Albufeira can make the perfect base for your golfing holiday, not only does it have the best nightlife on the Algarve, but being bang in the middle of the coast and right on the beach its the perfect location to reach courses in Lagos to the West or Tavira to the East with only 45 mins travel time.
Albufeira is often overlooked as a golf destination due to its sister resort, Vilamoura, found some 20 minutes along the coast. In fact Albufeira makes more sense as a base for your golfing holiday than anywhere else, and here's why.
Albufeira boasts hundreds of hotels, of all standards, and in all locations. Whether you are looking for a simple resort to rest your head at night or a full blown 5 star resort with health spa and full board, Albufeira can provide them and everything in between. Albufeira is also cheaper than Vilamoura, we estimate at about 20 to 25%, these savings can be converted into more rounds of golf or other activities. Albufeira also has a much bigger nightlife than any other town in the Algarve and is home to hundreds of other activities you can get involved in outside of your rounds of golf.
As we all know many of us will be looking for early tee times so that we can get out onto the courses as soon as possible, the favourite, and most popular times are between 7.30 and 8.30am and as Albufeira is so central you can choose from a wide variety of courses that can be reached with 30 mins, these include, Victoria (where they hold the Portuguese Masters), Millennium and Laguna Golf courses on the outskirts of Vilamoura and close to Albufeira, also Pinhal and the Old Course which are in the centre of Vilamoura itself and the Vilasol Golf resort which is on the other side of Vilamoura close to Quarteira. If you add another 15 mins to your travelling time you will be in the heart of VIP golf, Quinta do Lago and Vale do Lobo, there are several courses to be found here including Quinta do Lago North and Quinta do Lago South that are at the heart of the area, you will also find Pinheiros Altos, Laranjal and Sao Lorenzo Golf Courses within the Quinta do Lago area. Just to the West and in between Vilamoura and Quinta do Lago is Vale do Lobo where you will find the Royal and Ocean golf courses. So just by travelling within 45 minutes from Albufeira to the East we have over 10 golf courses of all different levels and prices to chose from, Laguna and Pinhal are the cheapest courses from the ones we have mentioned above with prices starting from €50 depending on the time of year and tee time you chose, the most expensive is Victoria, where they hold the Masters, and all the Quinta do Lago and Vale do Lobo courses are around the €80 to €120 mark again depending on the time of year and tee time.
If we take ourselves back to Albufeira as our golf base we also now have the option of travelling West towards Cavoeiro and Lagoa as well as Alvor and even Lagos all within 45 minutes travelling time from Albufeira. Our first port of call is Albufeira's own golf course found on the Western outskirts of Albufeira in a protected nature reserve called Salgados Golf Course, the course is by far the best value for money with prices starting as low as €40 for 18 holes (once again we must mention this depends on time of year and tee time). The course is very challenging, lots of tricky holes with a fair amount of water, but the views across the Herdade dos Salgados, home to exotic birds and wildlife, are stunning.
Leaving the Albufeira area we can travel only 20 mins along the motorway and reach the golf resort of Carvoeiro where 2 courses are found called Gramacho and Vale do Pinta, both are very reasonably priced and provide a great challenge even to scratch golfers. Travelling inland from the same junction as Gramacho and Vale do Pinta you will find the Silves golf course and just slighty further West is the Amendoeira Golf complex, home to the Nick Faldo and Christy O'connor Jnr Golf clubs. Moving further West we get to Portimao and Alvor where there are yet more courses to chose from and still only 30 minutes drive from Albufeira. In the town itself, in the West of the city, we have the Alto Golf Club and outside of Portimao heading inland we have another golf complex where Alamos and Morgado Golf Courses are found and in between the two you will find the incredible location known as Penina Hotel and Golf Resort. Penina boasts 3 courses, the Championship, the Academy and the Resort courses. The hotel and golf academy are world renowned and have won numerous awards, the Penina Hotel and Golf Resort is affectionately known as the home of golf here on the Algarve.
We have reached the 30 minute driving point from Albufeira and as you can see we have an enourmous range of courses to choose from, almost all have driving ranges, bars, restaurants, pro-shops and many other facilities, however if we push on around 15 minutes more to the West you can enjoy even more golf courses.
As you pass Lagos you will find 2 prominent courses in the area one being Boa Vista which has an excellent reputation and is one of the finest courses on the Algarve the other and less well known but still superb is Espiche Golf Course. As you drive down into Lagos we are left with one of the most picturesque and beautiful courses the Algarve has to offer, the 27 hole links course known as Palmeiras, with three sets of 9 hole layouts one being along the sand dunes of Meia Praia this is the only true links course on the Algarve, with stunning views across Lagos and the harbour.
Now we have given you the whirlwind tour of the golf courses that can easily be accessed from Albufeira lets late a look at the activities that you can enjoy with Albufeira being the base for your golfing holiday.