The Complete Guide to Vilamoura

As one of the most popular destinations in the Algarve, Vilamoura has a little something for everyone. Renowned for its world-class marina and proximity to championship golf courses, it is the perfect place to both relax and have a little fun!

This complete guide to Vilamoura will tell you everything you need to know to get the most out of your visit!

How To Get To Vilamoura

Fortunately, getting to Vilamoura is relatively easy.

From Faro

If you are flying into Faro, and your hotel does not have a shuttle, you can try to arrange an airport transfer that will take you directly from the Faro Airport to Vilamoura. This option is likely to be the cheapest and most convenient one for people traveling in larger groups.

Renting a car and driving from Faro to Vilamoura is the fastest way to get there. Simply take the IC4 to the N125 and you’ll be there in about 30 minutes depending on traffic.

If you aren’t renting a car at the airport, you can get to Vilamoura by bus. To get to the bus station from the airport, take bus route 16 into Faro. Once at the station purchase your ticket and hop on the bus. The trip should take about 45 minutes.

From Lisbon

There are 4 different ways to get to Vilamoura from Lisbon. The fastest and most direct way is to rent a car and drive. The trip will take just under 3 hours if you don’t mind taking a toll route and just under 4 hours if want to avoid tolls.

Taking the train from Lisbon to Loule and then hopping in a taxi to Vilamoura is likely to be the most comfortable way to get there but not necessarily the most cost-effective.

If you choose to fly from Lisbon you will fly into the Faro Airport and then have to use one of the options listed above to make your way to Vilamoura.

Finally, taking a bus from Lisbon to Vilamoura is the cheapest way to travel and should get you into town in just over 3 hours.

What To Do In Vilamoura

Vilamoura is a popular destination for celebrities which gives the entire town an air of fun and sophistication. Luckily, there is more than enough fun and activity to go around. You’d have to work pretty hard to get bored in Vilamoura.

Visit the Beaches

For anyone looking to spend a little time playing in the sun and surf, Vilamoura has some of the best beaches in Portugal! These blue flag beaches are definitely worth a visit!

Praia da Falesia

One of the most spectacular beaches is Praia da Falesia. More than just being one of the best beaches in Portugal, this beach is widely considered to be one of the best in the entire world! The popularity of this beach means it can get crowded at times, but with 6km of golden sands, you should be able to find your own spot without too much trouble.
At the west end of the beach near Olhos de Agua you can see the stunning red cliffs and at the eastern end, closer to Vilamoura, the cliffs are smaller and the beach is much wider.

This beach offers unparalleled views at both sunrise and sunset. Be sure to time your visit to the beach accordingly, you do not want to come all the way to Vilamoura and miss this opportunity.

For people interested in watersports and activities like paragliding, snorkeling, scuba diving, surfing, and even jet skiing, this is the beach for you!

If you’d rather have two feet on solid ground, you can hike the trail that runs atop the cliffs or walk the entire length of the beach in about 2 hours.

Praia de Vilamoura

Situated between the marina and Quarteira harbor, Praia de Vilamoura is a lively beach with soft sand and crystal clear waters. With plenty of bars, cafes, and restaurants lining the beach, it is the perfect place to spend a day.

Sheltered from the strong waves and currents so the water is calm and accessible. On the beach, you can rent sun loungers and parasols to make your stay more comfortable. It is also possible to rent kayaks and paddleboats. Take one out and get a completely different perspective on the stunning coastline.

Go Golfing

When it comes to golfing in Vilamoura, you’re spoilt for choice. Here are just a few of our favorite courses:

Quinta do Lago

This award-winning golf destination is one of the most popular in Europe. Quinta do Lago is made up of three golf courses, the Paul McGinley Golf Academy, and the only Taylormade Performance Center in southern Europe.

The South Course is perhaps the most incredible of the lot. This course has hosted the Portuguese Open on 8 occasions but can be enjoyed by people of all skill levels. Just be sure to keep it straight to avoid all the strategically placed hazards!

Vale do Lobo

Home to two championship golf courses, Vale do Lobo has everything you could ever want in a golf resort! A breathtaking clubhouse, golf shop, golf academy, and club, buggy and trolly rentals, with amazing accommodations and a luxury beach! What more could you want?

Pinheiros Altos

This is a 27 hole course that can be broken up into three, smaller, 9-hole courses called Pines, Olives, and Cork. The 8th hole on the Olives course features a challenging island green that has caused the hole to be named as one of Portugal’s “must play” holes.

Even if your game isn’t going so well, the rolling fairways, plentiful birdlife, and beautiful surroundings mean you’re sure to enjoy the round anyway!

