Holiday with children in Carvoeiro, white Portuguese fishing village in the Algarve

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.

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Wintering in the Algarve with school-age children

Before Vincent and I had children, we were more often abroad for longer periods of time. A few months a year we lived as digital nomads abroad. I was mainly working for my own website Stylish Travel Tips and Vincent was already working on his international projects by then. It was a beautiful and free life in which we could decide where to go and for how long. Even when I was pregnant with our oldest we were in Asia for long periods of time and secretly dreamed of traveling around with a little baby.

How ironic our life looked when Sofie was born (crying baby) and we were suddenly confronted with the phenomenon of “rest, cleanliness and regularity”. Our house became our permanent home and after 2 years Sofie got a little sister and with that our family was complete 🙂

Fortunately, some more space opened up after Emma’s babyhood and we were able to go on distant trips again. Since late 2020 we have been living and working abroad for a few months every winter and our children go to school there temporarily. After 2 winters in Curaçao we stayed last winter for 3 months in Portugal and to be more precise in the Algarve.

In this blog I will take you through exactly where we stayed for a longer period of time, which school our daughters went to and what your life looks like when you go abroad with school-age children for a longer period of time. Every time it’s a great adventure for us where we not only have great memories as a family, but where we also see how the kids develop in a positive way and move easily and freely internationally.

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Winter sun holiday in Portugal

Where is the best place to go during winter holidays in Europe? In my search for the best climate with the best chance of sunshine hours, I quickly ended up in the Algarve. We are here for an extended period and during the Christmas holidays friends also came over for a winter sun holiday, and how lucky we were with the beautiful weather!

It feels a bit like spring here almost every day. The air is fresh but with the sun, it is soon 18 degrees and that almost every day if you’re lucky. If you ask me, the ideal destination within Europe and less than a three-hour flight away.

In this blog, I will give you all my tips on where we stayed and what trips you can do. Believe me you will run out of time, because there is still so much to discover in the Algarve. One advantage in winter, it is not so crowded and too warm. So no crowds of tourists in the popular villages and you often have the beach almost all to yourself.

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The Azores in a nutshell

I have my arms spread out wide, I have closed my eyes and I feel a ray of sunshine coming through a crack in the clouds. A beam of light warms up my face. Dark clouds appear and fade the sun out. With the tips of my fingers I feel the wind blowing all around me. Here I am on top of a cliff on an island in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean.

Far away I can hear the waves crash onto the rocks. I smell the freshness of nature. Then I open my eyes. My eyes glance down under me. A spectacle of the forces of nature that formed in the past decades unfolds itself beneath me. I am looking over the infinity of the ocean.

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São Miguel, the “green” island of the Azores

São Miguel, the main island of the Azores is the largest and most popular island of the archipelago. São Miguel is rich with beautiful views, winding coastal roads and volcanic craters.

Friendly villages are scattered across the island. The capital Ponta Delgada offers a mixture of modern buildings and historical monuments, plus restaurants, shopping streets and a beautiful promenade. The island offers an abundance of hiking trails, making it an ideal destination for nature lovers. Read More…

Faial, the little “blue” island

Faial is one of the central islands of the Azores and forms together with the islands of São Jorge and Pico the “Ilhas do Triângulo” (Azores triangle). Faial is a small island with a length of only 21 km and a width of maximum 14 km.

It got its name because of the many beech trees (in Portuguese faias) that you find here. Everywhere you go on the island of Faial, you can see fields of hydrangeas in different blue colors. Therefore, Faial is also called the “blue” island. Read More…

The mountain island Pico

Nature lovers can limit their island hopping tour of the Azores, because Pico island has it all. The youngest of the archipelago is small, but its outdoor opportunities are more than big. Pico is of volcanic origin, and this is very evident if you drive from the airport towards the civilized world.

Black lava stones are contrasting the bright green of ferns, young plants, vines and moss. This unique island in the Atlantic Ocean is absolutely worth a visit, and these are the reasons why. Read More…

The Azores, an archipelago with extraordinary beauty

In the middle of the immense blue Atlantic Ocean, Mother Nature created an area of unparalleled beauty that is ready to be discovered: The Azores.

This gorgeous, mysterious islands archipelago is of volcanic origin and is situated at almost 1,400 kilometers off the coast of Portugal. The Azores consists of nine islands that are divided into the eastern group of Santa Maria and São Miguel, the central group of Terceira, Graciosa, Sao Jorge, Pico and Faial, and finally Flores and Corvo. The largest city, Ponta Delgada is located on the island of São Miguel. Read More…