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This once quaint fishing village has transformed into a major tourist centre over the last few decades, with excellent links to some of the best beaches in Portugal. But, at its heart, you can still find the cobbled streets and Moorish influences that drew visitors in the first place. The town is also well known as a gastronomic capital, specialising in exquisite seafood.
The Algarve’s microclimate means it is blessed with mild and pleasant weather all year round. June through to September is high summer season but in spring and autumn you can still get long hours of sunshine. Both flights and accommodation will be more expensive in high season but healthy competition means things rarely get too expensive.
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There is an excellent choice of cheap flights to Albufeira from several UK departure airports, including:
The main airport serving the town of Albufeira is Faro, which deals with more than six million passengers a year, mostly in the busy summer season. It is close to the A22 highway that runs through much of the Algarve and north towards Lisbon. There is also a train station close by with connections throughout the region, as well as good bus links. Rental cars are also available at the airport with a choice of providers.
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The Algarve is well served by a good road network, with the main A22 road running east to west. A train line also traverses the region with a station at Albufeira linking it to Faro, Lisbon and beyond.
In the town itself, the Old Town is small enough to traverse on foot with available taxis for longer journeys. The local bus network, or Giro, has five lines which serve most of the town and surrounding area.
Lying at the bottom of a steep hill, the Old Town retains some of the fishing village charm of its past. The main square is the place to hang out in the long summer nights, with cobbled streets full of restaurants and shops winding off in all directions. The Strip is a few kilometres away and presents a more modern side of Albufeira life, with plenty of entertainment and eating options. For a more natural experience, there’s the Salgados Lagoon, a haven for birdlife.
British citizens don’t need a visa for Portugal. The country uses the euro and is in the same time zone as the UK.