The Eastern Algarve is the area between the capital of the Algarve, Faro, in the west and Vila Real de Santo Antonio in the east. The latter village is situated on the river Guadiana. The opposite side of the river is Spain. Scattered along the coast the villages of Olhão, Fuzeta, Santa Luzia, Tavira, Cabanas, Cacela Velha, Monte Gordo and last but not least Vila Real de Santo Antonio offer great entertainment, shopping, restaurants, bars and great beaches.
Sunny beaches and crystal clear water
With an average of 12 hours of sun daily, the Algarve boasts one of the most stable climates in Europe. In the summer it is not too hot and the winters are mild. This makes the eastern Algarve the ideal holiday destination throughout the year.
The ocean offers clean water for swimming and is lined with wide sandy beaches. Nice little restaurants, café’s and bars are all around. Shops with the typical Portuguese pottery, sweets and liquors can also be found in every village.
This makes The eastern Algarve ideal for sunbathing and relaxing, but also for trips in the countryside. Start at Villa Mãe Home, and visit all the beautiful spots. The whole of the Algarve is within your reach if you follow the new (traffic jam free) motorway along the coast.
Fancy a game of golf, mountain biking, jet skiing, karting, a quad ride? Or would you rather go dolphin spotting, have a jeep safari in the hills?
The Algarve has more to offer than you would expect!
For nature-lovers the Algarve is an attractive destination.
Depending on the season, nature has a different charm. Winter offers the blossoming of the almond trees, better known as the “Algarve snow”. Experience the scent of the orange grooves in full bloom in the spring. Witness the harvest ritual from the carob trees in the heat of the summer. And lend a hand with the picking off the olives in November, a tedious job. Every season offers different flowering plants and wild flowers.
Bird-lovers: please don’t forget your binoculars because this is the place to observe birds of prey (also outside of the bird sanctuary). Lots of storks build their nests right in the middle of towns and villages and observe us…
Walks on the beach? Hiking in the hills? Everything is possible here. We can even provide a guide who will give you a detailed explanation on plants and wildlife.
Eastern Algarve – traditional villages
Santa Catarina da Fonte do Bispo is a small sleepy village just 6 miles north of your holiday villa Mãe Home. It is roughly situated between the cities of Olhão and Tavira but northbound.
Another lovely village is the typical and very Portuguese Moncarapacho with its beautiful church in the square, just 5 km away. At close distance from the villa you will find everything you need for the lazy, as well as the active holidays: the beach , golf courses, the hills, Tavira and Faro. The airport is only 30 minutes by car!.
Tavira: The Venice of Portugal
This beautiful authentic fisherman’s town, situated alongside the Rio Gilão. On the coast there’s a choice of unspoilt beaches. It is one the most charming cities in the Algarve, representing the typical traditional architecture of the previous ages. A visit to one of the 37 churches is recommended. Tavira is well known for the production of salt. There are plenty of bars and terraces to relax with a cool drink.
Olhão – Fishermans village
Villa Mãe Home is situated in Quelfes, Olhão. Olhão is the largest fishing port of the Algarve. The town is only 10 minutes from Faro by car or train and about 3 miles from your holiday property Villa Mãe home. To be fair, Olhão isn’t the most stunning town of the Algarve. However, Olhão is the gateway to some of the most beautiful islands of Portugal. On a regular basis, the ferry will bring you to the stunning beaches of Armona, Culatra and, our personal favourite, Farol.
It is also a great starting point to discover the Natural Park of Ria Formosa. Furthermore, you can enjoy delicous and traditional food in the town. Whether you are staying for several weeks or just for a daytrip, Olhão surely has something nice to offer you.
Eastern Algarve beaches
Algarve beaches are some of the most beautiful beaches in the world, many of which have been awarded the exclusive “Blue Flag” eco-label!
With 200km of Algarve coastline, there are almost too many beaches and coves to count and there are certainly too many Algarve beaches to cover here. However, you can find general information about what the beaches are like in central, western and eastern Algarve, where the nudist and gay beaches are and what the coloured flags on the beaches mean so you can stay safe on the beach and in the water. You can also find out why it is such an honour when Algarve beaches receive the Blue Flag award and read about the “Accessible Beaches” scheme, which makes choosing a suitable so much easier, particularly for disabled people. In general though, whatever you are looking for in a beach, you can be assured that the Algarve has a beach perfect for you!
The water at the eastern end of the Algarve is normally a few degrees warmer as it is edging closer to the Mediterranean. The beaches are backed by gentle dunes rather than cliffs and are very gently shelving. There is a huge amount of room for everyone! At various points along the beaches there are beach bars, restaurants and sun loungers – Monte Gordo in particular has an abundance of all of them!
Olhão, Fuzeta, Tavira and Cabanas de Tavira beaches are sandspit islands (ilhas) and reached by boat. The warmer water on the lagoon side of Ilha de Tavira is perfect for swimming, and the idyllic beach on the seaward side goes on for ever.
Ria Formosa Natural Park
The beautiful Ria Formosa Natural Park of 18.000 hectares is primarily a lagoon system, which is protected by sandbanks. A huge variety of wetland birds can be seen in Park, as well as ducks, shorebirds, gulls, terns and the rare purple gallinule. Storks, herons and many other species can be observed in the Park. The area around Tavira delivers about 90% of the entire oyster and mussel production of Portugal. Wetland of international importance, the Ria Formosa is a maze of canals, islands, marshes and barrier islands, stretching 60kms along the Algarve coast, between the beaches of Manta Rota and Garrão.
This diversity of ecosystems attracts a varied fauna that includes numerous species of birds. One of the rarest is the “galinha-sultana (sultan hen)”, symbol of the Natural Park, and a type of bird that you can’t find anywhere else in the country. If you want to admire this bird of gorgeous plumage and know everything about the protected area, begin your visit by the Centro de Educação Ambiental de Marim (Environmental Education Center of Marim) in Olhão, which will show you the most suitable hiking trails and observatories where to hide to enjoy the day-to-day of the various species.