Algarve_Portugal event destination
07 May 2024

Uncovering the Unknown in Algarve - Portugal

Step into the world of the Algarve, where the Atlantic's whispers mingle with the fishermen's songs, and the sun paints the sky in amber and gold.  

Welcome to our journey through this coastal paradise, where the scent of orange blossoms dances on the breeze and the rhythm of life beats to the sway of cork trees.  
In this blog, we invite you to uncover the hidden treasures and vibrant spirit of the Algarve, a destination that beckons not just with its breathtaking landscapes but with a soulful tapestry woven from centuries of culture, tradition, and innovation.  

Whether seeking a corporate retreat that sparks creativity or a luxurious escape that pampers the senses, the Algarve promises a tapestry of unforgettable moments.  



1. Arriving in the Algarve 
    1.1 Time differences
    1.2 Climate and Temperatures in the Algarve 
    1.3 Traditions and Festivities in the Algarve 
2. Why Choose the Algarve for Your Next Incentive Travel 
    2.1 Accommodations 
    2.2 Activities and Venues 


1. Arriving in the Algarve

Algarve map

Nestled along the sun-kissed shores of southern Portugal, the Algarve exudes an irresistible charm that has beckoned travelers for centuries. Its prime location along the Atlantic coast, Mediterranean climate and breathtaking landscapes have cemented the Algarve's status as a sought-after destination for leisure and corporate events. 

Easily accessible by air, Faro Airport stands as the primary gateway to this enchanting region. Situated just a stone's throw away from the bustling city of Faro, the airport offers seamless connections to major European cities, ensuring a smooth and hassle-free journey for visitors from around the globe.   


1.1 Time differences

Before packing your bags, it is essential to note the time differences. The Algarve operates on Western European Time (WET), which is typically one hour ahead of Coordinated Universal Time (UTC+1). For those traveling from different time zones, adjusting your schedule accordingly ensures a smooth transition upon arrival.

1.2 Climate and Temperatures in the Algarve 

One of the most alluring aspects of the Algarve is its remarkable climate. With more than 300 days of sunshine annually, you can expect pleasant weather for your entire stay. Summers are warm and inviting, perfect for outdoor events and team-building activities, while winters remain mild, making the Algarve an attractive destination year-round. Average temperatures range from 15°C (59°F) in winter to 30°C (86°F) in summer, offering a comfortable environment for your attendees to indulge in all the region has to offer. 


1.3 Traditions and Festivities in Mallorca 

The Algarve is renowned not only for its stunning beaches and landscapes but also for its vibrant traditions and celebrations, which are deeply rooted in its rich history and cultural heritage. 

One of the most significant events in the Algarve's calendar is the Carnival, celebrated enthusiastically in various towns and cities across the region. Colorful parades featuring elaborate floats, dancers adorned in extravagant costumes, and lively music captivate spectators of all ages. Loulé, in particular, is renowned for its vibrant Carnival celebrations, attracting thousands of revelers each year. 

Religious festivals also hold a special place in the hearts of the Algarve's inhabitants. The Festa da Nossa Senhora do Pilar (Feast of Our Lady of the Pillar) in October is one such event, celebrated with religious processions, music, and traditional food stalls, particularly in towns with solid Catholic traditions like Tavira and Olhão. 

For those with a taste for tradition, the Algarve's fairs and markets offer a glimpse into the region's past and present. The annual Feira de São Martinho (St. Martin's Fair) in Portimão is a highlight, featuring an array of local crafts, regional delicacies, and entertainment for the whole family. 

Additionally, the Algarve boasts a rich culinary heritage and abundant food-related celebrations throughout the year. From the Festival do Marisco (Seafood Festival) in Olhão, where visitors can savor the freshest seafood delights, to the Feira de Enchidos Tradicionais (Traditional Sausage Fair) in Monchique, showcasing the region's best-cured meats, there is no shortage of gastronomic delights to indulge in. 


Algarve incentive travel destination

The Algarve, where incentive trips transform into unforgettable adventures amidst the tranquil embrace of nature's bounty!  
This fascinating region beckons with its charm, boasting a title as one of Europe's least densely populated areas. This distinction isn't just a statistic; it is the secret behind the region's pristine landscapes and vibrant ecosystems. 

Imagine wandering through landscapes where time seems to stand still, where cork oak trees whisper tales of centuries past and natural reserves unveil the untamed beauty of Mother Earth. In the Algarve, nature isn't just a backdrop; it is a living, breathing spectacle home to dolphins and majestic whales gracing the horizon with their presence. 

