Portugal’s positioned itself as a mecca for golfers over the last few decades, attracted by its perfect climate – warm enough to feel like you’re playing ‘on holiday’, but not as scorching as some other top regions. But, with so many to choose from, where are the best places for overseas buyers to purchase a Portuguese golf property?
This gorgeous waterfront town has had a bit of a glamorous makeover in recent years. It has some of the best golf courses in the country. Laranjal, designed by Santana da Silva, has an absolutely spectacular setting among lakes, cork and orange trees and is known for its excellent service. It received a prestigious Best Golf Course award in 2011. The nearby Millennium Golf Course is quite open and easy to navigate – perfect for casual players. Dom Pedro Pinhal, of course, hosted the Portugal Masters last year, and also saw Oli Fisher card the first 59 in all the European Tour’s 46 years.
Beyond golf, Vilamoura has two lovely sandy beaches, and a number of excellent international restaurants. The surrounding areas has a high concentration of gleaming new builds, many of really excellent quality. It isn’t necessarily a historic town, but the centre does also have some interesting Roman mosaics and the ruins of a villa.
Albufeira used to be a bit of a Portuguese Marbella, but it’s since become much more upmarket – and is now one of the priciest areas to purchase in the Algarve. The golf course at Pine Cliffs is a huge favourite, with people coming from even beyond Europe to play. It has a fantastic location, right on the cliffs and with views over the Atlantic. Be careful of hole nine – the so-called ‘Devil’s Parlour’ – with a drive over a narrow ravine.
There are twenty-five (yes, twenty-five) sandy beaches to enjoy in the summer, many with Blue Flag status. Praia dos Pescadores, Praia do Tunel and Praia do Inatel are also popular for watersports (time for a new hobby?). The old town has an authentically Portuguese feel, with narrow, winding streets and whitewashed buildings.
Quinta do Lago/Vale do Lobo
Quinta do Lago is one of the top golfing resorts in Portugal, winning Best Golf Destination in the World Golf Awards in 2015 and 2016. In addition to the courses, you have the Paul McGinley Golf Academy and a TaylorMade Performance Centre (the only in southern Europe). The eponymous north and south golf courses offer fantastic challenges for more experienced players. Plus, they’re in a wonderful location, just next to the Ria Formosa National Park.
Most property here is low-rise, and is set to stay that way, due to the location next to the national park. There’s a lovely beach, accessed by a wooden walkway, with sea on two sides.
These famous seaside resorts, once the playground of exiled royalty from all over Europe, have some great golf courses. Penha Longa Atlantic South, part of the Penha Longa Ritz-Carlton Golf Course, is ranked in the top 30 in Europe. It’s built in the grounds of a 14th-century monastery, and has a number of challenging holes. Atlantic North is more suited to beginners or a casual afternoon’s round of golf. Quinta da Marinha, designed by Robert Trent Jones, has some really interesting Par-3 holes.
Cascais itself is known for its great beach and convenient access by train to Lisbon. Many properties here are expansive villas, often built at the turn of the century. They’re largely traditional in style, with brightly coloured facades and high garden walls offering a lot privacy.
Find out everything you need to know about the buying process in Portugal, from choosing your area to when to involve a notary and how to make an offer, with our free Portugal Buying Guide
Don’t miss your free tickets to the next Your Overseas Home shows in London, Birmingham, Chester, Harrogate and Epsom to meet property, financial, currency, legal and removals experts from Portugal.
You are looking for a property in Portugal? Search on Green-Acres
Want to sell your property on Green-Acres? Advertise on Green-Acres