These activities in Portugal will turn your health break into a real holiday!
Every day, you have a large part of the afternoon and the whole evening to enjoy your well-earned holiday.
In the Algarve, there are plenty of things you can do to occupy your time. Here are some of the options:
A 45-minute session at the Day Spa allows you to wind down and relax in the sauna, hot tub, Turkish bath and hydro massage shower. Health Holidays guests can use these facilities free of charge after their body shape and aqua jogging activities. If you wish to go at a different time, you can make a reservation at the reception. Of course, you can also enjoy various beauty treatments at the Day Spa (extra charge).
Bridge is played at Vale d’El Rei every Wednesday and Friday from 1 PM to 6 PM. As a guest of Health Holidays you can join in at a small charge. You need to inform our staff about this one day in advance.
If you want to explore the Algarve by car in your spare time, Health Holidays cooperates with a reliable and affordable rental company. The rates depend on the rental period, so please contact us in advance or state when booking that you want to rent a car.
Renting a bike or mountain bike during your stay is an excellent idea, as it allows you to explore the surroundings and exercise at the same time. For rentals, please go to the reception.
A different and highly enjoyable way of exploring the countryside is on horseback, as the area is ideal for riding. For equestrian activities, please go to the reception.
The Algarve is famous for its many golf courses, and a number of these can be found near the hotel. If you would you like to play a round of golf during your stay, please contact us for information and prices. If you want to bring your golf bag with you, don’t forget to inform us about this so we can notify the airline.
You can find impressive rock formations, caves and caverns along most of the Algarve coast, but the most beautiful parts of the coastline can be found between Albufeira and Portimão. The best way to view the dazzling golden-yellow rock formations and the caves is to take a boat trip along the coast from Benagil. You can book this cave trip with our staff.
One of the most exceptional sights in the Algarve has to be the dolphins in the Atlantic Ocean.
There is a relaxed and friendly atmosphere throughout the Algarve, and this includes the fishermen and dolphin spotters. Fishermen often inform the dolphin spotters where the dolphins are, so the chance of actually seeing the dolphins is quite high.
This is one of the most beautiful walks that we have ever offered. The 5.7 km walk follows the cliffs along the Portuguese coast almost uninterruptedly. The walk consists of two parts. Generally speaking, most people will be able to handle the first part. The second part is more challenging, so it is only recommended for people who are agile and do not suffer from any hip and/or knee complaints. If you are unsure whether you will be physically able to complete this walk, you can consult our sports staff.
A visit to one of the characteristic regional markets is an unmissable part of a holiday in the Algarve. There are markets in all sorts and sizes, and they are colourful, bustling and entertaining – a real experience! Many towns only have a market once a month, but fortunately our staff know where the markets will be held during your Health Holiday. If you miss the market, there is a large shopping centre on the outskirts of the town of Albufeira. Here you will find everything you could possibly need in the field of electronics, allowing you to make beautiful pictures of the surroundings. There are also plenty of fashion shops, so you could treat yourself to a new outfit!
Castelo dos Mouros
Silves lies about 15 kilometres from Vale d’El Rei and was the capital of the Algarve from the 8th to the 13th century, under the rule of the Moors. It is therefore no surprise that the most important landmark of this Portuguese town dates back to that period. Castelo dos Mouros, the Moorish Castle, towers proudly above the town. The castle is a magnificent example of Moorish architecture, made entirely of the local red sandstone. The enormous water reservoirs in the castle are a striking feature. Until the end of the 19th century, the castle supplied the entire population and all the animals of Silves with drinking water. The Moorish Castle is partly open to the public and is really worth a visit, also because from this hill you have a splendid view of the surroundings.
Sé de Silves
Close to the impressive red castle is the cathedral of Sé de Silves. Although Sé de Silves is the oldest cathedral in the Algarve, the current building only dates from the 15th century. In 1352, the whole building collapsed during an earthquake. This Gothic cathedral is also constructed using the red sandstone, but it has whitewashed walls. It was renovated in the 20th century. Like the Moorish Castle, it shouldn’t be missed during a visit to Silves.
Lagos is situated in the west of the Algarve. Together with Sagres and Cape St Vincent, it is known for its rich history of seafarers and explorers, who sailed from the southern tip of Portugal in search of new worlds to conquer in the 15th century. The harbour of Lagos was the main point of departure for the seafarers. It was also the capital of the Algarve from 1576 to 1756, and its city walls, dating from 1400, are still almost intact. Outside the town, near the harbour, lies the “Forte da Ponta da Bandeira”. It served as a fortification and is one of the best preserved fortresses in Portugal.
Farther west lies the town of Sagres, which is surrounded by beautiful nature, magnificent cliffs and dazzling beaches. Here, Prince Henry the Seafarer built his fortress overlooking the ocean. It is really worth a visit. There is a giant compass and a chapel, and you can take a short walk along the cliffs and enjoy the fabulous views.
Cape St Vincent
You will probably have already seen Cape St Vincent (Cabo São Vicente) from the fortress. It is the most south-westerly tip of the European continent. On the enormous cliff stands a 150-year-old lighthouse, built on the ruins of an old monastery. It is believed that the Cape is on sacred ground, but the weather can be extremely rough with waves battering the lighthouse relentlessly. Stalls selling souvenirs can be found almost everywhere.
In the vicinity of the Vale D’el Rei accommodation there are plenty of beautiful places that you can visit in a short period of time. The sophisticated resort of Vilamoura was built specifically for tourism in the 1970s. Seeing and being seen is the motto here, and the town’s marina is full of luxury superyachts. Completely different is the village of Porches, known for its ceramics and earthenware. The steep, narrow streets of the village have lots of shops selling crockery, tiles, pots and pans. You can have one of those typical Portuguese tiles (‘azulejo’) made to order as a unique souvenir.
Monchique lies in the interior and is known as the Garden of the Algarve. Monchique is the name of both the village and the surrounding forests. With an altitude of 902 m, Foia is the highest mountain of the Algarve. In addition to forests of cork oak, walnut and other indigenous trees, you will mainly find eucalyptus trees here. The ultimate goal is the summit, which can be reached in various ways – on foot, on a mountain bike or in a jeep.