The fishing village of Alvor is situated on the estuary of the river, Rio Alvor. Although the earthquake wiped out most of the traditional Moorish village in 1755, you can still see remains of Alvor’s history in places such as the 16th century Igreja Matriz with its beautiful Manueline arches and pillars.
Despite steady developments since the dawn of tourism in the 1960s (especially on the eastern side) the buildings are mainly low-rise and the charm of the old town with the narrow cobbled streets leading down to the harbour on the lagoon of the river estuary still remains.
The riverfront in Alvor has been done up over recent years and is now fully paved and lined with palm trees and several beach bars, which all have plenty of outside seating for those endless summer days.
The riverfront has to be one of Alvor’s most idyllic settings, as you sit and watch the fishing boats come and go. At the end, near the lifeboat station, is a collection of restaurants tempting you with the aroma of freshly barbecued fish.
Alvor’s main beach, Praia de Alvor, is just a short walk away, passing the fishermen's smart new huts and Alvor's sports complex on the way. It is a lovely long, dune backed, sandy beach. The eastern end of the sands, which offers a little shelter from some large rock formations is known as Praia de Três Irmãos. There are also several hotels at this side of town. Even at the height of the season there is plenty of room on the beach for you to lie down and relax. There are restaurants and snack bars on both beaches.
Wander into town and explore the network of streets that make up Alvor and discover a multitude of places to eat and drink, catering for all tastes – traditional Portuguese, Indian, Chinese, Italian - and equally as many bars to choose from, including several Irish bars.
Alvor is an ideal resort for families and has everything that you need for a relaxing stay. There are plenty of shops including several smaller grocery shops for your daily needs, but if you do decide you want to go further afield then Lagos is just to the west and Portimão is just to the east.
There are plenty of activities on offer in and around Alvor. Slide and Splash water park is only a short distance away in Lagoa, there are canoeing trips on the Alvor river, bicycles to hire, several golf courses on the doorstep, fishing trips and boat trips to see the caves around Lagos or dolphin watching.
Zoomarine sea-life park is less than 30 minutes away on the outskirts of Albufeira and Lagos zoo is even closer - both great days out for families.