Furthermore, the Algarve is also a paradise for epicurean delights! Prepare your taste buds for a culinary journey like no other, where the tangy zest of piri piri chicken tantalizes your senses, and local traditions infuse every dish with soulful flavors. 

So, get ready to unlock the treasures of the Algarve, where every corner reveals a new wonder, and every day is an opportunity for discovery and delight. 


2.1 Accommodations

    1. Hotel W Algarve

Nestled along the stunning coastline of Portugal's Algarve region lies a luxurious gem known as the W Algarve Hotel, a haven of luxury and extravagance that beckons travelers from around the globe. But what truly sets this resort apart isn't just its breathtaking views or lavish amenities—it is the fascinating tales woven into its fabric. 

Owned by the prestigious company from Qatar that also holds the reins of Paris Saint-Germain football club, the W Algarve embodies a unique blend of international flair and local charm with its 134 guestrooms, 83 residences and 6 event rooms. This connection infuses the hotel with a cosmopolitan atmosphere, where guests can immerse themselves in the intersection of world-class hospitality and sporting excellence. 

As guests step through the grand entrance of the W Algarve, they are greeted by a stunning display that pays homage to the global presence of the W brand. Adorning the foyer's walls are 360 meticulously crafted porcelain plates by Vista Alegre, each representing a destination where a "W" hotel already stands proudly. 

After a full day of meetings, a fabulous spa awaits the hotel’s guests, a sanctuary unlike any other. Two entire floors are dedicated to wellness, where guests can indulge in various treatments inspired by traditional Portuguese therapies.  

And as day melts into night, the hotel's pool becomes a stage for a mesmerizing spectacle of light and sound. Every evening, as the sun dips below the horizon, guests are treated to a breathtaking show choreographed to the haunting melodies of Ana Moura's fado—a soul-stirring homage to Portugal's musical heritage. 
Amidst the culinary wonders of the W Algarve, one standout experience awaits at Market Kitchen, a culinary destination that celebrates the vibrant flavors and rich traditions of Portuguese cuisine with a contemporary twist. Led by a team of innovative chefs, Market Kitchen is more than just a restaurant—it is a culinary journey that takes guests on a voyage of discovery through the diverse landscapes and culinary heritage of the Algarve region.  
Here, locally sourced ingredients are transformed into culinary masterpieces that pay homage to the land and sea that surround this coastal paradise.


    2. Tivoli Marina Vilamoura Algarve Resort 

Hotel Tivoli Marina Algarve

Let's set the scene: Your guests are welcomed into a world of sophistication and relaxation, with the azure waters of the marina stretching out before them. 
This is the exquisite Tivoli Marina Vilamoura Algarve Resort, a resort that, thanks to its prime waterfront location and over 300 guestrooms, offers panoramic views, serving as a breathtaking backdrop for any occasion. 

As you navigate the resort's elegant corridors, you will find yourself drawn to the mesmerizing vistas that seem to follow you at every turn. Whether you are lounging poolside, savoring a gourmet meal, or retiring to your lavish accommodation, the allure of the marina is ever-present, casting a spell of serenity over your experience. 

When it comes to events, whether you are planning a corporate retreat, conference, or special celebration, the resort offers a variety of versatile event spaces to suit your needs. From elegant ballrooms with panoramic views, like the main conference hall, which can host up to 3,000 guests, to intimate outdoor settings overlooking the marina, each venue is equipped with state-of-the-art technology and personalized service to ensure your event is a resounding success. 

In terms of dining, the resort's culinary offerings are nothing short of extraordinary. From innovative gastronomic delights to traditional Portuguese flavors, every dish celebrates the region's rich culinary heritage. 

But the magic of the Tivoli Marina Vilamoura Algarve Resort extends beyond its walls. Venture out and explore the wonders of the Algarve... 


2.2 Activities and Venues

In the land where the blue ties the sky to the sea, where cork oak trees stand as silent sentinels of time, and where natural reserves abound with biodiversity and beauty, lies an Algarve waiting to be discovered.  
Renowned as one of the world's premier golf destinations (more than four dozen courses), the Algarve boasts championship courses that lure enthusiasts from every corner of the globe.  
But beyond the fairways and greens, a tapestry of experiences awaits, from clam-picking adventures on traditional wooden boats to Michelin-starred cooking classes led by master chefs. 


    a. Discover Authentic Algarve: Clam Picking in Ria Formosa Natural Park 

clam picking-Algarve

Indulge in an authentic Algarvian experience as you immerse yourself in the age-old tradition of clam picking. Embark on a voyage of discovery aboard a traditional wooden boat, setting sail into the pristine waters of the Ria Formosa Natural Park. This protected lagoon, teeming with a rich tapestry of flora and fauna, serves as the picturesque backdrop for your day of adventure. 

