The Algarve is much more than one of the greatest destinations for golf

Katie Lowry  

Monte Rei Golf and Country Club

Without further ado, Monte Rei Golf and Country Club is simply heaven on earth. Constantly clinching the top spot for golf in the Algarve, this Jack Nicklaus Signature golf course is not only beautifully designed with a challenging edge, but also situated on the immaculate grounds of Monte Rei, surrounded by 1,000 acres of untouched countryside and endless greens, perfect for a relaxing break away from the craziness daily life brings.

The par 72 course stretched over 7,182 yards has a spectacular landscape of both the Atlantic Ocean and the Caldeirão mountains. With each hole brings a new breath-taking scene as you play through magnificent trees and valleys creating a unique test in the most picturesque of settings.

Monte Rei is also in the midst of creating a second course designed once again by the renowned Jack Nicklaus which will make them one of the very few clubs around the world to have two Jack Nicklaus signature courses.

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Monte Rei Golf Academy provides a tuition programme to all abilities for those enthusiastic to improve their golfing skills or perhaps those who want to try their hand at golf for the first time.

Monte Rei offer luxurious spacious apartments and charming penthouses in their clubhouse residences just seconds away from the clubhouse. There are also 1,2 and 3 bed linked villas with pools as well as extensive private gardens and enchanted terraces with a specially designed outdoor dining area. There are also 3 and 4 bed villas with pools inspired by Portuguese architecture that boast elevated sea views.

Without question, Monte Rei plays host to a variety of exquisite restaurants  and bars from fine dining to a leisurely bite at the pool, this resort offers it all under the direction of Executive Chef, Rui Silvestre.

Awarded a Michelin star, the “Vistas’” restaurant offers the complete gourmet experience beyond compare. Think stunning sea views, ambience like no other, excellent service and fresh, locally sourced ingredients used to create gastronomic delights. Experience a wide variety of Portuguese wine, with a carefully selected wine list prepared by their resident sommelier, Nuno Pires.

The Grill, Veranda and the Academy Café  all provide exquisite food and atmosphere for all occasions, dotted around the resort.

The Eastern region of the Algarve boasts sunny beaches, divine food, rich culture and history as well as beautiful nature reserves. Roman architecture, fishing ports and towns rich with culture also offer a wide range of shopping, bars and restaurants.

Visit the Rio Formosa National Park or the nearby Alentejo region with its endless countryside. Nearby beaches include Praia de Cacela Velha, Praia da Alagoa, Praia Verde and Cabanas de Tavira.

The nearest airports to Monte Rei are Faro which is a 40-minute drive from the resorts as well as Seville about a 90-minute drive.


Quinta do Lago

Next up is Quinta do Lago, nestled in the Algarve is one of the top Golf Resorts in Europe, with three astounding courses as well as world-class golf facilities such as the Paul McGinley Golf Academy and Southern Europe’s only TaylorMade Performance Centre.

Spoilt for choice, the north course is a championship par-72 course redesigned in 2014 by architect Beau Welling, with former European Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley.

Known as the “Crown Jewel” of Quinta do Lago, the south course is very popular among European tour players. This picturesque course oversees the Ria Formosa Natural Park and will challenge all golfing abilities.

Laranjal located 2km east of the resort in the Ludo Valley is famous for its five beautiful lakes and untouched nature winding around the course from umbrella pines to cork oaks.

Quinta do Lago offer luxury holiday rentals both short and long term from townhouses, apartment and villas from parties of two to twenty. The guest service team are readily on hand to make golf reservations, book local restaurants or activities and so much more.

The Magnolia hotel on the doorstep of Quinta do Lago also offers a boutique experience with a hint of Palm Springs to bring you a unique but highly hospitable experience.

Known for its’ high-quality restaurants and a huge variety of options, this resort really does cater for everybody and any occasion. The Bovino Steakhouse offers prime cuts from a prime location, why not bask in idyllic views from Gigi’s, visit Trattoria Toscana in the heart of Quinto do Lago or experience Michelin cuisine in Casa Velha.

Other exquisite bars and restaurant options include Dano’s, Pure, Koko, The Magnolia Restaurant, The Shack, Q Beach, Casa Do Lago or the Clubhouse itself with its legendary “19th hole atmosphere.” An array of options for both day and night!

