Embracing home turf: A Summer tourist adventure 

A perfect day in the Algarve: Exploring Alvor’s scenic paths and a hidden gem of a restaurant in Portimão

– June 15, 2024 | Text Marie Patterson 

As the days are finally starting to grow longer and warmer, summer activities begin to call. On this particular muggy warm afternoon, I set off to Alvor, which is slowly starting to awaken from its winter slumber.

Parking by the charming Restinga Restaurant, with the beach on one side and the enchanting Ria de Alvor on the other, I set out to explore the treasures hidden along its boardwalks and multiple paths.

©Charlotte Cockayne / Open Media Group

I had a leisurely stroll along the path until reaching the lighthouse, where in order to return, there is the possibility to walk along the beach or along the serene estuary and take a peek at where the fishing boats bobbed gently on the water.

This beautiful nature reserve really is one of my favourite hidden treasures of the Algarve with the golden sands of the start of Meia Praia stretching for miles. In all honesty, this particular day was destined to be all about food, and there is nothing like a walk, to open up your appetite. 

I then excitedly ventured back to Portimão, where Loki Restaurant awaited.

©Charlotte Cockayne / Open Media Group

This extremely coveted restaurant I had heard so much about has a four-month waiting list for reservations, so in November, I finally decided to make a reservation, but my expectations were sky-high, to say the least!

Tucked away in exclusivity, but only a stone’s throw away from the Arade River, the restaurant is small and intimate, only accepts one table per night, and has no menu! 

©Charlotte Cockayne / Open Media Group

Chef João Marreiros gave us one of the warmest welcomes ever, and it turns out, he not only prepares the food but also acts as server and sommelier, making sure his 11-course tasting menu is fully explained.

©Charlotte Cockayne / Open Media Group

Every single thing is made from scratch here, and he only uses the freshest, highest-quality and locally sourced ingredients that are available on that day, and frankly, this was evident in every bite.

It was one of the most exceptional meals I have ever had, and I now understand why this restaurant is such a coveted destination.

The chef is a genius, and I cannot wait to return. It was a truly fantastic experience and I felt honoured to have this gastronomic delight available in my own backyard. 

It was the perfect end to a perfect day that truly reflects what the Algarve is all about

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Read also:

Carvoeiro’s anticipated Black and White Night returns this June 15

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Author: Inside Magazines

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