The Algarve region in southern Portugal reportedly sees at least 300 days of sunshine a year, meaning there’s a very strong chance that it will deliver a summery, sun-drenched backdrop for your family vacation. These resorts take fun in the sun to the next level, with kids’ pools, water parks, and playgrounds. We also included hotels with things like kids’ clubs, kids’ menus, and apartment-style rooms that are suitable families. Check out all of our picks for the top kid-friendly hotels in the beloved Portuguese tourist destination of Algarve.
While plenty of kid-friendly village-style resorts can sacrifice style or substance, the luxurious Martinhal Beach Resort & Hotel is designed to appeal to both parents and kids -- of any age. In fact, this large resort's superb family-friendly features can be a godsend, especially to larger families traveling with multiple-aged kids or those with babies and toddlers. You can expect to find all of the usual kid-friendly amenities, like kids' and teen clubs and kid-friendly menus -- but the resort really stands out with its kid-only dining areas, spa treatments (even for babies), stepping stools, toilet toppers, stair gates, and activities. Plus, all areas of the resort are kid-friendly, including bars, restaurants, and pools. There are even dedicated pools for babies and toddlers, a teen-approved pool, and a sports academy and excursions just for kids. The sprawling beachfront property has spectacular sea and countryside views plus sports facilities and a bustling central square with shops, restaurants, and bars.
This large and luxe clifftop property is favored among seniors and families for its slew of dining and recreation options. The largest natural reef in Portugal rests right off the hotel's coastline, making it an ideal spot for divers and snorkelers. The resort can also organize cave trips, fishing trips, rented yachts, and water sports such as kayaking or canoeing. However, guests must take the hotel's free shuttle boat service to the nearby beach of Armacao de Pera to take advantage of the seasonal water sports. On-site, activities like mini-golf, pitch and putt, bocce, ping pong, soccer, and volleyball are all free. Several of the room types are large enough to sleep a small family, but the Ocean Family Suites are specifically designed with families in mind. These spacious two-bedroom suites each have a main bedroom with king-size bed and a second room with twin beds. There are three different kids' clubs with specifically designed programs for kids ages 6 months to 3 years old, 4 to 11 years old, and 12 to 18 years old. Participation is free, but excursions, art materials, and food and drink cost extra. Kids also get a free kids' check-in kit on arrival and have their own dedicated menus in some restaurants. Cots, cribs, high chairs, changing pads, and bottle warmers are available on request.
This stylish seaside hotel ideal for couples and families who want to relax in nature. This 131-room luxury resort is outfitted in a modern Mediterranean style and features one of Europe's top thalassotherapy spas, as well as six freshwater and saltwater pools (including a heated pool and kids' pool), two restaurants and bars, and private beach access. Spacious rooms come with minibars, Nespresso machines, and sleek bathrooms, plus breakfast is included. Kid-friendly features include a Koala Kids Club for ages three to 11. Activities and games are planned in both indoor and outdoor spaces. Babysitting services are available, as well as kid-specific tennis courses, for an extra fee.
The 176-room Hilton Vilamoura As Cascatas Golf Resort & Spa is a family-friendly upscale hotel on beautiful grounds that include an 18-hole golf course. The hotel has a bright, contemporary style with a touch more personality than many Hiltons. Most of the spacious rooms feature details like artsy hand-painted traditional tile art, and all come with private balconies and marble bathrooms. Some have full kitchens and washing machines. Features are numerous and include six pools, three restaurants and bars, free shuttles, and dedicated off-site beach space -- most of which are seasonal. Kids' facilities include Paradise Island Kids Club, a small kids' pool, and a shipwreck playground. The hotel runs the 18-hole Pinhal Golf Course, across the road, which has waterholes and bunkers dotting the hilly course. Accompanied minors get in free.
Opened in 2013, the Vidamar Resort Algarve is a 250-room upscale resort featuring fresh minimalist design. The resort sits between picturesque Salgados Beach and an 18-hole golf course, about 20 minutes from Albufeira by road. It's peaceful and secluded, though there's little within walking distance. Rooms are spacious and smart, with air-conditioning, minibars, coffeemakers, flat-screen TVs, and free Wi-Fi -- many offer sea views from balconies or terraces. There are three saltwater pools, plus another inside a stylish health center. Four restaurants serve everything from Asian to Italian and seafood, and half-board plans are mandatory. Family-friendly amenities include a kids' club, kids' menus, and entertainment.