Hotel Quinta Do Lago, Conrad Algarve and Wyndham Grand Algarve are all stunning 5-star hotels in the Quinto Do Lago region, which is just 20 minutes from Faro Airport.

The Ria Formosa national park is located right beside this resort where hundreds of magnificent flora and fauna reside and make this a top spot for the sighting of rare species. 2 miles of golden sand and glorious sand dunes can be accessed by walking over a wooden walkway at Ria Formosa, if spending the day at the beach is on the agenda.

The Quinta shopping centre boasts many designer stores, cafes and restaurants if a spot of shopping is up your alley. Other activities include horse riding, tennis, clay pigeon shooting, deep water fishing and practically every kind of water sport.

Quinto Do Lago is now one of the most expensive areas in Portugal for real estate and many big names own homes here.

Only a stones throw away from Quinto Do Lago, Vale do Lobo resort is just minutes down the road offering two picturesque 18 hole championship courses, the Ocean and Royal courses.


Vale do Lobo

The Ocean Course in the heart of the Algarve runs down by the flawless turquoise Atlantic, composed of the two original 9-hole golf courses designed by Sir Henry Cotton, which opens you up to the most breath-taking scenes of the Algarve out there.

One of Portugal’s most prestigious courses, through fairways, pine trees and lakes, is designed by golf architect Rocky Roquemore, making the Royal course challenging, charming and exciting alongside the golden coastline.

11 time Portuguese National Champion, António Sobrinho says "The Royal and the Ocean are two great courses. On the Royal, you have to hit the ball straight - you’re going to be in trouble if you don’t. The Ocean is different, it forces you to shape more shots and I really enjoy that."

Vale Do Lobo, the largest luxury resort of its kind in the Algarve, offers charming high-end villas both attached and detached with pools, outstanding deluxe linked villas with pools and jacuzzies as well as standard, studio and superior apartments all exceptionally close to the magical Atlantic Ocean.

The Vale Do Lobo resort is only an 8-minute walk from Vale Do Lobo beach and only a short walk to other beaches too. There are 14 tennis courts, football facilities, a state-of-the-art fitness training centre, a full-service spa, as well as indoor and outdoor swimming pools.

Diners can enjoy both local cuisine or international delights from Asian to French to Italian and so much more in one of the 15 restaurants and bars the resort has to offer. For example, pop into the Beach Bar for a snack, head to Breeze for an exquisite location or dine in Amore for Italian delicacies. The range of food offered is vast and there’s something suitable for everyone!

Sao Gabriel, Alambique and Gusto are Michelin star options for a night of fine dining and glorious delights in the region.

If buzzy bars are on the agenda, then flock to Maria’s restaurant and beach bar and head back to the resort after to hit the dancefloor at Geckos nightclub!

The Dona Filipa Hotel and the Ria Park hotel are high-end 5-star hotels, perfect for a luxurious and elegant stay in Vale do Lobo.

Again, this resort is located just 20 minutes from Faro International Airport. Lisbon, the Portuguese capital city, and the Spanish city of Seville are around two and a half hours' drive away.

Not only does the Algarve provide stunning beaches and world-class golf courses, there is also an endless amount of activities to participate in no matter where are along the Algarve. From Scuba diving to surfing with beautiful surroundings or paddle boarding down the calm waters of the south coast. Kite and windsurfing and also very popular if water sports are on the agenda!

Perhaps you would rather set sail on your own adventure in a private cruise taking in the breath-taking caves, coves and beaches with a glass of champagne in hand? Boat trips, sailing and dolphin watching are also readily available too.

Zoomarine, Aqualand, Aquashow and Slide and Splash are all very popular theme and water parks, perfect for a day of fun with the kids.

As mentioned before, Ria Formosa, one of the seven wonders of Portugal is an outstanding natural haven for thousands of species. A jeep or buggy safari are other options if you want to venture out and explore the history, culture and nature of the Algarve.


Ria Formosa

Uncover not only the charm but the plethora of culture in the Algarve from the Loule old town to São Lourenço Church and the Cape St. Vicent Lighthouse, to name just a few.

In the summer months, the Algarve is the capital of music and performing arts, featuring famous musicians from across the globe. The Algarve is for golf enthusiasts, families and anybody that loves some of the sun! The Algarve might possibly be the hidden jewel of the entire Iberian Peninsula and as we can see it has something for everyone.

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