Do you need to relax by day and party by night? If you're looking for sandy, family-friendly fun in the waves and sophisticated drinking and dining all in one locale, a villa to rent in or near Vilamoura is just the ticket. And don't worry, you don't have to be that sophisticated. We know a few places where a raucous weekend with friends is utterly appropriate.
Explore Vilamoura's beachy villas in the city and along the coast
Whether you're planning to enjoy the marina and beaches of Vilamoura proper or are eager to visit surrounding seaside towns and cities, holiday villas along Portugal's southern coast will provide the perfect base.
There's a marvellous marina awaiting you in Vilamoura
Vilamoura’s claim to fame is its delightful marina. It plays host to over 1,000 yachts, all bobbing on the water within sight of one of the many waterfront restaurants or cafes. So, even if you don’t have a yacht of your very own – poor you! – you can still relax over drinks or a meal while you enjoy the view. Snag a holiday within walking distance of the marina and you’ll also be within walking distance of the town's posh casino and nightclub. During the day, you can shop till you drop along the marina, where the retail outlets sell everything from local crafts to designer goods.
There'll be sunset over the red cliffs of... Vilamoura
Another thing to bear in mind while perusing a selection of Vilamoura holiday rentals is the beaches. Marina Beach is a golden strip of sand to the east of the marina, while Falesia Beach, to the west of the marina, is more striking. It’s one of the longest beaches – stretching for 6 kilometres all the way to the neighbouring town of Olhos de Água – and is backed by brilliant red cliffs that are absolutely dazzling at sunset. If you find a villa within sight of this majestic scene, set up camp at dusk for a show better than anything you’ve seen at the cinema in months.
You'll cry tears of joy at the sight of Olhos de Água
If you’ve been dying to take a break from the rat race, look for holiday lettings in Olhos de Água where your inner rat will feel instantly human again. A few kilometres west of Vilamoura, this picturesque fishing village is centred around a sandy cove, where fishermen still pull their boats onto the sand and repair their nets along the shore. On its eastern edge is the gobsmackingly beautiful Falesia Beach, but there's also golf, a public bathhouse and plenty of restaurants serving local and international cuisine to keep you busy. And don’t forget to keep your eyes peeled for the “olhos de aqua,” or the eyes of water, which refers to the freshwater springs found among the rocks above the beach.
Albufeira offers a mix of family friendly and night-time lively
About 16 kilometres from the centre of Vilamoura, Albufeira is a more energetic option for holiday rentals. A sleepy fishing no longer, locals now use the pretty, modern marina as a base for diving, dolphin watching and pleasure cruises. In summer, Tunel and Pescadores beaches are packed with families and young people enjoying time off school or work. Its cheery old town comprises of a collection of cobblestone streets lined with whitewashed Moorish-era buildings. It's adorable and kid-friendly by day, lively and beer-drinker-friendly by night.
Quarteira is a fishing village turned festive village
Welcome to one of the first resorts to be developed along the Algarve coast, but don’t waste your time imagining deserted beaches or sleepy fisherman’s cottages. This town takes its holiday visitors very seriously, and you’re more likely to see a finely mixed cocktail than a finely woven fishing net as you stroll the palm-lined promenade along the beach. Just a hop, skip and a jump from Vilamoura, you can also take a hike from your Vilamoura villa and come to Quarteira to check out the local fish, vegetable and flea markets that are set up near the harbour.