Praia da Luz Holidays
Praia da Luz Holidays – Lazy days and peaceful nights
Praia de Luz owes much of its popularity, not only with British visitors but also with the British ex-pats who live there year-round, to the fact that despite development in recent years it has kept its village appeal and low-rise landscape. Cobbled streets of delightful white-washed houses lead down to the beach, and luxurious apartments and villas spread along the gently rising hills. You can understand why the resort is so popular - everything you need for a wonderful holiday is to hand; plenty of places to eat and drink, a good variety of shops for those on self-catering holidays, most of the holiday accommodation is easily accessible and within walking distance of the town and the beautiful beach, and for a day out, the historic city of Lagos is only ten minutes away.
A holiday in Praia da Luz is taken at a slower pace than in many of the larger resorts in the Algarve, making it ideal for families and couples wanting to simply relax, enjoy excellent food in traditional restaurants, and laze the day away on the beach. Even so, for party animals there are a couple of late-night bars in the village, and Lagos old town dances on until dawn breaks of the old castle walls.
When to go
Winter is usually the quiet time in the Algarve, when some restaurants and shops close so the owners and staff can take their holiday. With Praia da Luz having a large ex-patriot British community many businesses stay open all year round, although sometimes closing earlier in the evening than during the summer months. And if you want a Christmas and New Year away from the British cold, there are plenty of celebrations that will make you feel right at home.
High season should be avoided if you don’t like crowds, as should Easter, as both coincide with school holidays. As most southern European schools close towards the end of June you might find the resort busier than you expected if you go in early July.
Weather in Praia da Luz
Winter on the Algarve doesn't get particularly cold (other than at night), but it does tend to rain a bit more than at other times of the year. But it’s still not much, with only about two inches of rainfall annually. During July and August the cooling breeze of the Atlantic may make you forget that that blazing sun above is responsible for temperatures that can go into the thirties, so take plenty of precautions, particularly where children are concerned. The September sun of 26º will cool to around 19º in November, reaching a low of 16º in January. April and May will be a comfortable low 20º before heading once more to a scorching summer.
Getting the best deal
As well as having a number of hotels offering all inclusive holidays, Praia da Luz has a large choice of villas, smaller hotels and apartments, so out of high season you stand a very good chance of finding an excellent deal on accommodation and flight. All inclusive can be an excellent way of having an economical holiday on the Algarve, even if you are limited to school holidays. Many hotels are geared to children and teenagers, and offer a variety of entertainment, while you relax around the pool or have a drink in the bar.
Airport and transport need to know
The Algarve is easily accessible from the UK and Ireland, where twenty-three airports connect to Faro airport. Most low-cost airlines have regular flights, as do Monarch and British Airways.
The 89km ride from Faro airport can take a chunk out of your holiday spends if you decide to take a taxi, around 90€ (£72) for a four-seater, up to 130€ (£104) for eight people, although you may be able to shave something off this by booking transport on-line or sharing a shuttle bus, which also needs to be booked. Allow for a 20% surcharge if you have a night or weekend flight.
You can add to your holiday adventure by taking a train or bus, which will take a couple of hours as you will first of all have to get into Faro from the airport and then change at Lagos. But at around 8.50€ per person all in, it can be a substantial saving. To hire an economy-size car, Opel Corsair or Ford Fiesta, will cost around 185€ (£150) during high season, so it might be worth doing that to give you the chance to look at the area while saving on local bus and taxi fares.
Best beaches in Praia da Luz
The Blue Flag beach a Praia da Luz is a long crescent of fine white sand, sheltered by the black cliffs of the Rocha Negra. If you feel energetic, there are pathways to the summit. The sea is calm and the atmosphere laid back and relaxed, which makes a very popular beach with families, particularly as dads and kids can while away hours gazing into the rock pools during low tide at the western end of the beach.
A pleasant palm-lined promenade runs alongside the beach, with plenty of places to stop for a drink and watch the surf gently roll in. During the summer months you can mess about on surfboards, pedaloes and banana boats. This is an Accessible Beach, with easy access to the sands for pushchairs and wheelchairs. There are also facilities for disabled people, including toilets and special equipment that allows them to join their family in the sea.
For surfers and windsurfers, Meia Praia is a large beach near Lagos that fits the bill, as it faces Lagos Bay. A long beach that extends all the way to Alvor, there are plenty of small beach bars to keep you supplied with basic needs should you decide to spend the day there.
Areias Sao Joao
Armacao de Pera
Praia da Falesia
Praia da Luz
Praia da Rocha
Praia de Oura
Quinta do Lago
Vale de Parra