OceanBlue Portugal

Burgau, Algarve, Portugal Book from Book from £90 per night

Activity-based hilltop retreat in the unspoilt western Algarve: 4 self-catering apartments (sleeping 2-4) for family and small-group adventures
At the tip of southwest Europe, Costa Vicentina Natural Park is one of Portugal’s least-developed regions: a wild landscape of jagged cliffs, hidden coves, gently forested hills and sun-beaten villages. For boat builder Sean and personal trainer Lucy it's a perfect setting for their dream: leading small groups on big adventures. From mountain bikes and paddleboards to surfboards and snorkels, one thing’s for sure: you’ll leave OceanBlue feeling fitter, healthier and more energised than when you arrived.

Their striking white villa, overlooking the Atlantic, is split into 4 self catering apartments. Ideal for families and friends, interiors are modern and bright with simple Scandi-style kitchens. Shady terraces lead out to the main pool, where you could spend your days in blissful recline. But drag yourself away! You're here to be guided in wonderful activities, which can be adapted for all ages, abilities and levels of adventure. There are clifftop hikes, gentle rivers to paddle, twisting valleys to ride. And if, after an active day, you don’t then feel like cooking, it’s a gentle stroll to Burgau village (0.5km) where beachside tavernas make gourmet treats out of fresh-as-you-like seafood. Whether you’re looking to reboot your lifestyle or learn a new skill, OceanBlue sounds like the ultimate escape for a healthy holiday in the sun; we can't wait to stay.

Highs

  • A great place to come solo, with friends or with other families; adventurous kids will be in their element
  • The gorgeous setting in a natural park with walking and biking trails right from the door, 5 minutes from beaches
  • Wonderful activities exploring under-the-radar spots: guided mountain-bike rides, paddleboard tours and catamaran trips to secret coves. Do as much or as little as you'd like
  • Surfboards and wetsuits to hire, and Lucy can book you lessons if you want
  • A fun, sociable atmosphere, sparked by fab hosts Lucy and Sean

Lows

  • Bedrooms are on the small side, but living areas are spacious
  • Kitchens are simple and don't have ovens, but are fine for preparing simple meals. There's a communal BBQ too
  • The pool is unheated and can be a little chilly out of high summer
  • You'll need to bring beach towels
  • The owners have small friendly dogs, but these can be kept away from communal areas

Best time to go

May and June are our favourite time to visit with glorious sunshine, pristine beaches and carpets of wild flowers. Autumn is also very appealing when the beaches are quiet and the ocean is warm. The high season months of July and August can be hot, but cooling northerly winds keep temperatures bearable. Winter nights are cold but the villa has underfloor heating and the sun still shines most days.”

Our top tips

Even if you're not a fan of organised tours, OceanBlue's trips are not to be missed. Whether you're a beach lover and water enthusiast or prefer exploring hinterland valleys and villages, they'll get you to places you'd never find in a guidebook to discover the real Portugal through different activities.

Great for...

Beach
Cheap & Chic
Family
Great Outdoors
  • Boutique Apartments
  • 4 apartments for 2-4
  • Self catering; walk to restaurants
  • All ages welcome
  • Open all year
  • Outdoor Pool
  • Spa Treatments
  • WiFi
  • Pet Friendly
  • Disabled Access
  • Beach Nearby
  • Off-street Parking
  • Restaurants Nearby
  • Air Conditioning
  • Guest Lounge
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Gym
  • Daily Maid Service
  • Towels & Bedlinen
  • Bicycles Available
  • Surf gear
Room:

Rooms

Overlooking the pool and huge view beyond, the 4 stylish apartments are cleverly designed. Internal walls are lined with mud plaster to create a soft acoustic and ambient climate: cool in summer, warm in winter. There's also underfloor heating for comfortable year-round living.

Open-plan interiors are predominantly white, with dashes of tropical turquoise or deep ocean blue. Immaculately furnished with simple sofas, a basic kitchen and outdoor terrace, they're a tasteful base in which to kick back and relax after your adventures.

The smallest, Sapphire has a kingsize bed in a large open-plan studio, with a basic kitchen and a large wet room. Its deck area is separate from the others, with a cool hammock chair.

Lagoona and Azul overlook the pool and each have 2 bedrooms, a large open-plan living area, and lovely light bathrooms with walk-in showers. Oceano is similar but it has a tub in its bathroom and a large private garden with plunge pool - an ideal space for kids to romp around or for those wanting a little more privacy.