Guided by a seasoned local fisherman and his loyal Portuguese water dog, you will delve into the secrets of clam and razor clam picking, learning time-honored techniques passed down through generations. Feel the thrill of the hunt as you navigate the tranquil waters, your senses alive with anticipation. With each scoop and sift through the sandy seabed, uncover nature's hidden treasures, from plump clams to elusive razor clams, destined to grace your table with their salty goodness. 

But the adventure doesn't end there. Venture further into the heart of the lagoon to explore an oyster farm, where rows of wooden racks cradle these ocean jewels in their brackish embrace. Here, under the expert guidance of your host, indulge in the ultimate seaside indulgence – slurping up freshly harvested oysters! 

And as you raise a glass of crisp white wine with TERRAEVENTS to toast to the sea's bounty, you will know that you have genuinely savored the essence of the Algarve, one clam at a time. 


    b. Unveiling Algarve's Culinary Secrets: Michelin-Star Cooking Class

cooking class Portugal

Step beyond the ordinary and uncover the culinary wonders of the Algarve, where gastronomic delights await beyond the beaches and fairways. Embark on a journey into the heart of Portugal's gourmet food scene with a bespoke cooking class led by Executive Chef Osvalde Silva, a master of Michelin-starred cuisine. 

Indulge your senses as the Chef escorts you through the bustling aisles of a traditional Algarvian market, a vibrant tapestry of sights, sounds, and aromas. Here, amidst the bounty of the land and sea, you will hand-select the freshest ingredients for the pièce de résistance: Cataplana, a beloved seafood dish steeped in centuries of Algarvian tradition. 

But first, a moment of respite awaits as you partake in the timeless ritual of sipping espresso or bica at a quaint Pastelaria (pastry shop), indulging in a taste of Portugal's rich culinary heritage. Energized and inspired, it is time to roll up your sleeves and channel your inner Chef under Osvalde's expert guidance. 

With each chop, stir, and simmer, you will unlock the secrets of Algarvian cuisine, infusing your creation with passion and flavor.  

Ready to start cooking with TERRAEVENTS


    c. Discover the Legacy of Cork Production in the Algarve

cork production in Portugal

Immerse yourself in the rich heritage of cork production at the Eco-Fábrica de Cortiça Francisco Carrusca, a venerable institution in S.Brás de Alportel. With roots tracing back to the 19th century, the tradition in the cork industry ensures deep-seated expertise and commitment to quality that sets this factory apart in the market. 

Cork is more than just a material—it is a symbol of Portugal's rich natural heritage and economic vitality. With thousands hectares of cork forests blanketing the landscape, Portugal boasts a thriving cork industry that plays a pivotal role in local culture and global commerce. 

So, step into the factory and witness firsthand the meticulous process of preparing natural cork planks. From harvesting the bark of the cork oak trees to sorting and certification according to the highest international standards, every step is executed with precision and care.  

Furthermore, explore the innovative applications of this versatile material at the cork shop. Discover the latest trends in fashion accessories crafted from cork fabric, showcasing this natural resource's remarkable versatility and sustainability. 

For a deeper insight into the sustainability and significance of cork production, TERRAEVENTS had the privilege of interviewing Sofia Carrusca, one of the owners of this esteemed cork factory, shedding light on the eco-friendly practices and enduring legacy of this remarkable industry. 

Q: What inspired you to establish your eco-friendly cork production facility in São Brás de Alportel, Portugal, and how did you conceive the idea of integrating a tourism venture within the factory premises?
A: In 2023, we are celebrating a remarkable milestone: 11 years of offering industrial tourism experiences at the Francisco Carrusca Eco-Cork Factory. This endeavor is a collaboration between two distinct yet complementary entities: the longstanding Francisco Carrusca Cork Factory (Carruscork), in operation since 1980, and Picturesque Journey, a tourism entertainment company dedicated to promoting the region's industrial tourism potential. 

The genesis of our tourism venture traces back to my academic journey, where the idea took root as part of my final degree project. Subsequently, my tenure with the Rota da Cortiça association provided invaluable insights into local dynamics, fostering a deep appreciation for the Algarve mountains and the cork oak.  
Building on this foundation, in 2012, I founded Picturesque Journey, and by collaborating closely with the Cork Route Association, we developed tour itineraries that spanned the Algarve's municipalities, immersing participants in the region's diverse offerings. It was during this time that the idea of opening the cork factory to the public for guided tours began to take shape.   

