Things to Do & Must-See Attractions in Portimao
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Famous for its picturesque marina, sandy beaches, and tasty sardines, Portimão is the gateway to the western Algarve, as well as the jumping off point for the popular Praia da Rocha beach. Perched opposite Ferragudo on the banks of the Arade River, it’s the region’s second-largest town (after Fado) and is bursting with restaurants, shops, and nightlife.
Portimão makes a lively hub from which to explore the beaches, fishing villages, and mountains of the Western Algarve, and there are plenty of options for sightseeing tours and activities. Marvel at natural wonders such as the Benagil Caves, enjoy tapas on a wine tasting tour of Lagoa, explore the nearby fishing village of Alvor, or cruise along the river to historic Silves.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Temperatures can reach over 30°C (86°F) in the summer months, so be sure to pack sunscreen and drink plenty of water.
- Free Wi-Fi hotspots are located around town.
How to Get There
Portimão is located at the mouth of the Arade River along the west Algarve coast. The closest international airport is in Faro, 39 miles (63 kilometers) east, and buses and trains link Portimão with Lisbon, Faro, and other destinations along the Algarve.
When to Get There
The most atmospheric time to visit Portimão is during the summer season from May to September. It’s possible to visit at any time of year, but be aware that many hotels, restaurants, and attractions close down in low season.
Family Activities in Portimão
Once you’ve explored the town, strolled around the marina, and tried your hand at water sports on Praia da Rocha beach, treat the kids to a day at the Lagos Zoo, the Zoomarine park in Guia, or Slide and Splash water park in Lagoa. Alternatively, book a private tour and take a coastal road trip in a convertible, Jeep, or motorcycle sidecar; set sail on a dolphin-watching cruise; or zip around town on a Segway tour.
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