travel adventures: algarve coast, portugal

After we visited Morocco, we flew to Lisbon, Portugal and picked up our rental car. We drove immediately from the airport to the Algarve Coast of Portugal. For this part of our trip, we planned to stay in two different areas along the coast, about an hour apart from each other. The Algarve coast was truly so magical and reminded me SO much of Northern California. So many times, E and I would just say – isn’t this just like Big Sur or Mendocino? When we travel, we typically stay in airbnbs, but for this trip, we decided to stay at resorts. We thought that would be a nice change of pace for us, especially before our next step (Lisbon) and both places were super family friendly.

Our first visit was to Pine Cliffs, a resort in Marriott’s luxury collection. We were able to use points from all of E’s work trips to stay here! 👏🏽It was too cold to get in the ocean, but we spent our days enjoying all-you-can-eat breakfasts, strolling around the property, playing at the EPIC kids playground area, wandering along the beach, taking Lucy & mama baths in our gigantic bathtub 🛀🏻,  and just lounging on the property. The resort had several restaurants, pools, and just things to do – it was great. We are usually the gogogogo type while traveling, so this was a really nice, forced relaxation for us. There was literally nothing to do outside of the resort property, so we just enjoyed the peaceful atmosphere and family time!

After a few days, we drove an hour away to the small town of Sagres, Portugal. I had heard good things about a small chain of Portuguese family-friend resort chain called Martinhal, and we decided to go for it! We stayed at Martinhal Sagres next. Guys – let me tell you. This place was incredible! Of course, if you don’t have kids, it wouldn’t be all that great, but if you do – it was a dream come true. The property is right along the gorgeous Algarve coastline and has its own private beach, several indoor and outdoor swimming pools, and basically ANYTHING you could need for a kid. Every restaurant onsite has a super long kids menu and several high chair/booster seat options. There were so many activities and playgrounds (in-ground trampolines! play houses! slides! swings! etc.) for kids, which made it SO easy for us. The coolest part was that at all of the restaurants, there’s a supervised kids play space meaning adults can eat in peace while kids are being watched by resort staff. Lucy would walk back and forth between our table and the play space and it was just super nice. It was also just nice to be in this hip environment and feel like an actual adult, without feeling judged for a wiggly toddler at dinner. 😅Martinhal also has other properties throughout Portugal.

The town of Sagres was small but super cute. The area is known for surfing, so we really wanted to make sure E could surf! He used to go all the time in SF but obviously doesn’t get to go anymore now that we’re in landlocked Nashville. One morning, we got breakfast at a cute cafe in town and then rented a surfboard and wetsuit so E could surf. Lucy and I hung out at the beach and explored and it was really fun to watch Eric do something he loved again! We also visited the town of Lagos on our way back towards Lisbon which was a little bigger. I  definitely would recommend visiting that town if you’re in the area!

Thanks for reading! Next up – I’ll be sharing details from our time in Lisbon!


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