Shopping in the Algarve: the complete guide
Shopping is one of the most fun things to do on your holiday. The best thing about shopping in the Algarve are the opening hours. Most shops are open from early morning until late in the evening. So whether you are looking for new bathers before hitting the beach or an easy shop break after lunch, there are international, Portuguese and designer stores to please you. After reading this article you will know exactly where to shop till you drop.
Where to go shopping in the Algarve
In most of the centres of the main cities and towns such as Faro, Albufeira and Lagos, you will find an array of shops. However, there are a couple of important shopping areas that have much more stores. You can find them below and they are definitely worth the visit. In these shopping malls you will find a wide selection shops and a food court. Entertainment in these shopping malls is key. You will find with many (musical) events that are hosted here.
This brand new shopping centre in Loulé opened in 2017. It instantly became the most popular shopping spot. Actually, it is the largest shopping centre of the entire Algarve. In MAR Shopping you can find an indoor shopping centre with 100 stores and restaurants, a designer outlet, an IKEA and an outdoor leisure area. Also the facilities in this shopping mall are excellent. There is free wi-fi, there are clean toilets and several ATM’s.
MAR Shopping is open 7 days a week, from 10.00 in the morning until 23.00 in the evening. On Friday and Saturday the shops are even open until midnight.
How to get there
The shopping centre is ideally located in the centre of the Algarve, close to the highway in between the cities of Faro and Loulé. It takes about a 20 minute drive from Faro Airport. When driving on the A22 highway, take exit 13. Or take exit 4 – Loulé Sul when drivig on the EN125. There are 3500 free parking spaces, so you will have no problem finding a spot. If you don’t have a car, there is a bus line between Faro and Loulé that stops here.
In MAR Shopping you can find the only IKEA of the Algarve, as well as the largest Primark in Portugal. The shopping centre is actually also the home of the first Starbucks in the Algarve. In this shopping centre you can find popular Spanish clothing brands such as Bershka, Oysho, Mango, Zara, Pull & Bear and Massimo Dutti. Also you can find Portuguese brands such as Parfois and Zippy. And of course we shouldn’t forget international brands such as H&M, Fnac, Rituals, Sephora and Swarovski. Moreover, there is a complete Pingo Doce supermarket inside. In short, MAR Shopping has more than enough shops to make you want to come back again after your next paycheck.
In addition to the shops there are plenty of restaurants where you can have a snack or a proper meal. There are the international fastfood chains, such as McDonalds and KFC. Do you prefer fresh cooked food? Then try out the Algarve Chef Experience, where four chefs will cook either Portuguese, Italian French or Thai food. If you like Portuguese food, another option is Portugália.
MAR Shopping also has a cinema called NOS. The best thing about the cinema is that the movies are all shown in their original language. Since most movies are Hollywood productions, the language of the movies is English, with Portuguese subtitles.
Next to the shopping centre you can find a designer outlet. The designer outlet is built as a mini town. It has pretty streets with benches and fountains. Here you will find stores such as Lacoste, Guess, Adidas and Calvin Klein offering their collection at discounted rates.
Forum Algarve is a big shopping centre in Faro, the capital of the Algarve. This pretty shopping mall has an outdoor square in the middle with a fountain. Around the square you find two floors of shops and restaurants. Forum Algarve is home to 120 different shops, including 20 restaurants and a cinema. The facilities on-site are very good as well: there is free wi-fi, toilets and a baby changing room. You can also check flight information on two different information desks.
Forum Algarve is open 7 days a week from 10.00 in the morning until 23.00 in the evening. On Friday and Saturday the shops are even open until midnight.
How to get there
The shopping centre is ideally located, on the side of the main road to enter Faro. It only takes a 5 minute drive from Faro Airport. When you are in the centre of Faro, you have the options to take a mini bus, a regular bus or a taxi. You could even walk to Forum Algarve, which takes only about 25 minutes from the city centre. Arriving by car, it is good to know that there are 2300 parking spaces, so no worries about finding a good spot. And of course, parking is free.
