players of all ages are welcome to do battle against the beautiful, fairways, bunkers and testing greens. Whatever your skill level is, Portimão has the ideal course for you.

Portimão’s Atlantic position makes it one of Europe’s true surfing hot-spots, and there are schools for beginners and breaks for those with more experience. The region also has great conditions for skydiving. Those brave enough, can fly through the sky while taking in the incredible mountain landscapes and the Alvor Estuary.

Scuba-diving is also a big draw thanks to the wrecks of four war ships that lie close to each other creating an artificial reef like no other in the world. Throughout Portimão there are many expert dive schools and tour operators who will ensure you are properly prepared to explore this incredible underwater world.

Back on terra firma there is tennis and athletics, or simply the chance to explore this stunning coastal region on foot, horseback or cycling. Indeed, those keen to explore deeper into the countryside will discover that Portimão is the gateway to some of Portugal’s great trekking opportunities. There are five routes that are all home to fantastic scenery, making it perfect for an invigorating day of exercise and discovery. You can marvel at the Ponta João D’Arens, where the rocks have been sculpted by erosion providing a home to many birds.

Or there is the fabulous Ria de Alvor where the dunes give way to salt marshes and the estuary, home to a wide variety of animal and plant species; a tranquil place that offers a livelihood for the local fishing communities.

So whatever kind of travel sets your imagination alight, you can pretty much guarantee Portimão’s got it covered.

Further information