Water, wildlife and whoopee

lemur family at zoo lagos

Algarve is synonymous with sun, sea and golf but there is far more to the region than all these.

Even now, with COVID-19 very much in our minds, Algarve attractions and events are offering visitors the opportunity to include a varied itinerary during their holiday.

With organisers and hosts adhering to the Portuguese government’s guidelines which include social distancing, hand sanitising and the wearing of masks in certain circumstances, locals and holidaymakers are enjoying visits to water and theme parks, drive-in movies together with boat trips and visits to the region’s only zoo.

Boats continue to visit caves and grottoes along the coast, most notably from Benagil, Carvoeiro, Portimão, Alvor and Lagos. There are also trips along the rivers A particular favourite starts at Portimão, travelling up to Silves where visitors then spend an hour and a half in the city – Algarve’s capital city until 1577. 

Zoomarine, Algarve’s theme park that is also a rescue centre for marine wildlife, reopened in June with most of its facilities available. See here for measures being taken concerning COVID-19. Visitors can also see the park’s new arrival, Seb. A two-toed sloth who spends most of his time upside down and with a metabolism that is so slow he can take up to a month to digest his food. If he has his eyes open when you visit consider yourselves very lucky as Seb needs around 16 hours of sleep! 

Other highlights include shows by dolphins, sea lions, seals and of course birds of prey and tropical birds also make their appearances. For information on all  activities available click here.

Slide ‘N’ Splash is now over 30 years’ old and, with many updates carried out over the years, continues to improve its aquatic entertainment for all the family. For those who are adrenaline junkies down to the tots in the group, there is something for all to enjoy. Click here for information on their preventative measures and for information of the water park itself click here.

Moving further west, Lagos Zoo has more than 140 species from five continents for visitors to interact with and enjoy. From feeding to petting, the cross-section of creatures includes penguins, otters, lemurs and iguanas plus meekats, lynx and donkeys – these are just a few of all residents at the site close to Barão de São João and Lagos.

The zoo plays an active role in raising people’s awareness about nature with environmental campaigns and breeding programmes for endangered species. It also participates in conservations projects.  

Finally, every Saturday through August until September 5, Campo de Jogos do Rossio da Trinidade in Lagos is turned into a drive-in for a movie or theatre piece.

Ticking boxes for adults, teenagers and youngsters, films being shown include Marnie and Friends, Game of Thrones and Parasite.

Sessions are free, starting at 9.30pm. Booking is mandatory, click here for more information, with space for 100 cars. There are bathroom facilities available along with food and beverages available.

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