For a budget getaway in Portugal, the Algarve region is the place. And for Algarve hotels offering great value, this list is where to look. Read on to discover the top value hotels in the Algarve region in southern Portugal.
Sagres Time Apartamentos is a mid-range property offering 40 one- and two-bedroom apartments. It's located in a quiet residential area of Sagres that is rather unexciting, but it's within a five- to 15-minute walk from the beach, restaurants, bars, and shops. Apartments are spacious and modern, if plain, and kitchens are fully equipped with everything needed for cooking and dining. All living areas and bedrooms have air-conditioning and flat-screen TVs, and housekeeping visits daily. Wi-Fi and safes are free in rooms. There aren't many features here, but the outdoor pool is a popular spot. Underground parking is free, and guests can use individual storage rooms for their bikes, surfboards, canoes, and the like. Guests can rent bicycles and barbecues at reception, as well as GoPro cameras.
The 102-room Carvi Hotel Lagos is situated right above Praia Dona Ana, one of the most gorgeous beaches in the Lagos area. It's also within about a 15-minute walk of the old town's restaurants, shops, and bars. Rooms are modern and fresh, although some are on the small side, and feature air-conditioning, flat-screen TVs, and balconies or terraces, some with breathtaking views of the sea. Breakfast with hot and cold options is free, and the restaurant and bar get good reviews. The rooftop pool is a popular spot for lounging and taking in those spectacular coastal vistas. Wi-Fi is free throughout the hotel, although it can be spotty at times.
The Marina Club Lagos is humble three-pearl hotel with a great spot right on Lagos' bustling marina. It's less than a 10-minute walk to Lagos' charming old town and a 15-minute walk to Meia Praia. Interiors are well kept and sparkling clean. The 36 pleasantly modern rooms are flawlessly soundproofed -- which is a blessing given its bus station-adjacent location -- and everything from the fast, free Wi-Fi to the sparkling plunge pool on the roof add value to a stay here. Features are otherwise limited, but do include a free hot-and-cold breakfast buffet with freshly ground coffee.
The Four Seasons Vilamoura (not part of the luxury Four Seasons brand) is an upper-middle-range time-share property located adjacent to a golf course, but a bit far from the beach and marina. Decor is a little dated throughout, but the 114 self-catering apartments are clean and spacious, with full kitchens, washer/dryers, and balconies. With several large outdoor and indoor pools, three restaurants serving good food, daily activities for all ages, and a spa, the property is a good year-round destination for families, couples, and golfers. Free parking is convenient for those exploring the area by car, but there are fees for in-room Wi-Fi and for use of the kids' club.
The Aparthotel Oceanus is a large apartment-style hotel aimed at the budget end of the Algarve vacation market. Its 102 air-conditioned apartments, consisting of studios and one-bedroom units, are spread over two buildings and include simple kitchens and balconies and bland decor. Bathrooms are well-finished, though, but don't come with many toiletries. The range of on-site facilities is solid, with both an outdoor and indoor pool, a kids' pool, several bars (one poolside), and a restaurant. The lobby and the decor in some areas looks dated, and some apartments can be noisy, but for its proximity to a lovely beach, it's a pretty good value.
Eden Resort feels more like a vacation village than hotel, which suits most guests who pass through here. The 198-room apartment-hotel is a 10-minute drive outside Albufeira and the beach, and 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. The three outdoor pools -- one for adults only, and two for families -- draw most of the action here, and they can get loud and rowdy. An indoor pool is found at the spa, which also offers treatments, a sauna, and Turkish bath.
Paladim Aparthotel is a simple value apartment property in Albufeira, (just) within walking distance of nightlife, dining, and beaches. Its 63 studios and one-bedroom apartments, while dated in parts, are clean and perfectly adequate for most travelers, with cooking facilities and lounge areas. The hotel's grounds are small, but the pool is a good size and the restaurant offers decent value for money; there's even some evening entertainment offered. While far from glamorous, for a cheap and friendly aparthotel with self-catering facilities and better-than-average food, this is a strong option.
