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If you’re looking for a big dose of sun, sea and sand for your 2019 / 2020 holidays, look no further than the Algarve haven of Armacao De Pera (Pera). The most southern region of Portugal, The Algarve, is known for its wonderful Mediterranean beaches and excellent tourist facilities. Even with stiff competition from the other Algarve resorts, Pera is thought of as having one of the longest and most scenic beaches in Portugal. Named after the tuna that were fished from the Armacao de Pera, or harbour, the resort was formerly comprised of two villages that have been united by a bridge. The major draw of Pera is its wide diversity of attractions and activities for all ages and personalities. On the eastern side of the resort you’ll find quaint cobbled streets and a more traditional ambience, while the beachside area is heavily tourist-oriented and has a buzzing, vibrant atmosphere. While many other beach resorts have little to do aside from sunbathing, Pera keeps you entertained with a range of activities including watersports facilities, friendly local bars and cultural boat trips. The resort offers everything from watersports to casinos, guaranteeing you have everything at hand for a relaxing coastal break. One of the best things about Pera is that it offers two distinctive areas within one resort, making it an ideal choice for groups of friends of differing ages and tastes, as well as those wishing to include several generations of family in their holidays.

Top attractions

Top attractions

The main attractions in Pera include the gorgeous beaches of Armacao de Pera, Praia dos Salgados and Praia Gale. As you head to the east of pera you’ll find the town’s 17th-century fort, which was originally built to defend against pirates. If you’re looking to add some variety and interest to your beach holiday, Pera is best used as a base to reach the best local attractions. From Pera, the popular resort of Salgados is just a 10 minute drive away, while there are also another three well-maintained golf courses just a short drive away. The busy local waterpark, Aqualand, is less than 10 minutes’ drive away, or you could head over to the Kartodromo de Almancil to practise your driving skills on the fantastic go-karting track. With buggies for children too, all the family can get involved, and you can even top the day off with a fun game of paintball.

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Eating out

Eating out

With stiff competition from the famed cuisines of France and Italy, Portuguese may not have achieved the same level of fame as some other European cuisines. If you haven’t tried Portuguese food and drink yet, you’re in for a delicious surprise. Portuguese food is nourishing, hearty and flavoursome, with a base repertoire of plenty of grilled meats and fishes, chunky stews and casseroles and one of the most popular dishes in the country, bacalhau (salted cod). Most dishes here are served with one of three accompaniments- potatoes, salad or rice. Pera has a wide range of excellent restaurants, cafes and bars to cater to all tastes. While there are many traditional Portuguese restaurants in Pera, you’ll also find a range of international dishes to cater to all the family.

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Families

Families

From long days lounging on the beach to exploring the quaint cobbled streets, paddling in the warm waters to exploring the traditional market stalls, there’s plenty to see and do in Pera. Some of the best attractions at Pera are Krazy World, a family attraction park with a little zoo, a children’s playground area, animal petting farm, pony rides for kids and a pool to unwind by, as well as several bars and a nice restaurant. If you’re looking for a thrilling time with all the family, head to the local water park, Aqualand, which is situated close to Alcantarilha. To treat your children to a culturally enriching day out with breath-taking views, visit the small chapel of Nossa Senhora da Rocha around 3 and a half kilometres to the west of Pera.

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Action & Adventure

Action & Adventure

Pera is an ideal choice of holiday destination for those looking for plenty of action and adventure on their holidays. The beautiful long expanse of sand in Pera is the perfect venue for plenty of activities, including walking and running on the sand, playing sports and swimming. Thanks to the gorgeous weather and naturally beautiful landscape, Pera has an abundance of sports to choose from to keep your adrenaline levels high. You can choose from golf, tennis, karting, fishing, archery, mountain biking, trail biking, outdoor bowling and motor sports such as quad biking. For an adventurous day out with a more light to moderate level of activity, you could try bird watching, sailing, hiring a jet ski to explore the coastline at your own leisure or kayaking. There are also a number of pirate-themed boat tours, guided walks and catamaran boat trips with knowledgeable local guides to give you the lowdown on the rich history and culture of this wonderful part of the Algarve.

