Silves is a small municipality located in the Algarve region of southern Portugal. Casually resting beside the banks of the Arcade River, Algarve is one of the most peaceful and calm places to visit in winters. It has a scenic view and a laid-back atmosphere. This ancient capital of Algarve was once an impregnable fortress and a major trading center in the region. It is no wonder the city today has historically significant infrastructures, boasts, and a deep-rooted cultural value. It is the perfect spot for snowbirds, the place offers various resorting amenities and is great for a nice, relaxing holiday.
Why should people visit during the winter?
The small, primitive city of Silves is a delightful winter destination for snowbirds. The city features beautiful cobbled streets, historical landmarks, open-air cafes, and many more attractions that make the town an attraction to people from all over the world. You can book a tour guide and explore the city in the afternoons. Sunshine is abundant in the winter. Winter in Silves is characterized by warm, temperate weather. You get a chance to enjoy some quality time with all the resorting facilities available. If you're a visitor in the area, do not miss out on the tasty delicacies of the town.
The weather of Silves remains partly cloudy and windy in winter. The city has an average winter temperature high of 19°C (66°F) and an average low of 9°C (48°F) during this season. Room heating is recommended as it can get pretty cold at night.
For more climate information visit Meteoblue
Things to see in Silves, Portugal
Silves is a popular tourist location. There are many places to visit and sights to see in the area. Some of these include:
- Castle of Silves: This medieval historical landmark was once a fortress, trading, and cultural center. Visit the castle for a brief education on the great amount of history associated with it. There are tons of exhibits on display to be seen within the castle.
- Praia Nova: This small beautiful beach is located at the Atlantic Coast flanked by cliffs. Asides the refreshing waters and beach activities, you can take a tour of the promontory east of the beach where the Old Fort and The Shrine of Our Lady of the Rock reside. There is also a tunnel where you can find marine fossils.
- Odelouca River: A tributary to the Arade River and a haven for wildlife, the river offers a scenic landscape you can visit for hiking, wildlife photography, camping, and similar activities. You can also go fishing or kayaking in the lake. If you're lucky you might catch a glimpse of an Iberian Lynx which this place is famous for.
- Museu Municipal de Arqueologia de Silves: this museum is the custodian of the archaeological findings from the city and the whole region. The museum possesses remains especially from the castle as well as the Cerro da Rocha Branca archaeological site. Visit this museum for more insight on these archaeological remains and trade routes from previous civilizations.
- Ideas Do Levante: Visit this place where various shows for opera, art, culture, photography, dance, cinema, theatre, music, wellness, and cultural marketing are hosted.
Things to see not far from the Silves, Portugal
There are many neighboring towns and places in the surrounding areas that you could visit.
- Forte da Ponta da Bandeira: This 17th-century historical landmark is located beyond the walls of the municipality of Lagos. This naval fortress was used for the defense of the city. The fortress has a chapel, a panoramic view, a restaurant with live music and delicious local cuisine. There are art exhibitions hosted here. It is also home to one of the most traditional celebrations of Lagos; the 29th Swim. It is located 36.1 km (22 Miles) from Silves.
- Museu Municipal Dr. Jose Formosinho: A local history museum located in the annex of the Church Igreja de Santo Antonio. The museum educates people about the local history of the town and the church through archaeological and art exhibits. You can learn a lot about Lagos here, it is the neighboring municipality of Silves. This Museum is located 39.5 km (25 Miles) from Silves.
- Serra de Monchique: It is a chain of mountains with an astonishing view of the greenery and landscape from the top. The highest peak is FOIA Peak. At its highest point, it has a height of . You should try hiking on a pleasant sunny day to test your hiking skills. The peak is located 33.4 km (21 Miles) from Silves.
- Rota Vicentina: Listed as one of the most beautiful coasts in Europe, Rota Vicentina has a network of hiking trails, numerous villages, and lakes with centuries of history. You can visit this place to spend a nice day in a peaceful atmosphere. You can also go for a swim or just enjoy fishing after a hike. It is located 88.8 km (55 Miles) from Silves.
Activities in Silves, Portugal in the winter
There are lots of fun activities you can participate in during your visit to Silves. Some of them include:
- Visit Castle of Silves: Visit the castle to get educated or acquainted with the history of the ancient city of the Silves. You will learn the historical significance of this region.
- Kayaking/Canoe: You can rent a kayak or canoe and visit the Odelouca River and other parks to enjoy nature and witness beautiful views.
