6 Great places to go from Tavira
with a car

Tavira is a great city to stay in and explore. There are so many different aspects to it. However, if you have transport either a car or motorbike there are some great places to visit both within the Concelho of Tavira and a few kilometres outside.

The countryside is magnificent and the coastline amazing. Get yourself a map and start exploring. We have made a few suggestions below. We hope you enjoy your travels.


Cachopo is the most northerly of the Tavira Parishes and one of
the largest.

This beautiful village is situated in the Serra do Caldeirão mountains, the range of mountains that separates the Algarve region from the rest of Portugal.

Cachopo Church
View towards Olhão from Mesa de Cum

The Cachopo museum located in the town celebrates the history and
traditions of the area and is well worth a visit. It can be found on Rua Matos Casaca.
Opening times :09.30 to 13.00 / 14.30 to 18.00
Tel. (+351) 289 844 191

In addition to the wonderful local crafts, local products such as wool, honey and cheese are produced on the local farms.


To say that Barril Beach is one of the best in Portugal is not an over exaggeration.

This beach was the first beach we visited when we came to the Tavira area and the one closest to the Pedras d'el Rei resort.

What a delight. Some people like to just get out of their bed and walk down to the beach.

Barril beach doesn't fit this ideal. You can either walk or take the train. Yes a train to the beach! How wonderful. This beach is really an adventure.

Whatever way you choose, when you get to the beach it exudes relaxation.

This is a wonderful family beach. Space for the children to explore and enjoy the safe swimming on the Blue Flag beach. Cafes and bars to eat at and enjoy some of the delights of the Algarvian menus.

Even in the height of the season nothing seems too crowded, there is space for everyone.


Cacela Velha is a village located in the civil parish of Vila Nova de Cacela, municipality of Vila Real de Santo António, Algarve, Portugal. Cacela Velha is situated on top of a hill with a view to the easternmost lagoon of the Ria Formosa. It is about 10 km from Tavira, a short drive down the EN125.

This is a beautiful village and well worth spending some time browsing around the narrow streets. Historically Cacela dates back to Islamic Portugal and the 10th century. Nowadays it is a fishing village that is developing a growing reliance on tourism. It remains unspoilt and the beach forms part of the Ria Formosa. There are some excellent restaurants to sample some of the local products of the sea.


Yes Spain. Tavira is just over half an hour from the Spanish border by car and it is well worth spending a little time over the border and seeing how our Iberian neighbour lives. There are a number of options when looking at getting there.

The most simple is to take the car on the A22 motorway and after crossing the magnificent Guadiana bridge. take the first exit off signposted Ayemonte and follow the road into the town. Park as close as you can to the marina and wonder through the streets. There are some pleasant cafes and restaurants so try them out.

Guadiana River and bridge spanning the border

An alternative to this way of getting there ( and our favourite) is to take your car to Vila Real de Santo António. Find your way to Avenue de Republica which runs parallel to the river. Park up here and take a ferry trip across the Guadiana. River. From the ferry terminal on the Spanish side it is but a few minutes walk into the town


Take the N270 out of Tavira heading towards the A22 motorway. At the final roundabout take the turn to Santa Catarina and São Bras. Drive for about a further 22km along a windy road and beautiful countryside and you will arrive in São Bras de Alportal.

View Larger Map

São Bras de Alportal´s recorded history dates back to 11th century when Portugal was occupied by the Moors. Nowadays it is a great example of what the interior of the Algarve has to offer. It is a town based on agriculture and becoming more reliant on tourism. But there is more to it than that.There is a vibrant ex-pat community who with the local Portuguese have produced something special. Take a drive around the old town where there are many beautiful and majestic buildings. The Museum of Sao Bras de Alportel is well worth a visit and is the cultural hub of the town with many activities arranged by and through it. See the link here


Vila Real is a city, civil parish, and municipality in the Algarve. Both the city and the municipality are the south easternmost of Portugal next to the Ria Guadiana and Spanish border. Vila Real de Santo António was founded after the 1755 Lisbon earthquake, and largely expanded in 1774 using the same architectural and construction techniques employed in the reconstruction of Lisbon after the disaster.

The front adjoining the Ria Gaudiana is a wide spacious linear delight. A wonderful walkway runs alongside the main road with the river on one side with glorious views across to Ayemonte and Spain and shops, cafés and restaurants on the other. There is an excellent marina and a regular ferry service to Spain runs throughout the year from a terminal next to this

Have a wander around the city. It is spacious and flat and easy to get around. The main square has many cafés and restaurants to enjoy the great local cuisine.

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