By 2014, bolstered by our growing reputation and in response to increasing interest, the factory transformed into the Francisco Carrusca Eco-Cork Factory, a living museum in full operation. Our offerings expanded to include themed workshops, wine and liqueur tastings, and other initiatives, catering to a wide range of visitors eager to explore the intersection of tradition, innovation, and sustainability embodied by cork production. 


Q: Cork is renowned for its versatility, but many may not fully grasp its potential until they witness its transformation firsthand. During the factory tour, what are some eye-opening moments or surprising facts about cork that you often find resonate most with visitors? 
At the cork eco-factory, visitors are treated to a comprehensive tour lasting 1 hour and 15 minutes, encompassing not only the factory itself but also an engaging visit to an interpretation room featuring an enlightening film. Additionally, they have the opportunity to explore a small store showcasing various cork articles, effectively demonstrating the remarkable potential of this ecological material.  
Currently, the finishing touches are being put on the "Cork Oak and Cork Interpretive Center at the Cork Eco-Factory," which comprises four exhibition rooms equipped with informative panels, an audio-visual system, and audio guides.  
Our range of visit options extends beyond the factory tour, offering activities such as guided walks through the cork oak grove, wine and liqueur tastings, themed workshops for crafting bags, lamps, and cork jewellery, yoga sessions amidst the cork oak trees, and more. These activities serve to enrich and complement the cork tour experience, catering to diverse interests and preferences. Additionally, we have successfully organized numerous tailored initiatives for large companies and groups, accommodating up to 300 people or more. 


Q: How can you advocate for the preservation and appreciation of the cork oak, an emblem of São Brás de Alportel, Portugal, given your commitment to honoring local heritage and culture in Cork's rich historical context?
AOver the years, we have spearheaded numerous initiatives, such as collaborating with the Rota da Cortiça Association, the Transhumance and Nature Association, and the Trees of Portugal Association, to gather signatures. Together, we successfully campaigned for the cork oak to be designated as the "National Tree of Portugal," a milestone I'm particularly proud of. Additionally, we have conducted reforestation efforts in partnership with Ana Aeroportos and team-building companies, resulting in the planting of over 3,000 cork oaks in areas ravaged by wildfires. Our organization also actively collects and repurposes used cork stoppers, aiming to showcase their recyclable potential through educational workshops and sustainable practices.


    d. Solar do Paco: A Historic Manor Venue for Unforgettable Events 

Solar do Paco_event venue_Portugal

Nestled amidst the rolling hills and verdant landscapes of Algoz, Solar do Paco stands as a testament to centuries of history, its storied past woven into the very fabric of its walls.  

Built in the 14th century, this magnificent manor house has witnessed the rise and fall of empires, the passing of noble families, and the evolution of the Algarve region.  
Among its distinguished residents was the Marquis of Sarria, Fernando Ruiz de Castro, brother of the infamous Inês de Castro, whose tragic love story is woven into the very fabric of Portuguese history.  

As one of the five palaces that graced the landscape of Algoz since the 14th century, Solar do Paco stands as a proud testament to the enduring legacy of Portugal's aristocratic heritage. While the other palaces have faded into obscurity, Solar do Paco remains steadfast and resolute, a beacon of history preserved for future generations. Recent restoration and renovation efforts have breathed new life into this illustrious property, ensuring that its majestic splendor endures for centuries to come.  

Today, Solar do Paco stands as a living monument to the past, inviting visitors to embark on a journey through time and tradition. Whether hosting a corporate retreat of up to 150 people or an intimate soirée, the stately halls and salons of Solar do Paco provide a picturesque backdrop for every occasion, surrounded by enchanting gardens and captivating vistas that elevate any event into a truly unforgettable experience. 


So, as our journey through the Algarve comes to a close, we hope you have been captivated by the allure of this enchanting region and inspired to embark on your own adventure.  

If you are ready to turn dreams into reality and experience the magic of the Algarve firsthand, we invite you to entrust your journey to the expert hands of TERRAEVENTS Portugal, trusted members of the Algarve Convention Bureau. With their deep-rooted knowledge of the region and passion for creating bespoke experiences, the TERRAEVENTS team stands ready to craft an event that exceeds your wildest expectations.  

Whether you are envisioning a corporate retreat that fosters innovation and teamwork or a luxurious escape filled with pampering and indulgence, let TERRAEVENTS Portugal be your guide.  

So, get in touch with us today! 

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