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Vilamoura Holiday – Helpful Things To Know Before You Book

vilamoura holiday

Is Vilamoura Worth Visiting?

Yes, Vilamoura is definitely worth visiting, especially if you are looking for a slightly quieter and greener holiday destination. Vilamoura is just 30 minutes from Faro airport making it easily accessible. It has a lovely marina, beach, and golf courses too.

Is Vilamoura a Good Holiday Destination?

Vilamoura is a great holiday destination. It’s friendly, and has great facilities including wonderful golf courses. It gives easy access to the whole of the Algarve area too.

Read on for a review of Vilamoura including everything you need to plan your visit.

vilamoura holiday hotels

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.

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.

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

vilamoura garden hotel vilamoura holiday the professional traveller

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.

Check prices now for your travel dates and find the best deal online for the Vilamoura Garden Hotel;

suite holidays in algarve vilamoura garden the professional traveller vilamoura holiday
One bedroom suite at the Vilamoura Garden 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 bedlinen 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 garden facilities vilamoura holiday the professional traveller
Pool Area at the Vilamoura Garden Hotel

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.

Vilamoura Holiday

Hotels Near the Vilamoura Garden Hotel

Hilton Vilamoura

As Cascatas

pestana vila sol aerial view vilamoura holiday the professional traveller

Vilamoura Holiday

10. Pestana, Vila Sol Hotel

The Pestana Vila Sol is a large golf and spa resort set in 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.

Check prices for your travel dates and find the best prices available online for the Pestana Vila Sol.

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Vila Sol Bedroom

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
pestana outdoor pool vilamoura holiday the professional traveller
The Vila Sol Outdoor Pool with bungalows around

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.

pestana indoor pool vilamoura holiday the professional traveller
Happy memories of this view
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Restaurant View

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!

vilamoura package trip more information
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vilamoura things to do more information

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.

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The Roman Villa remains Vilamoura

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.

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Alte Village Centre

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’s 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 has 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.

loule vilamoura things to do the professional traveller vilamoura holiday
Loule Indoor Market Hall Entrance

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 10am and getting back around 4pm).

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

loule market tour holidays in algarve the professional traveller

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

This brought me down into 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. Infact 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!

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 alot 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 then 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 then 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.

sagres tour holidays to algarve the professional traveller

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 treat 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 package trip sign up

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 so 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;

26. Further Reading – Book Recommendations

walking in algarve holidays to algarve the professional traveller

This guidebook describes 33 walks in the beautiful Algarve in southern Portugal. Boasting good weather, easy access, stunning scenery and some great hiking trails, the region is a perfect destination for a walking holiday. It is best known for its spectacular coastline: the coastal trails presented here afford ample opportunity to admire the plunging sinkholes, striking sea-cliffs and rock-hugged beaches. However, the interior is every bit as beautiful and other walks explore the forested slopes of Monchique and the tranquil countryside between the mountains and coast.

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Marco Polo Pocket Guide Algarve: the Travel Guide with Insider Tips Explore the Algarve with this handy, pocket-sized, authoritative guide, packed with Insider Tips. Discover boutique hotels, authentic restaurants, the region’s trendiest places, and get tips on shopping and what to do on a limited budget. There are plenty of ideas for travel with kids, and a summary of all the festivals and events that take place in this southern area of Portugal. Let Marco Polo show you all this wonderful region has to offer… 

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Further Reading

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

Hotel Sol E Mar Albufeira review

Vidamar Resort Algarve hotel review

Douro River Cruise in depth review

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

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