An area worth exploring 

Ok its not the most popular Algarve holiday rental destination.  Booking a holiday in a Algarve Villa type property in nearby Tavira would be more popular.  Never the less Vila Real de Santo Antonio is a stunning holiday location.  It is located on the Rio Guadiana; which is the river that divides Algarve from Spain.  If you stand on the far eastern edge of Vila Real on the side of the street you can easily see the Spanish coastline and the bridge that connects the town to Spain.

Gold in Eastern Algarve
Tavira golf

Charming place

Vila real is a relaxing and very peaceful town and it’s ideal for everyone who like the quiet side of life, or have a different holiday away from home. The place is charming with a lot to see and do.  Especially those who like learning about the local culture.  It is also ideal for taking walks and cycling since the area is flat.

Sandy Beaches

Vila Real has a gorgeous open sandy beach, which stretches for several kilometers.  There is a narrow road that is used to access the beach. There is plenty of parking if you decide to drive to the beach.

Lots to explore

There are lots of places to explore around Vila Real but one to make top of your agenda is Cacela Velha. It is a very small village with a handful of typically Algarvean whitewashed houses around a Church and a fort situated on the waterfront just past Manta Rota.  There isn’t a lot to do there it has to be said, but the village and the views are truly delightful. There are a couple of restaurants if you want to linger for a while – the one on the right just as you come into the village has an upstairs terrace giving great panoramic views across the beaches of Manta Rota and Monte Gordo to Vila Real all set against a backdrop of lush green countryside. About the only sounds ‘disturbing’ the total peace and quiet are from the birds and a few chickens!

Booking a holiday in one of stunning villas in Algarve is always a good choice.   Booking one near Vila Real is an excellent choice.  Nearby Tavira apartments are always in demand.   As are the wonderful East Algarve Golf courses.


The pretty Spanish town of Ayamonte, on the opposite bank of the Guadiana is fun to visit for a tapas lunch and maybe a spot of shopping! To save driving, a ferry regularly crosses between the two towns – the journey takes around 15 minutes. Just remember that Spain is an hour ahead of Portugal!

This is a great place to explore with family too as there are Ayamonte holiday apartments and Spanish villas situated close by most of the exciting places that you intend to visit.  This makes movement easier and with ease.

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Eat what  the locals eat.

If you are planning a trip or already planned for a holiday in Portugal, booked online a villa Algarve or apartments in  Albufeira.  Next thing to do is go online and research activities and restaurants.  Push it a step further and check out Portuguese cuisine.  You can  plan ahead of time what to eat and where to eat it while there. Perhaps you will ask what is Portuguese food like? What are the traditional dishes? In this article we look at the superb  food you can have while in Portugal in some  great restaurants.  Most of supermarkets and restaurants will supply meals and foods as takeaway. So while lounging in the sun at the pool in one of the many luxurious Algarve Villas enjoy a meal el fresco.


Bacalhau which is salted and dried cod fish is something you will always find in the Menu in most Portuguese restaurants. There is no specific way to cook this dish, its believed the recipe changes everyday. Bacalhau is more like lasagna with layers of co fish, onions, diced potatoes and cream.

This is a must try dish while in Portugal.  Always reasonably priced and very available.



There is plenty of sea food in Portugal. The most popular being cuttlefish a dish with chocos.  This is the seafood you have to try, its unique and can only be found in Portugal – Percebes, the creatures are the size of a thumb, tube shaped and the shells are small, but once you bite them you want stop, you will eat and look for more.  Mostly found in restaurants close to the sea.  If you choose a villa to rent in Albufeira for instance you ll fine this dish locally.

Salad based on fish
Fish salad


Most countries eat soup and bread as an accompaniment.  The Portuguese enjoy making soup with bread.  There are two different version of bread soup or Acorda. In Lisbon the bread is mused and cooked with shrimp. It is a delicacy. Tried it once in an Lagos restaurant didn’t  particularly like it.  Maybe I ll give it another go.


Then there is Alentejana, where olive oil and garlic is spread over the slices of bread and topped with a poached egg. Very Portuguese.