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Beaches

Beaches

Pera is an excellent choice of Algarve resort for those with limited mobility and families with young children looking for an inclusive beach holiday experience. Many of the beaches in the Algarve are Accessible Beaches, providing visitors with a range of amenities to cater for people with all levels of mobility. Many of the beaches in the area have ramps, walkways and footpaths straight to the sand and have height-accessible counters, bars and tables. The best beaches in the area include Praia da Armacao de Pera, a very long stretch of sand backed by Pera’s apartments and hotels. At the left hand side of the promenade you’ll find the remains of a 17th-century fort, as well as St Anthony’s chapel. With a couple of beach restaurants at the same end, this is also a great beach for enjoying a fresh seafood meal. Praia Granda is the next section of the long expanse of sand that runs from Albufeira to Salgados, with Gale situated in between. Another good option is Praia da Marinha, a tranquil cove situated just a 15 minute drive down the coast from Pera.

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Nightlife

Nightlife

Nightlife in Pera is usually fairly sedate, but becomes quite lively during the peak summer period. During the summer months you’ll find plenty of bars, beach bars, discos and clubs, as well as laid-back beach parties that are held on the warm sands in July and August. The best nightlife venues in Pera include the Kippis Bar, a relaxed bar’s popular with both the locals and tourists, the Cappelinha Bar, Brader Bar and Safira Shisha Bar and Club. If you’re looking for a more vibrant nightlife experience, Pera is best thought of as a base from which to visit the best nightlife venues in the surrounding area. Just a short taxi ride or bus trip away, you’ll find the popular resort of Albufeira and the iconic ‘The Strip’ with a long stretch of road lined with bars, discos and fuss-free restaurants.

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Couples

Couples

The beautiful expanse of golden sand, clear blue waters and sunny skies make Pera the ideal venue for your next romantic holiday. Whether you’re looking for the perfect honeymoon destination or are celebrating a special anniversary with your significant other, Pera’s winding cobbled streets, scenic views and traditional restaurants bring a real sense of romance to your holiday. For a fuss-free romantic day out as a couple, head to the old village area to find plenty of cafés and restaurants along the seafront serving freshly-caught local fish. There’s plenty of opportunities for great days out here from exploring the historic fort at Pera, to the Fiesa, a sand sculpture festival from May to October and the nearby Salgados Nature Reserve.

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Culture

Culture

Pera has evolved from a traditional Portuguese fishing village to one of the most popular Algarve holiday destinations, thanks to its huge expanse of white sandy beaches, authentic fishing community and excellent tourist amenities. Pera itself stands as an embodiment of the evolution of the Algarve region from traditional fishing region to major player in the European tourist industry. The old part of the city showcases the narrow streets and authentic fisherman’s homes that represent traditional Portgual, while the beachfront area reflects the town’s evolution to a tourist-friendly resort. Pera itself is home to a number of excellent cultural attractions that enable you to enjoy a scenic day out while learning about the long and rich heritage of the town. Majestically looking out over the sea is the Armacao de Pera Fort, originating from the 16th-century. This fort originally defended local fishermen against pirates from the sea and is home to the Santo Antonio Chapel, dedicated to the Saintly Protector of Fishermen Saint Antonio. Other cultural attractions in the area include the Igreja de Sao Francisco de Pera, which was constructed in the 18th century. Here you’ll find a stunning baroque-era altarpiece and artwork depicting the evangelists Mark, Luke, John and Matthew. Each year, Pera hosts the Internatioal Sand Sculpture Festival (FIESA), the largest sand sculpture show in the world. This is held annually between May and October and draws in some of the best sand sculptors from across the globe to sculpt an astonishing 35,000 tonnes of sand, as well as welcoming crowd participation.   

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