The achingly beautiful Algarve spans the southern Atlantic coastline of Portugal fringed with some of Europe’s most gorgeous beaches. A sun-drenched region (some 300 days of sunshine each year) is dotted with fishing ports, hillside villages, dramatic clifftop scenery, vast nature reserves and surprisingly, away from the crowds, slips into the lovely slow-lane-pace of living. 

Stretching from Cabo São Vicente in the wild western Algarve, famed for surf, deserted sandy coves and dolphins, through to the Parque Natural da Ria Formosa towards the easterly border with neighbour Spain. The Algarve plays host to wild pink flamingos to the golfing-green fraternity, this is a region in which you find time-stood-still villages, get lost among the almond & carob groves or just marvel at the chaos of one of the oldest fish markets designed by Gustave Eiffel no less, found in the port town of Olhão. 

Whichever route you take from the airport in Faro – the Algarve is a ceaseless chameleon of intoxicating wilderness beauty bashed by the Atlantic Ocean, lined with fascinating culture from Portuguese heritage to Moorish architecture and is inhabited by an incredibly humble folk who wrote the manual of the good, simple Algarvean way of life.

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