Apartment in Olhao, Eastern Algarve, Portugal - Stunning Views Over The Ocean And Ria Formosa Nature Reserve
We live in North Wales and first holidayed in the Eastern Algarve in 2007. We love it here, with the relaxing pace of life, the friendly people, the beautiful beaches and the all-year-round sun. The flight to Faro is only two and a half hours for us, and then from the airport it's a 15 minute drive to Olhao. If we catch an 8.00 am flight we can be here by lunchtime. When we had the chance to buy this lovely waterfront apartment here, with such a stunning view of the ocean and nature reserve, we couldn’t resist it.
Owner purchased this Apartment in 2010
Why Owner chose Olhão
We consider this area of the Algarve to be largely unspoilt by tourism. Although Olhao is a tourist destination it retains its charm as it is still very much a traditional Portuguese fishing town. The restaurants here have lovely, fresh food and wine at very reasonable prices, whereas many other holiday destinations have become expensive, especially to eat out. We love taking the ferry to the sandspit islands of Armona or Culatra; it is like stepping back in time, wandering past the pretty beach houses that line the paths to the beautiful white sandy beaches. There are no cars there and the beaches are never crowded, even in high season. The countryside inland is beautiful and we have spent many days exploring the various tiny hilltop villages where time seems to have stood still.
What makes this Apartment unique
All the restaurants, cafe-bars, shops, markets and banks are within a short walk of the apartment, yet at the same time, it is just far enough away from the hustle and bustle of the main street in Olhao, so you have the best of both worlds. You can chill out on the balcony, or in the rooftop pool after a day of sightseeing. The fact that only a few of the apartments in the building have access to this pool is definitely a bonus. The views and sunsets from our balcony are breathtaking; the only downside is having to tear ourselves away from the view when it is time to return home to the UK. After all, there are not many places you get the chance to see pink flamingoes whilst you are eating your breakfast..
100% refund if canceled at least 60 days before arrival date. 50% refund if canceled at least 30 days before arrival date.
The property is in a fantastic location. Well kept and everything inside for a comfortable and relaxing stay. Hope to revisit.
Great views from the balcony
Good apartment to one end of the seafront with great views of the salt marshes and birdlife. Pleasant flat walk into the centre and to the wonderful daily market (closed Sunday). Very good kitchen, cutlery and crockery a bit sparse but glasses in abundance. Lovely big balcony and there is a rooftop pool should you be there when it's warm enough to enjoy it. The only thing that would stop us going to this property again is the bed. Advertised as a double but was actually two singles made up as two and pushed together and one was a little higher than the other. When the linen was changed we asked for a double duvet cover as there were double duvets in the wardrobe. The other thing was that the bed was very hard, rather like sleeping on a plank but we put the single duvets between the mattress and sheet so that helped. If you like a hard bed and aren't bothered about a double it's a pretty good place to stay. The people we were dealing with were very helpful too which is a big plus.
Olhao is a good place to base yourself with plenty to do and more than enough eateries etc even in January.
Little place in paradise
Everything immaculate in apartment,had everything we needed. Beds are very comfy, loved having two bathrooms, huge balcony and great views, roof top pool never crowded no sun bed run here, short walk from old town and ferries to the islands,will definitely return loved everything
Relaxing and home from home
We very much enjoyed our 9 night stay . We have been to Olhao before so are familiar with the area. It provides a wonderful home from home environment with some wonderful views. A small maintenance issue was dealt with in in a timely manner.
We had great weather and some lovely food. Hope to go back again next year.
What a fantastic apartment! Great balcony. Clean and comfortable. Good location. Roof terrace pool!
We were met by Stephan who was very welcoming and helpful. The apartment is very comfortable with all mod cons and is a short walking distance from the harbour and town. There is a fish,meat and veg market just down the road where we brought fresh food and self catered but there are plenty of restaurants if you prefer to eat out. The TV has more chanels than you could wish for which was great for the two days we had terrible weather and if its impotant to you the WI FI is good. We are avid bird watchers and the view from the balcony was lovely we saw flamingo every day. The roof terrace pool is lovely and a real bonus. We hired bikes for the day and cycled to Fuesta which was lovely, got the Ferry to Armona also lovely and walked for miles. We loved this stay and would definately reccomend it.
