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Vilamoura Holiday Review – Helpful Hints and Tips For You

vilamoura holiday

Vilamoura is a lovely holiday resort set in the beautiful Algarve region of Portugal. Not only does it have lovely beaches, it also has lots of green areas, golf courses, great hotels and a marina.

It’s a little less crowded and busy than it’s near neighbour Albufeira. It still has plenty to offer holidaymakers so check out all you need to know about a Vilamoura holiday.

vilamoura holiday deals

Vilamoura Holiday

Author BioMelanie Newdick, Professional Traveller

  • +36 years travelling for work. Visited +40 countries (many multiple times)
  • Stayed in over 700 hotels. Taken +9,500 on coach holidays
  • Check all out my best money saving resources

getting there

1. Vilamoura Holiday – Getting There From the UK

The main airport in the Algarve is Faro Airport. It’s set a little outside the town of Faro, which is worth a visit if you get the time.

Jet2 has lots of holidays flying into Faro. Given the popularity of Algarve holidays, it’s no surprise to see plenty of flight availability.

Skyscanner currently has direct flights listed to Faro from the UK flying from the following airports;

  • Doncaster
  • London
  • Aberdeen
  • Bristol
  • Newquay
  • Belfast
  • Cardiff
  • Liverpool
  • Manchester
  • Birmingham
  • Nottingham
  • Edinburgh
  • Glasgow
  • Leeds
  • Newcastle
  • Bournemouth

Cheapest flights for the upcoming year currently range from £19 to £73 one way.

Faro Airport is small and therefore easy to navigate.

The flight time is 2 hours and 50 minutes from Luton.

Below are flights from London to Faro Airport.

weather info block

Vilamoura Holiday

2. Weather During the Year

Check out the weather in Vilamoura throughout the year.

Given Vilamoura is on the coast there is also the cooling breeze coming off the Atlantic to consider too.

Here are the sunny hours for the Algarve region of Portugal.

Below is the current weather for the Algarve region of Portugal.

Vilamoura Holiday

3. Vilamoura Location

Vilamoura is located in the Algarve region of Portugal on the coast.

It is on the mainland.

getting around

Vilamoura Holiday

4. Hiring a Car at Faro Airport

For our Vilamoura holiday, we hired a car from Faro airport.

We hired it from Goldcar and I have to say it was a pretty grim experience collecting the car. Firstly, there was quite a long delay. At the collection desk, the reservation agent was pretty grumpy that I wasn’t taking the car hire excess insurance cover, but that’s because I always buy a policy in advance which is much cheaper.

Having received the keys I went out to find the car which had a large number of scratches and dings. Given that no one had come out with me to the car I took photos and headed back into the office to let them know about the state of the car – I didn’t fancy a large bill at the end of the hire period. Again there was another long queue.

After what seemed like a very long time we finally got the keys and headed off to our hotel.

Check car hire prices for companies at Faro Airport

where to stay
vilamoura holiday vilamoura garden hotel

Vilamoura Holiday

5. Getting to the Vilamoura Garden Hotel

The Vilamoura Garden Hotel is 30 minutes away from Faro Airport.

If you want to stay off the motorway you can take the IC4 and the N125 to Vilamoura.

Vilamoura Holiday

5. Location of the Vilamoura Garden Hotel

The address of the Vilamoura Garden Hotel is;

 R. da Franca 951153, 8125-507 Quarteira, Portugal

The telephone number of the Vilamoura Garden Hotel is;

+351 289 247 150

The Vilamoura Garden Hotel is located near a golf course and not far away from the older part of Vilamoura and the harbour area.

The hotel has free parking onsite.

The Vilamoura Garden Hotel is located at the corner of a road junction with the hotel facing inwards and set around a pool area.

Vilamoura Holiday

6. Cost of Vilamoura Garden Hotel

4 nights at the hotel including flights from the UK was £250 for two people.

On arrival, we upgraded to a suite that gave us a separate bedroom as well as a lounge area and of course a bathroom.

vilamoura holiday suite a hotel

Vilamoura Holiday

7. Bedroom at the Vilamoura Garden Hotel

  • The hotel was nicely furnished and spacious.
  • The separate bedroom was large with a Kingsize bed.
  • The bed linen was crisp and clean.
  • The whole room was spotless.
  • The room faced the front, overlooking the road and the roundabout.

