Friday, 23 December 2011 2:58 PM
The Algarve in Portugal is a stunning destination for family getaways, none more so than Carvoeiro. Booking a villa in this part of the country will provide parents and kids with endless hours of fun.
Situated in the south-west of Portugal, Carvoeiro's town centre is small, but provides everything you need for sunny family breaks. There is an abundance of restaurants to suit all tastes and budgets, so whether your kids are fussy eaters or are willing to try different food, everyone will be catered for.
Staying in Carvoeiro villas can give you the freedom to cook your own meals and eat in when you like, but it is always nice to sample local delicacies such as fish soup with freshly-caught shrimp and mussels from the nearby ocean, grilled chicken piri-piri, steak Portuguese and desserts filled with almonds and figs.
Along with the large variety of restaurants for an atmospheric family meal, Carvoeiro is one of the most popular Algarve destinations because of the stretches of sandy beaches located here.
Praia – which means beach in Portuguese – de Carvalho, Praia de Marinha and Praia da Albandeira are just a selection of sandy strips. The latter is smaller than some of the others and is divided by rocks, which families might prefer if they would like to spend some quality time together.
Mums and dads can keep an eye on their little ones as they splash in the waves against a breathtaking backdrop of cliffs and large stone structures rising out of the water. Children will no doubt love discovering hidden caves and rock pools as they play in the warm sun.
Snorkelling is also a fun family pastime that can be enjoyed in this part of the Algarve, with the clear waters providing the perfect opportunity to spot some of the local aquatic life.
The town centre of Carvoeiro has changed a lot since its original days as a small fishing village, but is still a charming and friendly place for a getaway. Indeed, you can spend a leisurely hour or so watching the fisherman haul in their catches for the evening's meal.
You might decide to get a more panoramic view of the town by heading to one of the cliff tops on a family walk, with a lighthouse to be found at Cabo de Carvoeiro. The Algarve sun can get very hot, so make sure youngsters are protected with high-factor suncream, T-shirts and a hat.
Dating back centuries, remains of the old fort of Senhora da Conceicao can also be found on the cliff above the town.
A great place to cool off and to spend a day at is one of the two water parks that are an accessible journey away from Carvoeiro. Aqualand is located at Alcantarilha, while Slide and Splash is close to Faro in Lagoa.
Villas in the Algarve are the perfect type of accommodation for family holidays, due to the flexibility they provide. There is no need to worry about getting up early enough to make the breakfast sitting, or rush back from a daytrip for an evening meal, which can often be the case when staying in board or all-inclusive hotels.
They also provide ample space for adults to relax when the children are in bed, so parents need not worry about having to stay in at night with nothing to do. Whether enjoying a drink on the balcony or settling down for a romantic meal or film, self-catering villas are ideal for mums and dads who want to enjoy some time together.
With Carvoeiro providing plenty of restaurants, beaches, scenic walks and shops to stock up on groceries, it can prove the perfect place to book a villa for a family break in Portugal.