Excellent Accommodation with lovely views near to a lively busy town
We stayed in this property from 11 -17 September. It is in a very modern apartment block with spacious accommation and excellent security and a lift . The view from the large terrace was lovely although the road in front could get busy but not really a problem on the 3rd floor. The apartment was fitted to a high standard and was extremely clean. The owner Julia responded promptly to any queries we had before our arrival.
We were able to get a early check in and the meet an greet went smoothly. We didn't have any issues during our stay so hadno need to contact the management company.
Olhao is not the most scenic of towns but the harbour which is about 10 mins walk of the apartment has lovely views and is bustling and lively both day and night. Great choice of restaurants serving lovely fish but plenty of choice fo the meat lovers as well. It is also a lot cheaper than other places we have been to in the Algarve as well as being only 15 /20mins from the airport. Vino verde on tap for a large glass at 2 euros at the harbour hard to beat. The locals were also friendly and understand English but also French and Spainish as there were a lot of both nationalities. The train station is approx 15 minute walk and regular ferries to other islands. We went to Armona and views were amazing. There is a Lidl supermarket nearby but the local Pingo Doce near the harbour was more than adequate. A small grocery store a few blocks away has just opened and this was very convenient for small purchases.
Would certainly go back to this apartment and also Olhao as I loved the non touristy feel and the morning market had lovely fresh fruit. We didn't hire a car as we have been to a lot of places in the Algarve and it's perfectly possible to do without one.Have stayed in a number of villas/ apartments and find a smallWelcome pack with water, coffee and milk is much appreciated after a early morning flight. As we were tired and thirsty when we arrived it meant to we to go out immediately and look for a supermarket. An information pack is provided by the management company but the guest comment book in the drawer in the lounge gives a lot of valuable insider tips
Special interest holidays:
The apartment overlooks the Ria Formosa Nature Reserve and the sea. The bird life on view is amazing - a bird twitcher's paradise!
The unspoilt, white sandy beaches and clear waters of the offshore sandpit islands of Ilha da Armona and Ilha da Culatra are easily reached by ferries that run from the quayside, at the eastern end of Olhao's waterfront. Armona is the closest to Olhao and has a few cafes/restaurants. Ihla do Farol, where the lighthouse is, at the western end of Culatra, also has a beautiful sandy beach and a few cafes. All of the beaches hold the EEC blue flag. Many other sandy beaches can be reached by car.
Faro Airport is 14 km away, approximately a 15-minute drive. Trains and buses run between Faro and Olhao. Olhao bus and train stations are both within walking distance of the apartment. A taxi from the airport is around €20-25. Car hire is not essential as the apartment is so conveniently located for all amenities, including the ferries to the offshore islands.
All amenities and necessities can be found in Olhao including supermarkets, banks, restaurants and the new Ria Shopping mall. Faro is approximately 9km away, where you will find the large Algarve Forum shopping mall. The picturesque town of Tavira is approximately 22km away. Further afield is the Spanish border which is approximately a 45 minute drive along the motorway.
Olhao is a traditional Portuguese fishing town, full of character with its Moorish-style houses and winding, cobbled back streets. In the heart of the historic town you will find graceful buildings with wrought iron balconies, carved stonework and decorative tiled exteriors. At the centre of the town is the church of Nossa Senhora do Rosario, built in 1698 with contributions from the fishermen. It is an elegant building with a baroque facade. Olhao is well known for its fish market; there are two market buildings on the waterfront where you will find a vast and diverse choice of fresh fish and seafood, along with locally grown fruit and vegetables. These market halls are surrounded by pavement cafes where you can sit and enjoy the view of the boats moored along the waterfront.
The Natural Park of Ria Formosa encompasses 60 km of coast between Ancao and Manta Rota. It is a vital area for birds, especially waterfowl, and the park was included in the list of wetlands of worldwide interest defined by the Ramsar Convention. You can observe the wildlife from hides dotted around the Natural Park.
Boat trips are run around the Ria Formosa, or you can hire a boat yourself.
Olhao Seafood Festival takes place in August (usually around the 2nd week). It's one of the biggest gastronomy festivals in the Algarve with plenty of delicious seafood and live entertainment every night. Apart from the daily fresh markets in Olhao there are plenty of other markets to visit in the surrounding areas, including Fuzeta, Montcarapacho and Quelfes.
The unspoilt riverside town of Tavira is worth a visit and is only a short drive away, or you can catch a train or bus there. This lovely, historical town has the Rio Gilao running through its centre which is spanned by a Roman bridge. Faro is only a short drive or bus/train journey away, where you can wander around the ancient walled town and harbour.