, full of turquoise beaches surrounded by mesmerizing cliffs and high-end resorts, is also brimming with cafés and other charming spots, perfect for grabbing lunch and a drink, combined with a bit of people watching. A few stand out from the crowd, however; here are some of the most popular cafés and snack bars in the Algarve.
Pastelaria Agua Mel
This café begins the list with a twist because it isn’t located in a high-end, tourist-packed beachside town but in the village of Alte, located inland. It’s considered a “hidden” gem and is one of the area’s few vegetarian-friendly locations. It’s also a popular spot for indulging in delicious pastries and coffee.
Largo José Cavaco Vieira, 8100-012 Alte +351 289 478 338
These Pastéis de Amêndoa are among the many treats at Pastelaria Agua Mel. | © Courtesy of Agua Mel
Caffe Creme Cafetaria
Not the place for dieters, as the name Caffe Creme suggests, but this is a perfect spot for everything delicious. From crepes to ice cream and pizza to fresh bread, the Caffe Creme Cafetaria is a fantastic place to find tasty food, especially after a day of swimming and sunbathing.
8200-634 Olhos de Água +351 916 144 821
Earth Shop & Cafe
This sunny café serves breakfast, lunch, and snacks (and of course, coffee) in the charming town of Carvoeiro, near Faro. It’s a little on the pricey side for the area but visitor reviews boast about everything from the location to the quality of the meals and the wide variety of options.
R. das Flores 1, 8400 Carvoeiro +351 916 203 494
Bar, Restaurant, Snack Bar, Portuguese, Dessert, $$$
Do you like artisanal cakes? Then pay a visit to Riviera Pastelaria in Albufeira. As a café, pastry shop, snack bar, and lunchtime restaurant, it’s an all-around great place to visit. The Riviera Pastelaria also offers services for anyone needing a cake for an event.
R. do Município, 8200-161 Albufeira +351 289 587 745
For great prices, amazing views, and simple food with little fuss but nice flavor, the Iguana Café is an excellent choice for coffee, snacks, or a drink. Located near the popular Albufeira beach, this is a convenient venue for getting out of the sun for a couple of hours without leaving the seaside.
R. Latino Coelho 59, 8200-150 Albufeira +351 289 513 011
Mar d’Estorias isn’t your typical café or snack bar; it is also an art gallery, shop, and bistro. The café/bistro area serves up traditional Portuguese treats in addition to healthy recipes and international favorites. On the roof you’ll find the terrace bar with views over Lagos.
R. Silva Lopes 30, 8600-315 Lagos +351 282 792 165
Snack Bar Tico Tico
For favorite local treats (including a variety of seafood), the Snack Bar Tico Tico in Quarteira is worth the trip. Perhaps pair your visit with a stop in the local gypsy market, which is one of the best in Algarve. Some of the must-order items on the menu include mixed seafood platters (maybe with a small beer, or imperial) and caracóis, or snails.
R. da Gaivota 1, 8125-228 Quarteira +351 289 313 126
No Solo Agua
Located in three popular cities (Albufeira, Portimão, and Vilamoura), this small beach bar chain is one of the hottest spots in the Algarve. Walk up from the beach midday for a cool drink and some light snacks and/or return in the evening to dance the evening away with a view of the ocean.