Thursday, 22 June 2017
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Estoi PalaceEstói is a village of just over 3,000 inhabitants set in the foothills of the hilly Serra do Caldeirão area, close to Faro and its international airport. The town, with its quaint cobbled streets, whitewashed houses and town square is home to a pleasant mix of residents from locals to retired expats and young families.

Guia, AlgarveGuia is an idyllic Algarvean village nestled just ten minutes north of the popular resort of Albufeira with its well-established tourism infrastructure, shopping and nightlife.

Perhaps due to its ideal setting, close to a city yet secluded and tranquil, property in Guia has become an increasingly popular choice over the years, its villas being snapped up by mainly European expats.

Lagos beach & harbourDid you know? Lagos is an outstanding town in the western Algarve, but it has a dark history. It was once the centre of the European slave market. In fact, the first slave market in Europe was opened in the town in 1444. Slaves were imported from North Africa and sold on the market under the arches of the town’s old customs house. The building is now an art gallery.

Loulé church on the hillDid you know? Loulé is famous throughout Portugal for hosting the biggest and most flamboyant Brazilian-style carnival each year before Easter. At carnival time the town is transformed into a mesmerising party of colour, music and dancing. The event attracts people from all over the Algarve who come to watch the processions and join in the festive atmosphere.

The Monchique HillsDid you know? Monchique is famous for the production of Medronho, a powerful drink made from the fruits of the Arbutus Unedo tree. The trees grow in the hills surrounding Monchique and the Medronho is produced by the local farmers. Very few farmers have a license for distillation, but the authorities tend to turn a blind eye to them to keep this traditional specialty alive. Medronho usually contains about 50% alcohol. If you’ve sampled it you won’t be surprised that it's also called Aguardente which means "Fire Water".

POrtimãoDid you know?  There are two Neolithic/Chalcolithic burial grounds in the county of Portimão which are believed to date back to between 1600 and 2000 BC. One of the sites is at Monte Canelas, but the more important of the two is in Alcalar, with graves of several types, from megalithic chambers to tombs with false cupolas and side alcoves.

Olhão - Famous Fishing DestinationDid you know?In the late fourteenth century Olhão was a very small fishing community. It literally comprised a handful of people living in wooden huts on the beach. But, by the late sixteen hundreds it had grown significantly, so much so that it needed to defend itself from pirate invasion.

Quarteira - The Algarve's RivieraQuarteira has the best of both worlds: authentic Algarve with its promenade, cobbled streets and lively fishing community, and a world class resort with entertainment for all ages. Despite the fast-paced development of the local tourism and hospitality industries in recent years, Quarteira has managed to keep its charm intact.

The palm-lined Avenida Infante de Sagres promenade is Quarteira's equivalent of a high street where locals and holidaymakers flock to people-watch, drink and dine, and enjoy the lovely view out to the sea.