Pestana Vila Sol Premium Golf & Spa Resort

Pestana Vila Sol is one of the more natural golf courses in the region. It was designed to complement, respect, and maintain the topography and wildlife in the area. The 27 hole course can be a challenge to all skill levels but the clubhouse and amenities are sure to help! If staying at the five-star hotel, your room’s private balcony, the spa, outdoor swimming pool, games room, tennis courts, and fabulous dining will ensure you can relax in style.

To learn more about these and other golf courses in the region, check out our post, A Guide to Golfing in the Algarve

Aquashow Park

If you need a break from the beaches or are traveling with children and teenagers, a trip to Aquashow Park will set things right.

Located in Quarteira, just outside of Vilamoura, this water park has one of the largest water rollercoasters in the world! Perfect for thrill-seekers, this coaster gets up to 70km/h!

If you’d rather take things a little more slowly, you can enjoy the wave pool or one of the dozens of waterslides and attractions in the park.

This place is bright, lively, and perfect for kids of all ages! 

Casino de Vilamoura

Found the marina, Casino de Vilamoura is perfect for a night out.

With over 500 slot machines and several gaming rooms including poker, blackjack, and roulette tables, there’s an opportunity for everyone.

Even if gambling isn’t quite your speed, the casino has 3 restaurants, a bar, a popular nightclub and regularly hosts live entertainment and cabaret shows.

Just be aware that the casino does have a dress code which means men need to be wearing a tie and jacket. And, don’t forget to bring your passport or ID as you will be asked to present it upon entry.

Charter a Yacht

Boat trips provide some of the best opportunities to see the Algarve coast. Certainly, the views from the shore are spectacular but the views of the shore are definitely something special.

With many of the world’s rich and famous flocking to Vilamoura in the summer months, yachts are not an uncommon sight. Why not join them on the water?

Charter a yacht for a few hours (or a few nights!) and experience something truly luxurious. Put together the perfect package for your group, whether you’re interested in dolphin watching or food and wine tasting, we can help you put it all together.

For more information on available yacht charters and packages, head here.

Hit the Town

Vilamoura is known to have some of the best nightlife in the Algarve so if dancing till dawn is on your to-do list, you’re in luck!


Located along Praia da Falesia, this club has been hosting sunset parties for nearly 20 years. After a day on the beach, you can have a drink, dance, listen to world-class DJs, and celebrate the spectacular sunset. Quality cocktails and prime beach-front real estate really set this place apart.


This is one of the largest nightclubs in the Algarve. The venue often has world-famous DJs or musical acts and various theme nights keep things fresh and fun. Hip, urban, and cool,  if you want to leave your cares behind and just get lost on the dancefloor, Lick is the place for you.

Dice Club

Located inside the casino, this club is the height of sophistication and luxury. Quality and service are key in this location and you will often find a slightly older, more sophisticated crowd here. Attracting top-notch talent and a celebrity clientele, it’s not hard to see why Dice Club is one of the coolest places to be.

Where to Stay in Vilamoura

There are lots of great places to stay in and around Vilamoura. Already mentioned in this post, Quinta do Lago, Vale do Lobo, Pestana Vila Sol, and even Aquashow Park, have incredible accommodations. The famous marina is surrounded by hotels and staying in any one of them will put you nice and close to all the action.

Large hotel chains like the Four Season Vilamoura can provide all the facilities and amenities you’ll need for a comfortable stay. Offering luxury apartments and access to the spa, pools and landscaped gardens, you’ll feel like an A-list guest. With multiple restaurants, a poolside bar, and a cocktail bar, you will want for nothing.

If you’d rather skip resort accommodations and tourist-heavy hotels, consider an apartment rental. Apartment rentals can offer you a little more independence and some added peace and quiet. Contact us and we can help you find the right spot.

Where to Eat in Vilamoura

As with many other towns in the Algarve, Vilamoura is full of great places to eat. Here’s just a few to consider:

Ostra D’Ouro

Located on a quiet street, Ostra D’Ouro is the perfect place to enjoy authentic Portuguese food while admiring the marina. With a range of dishes and truly delightful staff, it would be hard to have a bad meal here. The sea bass and the lamb stew are both must-try items!

Rosa’s Cantina

If you’ve got a love for spicy food, definitely head to Rosa’s Cantina. This authentic Mexican restaurant has everything you’d expect, enchiladas, tacos, fajitas, and burritos. After a day on the beach, who doesn’t want a nice cold margarita and a prawn fajita?

O Marisco

If you are looking for delicious fish dishes and some romantic ambiance, O Marisco is the perfect fit. Offering daily specials and a solid à la carte menu, there are plenty of options available. The seafood kabobs or Argentinian steak with a glass of sangria is the definition of a perfect meal.

Vilamoura is a truly happening resort town that caters to just about everyone. When you’re ready to book your trip, we’re ready to help. Reach out and let’s create the perfect holiday!