Since our stay, the hotel has reconfigured its bedrooms and now offers a variety of rooms including family rooms and pool-view rooms.

vilamoura holiday facilities

Vilamoura Holiday

8. Vilamoura Garden Hotel Facilities

The Vilamoura Garden Hotel has a range of facilities that make it an ideal spot for your holiday in the Algarve including;

  • Ground floor bar open all day serving teas and coffees
  • Lift to all floors
  • Ground floor restaurant
  • Swimming pool
  • Gym
  • Spa
  • Massage service
  • Airport shuttle service
  • Games room
  • Garden
  • Bike and car rental
  • Business centre

Vilamoura Holiday

9. Vilamoura Garden Dining

The Vilamoura Gardens has a Tapas bar that serves lighter snacks and drinks throughout the day.

The Garden Cafe is where buffet breakfast is served as well as dinner. There is seating outside by the pool when the weather allows.

Check out the Vilamoura Hotel where we stayed

Vilamoura Holiday

Hotels Near the Vilamoura Garden Hotel

There are some great hotel options near the Vilamoura Garden Hotel if you fancy something else. Here is my handpicked selection.

Hilton Vilamoura

As Cascatas

vilamoura holiday pestana vila sol

Vilamoura Holiday

10. Pestana, Vila Sol Hotel

The Pestana Vila Sol is a large golf and spa resort set on 370 acres. It feels open, spacious, and relaxing.

It is a 5 star hotel.

Vilamoura Holiday

11. Location of the Pestana Vila Sol

The address of the Pestana Vila Sol is;

Alto do Semino, Morgadinhos, 8125-307
Vilamoura, Algarve

The telephone number of the Pestana Vila Sol is;

(+351) 289 320 320

Vilamoura Holiday

12. Cost of the Pestana Vila Sol

3 nights at the Pestana Vila Sol cost just over £100.

vilamoura holiday bedrooms 2

Vilamoura Holiday

13. Pestana Vila Sol Bedroom

On arrival, I was upgraded and checked into a little bungalow-style room. It was super cute and included;

  • A lovely comfy bed in a colonial style
  • Tea and coffee facilities (not always common in European hotels)
  • Minibar
  • Ensuite bathroom with nice fluffy towels, robe, and slippers plus toiletries
  • Lovely terrace with loungers and a great view across the garden area
  • Free WIFI
vilamoura holiday outdoor pool

Vilamoura Holiday

14. Pestana Vila Sol Facilities

  • Low-level accommodation spread throughout the grounds
  • Adults outdoor pool
  • Children’s outdoor pool
  • Indoor pool with whirlpool
  • Gym
  • Pool bar
  • Clubhouse with bar and restaurant
  • 27-hole golf course
  • Jogging circuit
  • Kids Club for children 4-11
  • Spa (this is 1km from the hotel itself)
  • Games room
  • Babysitting
  • Shuttle to the beach from June to September
  • Airport shuttle service
  • Boutique shop and newsagents on site
  • Free parking

The gardens are lovely and filled with tropical-type plants including palm trees.

Water features dot the gardens and my room looked over a pond with a waterfall and palm trees.

vilamoura holiday indoor pool

There was also a restaurant in the main building that did evening meals. This has a nice terrace area that looked over another water feature outside.

As it was November the outdoor pool wasn’t in use but the weather was still warm and pleasant. It was nice enough to sit outside in the evening – although that might just apply to those of us from the Highlands as I was the only person doing so!

Check out one of my favourite stays – the Pestana Vila Sol

things to do

Vilamoura Holiday

15. Things to Do in Vilamoura

Vilamoura is a small resort set in the Algarve area of Portugal.

It is 25km from Faro airport.

Vilamoura is popular with golfers and it also has a marina area with restaurants, cafes, and shops around it. A Vilamoura holiday gives you a great location to get to everything in the Algarve area with a slightly quieter feel compared to other locations in the Algarve.

Vilamoura has plenty of things to do and is within easy reach of all the main attractions of the Algarve area.

vilamoura holiday roman villa

Vilamoura Holiday

16. Things to Do – Museo De Cerro Villa

I decided to spend some time exploring Vilamoura itself. My first stop was the Museo De Cerro Villa, where you could visit Roman remains. The remains are actually of two Roman villas, and date from the time that the Romans were in their heyday in the area, around 27BC.

There is a small museum next to the remains themselves with some interesting interpretation boards. It was very quiet when I visited, with me as the only visitor until a school group arrived.