Vale d'Oliveiras Quinta Resort & Spa is an upscale resort set on well-manicured grounds with a backdrop of hills and two popular golf courses. Its 104 contemporary rooms have a red-and-white color scheme and include spacious townhouses with fully equipped kitchens. The restaurant serves delicious meals made with ingredients from the hotel's organic garden (which hosts regular tours, as well as activities such as educational visits for children). Other features include a health club with a heated indoor pool, small gym, and free group fitness classes. There are two outdoor pools with sunbathing areas, plus a kids' pool. Kids can also expend energy with toys, crafts, and games over at the free kids' club. This space features a large, fenced-in playground area, as well as an indoor activity center. The property is a favorite among both families and couples, though it's fairly expensive for not being on the water.
Located right on Vilamoura Beach and a short walk from the marina, the 323-room Crowne Plaza is one of the most luxurious hotels in the area. Stylish rooms have elegant beach decor in neutral tones and with wicker accents, and feature free Wi-Fi, upscale bathrooms, and furnished balconies with great views. The grounds are sprawling and beautiful, with a large lagoon-style pool, big lawns dotted with loungers, and several restaurants and bars with outdoor seating. The spa is a highlight here, with an indoor pool, a great treatments menu, and a gym -- but there are fees for fitness classes and for access to the pool (common in Algarve). A kids’ club, a kiddy pool with water features, and a large ship-shaped playground keep children busy.
Fresh and modern isn't always the way to describe aparthotels in the Algarve, but the Belmar Spa & Beach Resort deserves both of those adjectives. The 189 contemporary apartments range from studios to three-bedroom units, all with full kitchens and balconies. This four-pearl option is perched on a hill above Praia de Porto de Mos, which is just a five-minute walk away. There's a good amount to like on-site as well, including multiple pools, high-season dancing and live music (plus kids' activities), a stylish spa, extensive fitness facilities that include soccer pitches, and an overall quiet atmosphere.
The Oura-View Beach Club is billed as a five-star property, but in reality it's an upper-middle-range resort complex overlooking the sea, with direct access to the popular Praia da Oura beach and a location a short walk from the strip. The 177 apartment-style rooms all feature well-equipped kitchenettes, dining and living areas, and terraces, though they're in need of renovation and housekeeping isn't every day. The outdoor pool is lovely, with ocean views, waterslides, and a splash pool. Fees for in-room Wi-Fi and access to spa facilities leave guests feeling nickel-and-dimed, however, especially those on all-inclusive rates. The hotel is very family-friendly, with a popular kids' club, but noisy partiers can sometimes be an issue.
With 306 rooms, the Vila Gale Lagos has sleek interiors and a beach-adjacent setting, though this four-pearl hotel will require a 10-minute drive to reach Lagos' charming old town. There's definitely a buzz to the vibe here, and while its posh spa, clubby lounge, and high-end dining are all geared toward adults, there's plenty for kids as well. The real showpiece, though, is the design-conscious pool that has over 400 sunbeds, so there are never fights for space. The hotel puts on a long list of activities that are free for guests, and cater to both adults and kids. Features for the latter include a club house and playground with a zip line (though no supervision is offered). There are also numerous sports courts, ranging from volleyball to tennis. Rooms are attractively modern, if simple, and all include balconies, air-conditioning, and mini-fridges. The best have views of the ocean.
Though Monte Santo Resort has all the atmosphere and amenities of a romantic three-and-a-half-pearl property, it's also great for families. It's a short walk from town, and those not wanting to return uphill can take advantage of the hotel's free shuttle. The 133 suites and townhouses all have full kitchens and private balconies, some with sea views, though the style isn't entirely fresh. Features include a sprawling array of six outdoor pools and a full spa with a Turkish bath. For younger children, the hotel has an outdoor playground with swings, next to a kids' club in a little wooden house, complete with it's own fenced-in yard. For dining, Monte dos Comensais serves international and Portuguese cuisine (with a kids' menu) and has an outdoor terrace.
