Walking in the Algarve

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James Cave / Last Updated: July 28, 2021 / Posted in: The Algarve

The Algarve is the perfect location for a walking holiday. Hundreds of kilometres of beautiful coastline, three hundred days of sun (although you might want to avoid the height of summer), and affordable accommodation are just three of the reasons you should consider it for your next walking holiday.

There are two ways you can book a walking holiday in the Algarve: either purchase a package through a walking company or organise it yourself.

Companies and local businesses offering Algarve walking holidays

(Prices are usually per person and do not include extras such as flights or travel insurance. They are accurate at the time of writing, although prices may have changed since this was published.)

Duas Quintas: Duas Quintas is a bed and breakfast situated near Silves in the Central Algarve. As well as B&B accommodation, the owners also run walking holidays in the Algarve.

This is a bespoke service. Simply get in touch and let them know your needs and they’ll put together a walking holiday for you and your group including pickup and dropoff at the walks, accommodation, and breakfast. As well as coastal walks, this will also include walks in Monchique and some of the other less well-known parts of the Algarve. Alternatively, you can stay at Duas Quintas and they’ll help you organise your own walks while you’re there.

From: €550 PPS for 7 nights | Website: duasquintas.com

Headwater: Headwater offer a walking holiday on the West Coast of the Algarve, around Sagres, Vila do Bispo, and Cabo de Sao Vicente. The trip takes place over 6 nights and includes hotel accommodation with breakfast and some evening meals.

From: £797 | Website: Headwater.com

Macs Adventure : Macs Adventure currently offer two walking holidays in the Algarve: one focusing on coastal trails and the other combining the Algarve with the Alentejo and the Costa Vicentina. Both walks include accommodation and food and take place over 7-8 days.

From: £795 | Website: macsadventure.com

Inntravel: Inntravel offer accommodation at a walker-friendly Algarve guesthouse, located near Lagos. The walking holiday includes 7 nights bed and breakfast with some additional meals (including evening meals and picnics) during your stay.

From: Price on request | Website: inntravel.co.uk

Rambers Holidays: Rambler’s Holidays offer a walking holiday along the Algarve Way (Via Algarviana), the newly-organised walking route that goes from one side of the Algarve to the other. This isn’t quite the full 300km Algarve way, however. Rather, this walking holiday takes you on a few of the highlights of the Algarve Way including Silves, Monchique, Tavria, the Parque Natural Sudoeste Alentejano e Costa Vincentina, and the Cabo São Vincente cliffs near Sagres.

From: £1,115 | Website: Ramblersholidays.co.uk

Secret Hills Walking Holidays: Secret Hills are another specialist walking holiday company. They offer a walking holiday in the Western Algarve that focuses on Cape St Vincent Natural Park (Cabo de Sao Vicente) and the Monchique hills. This trip uses two hotels as a base and takes place over 8 days.

From: £774 | Website: secrethillswalking.co.uk

Responsible Travel: Responsible Travel are a holiday company that focus on responsible and eco-friendly travel (i.e. not using a car while on holidays). They offer a self-guided walking holiday that combines the Alentejo and the Algarve, starting in and finishing in Aljezur. The walking holiday takes place over 8 days and includes B&B accommodation in hotels.

From: €420 | Website: Responsibletravel.com

The Do-It-Yourself Option

If an organised walking holiday in the Algarve doesn’t sound like your sort of thing, the other option is to design your own walking holiday. This will take more time and planning on your part, but it will be cheaper. (Or, alternatively, stay in a guesthouse like Duas Quintas that offers a DIY walking holiday option).

The first thing you will need to decide is whether you want to do a single A to B walk or if you’re happy to do a couple of singular, unconnected walks.

The main A to B walk in the Algarve is The Algarve Way (Via Algarviana). This walking route, which is based on an old pilgrimage route, goes from one side of the Algarve to another. It’s 300km long and divided into fourteen sections, each with somewhere to eat and some form of accommodation. You can either do the full walk or the section of it that interest you the most. (There’s also the Fisherman’s Trail (Rota Vicentina), although this route mainly focuses on the Alentejo.)

If you’re looking to do a few singular walks in the Algarve, then you will need a good book of Algarve walks, accommodation, and a rental car.

Hiring a car is not really negotiable. While some hotels or guest houses will have one good walk on its doorstep, if you want to do more than one walk you will more than likely need to drive. The Algarve does have a fairly good bus service although the bus stops, obviously, are unlikely to line up with the walking route start points. If you choose this option, expect to spend a bit more time planning.

In terms of accommodation, you can either pick one location or stay at one or two places. From the central Algarve, it’s possible to either side of the Algarve in under two hours so it isn’t essential that you stay in more than one location.

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