Looking around the museum and the site took just over 1 hour.

The entry fee was 3 Euros and the museum is open in the mornings and the afternoons with a lunch break in the middle of the day.

Vilamoura Holiday

17. Things to Do – Vilamoura Marina

The Marina was quite quiet, given the time of year I guess as I was there in November.

By the number of restaurants, it was clearly a busy place in the summer season, with all sorts of cuisines available.

Given the fewer restaurants available I took a wander around the old streets and shops.

I then headed further along the marina and found a hairdresser where I got my haircut. It was, as it always is when having a haircut abroad, an interesting experience and I learned a bit about local life.

Vilamoura Holiday

18. Things to Do – A Fabulous Circular Drive!

If you have seen some of my other posts already then you will know I am a big fan of a circular drive!

Having got my map out I planned a circular drive from Vilamoura, travelling on the smaller and more rural roads.

I was a little nervous about driving, having not done so much driving overseas for a few years but it really was like riding a bike.

N125 West

I headed North out of Vilamoura and picked up the local road the N125 and headed West. This road runs to the South of the main motorway, the A22 which links the East and West areas of the Algarve.

The N125 is a normal single-lane carriageway road, so it is a little easier to enjoy the views along the way.

I then headed North on the N270 heading towards Paderne.

It was lovely to get away from the more touristy areas and out into the hills where I felt like I was seeing a bit more of local life. The villages I passed through were pretty and I stopped in a couple to take some photos.

I then turned onto the N124 and started to head East toward Alte.

alte village

Vilamoura Holiday

19. Things to Do – Alte

I don’t know what made me stop at Alte, I hadn’t researched it too much and kind of stumbled into it. I managed to park up beside the river and walk back into the small town itself.

The river had a variety of terraces, bridges, and a bar set right beside it. It was clearly a popular spot for locals to walk as well.

It was extremely quiet and very pretty.

I followed my nose into the centre of the small town and found a tiny cafe that was open and serving coffee. It was run by two very sweet elderly people and it was clearly a local cafe, given the chatter that was going on between the owners and the customers.

I sat outside, with the sun on my face and I have to admit I had a little cry.

It was such a beautiful spot and I was enjoying a lovely coffee. I had managed to find my way there, in my own little car, and had been a bit terrified at the thought of solo travel Initially I felt a huge sense of freedom and knew this was something I wanted to do more of. It was a really memorable moment in my travelling life.

The town had a few small shops, and again because it was November it was very quiet. I can imagine Alte has a great atmosphere in the summer when it is busier, although I loved it when it was quiet.

I continued through Benafim and Salir, still on the N124. The road had climbed higher and the views were really lovely. The Algarve countryside was lush and green and the road gave views across it.


I turned South on the N396 and headed down through Querencia and continued into Loule.

vilamoura holiday loule

Vilamoura Holiday

20. Things to Do – Loule

Loule is a lovely town, which I had visited before when I had taken a coach trip there from a nearby hotel that me and my group were staying in.

This meant I was able to navigate through Loule and find my way through to continue on the N396 which brought me back to Vilamoura.

It was a very pleasant and easy drive, which took most of the day (starting around 10 am and getting back around 4 pm).

It was a fantastic way to experience the local area and I really enjoyed it. In fact, it was the highlight of the trip for me.

If you are staying in Albufeira there is a great trip that takes in Loule market on a Saturday and Vilamoura! Check out the details below

Vilamoura Holiday

21. Walking from the Pestana Vila Sol

I decided to spend a day exploring on foot so headed out of the Pestana resort to try and reach the local town. I walked South and headed through lots of holiday accommodation, these seemed to be mainly holiday villas.

There were a couple of restaurants and shops along the way before I reached the Pingo Doce supermarket.

From there I headed along the road, which several people seemed to do as there was no pavement. This was slightly terrifying given the speed of the drivers!

This brought me down to the fish market area of Quarteria and the beach. I have to say I wasn’t such a fan of this area. It was clearly popular with visitors in the summer so after having some breakfast I headed back to the hotel.

On the way, I found a nice coffee at the Vila Sol Cafe. In fact, it was so nice I went back for breakfast the next day!

Vilamoura Holiday

22. Heading Out to the Beach from Vilamoura

For my final day in Vilamoura, I decided to head out in the car again.

I headed out to Praia Do Almargen which is a local sandy beach popular with locals. It had a cafe right on the beach which I was looking forward to visiting.

