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Busy with commerce, Portimão still has time to welcome visitors to its small, cosy old town. Stroll the old harbour with its cafes, set along a very pretty waterfront, sizzling with fish restaurants specialising in sardines. Take a trip up the Rio Arade and explore the local area, rich with bloody history, or get out and active in the sunshine. Our pick of the best places to stay in Portimão are perfect bases whether you're simply here for a beach holiday, or you plan to explore further afield.
Things not to miss:
- One of the town's biggest attractions is its beaches. The rocky sands of Praia de Rocha are where many visitors head - this is one of the Algarve's most famous beaches. Praia do Vau is less well known, but it's also a very lovely beach - well worth the stroll along the cliff tops to get there.
- If you come to Portimão in August you will be here for the annual Sardine Festival.
- Portimão is a great base if you want to visit: Silves, for its historic and bloody hill, crowned with a castle fortress fought over by Crusaders and Moors.
- Also nearby Lagos is definitely worth a look. Once a major ship building power, and now a charming coastal town.
- Sagres is a fascinating visit with strong ties to Portugal's rich nautical past. Now it's a place to enjoy fantastic views across some of the Algarve's most dramatic scenery.
- Portimão is a great resort for watersports - as well as sardine fishing, of course.
- Portimão is also well known amongst golfers. There are five courses within greater Portimão, a couple of which run right along the cliff tops and have spectacular ocean views.
The best places to stay in Portimão are generally congregated around the beach, ideal for those who love nothing more than to recline on the sand.
The best places to stay in Portimão
In the centre of town
The Bela Vista Hotel & Spa is right on Praia de Rocha, with private sea views from private balconies. There's also a palm-fringed pool - with beautiful sea views, and very stylish interiors in fresh white, bright blues and yellows.
For a private apartment or villa
- For some place all to yourself, explore the options at our online partner Booking.com.
- The nearest airport to Portimão is Faro (29 miles) and trains and buses run regularly from Faro.
- If you plan to hire a car, click here for prices and online booking.
- The best time to visit Portimão is from June to September, when the temperature sits comfortably in the twenties.
Still not sure which to book?
Best Hotels in Portimão
Bela Vista Hotel & Spa 38 rooms from £202Portimão (Praia Da Rocha)
A unique boutique hotel on the beach front. Cerulean blue walls in striking rooms and suites match the azure of the sea seen from private balconies. Excellent spa facilities and a dreamy swimming pool make this spot a very luxurious beach holiday.Beach Life - A unique setting, almost completely surrounded by a beautiful sandy beach.Watersports - The property sits directly on the beach.Restrictions on children - Adults only propertySwimming Pool - Lovely Outdoor PoolRecommended by - Relais & Chateaux