Alvor has retained much of its charm; despite the influence of tourism the original village streets and buildings remain much the same as when fishing was the only commercial activity.
The narrow village streets lead down to the waterfront where fishing boats are drawn up on the beach. The original fish market is still a central focal point where evening events are now staged. Just along from the fish market to the West tucked between two open air restaurants you may spot the old lifeboat station. Walking back into the village through narrow cobbled streets you may come across the 16th Century Church which boasts one of the most magnificent main doors in the Algarve.
The walk through the village offers a wide choice of restaurants; from classic Portuguese with their displays of fresh fish being cooked on open BBQ's to family restaurants catering for the budget conscious. Of course nowhere these days is without the usual Italian, Chinese and Indian and Alvor is no exception.
Many who stay in villas and neighbouring towns come to sample the atmosphere, dine or just alvor fishstroll through the quaint streets or stop for a drink on the promenade while watching the sunset.
There is a sufficient mix of bars to entertain all age groups and for the more adventurous Praia de Rocha is only a taxi ride away.
Alvor's main beach is only 5 minutes walk from the quayside. A long white sandy beach spreading for miles in either direction means you will always find a space of your own. The beach restaurants, lifeguards, facilities and plenty of parking makes the Alvor beach very popular and family friendly.
The area offers many golf courses, nature reserves, lagoons and mountain ranges helping to keep Alvor alive all year round by welcoming golfers, walkers and nature lovers who enjoy what there is to offer when the summer tourists depart.alvor beach
On the West side of Alvor flows the Ria de Alvor which spills into the lagoon. The boardwalk along the vast estuary and sand dunes make a wonderful walk, offering stunning views and as a protected natural area, teem with wildlife and flora. This is one of the chosen nesting places of dozens of species of migratory birds. The salt marshes also support an interesting variety of animal life, while the local fishermen still use traditional techniques to catch fish and gather shellfish.
Golfers are spoilt for choice with Alto Golf which runs through two valleys and was the last to be designed by Sir Henry Cotton. Palmares is a course of great beauty, perfectly blending beach and mountain scenery and Penina being the first golf course to be built in the Algarve is considered the masterpiece of Sir Henry Cotton. Morgado do Reguengo is the newest course to open in the Algarve, laid out in a large 980 hectare estate through undulating countryside.
Portimão is the main capital town of the area and boasts great shopping. The old Sardine restaurants still exist, no longer along the waterfront but just under the bridge. Its also one of the big game centres in the Algarve, offering the chance to catch swordfish, shark and other big fish.
There is something for everyone in Alvor.