5 August 2014
The south coast of Portugal is renowned for its natural beauty. With golden beaches, turquoise blue waters, and hidden caves nestled among the imposing cliffs, the coastline is the Algarve's most popular natural attraction. However, move very so slightly further inland and you'll come across a whole new aspect to the Algarve region. In fact, to maintain the plant life and wildlife in these areas, Portugal has numerous nature reserves and nature parks. One of these, the Ria Formosa Nature Park, is only a stone's throw away from Formosa Park Apartment Hotel.
The Ria Formosa Nature Park is primarily a series of large lagoons, but the park as a whole covers over 170km² of land. The area's mild climate, with mild winters and warm (but not overly hot) summers, make the area a perfect spot for many different kinds of wildlife. During the spring and autumn migratory periods, hundreds of different species of birds will rest within the park, from the azure-winged magpie to the black-shouldered kite. There are also many reptiles to be seen in the park, including chameleons, Spanish terrapins and even the distinctive fire salamander.
There's also plenty of other activities to enjoy in the nature park in addition to watching the diverse array of wildlife. With many trails found across the park, you can simply enjoy a relaxing walk, which is best enjoyed during the morning or early evening, avoiding the heat of the midday sun. Bicycles are also allowed on the trails. If you're feeling more adventurous, you can even hire a kayak and make your way around the many lagoons of the park, which provide a better view of much of the wildlife.
Stretching out over 60km of unspoilt coastline, the Ria Formosa Nature Park is an amazing sight to behold and an excellent place to escape from the typical beach holiday. At only €2.50 to enter, the park is very good value for the wealth of beauty contained within. The western edge is barely 200m from Formosa Park Apartment Hotel, and the main entrance, where you'll be able to get maps of the park, is roughly 30 minutes away by car.