I always really wanted to go to the Algarve with my family. It had been on my bucket list for a long time. Why, because I was always dreaming away with the image of its beautiful beaches with imposing rock formations, the sunny weather and, of course, the charming coastal towns.
One is Carvoeiro, a picturesque town where the houses are all painted white, just a 50-minute drive west of Faro. And that’s less than a 3-hour flight from Amsterdam, so just perfect if you want to go on holiday to Portugal with small children, because it takes no time at all to get there.
We lived in Carvoeiro for 3 months last winter and in this blog I will give you an insight into our life in Portugal, where we stayed and how incredibly beautiful the beaches there are.
Plan your holiday to Carvoeiro
One of the reasons to choose Carvoeiro is because it has a central location in the Algarve, from where you can make several trips for example towards the west coast of Portugal and the proximity of several beautiful beaches nearby.
Carvoeiro is a real hotspot in summer and therefore I can recommend you to go in the preseason or postseason like we did and believe me the preseason starts from as early as the end of March, because the temperatures are rising quickly towards 20 degrees and you can already swim in the pool or sea by then.
Where to stay in Carvoeiro?
Those who have read our previous blogs about wintering in Portugal already knew that we lived in Carvoeiro for 3 months. When from mid-March the temperatures started to rise and our stay was coming to an end, we really wanted to finish in style and experience the ultimate holiday feeling.
How lucky we were when I came across Casa Tuia online. It was exactly what I was looking for to end our adventure here and it became the icing on the cake of our stay in the Algarve. Take a look below to see what a gem I found when I came across Casa Tuia, Carvoeiro.
Casa Tuia, Relaxing in Luxury
Casa Tuia is run by a Belgian couple Kim and Olivier. Nine years ago they fell in love with this place high on the hill surrounded by 360 degrees of natural beauty. Within a few years, Kim and Olivier managed to transform it into a beautiful small-scale holiday resort with 5 luxury glamping tents, 5 holiday homes and 2 beautiful private villas entirely in Balinese style.
The two villas each have their own private pool, but there is also a large communal pool, a cozy bar a covered terrace where regular pizza nights are organized for guests.
We were lucky enough to be able to rent Villa 2 for two weeks just before the opening of the season. It became the icing on the cake of our beautiful stay here in the Algarve and we couldn’t have had a nicer farewell to Carvoeiro than to end at Casa Tuia.
While the weather had already started to tick up summer temperatures since mid-March and the little girls of us had been swimming in the pool almost every day since our stay here at the villa, Vincent and I could only enjoy this amazing place to the fullest.
Hometour Villa 2, Casa Tuia
The two private villas of Casa Tuia are completely built and decorated in Balinese style. For example outside, as an extension of your bathroom, you will find a real outdoor bath surrounded by lush Balinese plants that will immediately give you the feeling that you are in Bali.
They also had original wooden furniture pieces imported from Bali for the interior and the outdoor terrace is also attractively decorated. We immediately felt at home at Casa Tuia and were warmly welcomed by the owners Kim and Olivier. Would you also like to know what the rest of the villa looks like? Then feel free to look further 🙂
What makes Casa Tuia so special?
A picture often doesn’t say enough and it really does, you only know how something feels once you are there and that is the case with Casa Tuia. It already started with the warm welcome by the owners, they are so warm and enthusiastic! You just feel that you are welcome as a guest and that they have set up this small-scale resort with passion, which also makes it all very personal and unique.
In addition, I cannot explain how beautiful the view is from the pool terrace. You just can’t capture that in a picture; you just have to feel and see it. Almost every evening the setting sun created a beautiful spectacle on the horizon. It was almost surreal to wake up every day with this view from the master bedroom and then I really had to pinch myself whether this was real, so to speak.
Ultimate pleasure at Casa Tuia
I mentioned several times that it was really a treat to end up here and it was. It really felt like home and even more than that. We invited friends over for BBQ and toasted the good life together. The kids were outside every day, swimming or looking for Gigi, see also the fun video stories on my Instagram account @dairyofkasia.
Relaxing in the outdoor Balinese bath
Fortunately, I also often had a “mommy” moment to myself and what a delight it was to step outside into the warm bath, hear the birds whistling around you and the rustling of the leaves slowly moving back and forth through the warm spring breeze.
Sightseeing around Carvoeiro
Carvoeiro also offers a variety of family-friendly activities, including boat trips, water parks and nature walks. The nearby Zoomarine theme park is a popular attraction, with dolphin shows, a water park and an aquarium. There are also many restaurants and cafes in town that cater to families, with children’s menus and kid-friendly options.
In addition to Carvoeiro’s main beach, you have another small “hidden” beach if you walk all the way up the hill on the right and then take a long steep staircase down to Praia do Paraíso.
Eating and drinking in Carvoeiro
Carvoeiro has numerous restaurants, lots of eateries, serveral bars, many terraces and nice coffee shops. Even in winter when we were there from late December through March there is a lot open. Weekly we sat at the local bakery “Fabrica Velha” where many locals and expats come for our favorite coffee “Galao” (coffee with milk) with of course a Portuguese Pastéis de nata cake with it 🙂
Beachbar restaurant Levels is the hotspot on the beach of Carvoeiro and open all year round. From April when the official tourist season starts, all stores and restaurants really open and there is plenty of activity. We therefore found the early season a perfect time to visit Carvoeiro, but of course this is very personal.
Seven Hanging Valleys Trail Hiking Trail
What is highly recommended is the Seven Hanging Valleys Trail walking route of about 6 km long that takes you along the coast from Praiha de Marinha to Carvoerio. It takes you about 2,5 hours to 3 hours. This hike is suitable for the average hiker and and we do not recommend doing it with small children.
The route starts at the top of Praia da Marinha beach, past the famous cave of Praia de Benagil, Carvalho Beach, the Alfanzina lighthouse and officially ends at Praia de Vale Centianes, but we walked on towards the boardwalk of Carvoeiro and from there we took a cab back which will cost you about €10, but of course you can also walk it back. Do take plenty of water and food with you and also make sure you put on good sunscreen is my tip.
Once you have passed the beach of Benagil, turn left and go up a long staircase to a restaurant terrace overlooking the beach. At the back of the terrace the route continues and there are poles everywhere to guide you. Be sure to bring good footwear because the hiking route is sometimes rocky and can be slippery, but oh so beautiful!
Praiha de Marinha our favorite family beach
Every week we went to our favorite beach Praiha de Marinha. It is less than an 11-minute drive from Casa Tuia and one of the most beautiful beaches in the Algarve! The beach of Praiha de Marinha is long and wide and slopes gently into the sea which is just perfect for families with small children, but beware of the waves as they can be high depending on the current. For us and the kids it was great fun to be here every time.
Carvoeiro highly recommended for a holiday in the Algarve
Altogether Carvoeiro in the Algarve is a favorite holiday destination for families with children because of its beautiful beaches, family-friendly activities, welcoming atmosphere and beautiful accommodations such as Casa Tuia. Carvoeiro is a nice getaway for families and the perfect base if you want to explore the rest of the Algarve.
For the very last time I take a dip in the pool, because even I have to -chilly that I am- end it here in style. See my Insta stories under the heading Carvoeiro how that ends.
Are you excited after reading my tips and also want to book a vacation at Casa Tuia? Then check out their website for availability and if you have any questions about our stay please let me know!