The Algarve has long been named a paradise for sun and sea lovers, but there’s so much more here than a magnificent coastline and exceptional climate. In addition to popular resorts and activities, the Algarve is also a breath of fresh air and tranquility. From adventures along the Ria Formosa in Faro to the Algarve’s most famous beaches in Lagos and the Monchique to the Caldeirão hills, the Algarve has something for everyone, making it a destination of choice for the perfect family holidays.
We know what it means to go away as a family. Family fun requires organisation, planning and constant activities to keep little ones entertained. My Choice has put together the perfect list. From waterparks to educational activities, we’ve got everything you need to delight kids and adults on your family holidays in the Algarve.
Spend a day making furry friends
Family holidays in the Algarve can also be an excellent opportunity to get up close and personal with animals of all shapes and sizes. And what better way than with trips to farms and zoos filled with different animals?
Zoo de Lagos
Lagos Zoo is home to over 150 different species from around the world, including the Iberian lynx. Get the chance to feed animals such as otters, penguins, and lemurs, and even go for a dip on Boulders beach. Though the zoo isn’t very big, it’s just the right size for little legs to enjoy exploring on a hot day.
Krazy World in Algoz is home to lemurs, crocodiles, turtles, and the longest snake in Europe (8.5 metres) among its 62 species. Children can feed llamas, goats, fallow deer, and dwarf goats, and even go on a pony ride. Family fun in the Algarve is guaranteed by a large swimming pool with slides, go-karts, tree climbing, bouncy castles and an 18-hole golf course.
Visit a Palace
Estoi is a small historical village filled with whitewashed houses and cobbled streets. But what attracts families to this village in the municipality of Faro is its grand Palace, which was built in a combination of the baroque, rococo, neoclassical, and romantic architectural styles. A popular location for photo shoots, weddings, and exploring immaculate gardens, 19th-century Estoi Palace’s imposing pink facade and detailed interior, stained glass windows and plasterwork is sure to make an impression.
Family outings in nature
The Ria Formosa Natural Park is made up of lagoons, islets, marshes, and pine forests and is home to spectacular biodiversity. Stretching over 60 km along the Algarve coast, the park is a prime location for nature-loving families. Surrounded by breath-taking landscapes that change with the tides, winds and currents, young explorers are sure to get drawn in. Admiring the region’s fauna and flora as they head out on land or boat tours, watch as they learn more about these specific local ecosystems.
Explore the Algarve coast on a boat tour
Can you imagine bobbing along the waves as dolphins swim around you in the open sea? Set off on a boat trip to see the Algarve coast from afar and be greeted by the Algarve’s resident dolphins. This is sure to be an unforgettable experience for the whole family.
Enjoy long sandy beaches
The Algarve is dotted with hundreds of golden sandy beaches bathed in the clear waters of the Atlantic Ocean. However, some are more child-friendly than others, so here are two of our top suggestions:
Ever imagined hopping on a train to the beach? That’s precisely what you do when you catch the Praia do Barril train to the beach in Santa Luzia (Tavira). Promising to be the highlight of the day, the train takes visitors backwards and forwards, allowing them to enjoy views over the heart of the beautiful Ria Formosa Natural Park.
Less crowded than many of the other beaches around, Praia Verde in Castro Marim is the perfect beach for an escape. A pine forest, fine sand and warm, clear waters set the scene for an ideal beach day, complete with a picnic.
If you’re wondering what to do in the Algarve with children, we hope you’re inspired by our list of the best Algarve activities for fun-filled holidays for all. Whether on land or at sea, along the Algarve coast or in the Ria Formosa, at zoos or waterparks, the Algarve has it all for the perfect family holidays.