If you’re looking for a sunny getaway in an interesting European destination, Portugal is a great choice, with its rocky Atlantic coasts, great resorts and unique culture – and there are few better places than the Algarve. A region in the country’s south, the Algarve has been popular with tourists since the boom of the 1960s, and has a much longer history of transfer, travel and trade.
Holidaymakers of all types can find something to do here, with many available flights to Faro airport, transfers to the various towns and places to stay. In this article, though, we’ll focus on the small town of Armação de Pêra. Read on for some of the best things to see and do in the area.
The Town’s History
The town’s image was historically somewhere between the tall tourist developments and the idyllic, traditional-style cottages. It was far from a bustling metropolis, but thrived as a south coast fishing town. Armação saw many different inhabitants over the years – some of the items on this list will take you to notable historic sites. Most notable, though, is the fort that still stands on the beach, built in the seventeenth century to defend against pirates.
Exciting Trips and Tours
From coastline to charnel, here are a few of the best cultural things to do after you’ve taken your Faro airport transfersand settled into town.
Thousands of years of exposure to powerful Atlantic waves have left Portugal’s coast rugged and rocky, with many incredible formations. Some of the best can be found near Armação, including Marina Beach and Benagil Cave. Both are easily accessible, and guided boat tours are available to ensure you get the best experience.
The Bone Chapel
Located in the nearby town of Alcantarilha, it’s easy to see how this small building adjoining Igreja de Nossa Senhora de Conceição gets its name: it is home to over 1,500 bones, some going back centuries. The sight is striking, haunting and completely unmissable.
A Historical Tour
Finally, you can set all the historic sights you’ve seen in context with a bigger tour of the region, from the municipal capital of Silves to Cabo de São Vicente, the most southwestern point in all of Europe. Moorish castles showcase lost grandeur, while a dark chapter of the region’s past takes centre stage at the historical slave market. If you want to learn about the area you’re staying in, a tour is essential.
Eat Like a Local
Portugal is of course well known for its wine – port even gets its name from the city of Porto. What’s less well known is the variety of food on offer, ranging from Mediterranean staples of grilled meats and fish to African influences and international cuisines.
Algarve Food Options
The region’s popularity means it has a lot of options for eating, with a wide range of prices and styles. High-priced Michelin-starred eateries sit alongside cheap and easy comfort food joints on the beach. Though you have to go outside Armação for some high-end food, the town has good mid-priced restaurants, from the traditional Boca Xica to the oceanside Palm Beach restaurant.
As so many great wines are produced in the region, you can get great bottles at shockingly low prices – as low as €2 in some supermarkets, so it’s well worth stocking up as soon as you’ve taken your Faro airport transfersto your accommodation.
Top Tip: Order your wine in a carafe for that local touch!
Where to Stay
Pestang Viking Beach & SPA Resort – Located in the nearby town of Porches, the Pestang has direct access to a beach, and many rooms come with a sea view. Facilities include swimming pools and an exotic garden, but the real attraction here is the spa, where guests can enjoy a variety of services including Turkish ‘hammam’ – a special method that’s guaranteed to relax your entire body.
Rosamor Apartamentos – The simple decoration and light facilities at the Rosamor contribute to an easygoing atmosphere, while the air-conditioned rooms come with free wifi, balconies, a bathroom, a kitchenette and a sitting area with a TV – perfect for relaxing in between trips and tours. Best of all, it’s located very close to town – just a three-minute walk from Armação’s main beach.
How to Get There
Four airlines offer direct flights from UK airports to Faro, and prices are often reasonable. Though you’d be lucky to get anything near the lowest rates in the summer, even peak times are affordable. As always, avoid the school holidays for the best deals.
Once you’ve landed, a Shuttle Direct Faro airport transfers can get you to Armação in just 49 minutes – leaving all the more time to relax and explore.
- UK to FAO Flight Time: 2 hours 35 minutes
- FAO to Armação de Pêra Distance: 57 kilometres
- Shuttle Direct Transfer Time: 49 minutes
About Shuttle Direct
With a fleet of experienced and friendly drivers, Shuttle Direct is proud to be Europe and North Africa’s most well liked airport transfer operator. Book ahead to get where you need to go in style and without fuss.