The two-and-a-half-pearl Balaia Mar Hotel is a decent budget option for unfussy travelers. It's three-minutes to the tourist-friendly Santa Eulalia strip, and a 10-minute walk to Praia Maria Luisa. The hotel is old, and the 32 rooms include powerful air-conditioners, small TVs, and free Wi-Fi that requires constantly re-entering passwords. Many rooms are spacious, though, and some include large balconies. Apartments are also available. There are two pools, a bar with billiards tables, and a restaurant that serves a free breakfast buffet. All-inclusive rates are also available, but hours are restricted.
Apartamento do Golfe is a mid-range hotel offering good value a short drive from Vilamoura’s marina. Its 59 Studios, One-, and Two-Bedroom Apartments feature basic kitchenettes, living areas with sofa beds, and balconies. Decor and amenities are basic and there is a fee for Wi-Fi, but rates are competitive year-round, and units are clean. The pool is a lovely spot for a quiet day, and the restaurant serves decent international cuisine in a cute dining room with large windows. The location near several golf courses is convenient for golfers, and the hotel offers free shuttle service to the lively marina -- but those looking to spend a lot of time at the beach or marina may want to look elsewhere.
The three-pearl Hotel Eva overlooks the marina on Faro's waterfront and the barrier islands in the Ria Formosa lagoon beyond it. The 134 rooms are squarely mid-range, with pleasantly modern decor and features like air-conditioning, flat-screen TVs, and many that include private balconies. It remains one of the most popular picks in town in this category, with a seasonal rooftop pool and a public health club that includes a full spa and a huge fitness center. Its restaurant and bar have great views and breakfast with a wide variety of buffet options is included in most room rates.
The 74-room Hotel Sol e Mar is a mid-range option in an excellent location on the beach in Albufeira's old town. The beach is easy to access, and the city's lively restaurants, bars, and shops are within easy walking distance. Rooms are basic and could probably use an update -- furniture and features like mini-fridges are dated -- but they all have a balcony or terrace with nice sea views. The two restaurants get mixed reviews, but breakfast is free and guests can dine right above the beach. The indoor pool looks out onto the beach, but the hotel has no dedicated beach seating.
The Colina da Lapa is a two-and-a-half-pearl holiday village hotel with 70 simple apartments. It's best for families, though services and features are slim. There's a nice pool and shallow kids' pool at the center of the property, which are flanked by a playground, kids' club, casual restaurant, bar, and mini-mart. During warm months, the hotel is bustling with kids and families. Indoors, though, things are underwhelming, and while the apartments are spacious, they're also dated. All include full kitchens, a terrace or two, and separate bedrooms and living rooms, though appliances are old and the free Wi-Fi is abysmal.
Ondamar Aparthotel is a two-pearl hotel that's a five-minute drive from Oura Beach and a 10-minute walk from the Avenida Sa Carneiro strip of bars. Its 92 spacious, affordably priced apartments have a bland and dated look, and many need an overhaul to address worn or old furnishings. All come with full kitchens, living areas, dining areas, and balconies or terraces. There's a charge for Wi-Fi in rooms, but it's free in public spaces. Features are fairly good, and include a large freeform outdoor pool with poolside bar, children's pool, indoor pool, hot tub, fitness center, game room, and Portuguese restaurant.
The 35 apartments at Canavial are spread among a series of laid-back residential-style compounds, a 10-minute walk from secluded Praia do Canavial. These dated digs won't win any style awards, but all apartments include kitchenettes, outdoor seating, free Wi-Fi, daily housekeeping, and air-conditioning. Each of the compounds has its own pool, and there's lawn space with fruit trees that make for a home-away-from-home vibe (that is, if your home was in the Portuguese sunshine). Otherwise, features are few -- there's no restaurant or even breakfast service. As such, it's most appealing to travelers wanting to self cater in a quiet, residential area.