In this shopping centre you can find a great variety of shops. You will see popular Spanish clothing brands such as Massimo Dutti, Bershka, Mango, Pull & Bear and Zara. And Portuguese brands such as Parfois and Sportzone. Of course you can also find international brands such as Adidas, Rituals, Fnac, Foot Locker, Guess, The Body Shop, Bijou Brigitte and Levi’s. There is a big Jumbo supermarket inside as well, where many locals come to buy their groceries.
There is a large food court in the shopping centre of Forum Algarve, with about 20 restaurants to choose from. There are the international fastfood chains such as Burger King and Pizza Hut. Are you more into Portugese cuisine? Then try out the soups of Lojas das Sopas or steaks from Portugália. You might like to try the sushi at Hanami Sushi or all you can eat Asian food at Happy Family.
Forum Algarve also has a cinema called NOS, with 5 cinema screens. The great thing about the cinema is that the movies are all shown in their original language. Since most movies are Hollywood productions, the language is English, with Portuguese subtitles.
Forum Algarve hosts many events. In the summer you can enjoy performances from popular artists and bands. The entrance to these events is free of course.
Aqua Portimão is the largest shopping centre in Western Algarve. The shopping centre hosts about 120 different shops, including restaurants and the big supermarket Jumbo. The design of the shopping mall is inspired by the sea, as is the name. The main feature is the big orange tower. There is free wi-fi available, as well as several toilets.
Aqua Portimão has very attractive opening hours. The stores are open 7 days a week from 09.00 in the morning until 23.00 in the evening. On Friday and Saturday the shops are even open until midnight.
How to get there
Aqua Portimão is located in Portimão in the Western part of the Algarve. The address is Rua de São Pedro 72, 8500, Portimão. It takes around a 1 hour drive from Faro Airport, a 30 minute drive from Albufeira and a 30 minute drive from Lagos. In the underground and ground level car parks, there are around 1800 parking spaces. Parking is of course free.
In this shopping centre you can find all your favourite shops. You can find fashion brands such as H&M, Bershka, Mango, Massimo Dutti, Primark, Pull & Bear and Intimissimi. There are also sport stores such as Asics and Footlocker or home accessories from Zara Home, Tiger and A Loja Do Gato Preto. Moreover, there is a big Jumbo supermarket.
In Aqua Portimão there is a large food court with plenty of restaurants to choose from. Get for example your hamburgers at Talho Burger or McDonalds, noodles at Wok to Walk and fresh juices from Vitaminas.
Aqua Portimão hosts several events during public holidays and in summer. They are usually free to attend and provide you with an entertaining couple of hours.
AlgarveShopping is a shopping centre in Albufeira. It is quite big: there are about 127 stores, including 20 restaurants, a supermarket and a cinema. Facilities are also good: there is free wi-fi, toilets and several ATM’s. This shopping centre is a nice place to spend a couple of hours.
AlgarveShopping is open 7 days a week from 09.00 in the morning until 23.00 in the evening. The restaurants are open every day until midnight.
How to get there
AlgarveShopping is located in Guia. The easiest way to reach it is by car, driving on the EN125. The address is Lanka Parque Comercial e Industrial do Algarve, Lote R – Fração 3, 8201-878, Guia. There is plenty of parking space and parking is free. Another option is to catch a bus from the Albufeira bus terminal.
There is a great variety of shops in AlgarveShopping. You can find fashion brands such as Bershka, Oysho, Pull & Bear, G-Star Raw, Levi’s, Intimissimi, Massimo Dutti, Guess, Zara and H&M. Examples of other shops here are Accessorize, Chicco, Fnac and The Body Shop. There is also a huge Continente supermarket. More than enough to buy what you are looking for and to satisfy your shopping desires on holiday.
If you are hungry, there are many options. You could go for fast-food, such as Burger King, McDonald’s or Pizza Hut. If you prefer Portuguese food, you could go for a bowl of soup at Panela da Sopa. Or have a healthy juice at Vitaminas. There are many more options. Just come here and have a look.
There is a cinema called NOS in the shopping centre. Movies are in English, with Portuguese subtitles.