There is something special about spending Christmas at home, with family and friends, surrounded by all of your favourite things. But, there is no denying the appeal of going away. A lot of people choose to spend Christmas away, sometimes that’s visiting family and other times it’s jetting off somewhere warm. If you want to change things up this year, and you want to spend Christmas day basking in the sun, consider heading to the Algarve.
The Algarve is a popular holiday destination for tourists from all over the world. With its stunning coastline, picturesque villages and vibrant nightlife, the Algarve is a fantastic place to spend the festive season. It’s completely different to spending Christmas in the UK, and it’s certainly going to be a trip to remember. In this blog post, we will explore why spending Christmas in the Algarve is such a great idea.
Reasons to Spend Christmas in the Algarve
Firstly, the weather in the Algarve during Christmas is mild and pleasant. Unlike many other parts of Europe, the Algarve does not experience harsh winters. Temperatures during the day are usually around 16 to 18°C, making it perfect for outdoor activities such as hiking, cycling, or even sunbathing. Additionally, the region experiences hundreds of days of sunshine a year, so there is a good chance that you will have sunny weather during your Christmas holiday in the Algarve. Instead of wrapping up warm and braving the cold for a Christmas Day walk, you can throw on a light layer and head to the beach.
Secondly, the Algarve is home to some of the best beaches in Europe, and spending Christmas here means you can enjoy them without the crowds. Many of the beaches in the Algarve are secluded and tranquil, making them the perfect place to relax and unwind during the festive season. Some of the most popular beaches in the Algarve include Praia da Rocha, Praia do Vau, and Praia da Luz. Though these beaches are wonderful at any time of the year, Christmas is when you can enjoy them without the hustle and bustle of holidaymakers.
Thirdly, the Algarve is known for its fantastic cuisine, and Christmas is the perfect time to indulge in some of the region’s delicacies. Many restaurants in the Algarve serve traditional Christmas dishes such as roast turkey, bacalhau and bolo-rei. You can also try some of the Algarve’s seafood specialties, such as grilled sardines or octopus salad. To accompany your meal, be sure to sample some of the local wines, which are renowned for their quality. Though this is different to your usual Christmas dinner, it’s certainly going to be just as tasty.
Fourthly, spending Christmas in the Algarve gives you the chance to experience the region’s festive traditions. On Christmas Eve, many towns and villages in the Algarve hold a Midnight Mass, which is a religious service celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ. After the service, people gather together to enjoy traditional sweets and drinks such as bolo-rei and port wine. On Christmas Day, it is common for families to get together and enjoy a festive lunch or dinner, which often includes a variety of traditional dishes. This won’t be largely different to what you do at home, but it’s always enjoyable to try things somewhere new.
The Algarve is home to some fantastic Christmas markets, which are perfect for picking up last minute gifts and souvenirs. The markets are usually held in town squares and feature local crafts, food, and drink. Some of the most popular Christmas markets in the Algarve include the one in Loulé, which is known for its handcrafted pottery and textiles, and the one in Portimão, which is famous for its roasted chestnuts and mulled wine. These aren’t the types of presents you will find anywhere else, and they will really put a Portuguese twist on your festive day.
Spending Christmas in the Algarve means you can enjoy a range of outdoor activities. The region is home to several golf courses, which are open all year round. You can also go hiking in the Serra de Monchique mountains or take a boat trip along the Algarve coastline. For the more adventurous, there are plenty of water sports on offer, including surfing, windsurfing, and kitesurfing. The Algarve also has a fantastic nightlife, and spending Christmas here means you can experience it without the crowds. Many bars and clubs in the Algarve stay open late during the festive season, offering live music and entertainment. You can also visit some of the region’s casinos, which are known for their glitz and glamour.
As you can see, spending Christmas in the Algarve is an excellent choice for those looking for a holiday with mild weather, beautiful beaches and a lot of festive cheer. Though it’s likely to be different to what you are used to, there is no denying the appeal of heading to the Algarve to celebrate. Whether you are going with friends or family, as a couple or on your own, you won’t be disappointed by what Christmas in the Algarve is like. In fact, you might find yourself wanting to return time and time again. There’s also the added bonus of being away for Christmas being a lot less stressful, as there are no complex plans or dinners to cook, and you don’t need to worry about seeing everyone in such a short amount of time.