Albufeira, the city in the district of Faro, Portugal, is a holiday hotspot, the biggest and best-known resort on the Algarve. It is famous for its nightlife and therefore popular with younger tourists, but there is enough in the town to suit families with young children and retirees too.
Albuferia’s history goes back thousands of years, to Roman times. A prosperous trading port in the time of the Moors, it declined over the centuries but found prosperity again with the rise of tourism in the 1970s. A pretty town, the old centre has the characterful cobbled streets lined by whitewashed and blue-tiled houses, dotted with colourful flowers. The golden beach is soft and sandy, backed by towering cliffs.
For nightlife, Rua Candido dos Reis is the main drag, packed with bars and clubs. For a quieter night out, the pubs and cafes on the main square are geared more for families and older couples.
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Flights from the United Kingdom to Albufeira, Portugal range from about 3h-8h. The precise length of your flight will depend on several factors, including your departing city. If you’re flying from as far north as northern England or Scotland, you can expect your flight to be on the longer side due to geographical location, while flying out of London puts you at a more convenient location to enjoy a shorter flight. Your flight time will also depend on whether you book a direct flight or experience a stopover or two along the way.
You can choose from several daily direct flights to Albufeira from London’s Gatwick, Luton, and Stansted airports, serviced by Ryanair, British Airways, easyJet, and Jet2. Jet2 and easyJet also provide daily direct flights from Manchester, while Jet2 and Ryanair provide direct flights to Albufeira from Edinburgh. If your flight does have stopovers en route to Albufeira, you can expect to stop in common layover cities for this route like Cork, London, Brussels, Bordeaux, and Lisbon.
When your destination is Albufeira, you’ll fly into Faro Airport (FAO), which is about 45km southeast of Albufeira. To reach Albufeira city centre from the airport, you have several options. The highest-recommended option is to pre-book a private transfer from a local company, with a popular company being Yellow Fish Transfers. A one-way journey from Faro Airport to Albufeira city centre costs about £29 and should take about 45 minutes. There is no public transport option at the airport, although you can take a taxi to Faro city centre and then a bus to Albufeira, with an express bus option taking about 55 minutes and costing about £5. You will need to take a taxi to Faro city centre, however, and the bus only makes a few journeys a day, making precise planning difficult.
Albufeira is one of the most popular and stunning towns in the Algarve. Spending a day or several at its beaches are a must, with Praia dos Pescadores being a perfect spot for relaxing, swimming, and engaging in beachside activities. If you’re holidaying with children, or just love theme parks yourself, head to Krazy World, which is a part interactive zoo, part waterpark, and part activity haven, with go-karts and mini-golf aplenty. Especially wonderful for a romantic trip for two, a boat cruise to Benagil along the Algarve coastline will introduce you and a loved one to incredible rock formations and beautiful caves, for a memorable and spectacular experience.
British citizens do need a valid passport when travelling to Albufeira, Portugal, although a visa is not required.