Easter in the Algarve
15 December 2016
Admire Natural Beauty, Play Outstanding Golf & Sample Local Dishes During a Four-Star Stay at Formosa Park Apartment Hotel this April
With Christmas wrapped up and wintery showers ahead, now is the perfect time to be planning a much needed sun-soaked Easter break. With highs of 20˚C and nine hours of glorious sunshine per day, the Algarve will be the perfect destination to relax, recharge and enjoy quality time together as a family this April. Alongside spacious four-star suite apartments and family-friendly facilities such as an outdoor children’s pool and babysitting service, Formosa can offer easy access to a whole host of local attractions and activities that will keep all ages entertained this Easter. Read on to find out more and start planning your dream spring getaway today.
Explore Ria Formosa Nature Park
Whether you’re searching for a peaceful stroll, fancy an energetic bike ride or simply wish to discover more about local flora and fauna, the Ria Formosa Nature Park will offer an ideal day out this spring. Described as one of the ‘Seven Natural Wonders of Portugal’ and protected by the RAMSAR Convention, it offers over 45,000 acres of unspoilt natural beauty to explore… just 750 metres from our hotel.
The Blue Flag Ancão Beach marks the start of the park, however there’s much more to explore than this stunning stretch of sand dunes and crystal clear Atlantic water. The park’s islands, marshlands, coastal lagoons and peninsulas are home to many fascinating species of wildlife, from Chameleons and European Pond Terrapins, to one of the world’s largest populations of Seahorses! Another popular inhabitant is the Portuguese Water Dog, which boast webbed feet and were originally bred to assist local fishermen.
However, it’s the thousands of birds that migrate here and call it home that make it such an unmissable attraction. Over 20,000 birds are expected during the winter months… and in springtime some of these will remain to nest. Take the opportunity to spot a Greater Flamingo, a soaring Osprey or even the rare Purple Swamphen; which has been adopted as the park’s symbol. Keen bird lovers can also find out more about local species and pedestrian trails at the Marim Environmental Education Centre.
History fans can look forward to exploring the Roman ruins of Milreu, while adventurers may prefer to opt for boating or kayaking. Stretching 60km along the Algarvian coastline, this stunning park offers a wide variety of attractions suited to all ages and interests. However, nothing will quite beat breathing in the scent of blossoming flowers, including the beautiful Bee Orchids, while wandering between olive, cork oak and carob trees this spring.
An Exceptional Start to the Golfing Season
Though a hotly debated subject, many clubs and players claim April the 1st or the beginning of The Masters as the start of the golfing season… and with warm temperatures and lush greens, the Algarve is the ideal destination for any golfer wishing to tee off their season in style this Easter. The region boasts many beautiful and challenging courses, however our guests can benefit from exclusive access to two of its most celebrated – Pinheiros Altos and San Lorenzo.
Located less than a 15 minute courtesy shuttle bus ride from our hotel, San Lorenzo is ranked within the world’s top courses and is regularly listed within the best courses in Europe by leading publications and industry leaders. As part of the Ria Formosa Nature Reserve, its 18 holes offer players views over the Atlantic, lagoons and lakes, while fairways are lined with towering pine trees. Laid out in a figure of eight, its design by Joseph Lee and Rocky Roquemore is perfect for those seeking to push their golfing goals to the limit; especially on the breath-taking 18th that’s been described as ‘…one of the finest finishes in golf that you will ever experience…’.
Meanwhile, just 10 minutes away, Pinheiros Altos Golf Resort boasts a 27-hole championship course and one of the most respected golf academies in southern Europe. With state-of-the-art equipment, including Flightscope technology, a new Titleist fitting centre and two AA British PGA Professionals, this is a key destination for those seeking to get that extra edge on the course. While its three sets of nine holes each boast a unique character… from the longest and possibly more difficult Corks Course, to the Olives that’s home to the signature hole, situated on a palm-tree covered island.
If you’re a golf fan, there is no finer way to start the season than teeing off in the sun-soaked Algarve this Easter. If you’re planning a golfing getaway, we have two exclusive packages that include four-star accommodation, daily buffet breakfast, fine-dining… and rounds on our courses. Our seven night ‘Eagle’ package includes four rounds on the stunning Pinheiros Altos and one on the award-winning San Lorenzo from 101€ per night, while our three night ‘Birdie’ offer includes two rounds per person at Pinheiros Altos from just 97€ per night.
Portuguese Easter Traditions
After long days spent exploring the local landscape and enjoying some of the world’s most challenging golf, you may be in need of some sustenance. While our onsite restaurant will offer a variety of delicious local and international dishes, those seeking more traditional Easter fare may wish to head into the local town of Loulé. Alongside the obligatory chocolate eggs, other popular dishes will include codfish on Good Friday and Holy Saturday, alongside mouth-watering roast lamb on Easter Sunday.
Another Easter offering will be Folar, a bread that features a boiled egg in the centre. Though it’s served savoury with meats in some areas of the country, the Algarvians enjoy it sweet and flavoured with the likes of melted sugar, cinnamon, caramel and aniseed. While those in search of more traditional celebrations can join the thousands who gather for the Festa da Mãe Soberana (Feast of the Sovereign Mother). In honour of the patron saint of Loulé, a Festa Pequena (small feast) will be held on Easter Sunday, while those in town a fortnight later can look forward to the Festa Grande, processions and fireworks.
Whether you’re hoping for a relaxing Easter break spent soaking up the sun, the chance to learn more about local culture and natural beauty, or the opportunity to enjoy a sensational start to the golfing season… the Algarve will be the ideal destination for the whole family next April. Check out our latest offers here and start planning your perfect Easter escape today.
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