My friend and I visited Vale de Carros in June 2012.
From the outset it was clear that this was a family run hotel with select staff chosen for their particular expertise. The management and staff made the entire holiday experience an excellent one. We were greeted by a very friendly and helpful receptionist and later we discovered that the catering staff were very attentive, making sure we never got too hungry or thirsty. The bar and restaurant has an extensive drink and food menu and also has two large screen televisions. There was entertainment every night during our stay and music all day. The maid service is regular and towels etc. are changed every other day. The entertainment staff including kids club staff are also very good and ensure that all customers enjoy their stay and are included or excluded from all the resort's activities as the guest prefers.
The resort caters for literally all holiday makers. We met couples of all ages, families, and people travelling alone. All spoke very highly of the resort and in particular the staff.
The villas surround two seperate swimming pools (three if you count the kids pool). The main pool is overlooked by the resorts bar, restaurant and entertainment centre. The main pool is approximately 15-18 metres in length with a deep and shallow end and the baby pool approximately 5 metres in length.There are various pool activities for all ages including aqua aerobics and water polo to help work off that "holiday overindulgence". The second shorter (10metre) pool is much quieter and a little more isolated. We spent a few afternoons by this pool and it is the most relaxing spot in the resort. There is also a kids club and we noticed that the kids club staff actually keep a watchful eye on the kids while in the pool. So while not officially lifeguarded the pool has eyes on it at all times. There are also tennis courts although we did not try these out.
Vale de Carros is frequented by many different nationalities, including the Portugeuese themselves as well as their neighbours the Spanish, but we also met Swedish, Dutch, Russian and German nationals as well as Irish, English, Welsh and Scotlish clientele.
The mature grounds of the resort are imaculately kept with a range of colourful flowers and plants adding to the beauty of the surrounds. The villas are all connected by little pathways which lead to the various pools, bar, swimming pools and reception.
The resort is located in a rural setting and is approximately a 10-15 minute drive from Albufeira town. At first we were grateful that we had hired a car but as we got our bearings we realised that only a short 3 minute walk away were 2 mini markets, and numerous bars and restaurants. Praia Da Falesia (Falesia Beach) is only a short 5-10 minute drive, maybe a 25 minute walk away but well worth the visit (or several). The view of the beach from the parking area was spectacular and the beach literally does go on for miles.
Dotted along the beach are more bars and restaurants as well as sun loungers and parasols for rent. The beach is a supervised by lifeguards who are located every 750-1000m along the sands. We always saw green flags along the beach and water was always very welcoming. The waves were small but powerful and were a lot of fun for a splash and a swim.
We actually saw a wedding at one of restaurants and I can honestly say that it was the perfect location and setting for such an occasion, even if it was a little funny to see the grooms men fully suited and booted with their trouser legs rolled up....
We would also recommend a visit to Oldtown Albufeira which has many shops and market stalls as well as fine restauarants and bars. It also is fronted by a number of beaches including a sports beach which caters for anything from pedalos to speed boats and jet skis, parasailing to kite surfing. Oldtown Alufeira is also the nightlife centre of the town and has many sports, cocktail and late night bars and clubs.
For a little culture, we visited a little fishing village called Lagos, which was a short 45 minute drive from the resort. This quiet town provides boating trips to nearby caves, and beaches. The food we had at the local tapas bar was only second to the food we had on another trip to Olhao (near Faro). You must try Portuguese Green Wine and ask the locals about its origin. If you like a good white wine, you will never taste better. And for food, we would recommend trying the locally sourced seafood which is simply exquisite.
All in all, we thoroghly enjoyed our stay in Albufeira and we would highly recommend not only a holiday in Portugal but to stay in Vale de Carros.
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- Also Known As:
- Vale De Carros Albufeira, Portugal - Algarve
- Vale De Carros Hotel Albufeira