Gateway to Vale do Lobo and Quinta do Lago

Almancil is the golf jewel of the Algarve and a popular retreat for the rich and famous.

Located 15 minutes away from the airport in Faro, this Almancil is renowned for its two luxury resorts - Quinta do Lago and Vale do Lobo, which offer some of the best golf courses in the region and even in Europe.

Designed by the British golfer Henry Cotton in the late sixties, Vale do Lobo has helped established Algarve as a worldwide golfing destination, partly due to its privileged location near the seafront. Right across the golf courses and tucked away between rugged cliffs, is the beach of Vale do Lobo, a quiet haven for sunbathers. Vale do Lobo also has one of the largest tennis facilities in Portugal, featuring 14 courts which host a Tennis Tournament every August.

On the other hand, Quinta do Lago’s courses are immersed within the Ria Formosa Natural Park, which is among the most beautiful landscapes in the Algarve. These remarkable properties have largely influenced the look of Almancil as a town, providing visitors with a number of high-quality restaurants and stylish boutique shops.

Along the coastline of Almancil there are several beaches worth checking including Praia do Ancão, Quinta do Lago, Garrão and Vale do Lobo.

The church of São Lourenço de AlmancilThe church of São Lourenço de Almancil

The church of São Lourenço is one of the town’s most unique attractions. Set in the village of São Lourenço, the church was built during the 18th century and it is considered a great example of Baroque architecture in the Algarve. Its interior is covered with blue and white ceramic tiles from the bottom to the top, which tells the story of São Lourenço, the village’s patron saint.

Almancil is also home to the Estádio Algarve, a large football stadium which was built for the Euro 2004 and is now used for several sports events in the region. Adrenaline seekers should pay a visit to the Karting Almancil, a fun theme park dedicated to motorsport fans of all ages.

Like most towns in the Algarve, Almancil has a local flea market that takes place on the 1st and 4th Sunday of the month near the school C+S. There are also annual golf tournaments at Vale do Lobo, Vale do Lobo Amateur Week and Open Foursomes, which are open to members and guests. Other events include the patron celebrations at the beginning of August and the Cataplana Festival in June. The festival is held across several local restaurants and it’s an homage to the Cataplana, a typical dish of the Algarve.

Explore this region by following our Loule 5 day tour. Also read about Loulé, Vilamoura, Quarteira, Boliqueime, Alte and Salir.