Features include:

  • Coffee / tea making
  • Coffee maker
  • Dishwasher
  • Fan
  • Fridge
  • Full kitchen
  • Hairdryer
  • Hob or stove
  • Microwave
  • Terrace
  • Toaster
  • Underfloor heating
  • WiFi

Eating

Each apartment has a simple kitchen with fridge, toaster and twin hob, but no oven. The 2-bed apartments also have a microwave, and guests are welcome to use the communal barbecue in the pool area. You can buy everything you need in Burgau, a short walk or drive down the hill. There's a small supermarket, bakery, grocery store and wine shop, as well as daily visits from a van selling fresh fish.

However, eating out is a real highlight of the region; Lucy and Sean will recommend excellent restaurants and cafes. Burgau has several, and there are plenty of options further afield. Fish and seafood are the basis of traditional Algarve cuisine. A regional favourite is 'cataplana' – a combination of fish, seafood, chorizo and vegetables cooked up in a copper saucepan. Or you might want to try 'arroz de marisco' - a rice dish of prawns, clams and crabs cooked with tomato and wine in a large clay pot.

Features include:

  • Coffee / tea making
  • Coffee maker
  • Dishwasher
  • Fridge
  • Full kitchen
  • Hob or stove
  • Microwave
  • Restaurants nearby
  • Toaster
Eating:
Activity:

Activities

Guided activities:
Each day there's a different activity on offer, guided by Lucy or Sean. They can be adapted for all ages, abilities and levels of adventure. Sometimes you will be part of a group (max 6), other times it will be just you and your guide. It's all bespoke and very flexible.

  • Mountain bike through rural valleys, grassy meadows and downhill trails
  • Try paddleboarding, along a gentle river or secret beaches along the coast; great for core, balance and body strength
  • Enjoy a relaxing sea safari on Sean's 7m Cheetah catamaran; swim to hidden bays, snorkel into blue grottoes or picnic at anchor
  • Boost your fitness levels with Lucy's Wild Gym sessions; from sunrise bootcamps on the beach to guided runs and poolside yoga

Independent time:
  • Chill by the pool or in your private garden
  • Hike along the ancient coastal paths, stopping off for lunch at the traditional fishing village of Salema
  • Surf the gentle waves of the south or the wild breaks of the west. You can hire equipment from OceanBlue and Lucy can arrange lessons on request
  • Hit the beach. We like the sound of Ingrina (serene and sandy, with rock-pooling); Zavial (wild, with dramatic cliffs), and Cabanas (sandy, with a super beach club and beanbags)
  • Take a drive to dramatic Cabo de São Vicente, Portugal's most southwesterly point, with a lighthouse and spectacular views
  • Visit historic Lagos with its bustling markets, buzzing nightlife and pretty harbour estuary

Activities on site or nearby include:

  • Birdwatching
  • Boat trips
  • Cycling
  • Fishing
  • Golf
  • Hiking
  • Horse riding
  • Kayaking
  • Mountain biking
  • Private guided tours
  • Scuba diving
  • Snorkelling
  • Tennis
  • Wakeboarding
  • Wildlife
  • Windsurfing
  • Wine tasting
  • Yoga

Kids

Children of all ages are welcome and it's a great place for a family break. Older kids will get the most out of the activities on offer, but they can be tailored to all ages, abilities and levels of adventure. Lucy and Sean have a 11-year-old daughter who’s happy to make new friends and share her water skills.

Best for:

Babies (0-1 years), Toddlers (1-4 years), Children (4-12 years)

Family friendly accommodation:

Sapphire is a studio apartment with kingsize bed and a single sofabed/space for a baby cot; Azul, Lagoona and Oceano are all 2-bedroom apartments (1 double, 1 twin/double) with space for 1 baby cot.

Baby equipment:

Baby cots and high chairs

Remember  baby and child equipment may be limited or need pre-booking

Kids Activities on site:

Swimming pool (unheated), biking

Kids Activities nearby:

Splash sessions, surfing, SUP, horse riding, beaches, boat trips

Families Should Know:

The pool is not fenced. Two small friendly dogs may be around but can be kept away on request.

Distances:

  • Airport: Faro (a 1-hour drive)
  • Shops/restaurants: 0.5km
  • Hospital: 12km (Lagos)
Kid Friendly:

Location

Ocean Blue is on a hilltop just inland from the traditional fishing village of Burgau, in Portugal's western Algarve. Surrounded by wild fig fields, it's on the edge of the Costa Vicentina Natural Park.

By Air:
Fly into Faro then hire a car. It's an hour's drive.

Alternatively, Lucy can arrange airport transfers, or you can take a train from Faro to Burgau, then taxi/walk from there.

Detailed directions will be sent when you book through i-escape.

Airports:

  • Faro 97.0 km FAR

Other:

  • Beach 1.0 km
  • Shops 0.5 km
  • Restaurant 0.5 km

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