ARMAÇÃO DE PÊRA, 15km west of Albufeira, fronts one of the largest beaches in the Algarve, which spreads east all the way to Galé. Beach aside, it is not the greatest looking of resorts; high-rise buildings and apartments straggle along the town’s main through road, tempered only by the terraced gardens and cafés overlooking the central part of the sands. The remains of the town’s fortified walls are at the eastern end of the pedestrianized seafront road; a terrace in front of a little white chapel provides sweeping views. But the town beach is fine and if the main section is crowded, just head further east, beyond the cluster of traditional boats on the fishermen’s beach towards Galé, where things are quieter.
To the west, the coast changes, boasting fine caves and strange rock formations around Praia da Senhora da Rocha, which can be visited on daily boat trips from the fishermen’s beach. The 10km or so of coast between here and Centianes is flat and scrubby, with a series of delightful cove beaches, including Praia da Albondeira and Praia da Marinha, that have somehow escaped any large-scale development. The other local attraction is 4km up the main N125 at Porches, where the most famous of the Algarve’s chunky and hand-painted pottery comes from; there are various shops along the main road which sell it.Read More