The mid-range Vila Gale Cerro Alagoa is a 310-room resort midway between Albufeira's lively "strip" and its picturesque old town. It's a 10-minute walk to two lovely beaches, but the hotel also overlooks a busy main road, and some rooms pick up traffic noise. Outdoor pools -- including one with a bar -- as well as one indoor pool mean there's always a place to swim, though poolside loungers can be hard to come by in peak season. Child-friendly facilities include a kids' club, a splash pool, and an indoor and outdoor playground.
The 144-room Real Marina Hotel & Spa is a quiet three-and-a-half-pearl property across the street from the marina in the fishing village of Olhao. Plenty of restaurants and bars are within walking distance, as is the train station. Rooms are spacious and modern, and all have furnished balconies with views of the marina or village. Dining is offered in two restaurants and a bar, and half-board rates are available. The outdoor pool and terrace overlooking the marina is a popular spot for hanging out, and the kids have their own pool and a kids' club with games and toys. There are also a a fitness center, indoor pool, and spa.
The 198-room Eden Resort is a three-and-a-half-pearl apartment-hotel that's a 10-minute drive outside Albufeira and the beach. The resort consists of spacious and simple apartments, townhouses, and villas with fully equipped kitchens and furnished outdoor spaces, some with private pools. The buffet restaurant serves all meals and all-inclusive rates are available, but reviews are mixed. Light fare also is available at three bars, and there is an on-site mini-market. Two of the three outdoor pools are for families, and kids also have an outdoor playground with slides, swings, and climbing structures. There's also an indoor kids' club with games, puzzles, and toys.
The Alfagar II Aparthotel is an upper-middle-range hotel located in the peaceful resort village of Balaia just east of Albufeira. While there's not much in the immediate area, the complex is self-contained and has a beach within walking distance. With all-apartment accommodation and plenty of child-friendly facilities, the majority of guests are families with kids. The 90 apartments are modern and bright, with kitchenettes, dining/lounge areas, and spacious terraces -- most with views of the sea. Water-based facilities are excellent, and include a large outdoor pool, indoor pool, and water park for kids, which features waterslides and a water-based playground. Dining options are a little limited and some guests complain apartments can be noisy, but most find the property excellent value for money -- especially families who don't mind being a bit far from area nightlife.
Estrela da Luz is a modest family-friendly aparthotel within a 10-minute walk of Luz's boardwalk and the beach. The simple property manages to pack a good bit into a 146-room package, including two casual restaurants, a spa, and three pools. The gym has a good selection of modern equipment and free classes. The apartments range from studios to four-bedroom units (the largest apartments can fit up to seven people), with a basic, modern style, tons of space, and full kitchens. They're all air-conditioned and Wi-Fi is free. All in all, this is a solid and popular bet for a town with lots of aparthotel options.
The three-and-a-half-pearl Vale da Lapa Resort & SPA has the benefit of wide open landscaping on the edge of Carvoeiro, with pleasant views of the gardens and mountains in the distance. It's too far from attractions in Carvoeiro to walk to anything, but the resort does have plenty to do on-site, including a nine-hole putting green, a full-service spa, and a kids' club. The 85 suites and Villas are modern and sharp, and include full kitchens, making them ideal for those looking for an upscale but affordable stay. All-inclusive rates are available, too.
For travelers not planning on leaving their resort too frequently, Vale D'El Rei is a fine three-and-a-half-pearl option in a secluded, quiet spot in the countryside. It's a 15-minute drive into Carvoeiro for dining, the beach, or nightlife, and the hotel runs a free shuttle into town. The 76 rooms and villas have a simple, mostly modern look, and come with free Wi-Fi, flat-screen TVs, and air-conditioning. This is a tranquil place, with lovely gardens strewn with sun loungers. There are pools, a kids' club, a game room, and a playground for kids. Low-key bars, a casual restaurant, a spa, tennis courts, and a gym round things out.