Portimao is the largest town in the Western Algarve and is situated about one mile up the river Arade.
The town is famous for its restaurants serving fresh sardines caught locally. Nowadays the fishing boat harbour is on the far side of the river with a small craft harbour near the town and a yacht pontoon near the bridge. Most of the yachting activity is now based on the marina at the mouth of the river near the westerly breakwater protecting the harbour.
The main beach is the famous Praia de Rocha with golden sands and magnificent coloured rock pillars and rock formations. It is very busy in the tourist season but there are less busy coves and beaches all along the coast.
It is an excellent base for he tourist with the whole of Western Algarve within reach and the town of Albefura and beyond to the east. The former fishing village of Alvor is nearby, followed by the old sailing town of Lagos with the remains on Henry the Navigators fort at Sagres. Going east the resort of Vilamoura is worth a visit. Time must also be found to go into the mountain that shield the coast from the wind. Here you will still see the life as it was before the days of the aeroplane.
Night life is based on Praia de Rocha with many vibrant bars and discothèques. There is even a casino in a five star hotel.
Golf courses are all over the Algarve with the nearest to Portimao being the Penina courses, the course at Alvor and the Morgado do Regengo course.
A lunchtime visit should be made to the small fishing village of Ferraguda to have locally caught fish at the restaurant on the quay or in the village.