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Portugal is best for...

Sun worshippers

Soak up the sunshine on one of the Algarve’s glorious beaches.


Venture through the lush, green mountains of Madeira.


Try succulent espetada and freshly caught sardines in one of Funchal’s quaint little restaurants.

Fast facts

Language: The language spoken in Portugal is Portuguese.

Currency: The currency used in Portugal is Euro (€).

Local time: Portugal has the same time as GMT/UK time.

Fly to: If you’re going to the Algarve, you’ll arrive at Faro Airport (FAO) which is 4km west of Faro. If you’re staying in Madeira, you’ll fly to Madeira Airport (FNC), 16km northeast of Funchal.

Flight time from UK: 3-4 hours

Tourist Information: Further Portugal tourist information can be found here.

Visas & Health Before you travel, click here for recommendations and advice on visas and health for your holiday to Portugal.

Weather & Climate

Temperatures: Summers are generally hot and dry with temperatures averaging between the mid and late 20s (°C).

Best time to visit Portugal: Pleasant throughout the year, with mild winters and comfortable summers.

Weather in Portugal varies from region to region. Portugal weather is usually mild during winter, with temperatures rarely falling below 10°C. Coastal regions such as the Algarve are slightly cooler than inland areas, but still warm and sunny.

Getting Around

By taxi: Resort areas have plenty of taxi ranks. Be aware that it is standard for taxi drivers to charge extra for luggage.

By hire car: A hire car is a good idea if you want to explore the more rural areas of the Algarve or Madeira.

By train: Portugal has a vast railway network that covers most of the country. The state-of-the-art Alfa Pendular trains are a great option if you want to travel directly from the Algarve to Lisbon.


Carnival time For a real Portuguese party, visit the Loulé Carnaval in February. The locals dress up in neon colours, feathers and lots of glitter as they parade through the streets to samba music.

Floral floats Two weeks after Easter is the Madeira Flower Festival, one of the biggest annual events on the island. Floats travel through the city of Funchal, each decorated with the island’s native blooms.

World music The Loulé Med Festival is a popular world music celebration which attracts thousands of festival-goers every June.

For golfers If you’re a golf fanatic, you won’t want to miss the Portugal Masters which takes place in October.

Holidays in Portugal

Hiking Excursions in Portugal Portugal holidays Piri Piri Portugal Portugal wine

There's an idyllic Portuguese holiday paradise to suit everyone. As you unwind on a beautiful beach, or pause for a lunch of grilled sardines in a tranquil village, you might wonder why the great Portuguese explorers ever wanted to leave this enchanting and diverse country in search of far-away lands.

Prices start from £223

With its vast, sandy beaches and kid-friendly attractions, it’s no wonder that Albufeira is the most popular resort in the Algarve. Almost 15km west of Albufeira is Armacao de Pera, a lively area with a wealth of shops, bars and restaurants and a quaint little old town. Slightly further afield is Lagos, an ancient fishing village with a modern marina and a palm-tree lined promenade. Funchal is the biggest city on the island of Madeira. Picture cobbled streets lined with traditional restaurants and charming little shops and galleries. Just 6km east of Funchal is Caniço de Baixo, a tranquil hillside village overlooking the ocean.

The Algarve

Relax on the Algarve’s sun-drenched southern coast where 160km of long golden sandy beaches slope gently into the sea. Meanwhile challenging golf courses sit on the Algarve’s clifftops with spectacular views across the lush countryside. When booking your holiday to Portugal, you can choose from modern resorts where hotels and facilities cluster around sparkling marinas.


The Portuguese island of Madeira lies 560km west of the African coast and is often described as a floating garden – possibly because national parks make up two thirds of the island and exotic plants thrive in the year-round sunshine.

Recommended offers in Portugal

Portugal, Algarve, Armacao De Pera

Hotel Vila Galé Nautico

7 nights All Inclusive flying from Belfast

  • Bright and modern, with an attractive nautical theme
  • A short stroll from the beach
  • Perfect for families and couples

Stay from £510

Portugal, Madeira, Funchal

The Cliff Bay

7 nights Bed & Breakfast flying from London Gatwick

  • Romantic cliff-top setting
  • Michelin-star restaurant
  • Perfect for honeymoons

Stay from £708

Portugal, Madeira, Funchal

Hotel Porto Santa Maria

7 nights Bed & Breakfast flying from London Gatwick

  • Seafront location, next to the scenic marina
  • Perfect for a romantic honeymoon
  • Part of The Style Collection, includes 20kg on Thomas Cook return flights

Stay from £633

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