- Walking tour of the city: You can take a walking tour of Silves with a tour guide on the cobbled streets. If you have a camera, you can take photos of the beautiful historical infrastructure of the city and you can also try a variety of delicacies.
- Scuba Diving: You can take scuba diving lessons and discover the beautiful marine life underwater with a large and uninterrupted Atlantic coastline.
- Sighting of Iberian Lynx: Get a chance to watch the Iberian Lynx in the wild of the Odelouca River.
- Hiking: Visit the Odelouca River, Rota Vicentina, and similar attractions for a great hiking experience with mind-blowing landscapes.
- Spa & Fitness Clubs: There are various health clubs nearby along with spas. You can visit these clubs for quality time and take part in yoga exercises. It is easy to find yoga instructors
- Visit Praia Nova: Visit Praia Nova for beachcombing and go to the tunnel with the beach to find the marine fossils. Take a look at the promontory on the beach.
- Fishing: You can visit Odelouca River, Rota Vicentina, and similar charters for fishing.
- Golf: Spend a nice day golfing in the Silves Golf and nearby golf clubs in town or on other islands.
- Visit the other beaches: Visit the other beaches of Silves and Lagos each with its own uniquely beautiful features.
- Visit the other Municipalities: Visit Lagos and other neighboring municipalities of Silves to find more attractions and learn about the history of the Algarve region.
- Visit Ideias Do Levante: Visit this place and spend some quality time to appreciate the splendid opera theatre, photo gallery, dance performances, and cultural performances.
Shopping + Restaurants. Are they open in the winter?
You will find a lot of fresh produce markets in Silves. You can check out Municipal Market Silves. The vendors gather at the marketplace from 7 AM to 2 PM every Monday to Saturday. You can find a wide variety of freshly picked fruits, vegetables, and other fresh farm products. You can also get fresh meat, seafood, and tantalizing delicacies from the market. Visit the Estudio Destra for custom made ceramic products. The products range from lamp bowls, vases, and more.
Algarve is popular for its cuisine. For starters you can try, Marinated Carrots popularly known as Zanahorias Aliñadas, it is usually served with olives, before the meal. A Portuguese staple "Bifana" is enjoyed as a snack, it is made of bread roll filled with marinated pork. "Pastel de Nata" is perfect for those who have a sweet tooth. When it comes to seafood, "Bacalhau", "Robalo", "Dourado", "Cataplana" and much more are popular in the streets of the old walled town. You can enjoy all these delicacies in the restaurants of Silves at affordable prices.
There is no bus station in Silves, the buses depart from the south side of the town close to the Rio Arade and the tourist information office. Bus tickets are purchased from the bus driver. You can choose the bus service for traveling to the neighboring municipalities or other cities. The bus service is unavailable for travel within town. Taxi services can be used to travel in town.
There is a Silves Train Station located in a small village called Silves Gare. You can walk if you leave early for the station or take a taxi to reach even quicker.
The nearest international airport to Silves is Faro Airport (FAO) located 63.1 km (39 Miles) from Silves. There are various airport shuttle services available which you can use and you can also take a taxi or a bus to reach the airport or get to your residence from the airport.
In Silves, public and private health facilities are located in the town and are easily accessible. The health sector is perfectly suited for anyone who walks in with a problem. 24/7 emergency is available in hospitals. Emergency cases are handled well. You can find some of the most significant healthcare centers below:
- Silves Health Center: Public health care services
- Swiss Dental Services Portimao: Dental care services (www.swissdentalservices.com)
There are several different rental companies present in Silves, whether you're looking for an apartment, cottage, or a villa. Some of the most popular companies that are commonly used include:
- Idealista (www.idealista.pt)
- Rentalia.com (www.rentalia.com)
- Long Term Lettings (www.longtermlettings.com)
- Airbnb (www.airbnb.com) is available in case you are looking for a more customized offer.
These prominent websites and other websites connect you to the local real estate agents in Silves. You can rent 1-bedroom and 1-bath with rates starting from per month.
Camping Canelas: It costs between €22 (approx. $26, £20, $34 CAD, $35 AUD) for camping, including the facilities. You can visit this website for more information (www.camping-canelas.com).
Motorhome Park Silves: There are 43 sites available and the costs vary according to the month. It costs €8.50 (approx. $10, £7, $13 CAD, $13 AUD) around November including facilities and €9 (approx. $10, £8, $14 CAD, $14 AUD) in December. You can visit their website for more information (www.algarvemotorhomepark.com).