Monte Gordo Portugal Guide

Monte Gordo is a popular resort town that is situated on one of the finest beaches of the eastern Algarve. Monte Gordo was purpose built for tourism, with large hotels and apartments blocks lining the beach front promenade.


The town has excellent tourist facilities, including great hotels and varied restaurants, but is completely devoid of the Portuguese charm found in many of the Algarve’s historic towns. The beach is the main attraction of Monte Gordo but there are a number of interesting day trips to the towns of the surrounding region. This guide will provide an introduction to Monte Gordo for visitors who are considering a holiday to the town.

Highlights of Monte Gordo

1) The vast sandy beach which can easily accommodate all summer visitors

beach of Monte Gordo

The beautiful beach of Monte Gordo

2) The varied selection of restaurants serving great value food and drink

Monte Gordo nightlife

A glass of Sagres beer makes a great night in Monte Gordo!

3) Day trip to Vila Real de Santo Antonio

Vila Real de Santo Antonio

Who should visit Monte Gordo?

Monte Gordo is ideal for tourists who simply want from a holiday destination, glorious weather and wonderful beaches. There are much more scenic, historic or lively destinations in the Algarve but if a quiet relaxing beach holiday (with or without children) is wanted, then Monte Gordo is ideal.

beach of Monte Gordo

The town is popular with couples, families and mature tourists and attracts a range of different nationalities including British, German and Spanish. The town is not aimed for groups of rowdy party goes, for this head either to Albufeira or the Balearic Islands.

When to visit Monte Gordo

The height of the summer season for Monte Gordo is from July through to August, during this season the hotels are full, restaurants are busy and there is a great atmosphere around the town. Weather is suitable for spending time on the beach from May until the end of September and outside of the summer season hotel bargains can be found but the town will feel much quieter.

Monte Gordo weather

The average weather of Monte Gordo

Monte Gordo closes down for the winter and the weather of this season is mild with an equal number of wet days as bright sunny days. For a winter holiday to the Algarve head to the towns which have a large permanent population such as Lagos, Praia da Rocha or Albufeira.

Monte Gordo sunshine sun

The average hours of sunshine per day for Monte Gordo

Does Monte Gordo Have Good beaches?

The main attraction of Monte Gordo is the wonderful sandy beach that extends for 14km from the town of Altura to the mouth of the Guadiana river. Unlike the western Algarve, which has steep cliffs, the beach at Monte Gordo is on the same level as the town and is suitable to access for all visitors. The beach is both long and wide so that even at the height of the season there is plenty of space for all.

beach front of Monte Gordo

The beach front of Monte Gordo

The waters are crystal clear but are shockingly cold, being from the chilly Atlantic and not the warm Mediterranean. For families the sea waters are clean and calm, idea for children splashing around in and the beaches are supervised by life guards during the summer.

Where to stay in Monte Gordo?

Monte Gordo is a relatively small and no hotel (that is in the town) is more than a couple minutes walk from the beach or the main promenade of shops and restaurants. Always check reviews of hotels to select the best for your budget but do be wary of very old reviews. For the latest reviews and booking of hotels click here.

The beach promenade

The beach promenade

From the Airport to Monte Gordo?

The main international airport of the Algarve is Faro airport which is centrally located along the southern coastline. Monte Gordo is located 60km to the east of Faro and it is advisable to organise a pre-arranged pick up from the airport due to the limited public transport connections. Never get a taxi from the airport to Monte Gordo as this will be very expensive.

faro airport

The main terminal building of Faro Airport

Airport to Hotel by Public Transport?

Monte Gordo has limited bus and train services from Faro. Faro town centre is a 10 minute taxi ride from the airport (€ 12-15) and the train and bus station are only 200m apart. The train is the more relaxing method of travel (€5 single ticket) but there are only 11 daily departures. From the train station it is a 1km walk to the resort centre. If there are no suitable train departures head to Faro bus station and catch the bus. Bus and train travel is safe even on the late night services.

Algarve regional train

The Algarve regional train

What is there to do in Monte Gordo?

This guide lists the main activities in Monte Gordo. The main activities are the beach, cycling/walking along the coastline or day trips to Vila Real, Castro Marim, Ayamonte and Tavira. There are three excellent golf courses close to Monte Gordo.

Do I Need to Hire a Car?

For a holiday to Monte Gordo there is no need to rent a car as all day trips can be easily reached using public transport. The advantage of a car is it makes the transfer from the airport much easier and does open up more of the surrounding area.

When renting a car always be aware of the high excess for insurance, which is usually around €1,000. Further insurance can be purchased to remove the excess (€10-15 a day) but it is a sneaky additional cost which is paid locally Portugal – all Portuguese rental companies apply this excess. If you wish to cross the border into Spain always check with your rental company that you are insured.

Mata Nacional da Dunas Litorais de Vila Real

The beaches of the Mata Nacional da Dunas Litorais de Vila Real

The Mata Nacional da Dunas Litorais de Vila Real de Santo Antonio

To the east of Monte Gordo is the largest forest of the Algarve, the Mata Nacional da Dunas Litorais de Vila Real de Santo Antonio. This natural park has a unique ecosystem of pine forests that cover the sand dunes of the region. The forest is the perfect place to escape the summer crowds and there are pleasant shaded footpaths across the 440 hectares of forest.

Mata Nacional da Dunas Litorais de Vila Real

The shaded paths of the Mata Nacional da Dunas Litorais

Is language going to be an issue?

Everyone who works in the tourist trade can speak English fluently. English is used as the second language and no visitor will experience any difficulties communicating. All restaurants will have English menus and home cuisine can be easily found.

The best guide to Monte Gordo