The popular Cataplana fish stew is a must to have  while on a Portugal holiday rental holiday. A signature dish from way back. The ingredients differ from region to region and restaurants.  The ingredients of white fish, seafood, potatoes, peppers and some chili will always remain the same. Eat it straight from the pot with warm crusty bread. When you go to Rome do what the Romans do.  Most of our Portugal Apartment, Villa’s in Portugal are located close to  restaurants that serve these dish.  To be fair you can say this about all of Portugal.  The one thing the Portuguese have in common is they like their food and like to enjoy good company while doing so. To enjoy all these dishes book online a holiday rental on  We have a number of excellent location to choose from . Have a look at one of the excellent Lagos villas most with private pools.  Or apartments  in Albufeira depending on your requirements.  Book early as villas Portugal is a very popular search topic.

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4 Albufeira Restaurants Reviewed for self catering holiday makers

4 Albufeira Restaurants Reviewed for self catering holiday makers

Quick Guide to 4 restaurant in Albufeira .

The Quick Guide basically tries to give you a feel for the various options you have available in relation to Albufeira  restaurants.   Maybe encourage  those of you that havnt book online apartments in Albufeira before to research the area you intend to visit.

A Portugal Holiday rental can be a great choice for a sunshine holiday and  villas in Algarve and particularly  villas in Albufeira are no exception to this rule. Try a short stay apartment in Albufeira Old Town.

Take a quick look

Review of 4 Albufeira restaurants

Ok!! we are not restaurants reviewers. We are a holiday rental website Visit our website and find unique listings.

Our blogs review it, look at, investigate, relate all things interesting (or at least we think interesting) in and around the locations we are advertising for self catering holiday homes.

On this occasion we are looking at 4 restaurants in Albufeira. Albufeira is a well-known tourist resort in the central part of the Algarve in Portugal.


So instead of reviewing the restaurants we decided to review the reviewers. Our first port of call was to put Albufeira Restaurant into Google search menu and of course up tops Tripavdisor.

Now it has its pro and cons, and a lot of folks are questioning its motives, mainly because Tripadvisior has huge commercial interests in the hospitality industry. But I am not A A Gill writing for the Sunday Times and I have looked at other websites pertain to review food and drink outlets for instance Virtualtourist which made me yawn just looking at homepage. So for the purpose of this exercise I am sticking with Tripadvisor.

Lets search restaurant reviews Albufeira Algarve.

Ranked #1. Restaurante Dom Carlos, Rua Alves Correia Tel No 351289541224

Reviews …. 539

Excellent …. 452

Poor …. 13

Reviews “excellent “ most recent.

Reviewer (Ireland)

1. Dom Carlos is a hidden gem. Everything about the restaurant is simply faultless. The room itself beautifully decorated, owners delightful, and the food just amazing.

Reviewer (Omagh, Northern Ireland)

2. Pricey but worth it.

Reviewer (Clonmel, Ireland)

3. Peter and Anna are brilliant hosts and customer service is excellent. Peter explains all the courses and will gladly offer some items not on the menu if available. Take his advice and arrive hungry! On our second visit.

Reviewer (Yorkshire, UK)

4. There are a few restaurants of a good quality which serve local dishes such as Cataplana and black pig and are well worth a visit. Then there is Dom Carlos.

Review “Poor” 13 in all

Comment: Hats off to Dom Carlos Must be doing a lot of things right to get Ranked #1 on Trip Advisor of Albufeira

Reviewer (Glasgow)

1. Having dined at some of Glasgows top restaurants we thought number 1 in Albufeira would be fantastic, how wrong we were, pretentious, arrogant is the way I describe it, its a set menu and that’s it with limited options, 5 courses and not very good at that, don’t believe the hype, way over priced,

Ranked #2 Os Arcos Restaurant

Rua Alves Correia, 25, Albufeira 8200, Portugal Tel No. 289 513 460

Reviews …. 377

Excellent …. 307

Terrible …. 009


Reviewer (Manchester)

“Not No. 2, It’s a Number 1”

We had the Sea Bass. What was it like? Well let’s say we eat a lot of fresh fish,but this was the best.

I have limited knowledge of Portuguese Vinho. If you are unsure, ask the owner as he knows his stuff.

Comment: The Sea Bass on the Algarve is excellent

Reviewer (London)

“Very family friendly- a homely local restaurant”

Because we have a 5year old and a 1.5 year old we tend to eat early and they opened at 6.30pm

The owner welcomed us and provided a high chair. The owner helped us heat up some baby food but he still wasn’t having it. Ultimately we gave him some chips.

