Once a pretty quiet attractive fishing village (Armacao means tuna fishing location) on the coast down from Pera, and to the west of Albufeira, tailor-made all inclusive resort Armacao de Pero is a mecca for golf holidays on the Algarve. All inclusive resort territory is on the menu here, and it's lively in the peak summer months, but quieter out of season.
Albufeira's choice of golf courses are easily accessed from Armacao de Pera, plus its major draw is its glorious long sandy beach. Alongside this you've easy access to pretty villages such as nearby Pera and Porches (famous for pottery and arts and crafts centres), and market towns such as Algoz and Alcantarilha. Historic centres such as inland Silves with it's dramatic castle and choice of museums is also easily accessed nearby. Car hire is recommended here if you're wanting to push out further west into the Algarve.
Along with Albufeira, Armacao de Pera is one of the oldest and long-standing resorts on the Algarve coast. It's famous for it's long sandy beach, a major attraction for family holidays here in this Algarve beach resort. Armacao de Pera is actually an important spot on the Algarve coast - it's the spot or axis where the coast west from here tilts (hence the dramatic rock formations all the way west to Cape St Vincent). East Algarve beaches in contrast are flat golden sands with shallow waters, whereas to the west the land rises at points to rocky cliffs to great dramatic effect. There's a collision going on here between Eurasian and African continental plates - the African plate is literally pushing the land mass on the Western Algarve coast upwards. The most dramatic effects of this natural affair can be seen at Algar Seco.
Armacao de Pera's beach stretches beyond Gale beach to the west of Albufeira, in an endless beach bay which doesn't end until the headland that winds round towards Carvoeiro. There's a choice of holiday accommodation here, particularly Algarve holiday apartments. An excellent Algarve all inclusive resort for families, you can expect all your regular holiday resort facilities including holiday shops, and numerous bars, restaurants and supermarkets.
Prior to the 18th century Armacao de Pera was an Algarve fishing hotspot - those in the fishing trade lived in nearby Pero and Alcantarilha, although some fishing families moved down here when the fort was built as protection against pirate invasion. The fort here at Armacao dates from the 18th century, and much of the eastern part of the town retains some of its old character.
The fort and remains of the chapel and walls is well worth a look. If you're a fan of fish restaurants, you'll find many a fine fish restaurant towards to east of Armacao de Pera lining the beach. Dine alfresco with views out to sea. Holiday apartment development stretches all the way round to Senhora da Rocha (development reaches its peak here). The beaches at Senhora da Rocha are superb, again perfect sheltered family holiday beaches.
Armacao de Pera makes for an ideal family holiday base on the Algarve, centrally placed with lots of opportunity for Algarve excursions and tours. Move up to historic Silves on an excursion tour, or opt for car hire Algarve - driving around the Algarve is excellent, with good roads and a fast motorway - the A22 - running the length of the Algarve Coast. You're only a hop and a skip from pretty fishing village Carvoeiro and the stunning rocky coast and rock formations of Algar Seco. Further inland up from Portimao visit the sublime rural retreat of Monchique - home to natural spas and a host of walking trails in beautiful woodland.
Cliff Richard (sir) owns a vineyard at Guia just to the east of Pera. It's open to visitors (see weblink right - it's not cheap). Apparently Sir Cliff is often seen getting his hands dirty on the vineyard!? The vineyard produces the Vida Nova range of wines, and tasting and guided tours of the vineyard are on the menu during a visit. The wines are mostly fruity reds - check the weblink for details. To book tours telephone: 00351 968 776 971.
If all round family holiday fun is more your scene, then Albufeira's nearby choice of family holiday attractions are easily reached from Armacao, including Aqualand Algarve and the fabulous family day out at Zoomarine (with dolphin shows and dolphin interaction).
To the east of Albufeira just off the fast A22 motorway is Loule, famous for its weekly open air market every Saturday. Hook into an excursion coach trip to Loule market, or if you're in a car hire make sure you get there early for parking, or park on the outskirts of town and walk in.