Think of food from Portugal and fresh seafood is usually somewhere near the top of the list. And the Algarve has some of the country’s freshest and finest. Shellfish, including prawns and clams, are popular while grilled sardines – sardinhas no churrasco – washed down with a cool beer is almost compulsory. Other popular dishes include cataplana, a type of bouillabaisse named after the copper pan in which it’s cooked, and arroz de mariscos, a shellfish and rice stew. You will be able to sample all these and more at our pick of the best hotels for foodies in the Algarve.
Smoked hams, grilled meats and pork dishes are also worth looking out for whilst, for the sweet-toothed, a pastel de Nata – custard tartlet – is a must as, indeed, is anything made with almonds. Local wines are affordable and perfectly acceptable.
The finest way to enjoy the food is undoubtedly with a beachfront or sea-view dining terrace. Many of our choices of the best hotels in the Algarve for foodies give you just that.
BEST HOTELS FOR FOODIES IN THE ALGARVE
FOR A MICHELIN STAR (OR TWO)
For serious eating, head for either Vila Joya or Vila Vita Parc, both with Michelin-starred restaurants.
- Overlooking the sea, Vila Joya has one of Portugal’s most celebrated restaurants, a two-Michelin-starred affair that spoils with locally sourced, and highly inspirational, cooking. With just 21 contemporary-luxury rooms, Moorish architecture, pool and spa, it’s a truly indulgent choice.
- Vila Vita Parc, a cliff-top resort near Porches, also offers a two-Michelin-starred dining room as well as seven other dining options. Rooms are light and contemporary and there’s a host of activities from deep-sea fishing to golf as well as a children’s club and a spa.
FOR DINNER WITH A VIEW
- Also considered to have one of the best restaurants in the region, Bela Vista Hotel & Spa, perched above the beach at Praia da Rocha, has a fine-dining restaurant overlooking the sea. The adults-only hotel is cool and sophisticated with art deco-styled rooms and chic white cabanas around its pool.
FOR PORTUGUESE SPECIALITIES
- In the heart of Tavira, the Pousada da Convento, a former 16th-century convent, is beautifully atmospheric. Here you can breakfast in the cloisters to the sound of birdsong, while dinner of traditional Portuguese dishes together with a choice of excellent Portuguese wine list is served in the smart restaurant.
- An alternative choice for traditional Portuguese specialities is Pousada de Faro, an 18th-century Rococo palace that has been turned into a contemporary boutique-style hotel.
FOR FARM TO FORK CUISINE
- With beautiful views over citrus groves and fields from its dining terrace, Vila Monte Farm House offers some of the area’s finest farm-to-fork cuisine. Rooms are cool and white with Moorish flourishes, plus there’s a pool and outdoor cinema.
Whether you want Michelin-starred finesse or quality traditional dishes, our choice of the best hotels for foodies in the Algarve has it covered. Still not decided?