Portugal – Come to Sunbathe, Stay to Explore!
There are plenty of wonderful countries in Europe which are ideal for summer vacations, especially those in the southern half of the continent which offer a wonderful climate from May to September every year. And while many people have sampled the delights of Greece, Italy, France, and Spain in recent decades, this could be the ideal time to explore Portugal.
This beautiful nation has all the ingredients you would expect for the perfect holiday; friendly people, plenty of culture, exotic cities, idyllic villages, stunning beaches and, of course, blue skies and a hot sun. But the mere fact that it offers so much to visitors perhaps makes it a country that needs to be explored as well as savoured.
And because of the sheer diversity of interesting places which are worthy of a visit, the sensible tourist will be sure to hire a car at some point during the vacation. While most of us like nothing more than to lie back on a sandy beach and soak up the sun, there will come a time when a little boredom sets in and a desire to see more of the local area will take over.
So much to see and do
Thankfully, Portugal isn’t one of those countries which offer little else apart from an expanse of sand and a scattering of restaurants and hotels. If you want to know more about the culture of this richly historic nation, all you have to do is get behind the wheel of a car and set off for a day of discovery.
The most popular holiday region in Portugal is the Algarve, a beautiful area that hugs the southern coastline, and which is home to some of the most impressive historic homes, castles, churches and cathedrals to be found anywhere in Europe. If you happen to be something of a culture vulture, this is undoubtedly the destination for you.
Throughout this part of the country you’ll also find some of the best golf courses in the world. The Algarve has become something of a paradise for golfers, and several of the venues have played host to some exceptionally high profile tournaments. If you like the idea of following in the footsteps of Ian Poulter and Tiger Woods, make sure you bring your clubs with you.
In some countries, driving a hire car can be a little intimidating, mainly because the roads can get rather busy and the local drivers seem to be in a permanent hurry, but that’s not the case in Portugal. The pace of life is pleasantly slow, so very few motorists ever appear to be in any great rush. Portuguese people are friendly by nature, and they are happy to show a little patience to other road users.