Cape Town, South Africa
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Algarve car rental is useful at Portugal's most popular holiday destination with so much to explore. There are glorious clean beaches stretching for 200 km along the southern Portugal coast, the cool, un-polluted water, and the fact that it is relatively cheap, very safe and overall welcoming. English is spoken at most resorts.
Should you decide to rent a car to explore it all, you will find it a very worthwhile experience. The Airports serving the Algarve are Faro Airport and Porto Airport, but Faro is best for tourist arrivals from which it is advised you collect Algarve car rental reservations.
The Algarve is rich in culture and diversity. If you are looking for fast paced resorts or a calm tranquil setting either is attainable. The entire region is approx.5400sq km and is graced with over 100 different beaches.
If you are into nature the choices are many from the Ria Formosa to Monchique mountain, from Caldeirão mountains to Sagres cape, in fact there are over 30 hiking trails (as per official Turismo de Portugal guide books).There are over 30 courses dotted throughout the region.
Although the permanent resident population is under 500,000 people, the area receives more than ten fold that amount of visitors in tourism each year. The busiest times of year tend to be July/August. It is imperative that you make your Algarve Hotel booking and Algarve Car Hire in advance to avoid disappointment.
What to See and Do in The Algarve
Lagos - The old inner city inside the remnants of a protective wall. You'll find winding streets barely wide enough for small cars, quaint shops and wonderful restaurants.
Silves - The red stone castle. The road there is narrow and winds through some rural areas, but it is definitely worth a half day trip if you like castles.
Monchique mountains - a beautiful area covered by eucalyptus forests with wonderful fresh smell, small waterfalls in winter. You will find great hiking trails and unexplored quiet fields.
The view from the Foia peak is absolutely amazing, you can see both south and west coasts and even see the swell! Maritime adventure and sports such as wind surfing, kite and board surfing and boating are popular.
A car is often the best way of seeing the Algarve, owing to the limited public transport services. Algarve Car Rental can be hired at Faro Airport and in other towns and cities in the Algarve. Most car rental companies stipulate a minimum age of 21.
Prices start from about €30 a day for a small car during the summer but can be as low as €5 a day outside the holiday season. There is often a wide range of cars to choose from.
The Algarve has a good network of roads, but be aware that some country roads are little more than dirt tracks. Roads are generally well maintained, however, road markings may randomly disappear (in this case stick to the right as far as possible - a favourite Portuguese habit is to overtake, still they are mindful.
After many years, the A22 (IP 1) motorway was finally completed in 2007, which goes from Bensafrim in the west all the way to Monte Francisco on the Portuguese/Spanish border. The Algarve, like the rest of Portugal and mainland Europe, drives on the right.
Petrol stations are found all over the Algarve. All stations will sell standard unleaded (95 RON) and super (97 RON) and diesel. Some stations sell LPG (GPL) as well. Unleaded petrol is known as gasolina sem chumbo and diesel gasoleo. Petrol prices in Portugal are high in comparison to other European countries.
Driving Information when you Rent a Car in The Algarve.