Algarve

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A prime slice of Portugal

Portugal’s southernmost strip isn’t just about ribbons of golden sand and world-famous golf courses. It’s also got an edgy mix of modern, got-it-all resorts and traditional towns. Plus, families are more than catered for with a superb line-up of waterparks, theme parks, and restaurants where little ones are always welcome.

Albufeira – the best of both worlds

If having everything on your doorstep is a priority, try the Algarve’s largest holiday spot, Albufeira. It ticks off a 5-kilometre beach, restaurants galore, and nightlife as loud as you want it. On the other hand, you can also go local in its old cobbled town or walk along cliff-top paths in search of hidden bays.

Down-tempo towns

If you prefer things a bit quieter, Sao Rafael is ideal. Its main beach has Blue Flag status and this modern resort is home to a clutch of beachfront bars and restaurants. To experience authentic Portugal, meanwhile, head for Olhos D’Agua – it’s a working fishing village with cobbled lanes and traditional waterside restaurants. The beach is a big hit with kids, with rock pools to explore and freshwater springs that bubble up through the sand.

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Albufeira

Set on Portugal’s southern coast, Albufeira is the Algarve’s biggest holiday hotspot. It’s a really clued-up resort, pulling together a modern seafront with a traditional old town stacked with shops, bars and restaurants. And it’s also come up with a can’t-lose combo – an all-you-can-handle nightlife and a coastline crammed with Blue Flag beaches.

Alvor

Alvor likes to mix things up. Set on the western Algarve in Portugal, it’s a traditional fishing village with its own lagoon and river, but it also comes with modern music bars and some of the best restaurants around these parts. As for the beach, well that serves up plenty of golden sand.

Olhos D'Agua

Set on Portugal’s Algarve coast, hilly Olhos d’Agua is a bit of a dark horse. It’s a small, friendly fishing village where you can still see the local fishermen hauling in the day’s catch on the beach – but after dark, it puts on its tourist hat. It doesn’t go party crazy like Albufeira, about 15 minutes’ drive away, but the clutch of restaurants and bars here aren’t quite as sleepy as they make out.

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Top 5 resorts in Algarve

Top 5 hotels in Algarve

Terms and Conditions Limited availability at these price so book now to avoid disappointment. Guaranteed savings - Refers to an online discount of 10% on July & August nad 9% September & October holidays and applies to the basic adult cost before supplements. Available on package holidays booked online departing between 1st July 2014 and 31st October 2014 Online discount only applies to package holidays booked on firstchoice.co.uk and does not apply to flight only, accommodation only and tailor made flight+hotel bookings. Online discount is not combinable with free child places.

Free child places - Free kids offer applies to new bookings only, on selected summer 2014 holidays, subject to limited availability. Only 1 free kids place is available in each selected hotel room or selected apartment type or villa with 2 full paying adults. Other children must pay the full brochure price. Available on First Choice holidays only. Free child places may not be combinable with other discounts.

 Save up to £400 per couple on July & August  holidays – Saving offer applies to new bookings only on selected First Choice package holidays booked on firstchoice.co.uk. Offer applies to holidays departing between 01 July – 31 August 2014 and is subject to limited availability. Savings is against brochure price. Excludes flight only, accommodation only and any other bookings. Additional supplements may apply. Saving is based on a minimum of 2 adults travelling. Thomson reserves the right to withdraw or change this offer at any time