Comment: Portugal has a tradition of family friendly holiday. Albufeira is the ideal place to place to book a holiday rental.

Reviewer (Portarlington Ireland)


We visited Os Arcos on two nights during our holiday. On both nights the food and service was outstanding.

Reviewer (Sunderland)

The other extreme. Terrible

“Not friendly”

On two occasions we tried to get a table, both times they were tables with no reserved signs on the tables, we started to think he didn’t like the look of us, so we gave up trying to get a table, so we kept going back to o’Manjar’s (round the corner) and Bistro restaurant, next door.

Comment: Maybe just a simple misunderstanding. I do note the owner didn’t reply. Might have been too busy getting rave reviews.

We moved in the interest of variety to the:

Ranked #4 The Indian Sizzler

Lt E Lj 14 | Bellavista Commercial, Above #McDonalds, 351 920 522 599

Reviews …. 32

Excellent …. 29

Poor …. 1

Reviewer …. (Dundee)


We had a take-away from the Indian Sizzler and I have to say “Wow!” From the moment we entered the restaurant we were treated extremely well by the owner Jay.

Comment: Ideal takeaway if someone is enjoying a self catering holiday in Albufeira.

Reviewer (Edinburgh)

“Best Curry I ever had!”

My husband and I braved a thunderstorm to go to the Indian Sizzle

based on the fantastic reviews on Tripadvisor and it was worth getting soaked! The owner was so friendly and welcoming and had no problem with us drying off in the bathroom before sitting down. She gave us poppadums and sauces on the house, which were delicious,

Comment: Definitely worth a visit

Poor review

Reviewer (Kildare)

Was really looking forward to an Indian meal at this restaurant & all seemed very promising in terms of customer service, location and ambiance. The food I ordered arrived promptly and with a smile, however, my main course was sooo!!!!!! Disappointing in terms of appearance and taste had originally ordered a Phall, but was dissuaded by the waitress to have a Vindaloo…

Reply from Owner Jay E, Owner at The Indian Sizzler

Thank you for your review, Something clearly went wrong with your meal on the night and we would like to offer you a sincere apology. I serve all tables and had this been brought to my attention at the time, I would have done my best to resolve the problem to your satisfaction and if that was not possible, you. would not have been charged for the meal. We regret that we are unable to offer you any explanation, but if you can reply to my private message I will arrange a refund for you.

Comment: Hats off to Jay owner of The Indian Sizzer

Ranked #7 Shalom II Rua Da Liberdade, 23, Albufeira, Portugal +351 922 015 364

Reviews …. 415

Excellent …. 294

Very good …. 91

Average …. 22

Poor …. 6

Terrible …. 2

Reviewer (Kildare)


Try the “Ribs”, you will not be disappointed. Great restaurant and fab food, well worth a visit. Exceeded our expectations.

Comment: I know Albufeira is a great location for self catering holidays and Shalom 11 might be the right place for you to eat. Let us know how you get on.

Reviewer (Newbridge)

“A Must! Fab dining experience”

came here on a rainy night on recommendation from family, there was a group of us and there was no problem pre-booking a table to fit our party. Which was 11. The ribs are the best!! And you can fill up on as many as you want, “more ribs” “yes, please”. I had a linguini dish, the flavours were delicious,…

Comment: Another happy client.

Reviewer (Birmingham)

“Ribs !”

We went on 3 occasions in a ten day holiday. 1st night we had ribs 2nd we had a shared mix grill 3rd i had steak. Ribs were fab. Mixed grill for two was stunning. The ribeye steak (normally a personal favourite). I wouldn’t order it again. Not bad, just not how i like my steak. Paid about €30 -€35..

Comment: Ribs seem to be a winner

Now to the other extreme Terrible reviews.

Reviewer (Scotland)

“Worst ribs in town!!!”

They have a sign saying best ribs in town and they are all you can’t eat but that’s rubbish, ribs were full of garlic and when you start eating them all they slow down or ignore you, the staff were too busy talking to each other to serve and they were slow, partner had a curry that looked right out of a birds eye box.

Comment: Surprised owner didn’t make a reply to comment. In fairness maybe they were too busy to notice. As a team on we know we are not going to it right all the time. But its important to be open honest and transparent.  Let us find the perfect apartment in Albufeira old town for you.

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