10 Things to do in ALvor
Go vintage toy shopping! Tucked down one of Alvor’s quiet backstreets is the O Miminho – Children’s Paradise Toy store. Selling new and pre-loved toys and clothes, the shop is a treasure trove for retro lovers. Opening hours can be a bit erratic, but even if it’s closed, it’s worth a stroll past just to check out the collection of vintage Barbie, Action Man and My Little Pony in the window.
Explore the Seashore
Look for crabs and other shore creatures on Alvor’s boardwalk trail. The 2km boardwalk starts near the fisherman’s huts and meanders through the marshy wetlands and dunes. It’s a nice, flat walk that’s family-friendly and suitable for prams and pushchairs and there are several paths off the main trail that will take you onto the beach.
Alvor Mini Golf
Get crazy at the mini golf. There are two mini golf attractions in Alvor – both are great for kids. Tee your way through a tropical jungle or check out some cool dinosaur eggs. You can even get grab some lunch or a cocktail while you’re there.
Watch the local fishermen at work at the huts on the riverfront. Depending on the time of day, you might see them mending their nets, gutting the catch of the day ready to sell to restaurants, or cooking up a tasty seafood stew for lunch. A wonderful, authentic, experience for children but please be mindful that this is a work site, not a tourist attraction. Alternatively, at the other end of the promenade there’s an interactive exhibition on the fishing tradition in Alvor near the enormous Pescador statue.
Encourage the kids to eat more adventurously in some of town’s fantastic seafood restaurants. Try a plate of cockles, mussels or clams, fresh from the Alvor estuary, savour the sweetness of grilled octopus, or share a traditional seafood cataplana (stew cooked in a copper pot). If the thought of these dishes leaves the kids squirming, there are plenty of more ‘familiar’ childrens’ menus as an alternative.
Alvor Tourist Train
Ride the tourist ‘train’. If you, or the family, are too hot or too tired to walk very far, the Alvor tourist train is a fun and easy way to see the main sights in town. Hop on at the stop near the fishermen’s huts. Note that the ‘train’ usually only operates in the Summer season.
Playa tres Irmaos
Play at being pirates and explore the hidden caves and coves along the white sand beach at Praia dos Três Irmãos. Be sure to go at low tide though! Make a day of it and pack a picnic or get a ‘Beach Box’ from one of the delicious sandwich shops in town. Alternatively, there are a couple of informal, child-friendly restaurants, right on the beach.
Alvor fun and games
Looking for something to keep the children active and occupied in the evening? During the Summer, there are trampolines, bumper cars, and other family-friendly activities on the main square of the promenade. If it’s out of season, and a bit cold outside, Alvor Bowling alley, near Praia do Tres Irmaos, should keep them entertained for a couple of hours.
Alvor sweet delights
Satisfy the kids’ (and/or your own) sweet tooth at one of Alvor’s many ice cream parlours. Grab a tub of tasty homemade gelato or, if it’s a chillier day, a delicious chocolatey waffle or crepe.
Go flamingo spotting on the Estação da Biodiversidade de Alvor walk. The route takes you along the top of the riverbank with fantastic views across the estuary and the chance to spot the resident flamingo population (especially in Spring and Autumn). There are also information boards along the route highlighting other wildlife for the kids to look out for. Note there are a few slopes on this trail.