I love to feature Silves on this blog and my social networks. It is one of the main cities in the Algarve. With History in every square inch, it delights tourists of all ages. I go there often because the Algarve is my home.
Interesting, Damas. I’m going to the Algarve and want to visit Silves. What’s your suggestion for a day trip?
First, I thank you for choosing the south of Portugal.
See a suggestion below. It is enough to visit what matters most in Silves — and then you can dedicate more of your time to other parts of the amazing Algarve.
Planning a day trip to Silves
Your focus will be on the Historical Center, which you must explore on foot. The essential points are close to each other. Therefore, it will be easy to schedule a visit for a morning and an afternoon, or even a little less.
I stop on the N124 road, which crosses the city, and start my journey from Coronel Figueiredo Street towards the Historical Center. The streets are narrow and steep, covered with stones — quite often, slippery stones. (Unfortunately, the visit is not proper for people with mobility disabilities.)
To understand the area, see the following image from Google Maps.
Castle, Cathedral … and storks
Still on the N124, the time travel atmosphere starts when we see old buildings amid homes and businesses. In the distance, we discover the famous Castle and the Cathedral.
On warm days, storks might be flying around. They are an extra wonder in the area. For many tourists, this is the first experience of seeing a stork in person (what about you?). The birds build large nests, seen everywhere.
In front of the house shown in the previous two photos, we find a well-preserved, historic building: the Turret of the City Gate. It was connected to walls that protected the town. We can cross it to continue our historical journey.
After crossing it, we see an interesting gift shop: Ana & Joana.
Some steps above, the Silves Cathedral appears. Although in poor condition, it is still worth a visit for being connected to Portugal’s historical events.
In this area, find the ceramic shop Al-Tannur. The place breathes Art and History. The owners are kind, fantastic artists who create gorgeous pieces right there. Have the privilege of talking to them and buying something.
Following the itinerary in Silves, always up through the Historical Center, we soon find Restaurant Café Inglês. Here is an opportunity to eat and drink … and to rest.
Finally, we arrive at Silves Castle, the most outstanding star of a day trip to Silves. The entrance is a few meters from the restaurant mentioned above.
Your day trip to Silves might be even more attractive.
In August, the town promotes the traditional Silves Medieval Fair (on days to be decided each year). The Historical Center changes decorations to show a medieval atmosphere. Tourists feel like being part of a medieval film. Don’t miss this opportunity.
Wonderful, Glauco! Now I may organize this part of my trip to the Algarve.
I love your excitement. But now I have some…
Particular advice for a day trip to Silves
Summer is intense in the Algarve. Thermometers easily reach 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit). The problem is that Silves is hotter than the region’s average. Expect extra four or five degrees Celsius (39-41 degrees Fahrenheit).
Therefore, for a tour in Silves at this time, I recommend sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat or cap. Also, beware of dehydration.
On rainy days, multiply your care on the streets. Some parts are very slippery. And take a lot of care if you climb the castle walls. It is easy to fall from there (accidents like this are common in Portugal; usually, selfies are to blame).
I do not recommend a visit in Winter. The Algarve practically dies at this time. Tourists are scarce, and most places close. To be honest, it is depressing.
Good luck with your trip to Portugal. If you see a stork in Silves, say hello on my behalf.
» I live in the Algarve (South of Portugal). My first fiction book, for young adults, was published in 2001 in the Portuguese language — a time travel adventure with thousands of readers. I also wrote books and guides about travel and technology. Screenplays are my greatest passion.
» This is the English version of my blog G. DAMAS (Portuguese language, online since 2010). English is not my native language.
[ More / Contact ]