: Quinta da Saudade residents bar and restaurant
: Salgados Golf Club
: Sao Domingos
The Quinta da Saudade is a small, privately owned development occupying some 24 acres, about 6Km west of Albufeira and only 40 minutes drive from Faro airport. 29 villas and apartments enjoy a peaceful setting on an old hillside farm estate amongst mature orange, almond and olive trees. The villas have wonderful views across to the sea which is less than 2Km away. The wetlands and farmland are a walkers and bird watchers paradise including a flock of flamingos.
The nearest beach is a magnificent long stretch of sand, bounded by dunes where it is always possible to escape the crowds, even in August. Further along you can find pretty sandy coves hidden amongst stunning Algarve rocks and cliffs with clear rock pools to explore.
The local beaches are some of the best in Europe. Castelo, Gale, Armacao and Salgados are all between 5 and ten minutes drive away. They all have a choice of beach bars and restaurants.
The West Coast of Portugal is about an hours drive away where there are excellent surfing facilities. Salgados Golf Club and driving range are only a few minutes drive away and there are many other excellent golf courses in the area. The Quinta has on site stables which ideal for horse rides around the wetlands to the beach. Hard hats are provided. If you fancy wind surfing, the estuary at Portimao is a safe area with a choice of schools. At the Quinta there is a good quality tennis court with equipment on hire from the office.
For children of all ages the Zoo Marine is always very entertaining with dolphin, seal and bird performances, fun rides and other activities. The Algarve sun means that water parks are always a success and there is a choice for all ages between 10 and 20 minutes away. At the Quinta there are two swimming pools, the larger one has a separate shallow end for youngsters. There is also a self contained play ground, table tennis, boules and crazy golf.
MARKETS AND SHOPS
Most towns and villages hold a market at least once a week. Our favourites are Albufeira, Armacao de Pera and Loule. All full of local produce and lots of local characters who rally bring the Alarve alive. For more day to day shopping there is a choice of good quality supermarkets and ten minutes away the Algarve shopping centre. A tasty local bakers called Doca Boca produces Portuguese breads and cakes including Orange Cake. we often drop in for breakfast. Just up the road is a butcher who speaks good English to discuss the best meats to barbeque.
PLACES TO VISIT
The Algarve is not rich in historical monuments due to an earthquake about two centuries ago. However there are many characterful villages along the coast and inland. You will probably fly into Faro but its town centre and the salt flats are worth a visit and while you are going East the town of Tavira is also pretty.
Albufeira has lost its original charm but is good for night life and the new marina has restored some of the lost character to the town. Other marinas for boat lovers are at Vilamoura and Lagos. There are fishing boats at most villages along the coast.
Armacao de Pera, Carveiro and Salema are all seaside villages that are worth a visit. Inland, Sagres with its castle and tales of Scndinavian Princesses are on the way to the spa town of Caldas de Monchique in the Serra de Monchique hills. The commercial centre of Portimao has a vibrant sea front and a good shopping centre for leather goods.
Only an hour to the west is the South West tip of Europe, Cape St Vincent. Visit the Pousada hotel for lunch and the port at Sagres where wooden fishing boats are still built. But most impressive of all is the fortified school of Henry The Navigator on the very tip of Europe from where he trained the crews of Portuguese Caravelles to sail the oceans of the world in the 15th Century.
There is a wide choice of restaurants from snack bars on the beach, traditional Churrasqueiras where the locals eat chicken Piri-Piri and many other high quality, family friendly spots to discover. Ask Alice and Fernando in the Quinta office for their recommendations!