The beach was reached by travelling down a tiny, bumpy, and pot holed road. There were little farms along the way together with plenty of cats!

Unfortunately, the cafe was closed due to it being November but it was still nice to see the views.

I looked for somewhere to eat but couldn’t find anything that suited me open, so I headed back to the hotel after stopping off at Pingo Doce and getting in some things to eat and drink so I could spend the rest of the day relaxing on my lounger with nice snacks and drinks!

Vilamoura Holiday Video

23. Vilamoura Holiday FAQs

What is Vilamoura like in Portugal?

It is a friendly, welcoming spot with lots of green spaces around it and a lovely marina. It is less touristy and quieter than some other parts of the Algarve, particularly when compared to Albufeira.

Does Vilamoura have a beach?

Yes it does. The beach, like most in the Algarve, are sandy and wide. The beach area is known as Praia De Vilamoura. Check out these photos of Praia De Vilamoura

How safe is Vilamoura?

As a solo female traveller I felt very safe in Vilamoura. I walked a lot around the area and I also headed off in the car for a day exploring the countryside.

Is Vilamoura family-friendly?

Vilamoura is certainly welcoming and friendly to families. Some of the resorts, such as the Pestana Vila Sol, have great facilities for families with children too.

How far is Vilamoura from airport?

Vilamoura is 26km from Faro airport. It takes around 30 minutes to get there using the N125 roads rather than the motorway.

Is Vilamoura Nicer Than Albufeira?

For a holiday experience that is a bit quieter and calmer Vilamoura is a better choice than Albufeira. There are great facilities, a lovely marina and lots of green spaces. Vilamoura is still within easy reach of Faro airport, and still on the Algarve coast. It is less touristy than Albufeira, but still very easy to visit. It is also just 10 miles to Albufeira making it possible to have the best of both worlds.

Is Vilamoura Nicer Than Albufeira?

For a holiday experience that is a bit quieter and calmer Vilamoura is a better choice than Albufeira. There are great facilities, a lovely marina and lots of green spaces. Vilamoura is still within easy reach of Faro airport, and still on the Algarve coast. It is less touristy than Albufeira, but still very easy to visit. It is also just 10 miles to Albufeira making it possible to have the best of both worlds.

Is Vilamoura family-friendly?

Vilamoura is family friendly although perhaps geared to slightly older children. That said resort hotels such as the Pestana Vila Sol have great facilities for children. Vilamoura is certainly a friendly resort that is welcoming for families.

How far is Vilamoura from the airport?

Vilamoura is 26km from Faro Airport. It takes around 25 minutes to travel if you don’t travel on the A22 motorway and use the N125 instead.

Vilamoura Holiday

24. Some Other Places to Visit

I’ve been lucky enough to take several Algarve holidays, but also to take guests on Algarve holidays when doing tours of Portugal.

It’s a really interesting part of the country with lots to discover including;

The Eastern part of the Algarve – Tavira, Olhau, and the Ria Formosa area. Lovely beaches, lovely town, and nice markets too! There are some good spots for birdwatching – I still remember seeing a Hoopoe from the coach when in this area.

The Western end of the Algarve Sagres is very interesting, particularly the maritime school set up by Henry the Navigator. Lagos is also lovely with a very interesting museum and a very pretty town centre also. It’s well worth a day at least.

Loule is lovely and on Saturdays, they have a large market sprawling through the town centre with both gypsy and farmers markets. There are lovely restaurants and the market hall building is lovely too. It’s a great place to pick up some treats and souvenirs at the same time.

If you do want to get out into the hills then why not do a circular route like I did? It’s easy to drive and you are bound to find some interesting villages along the way.

Vilamoura Holiday

25. Want to Stay in Vilamoura?

Check out prices across the whole of Vilamoura and find the best deals on the internet super quick. Just click on the price to see a bit more information about the hotel, and click again if it sounds interesting.

If you want to find the best deals available for hotels in Vilamoura then check these out;


Further Reading

If you found this Vilamoura Holiday article useful then you might like;

Hotel Sol E Mar Albufeira review – a fab hotel right on the beach

Vidamar Resort Algarve hotel review – a great resort with everything there

Monte Gordo review and trip planner – all you need to know about this locals spot

Algarve Holiday – all you need to know to plan your holiday

If you are wanting to get some ideas for your next trip then check out my Travel Inspiration pages

Other Articles

You might find these other articles of interest;

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