Albufeira, Portugal, is bigger than you’d think.
And the main attractions are spread out over a fair distance. This makes walking a less-feasible mode of transportation. Luckily, there is a fun and affordable alternative⸺the Tourist Train.
You’ve probably seen similar tourist trains on your travels. I’ve personally taken them in a variety of cities, from Key West to Paris and everywhere in between. But who knew they would have one in this quaint seaside city? It’s certainly not heavily advertised on traditional tourism sites, and you likely won’t find a brochure for it at your hotel. You just need to stumble upon it, which I very fortunately did as I was walking through the Old Town.
For just 4 Euros you can get a day pass aboard the train, which makes four stops throughout Albufeira. There are other options available for a lower rate⸺it’s just 2 Euros for a roundtrip ticket, for example. But for the extra couple of bucks, it’s worth it to be able to hop on an off anytime you like.
The train moves in one direction along the main street, Areias de São João. It departs every 20 minutes during the day and every 40 minutes after 7 p.m. from The Strip, Old Town at Fishermen’s Beach, Town Hall, and Brisa Sol Hotel. I caught the train at Brisa Sol and did a full circuit, which took about 40 minutes. After a quick poke around the area, I hopped back on the next train and headed for Old Town, where I was staying. Later that night, I took the train to The Strip and back. It saved my feet a ton of walking, and I didn’t have to shell out a ton of cash for taxis.
Pro Tip: The last train departs The Strip at 10:40 p.m., so if you plan to party til the wee hours, you’ll need to find another way to stumble home safely.
There’s not a lot of sightseeing to do on the train itself. It’s simply a quick and easy way to get from one place to another. Just kick back, relax, and enjoy the ride through town.
Have you ever taken a tourist train? What was your experience like? Share it with the Wanderlust Wayfarer Facebook group.