A guide to Vale do Lobo, Algarve, Portugal

When people yearn for sunshine, beaches and great family-friendly resorts, they often turn to the sun-drenched shores of the Algarve in southern Portugal. It’s a holiday destination with an international reputation for offering the best in sports facilities, sophisticated tourist complexes and safe, pristine beaches, and basks in 300 days of guaranteed sunshine a year.

Vale do Lobo holidays
Nestling in a valley of aromatic pine trees between Faro and Vilamoura, 1000 acres of landscaped parkland makes up the setting for Vale do Lobo, the very first and largest purpose built luxury holiday resort on the Algarve. Originally a joint venture led by Trusthouse forte and Costain plc, the resort was taken over by Dutch entrepreneur Sander Van Gelder in the 1970s, who exploited its enormous potential to the full, constantly re-landscaping a development which has gone on to win countless awards.

Vale do Lobo holidays are a way of life for many people who have made their permanent home here in bespoke designed villas oozing luxury and glamour. Vale do Lobo has long attracted the rich and famous by offering the very best in contemporary living, and its versatility keeps people coming back again and again. And the good news is that if you are prepared to be flexible with regards to accommodation and flight times, cheap holidays in Vale do Lobo are not difficult to find.

When you come to spend a holiday here, you will find that Vale do Lobo is much more than a resort – more like a whole community dedicated to relaxing and revitalising whoever is lucky enough to stay here. Amenities cater for every conceivable need, ranging from stylish boutique and designer shopping to supermarkets, a bank, a petrol station and a doctor’s surgery. Buildings are tastefully styled with traditional Moorish lattice work, graceful arches and distinctive Portuguese terracotta roofs, which merge beautifully with the surrounding landscape. Entrance gates and security guards make this a self-contained development, with 24 hour security ensuring the resort is extremely safe for residents and their children.

Ultimately, Vale do Lobo holidays are all about relaxation and for this the resort delivers the Praca, the fabulous beach front area, with an endless swathe of soft sand flanked by rust-red cliffs. You will find over half of the resort’s 15 restaurants here, and Indian, American, Italian, French and Chinese cuisine sit comfortably alongside the traditional Portuguese eateries in a stunning contemporary setting. By night the bars and beach clubs come alive with music until the early hours. If you have children, the resort’s Penguin club caters for all your babysitting needs and keeps the little ones entertained, leaving you free to soak up the atmosphere while you kick back and relax.

Sports and wellness facilities at Vale do Lobo
With the accent on contemporary leisure, Vale do Lobo holidays are very much about sports, and the facilities here are at worst impressive, at best world-class, and at all times second to none. Like much of the Algarve, golf is very much on the agenda here, with two championship courses offering stunning views of the coast. Vale do Lobo holidays are just as popular with tennis players, who come to play on the resort’s 14 courts and train at the tennis academy, which has a proven reputation as the best in Portugal.

A number of sporting events attract celebrities throughout the year, including The Vale do Lobo Grand Champions ATP Seniors Tour event in August. For those with relaxation in mind, Vale do Lobo offers the Royal Spa, its state of the art health and wellness suite. 4000 sqm of treatment facilities allow visitors to indulge in herbal therapies, reflexology, aqua massage and the latest beauty treatments, or simply relax in the jacuzzi after a session in the Fitness Centre.

Things to do around Vale do Lobo
There’s entertainment on tap at Vale do Lobo, so you should never have to leave the resort. A varied programme of cultural events and shows include modern ballet, concerts and theatre in the auditorium and exhibitions at the onsite Art Gallery. However if you should feel the need to venture outside the resort, the historic city of Faro hosts a rich tapestry of architectural styles that tell the story of the region’s changing fortunes, and the whole of the eastern stretch of the Algarve beyond Faro shows an unspoilt side to the Algarve, with stunning walking and horse-riding landscapes and endearing towns such as Tavira.

If you decide to hire a car it is well worth a trip over the Spanish border, just a few miles away, to visit the beautiful city of Seville with its profusion of orange trees, and explore the intricately beautiful Moorish Royal Palace.

Further Vale do Lobo Holidays Information

Portugal web portal – Portugallife.co.uk is an online portal for people living or working in Portugal.