Portimão is a residential city in the western Algarve. It sits on the banks of the Arade River. Traditionally, it was a centre for shipbuilding and sardine fishing. However, nowadays, tourism, leisure, and retail are the primary industries in the area. Most tourists visit Portimão either for sailing or shopping.
The city’s once-bustling fishing docks are now a scenic promenade. Quaint tree-lined plazas feature in the old town. There are a series of historic buildings and pleasant pedestrian streets, together with a varied selection of cafes, bars, and restaurants. The local speciality is, of course, freshly cooked seafood.
The low-key and relaxed ambience
The city has a low-key and relaxed ambience making it very different from the surrounding famous Portuguese beach towns. For example, Praia da Rocha is three kilometres south of Portimão. By comparison, Praia da Rocha is a modern, purpose-built town packed full of bars and hotels situated along a stunning beach. Foreign tourists flock to the area during the summer months. Portimão, however, is more residential and the majority of the residents are Portuguese working families. The town’s restaurants, cafes and shops are aimed towards the local clientele.
A visit to Portimão can easily combine with a visit to Ferragudo, on the opposite side of the Arada River. Ferragudo is a traditional Portuguese fishing village. The surrounding coastline offers stunning beaches. During the summer there is a ferry service across the river, connecting the two towns.
The Marina Portimão is the last safe-haven on the way to the Med. It boasts the leading position in Portugal as the preferential Super-Yacht marina.
Located in the Arade River estuary, over 25-hectares of dedicated marina space is overlooked by the ancient forts of Santa Catarina and São João. The water in Portomão is deep and protected from the prevailing winds. Therefore, almost any boat can enter or leave at any time of the tide. The marina entrance is wide, so there is plenty of room for manoeuvring.
In the port, there is a luxury condominium including its own exclusive Beach and a spectacular Oceanic Swimming-pool which faces the sea. Marina facilities include 24-hour security and car-parking.
International sailing teams
Several professional international sailing teams use Marina Portimão as their base, and it has been the stage for international events. The boatyard offers a vast range of services including the capacity to lift boats of a maximum of 300 tons!