One of the most well presented coastal tourist destinations in the Central Algarve, after Vale do Lobo and Quinta do Lago, is Vilamoura. Vilamoura is a coastal town forming part of the Council of Loule with Quarteira to its East and Olhos de Agua in Albufeira to its West. Loule is one of the biggest and wealthiest Councils of the Algarve as it includes the luxury coastal resorts of Vale do Lobo and Quinta do Lago and other major towns including Quarteira, Loule, Boliqueime, Almancil, and Vilamoura.
There are many benefits to being in the Central Algarve mainly due to its proximity to Faro International Airport (the only international airport currently serving the whole of the Algarve), just 25 minutes from Vilamoura. As well as the Airport, the Central Algarve has easy access to good transportation links and is serviced by an array of buses, trains, taxis and the major road networks in the Algarve including the single carriageway EN125 lined with shops and businesses, the A22 Toll Motorway both running across the width of the Algarve from Lagos on the West to the Vila St Antonio Real on the East Coast next to Spain's SouthWest Coast, also the A2 (to Lisbon/Porto) and N275 backroads to Loule main town.
Vilamoura is one of the more famous tourist locations on the coast in the Central Algarve. The main entrance to Vilamoura from the EN125 road system is simply exquisite, with the aesthetically pleasingdual carriageway lined with beautiful palm trees, you'll be forgiven for thinking you're in sunny California. Vilamoura is home to international equestrian events and Golf Championships.
Vilamoura is very flat with an eclectic blend of both a Portuguese and an international community with a mix of permanent and holidays homes, resort apartments with swimming pools, luxury villas with private pools and low rise residential apartments and terraced homes.
It is fully equipped for both the lifestyle of a holiday maker and a permanent resident. On one hand you have 5 star hotels with spas, golf courses, a marina full of super yachts and boat trips, Irish pubs and a wide choice of restaurants with international cuisine.
On one other hand it benefits from banks, pharmacies, post office, minimarkets, schools, a small private hospital, vet, public swimming pool and gym, fast food and international restaurants with Indian and Chinese food and McDonalds and Pizza Hut.
Vilamoura is very family orientated, with year round weekly Clubs for children including athletics, football pitch, kids motorbike park, basketball, tennis, golf & sailing lessons and a public swimming. It also has a fantastic Roman themed mini golf and a charming train bus for the kids and scattered around are self-serve bike rental stations.
For the grown-ups there is golf, beachside bars, boat trips, private luxury yacht charter and members only spas, private leisure and health clubs at the 5 star hotels, Browns and a tennis and paddle club, and the only Casino in the Algarve which also offers live entertainment and dinner. Vilamoura is very bike and runner friendly.
One of our favourite hotels here is The Tivoli Hilton with beach and marina views where you can become a member of the Spa/Gym with access to the heated indoor pool and outside beachside pool, dine and have a drink even if you're not a guest.
The heart of Vilamoura is the marina where you can enjoy some retail therapy, souvenir shops, beauty bars, fashion stores, restaurants and Happy Hour cocktails and a pint whilst watching the Live game at one of the many Sports Bars or Irish Pubs or sit at a choice of Cafes watching the World go by. Just to the West of the marina is a lovely beachside restaurant Thai Beach serving lunch and dinner often with Live entertainment and to the East is Pure Beach nightclub.
For shopping you can head inland in 15 minutes to Mar Shopping an indoor air conditioned shopping centre set over two floors with a Cinema, Restaurants (including Starbucks), Homeware Shops, Fashion and Beauty and a Supermarket Pingo Doce. Next door is the famous homeware superstore Ikea, DIY superstore Leroy Merlin and for designer shoes and clothes you have an outdoor shopping mall Designer Outlet Algarve with shops such as Adidas, Puma and Calvin Klein. A lovely town to visit is Loule town centre just 5 minutes from Mar Shopping where you can stroll along the high street shops, watch the world go by having a coffee, or enjoy a live show in the Theatre (in Portuguese) and pop into the daily fresh fruit and vegetable market open until 1pm (except Sundays). Just the market building itself is worth the visit with the extraordinary moorish influenced architecture with its two large red domes. Also in Loule town are several bigger supermarkets and home electric stores.
We have included the Pros and Cons of living here in Vilamoura, this is purely our own opinion to help you understand the area more.
Vilamoura is perfect if you want to be in the middle of it all and have everything on your doorstep, and be very close to the beach. It is a busy town with the majority of facilities and amenities being available year round. Many residents travel to Vilamoura for work and play. Due to the coastal location of Vilamoura, your property should be attractive for re-selling or to make an income for holiday rentals. Vilamoura is quite a modern cosmopolitan town, maintained to a high standard, and is both a beach resort and permanent residential town. If you want the hustle and bustle of life in a coastal town, and to be understood in English, then this is the place to be.
During the winter months Vilamoura will be quieter, less tourists though you will feel that you have beaches and cafes to yourself, some tourism restaurants and businesses will close for their holidays in low season (October to March) as there is less demand. In the summer months there will be lots of tourists so increased traffic, less car parking spaces, busy beaches and bars. If your property is in a street full of holiday villas, then you will have the noise of the gardeners equipment, property maintenance and guests of neighbouring properties enjoying their pools long into the night. If you want sea views and to experience the real Portugal with traditional festivals, character villages, farms and integrate with the local Portuguese community, then head to Boliqueime just a short drive away.
Has this helped you decide Vilamoura is where you want to buy your home in the sun?
Thank you for reading this, we hope you found it helpful. Let us know what you think, if you think we have missed anything or if you have any questions.
If you own a home in Vilamoura and are thinking of selling, we will happily be your Real Estate Agent get in touch.
Photographer credit: birch photography
Last updated: 1 February 2021