Most of our Holiday villas located between Silves and Sao Bartolomeu de Messines (Messines), Algarve Portugal. Messines is short for Sao Bartolomeu de Messines and is a turn off from the highway the A22. 50 kilometres from Faro, the capital of the Algarve and 15 kilometres from historic town Silves.
Since 1988 I visit Messines, and to me it is a very special town, not because of its beauty, maybe it is ugly, but ugly can make beautiful! It is pure, it is a farmer’s town, and it is very Portuguese
Highlights S.B. de Messines
You can get in Messines Algarve everything you want, there is a daily vegetable and fish market, pharmacists, little supermarkets, and a larger supermarket, open everyday! There is a cinema (!), papelaria where you can even buy foreign papers, and an unlimited amount of pasteleria’s to drink a nice cup of coffee with a pastel de nata, and believe it or not in one of those pastelaria’s they serve a full English breakfast!
Messines Algarve is actually well known in Portugal because the famous Portuguese poet Joao de Deus (1830-1896) who has born and raised in SB de Messines, therefore there is a museum of his work, the museum is the house he lived and is next to the church. He is also famous of developing an education system for young children, which is still in use today!
A beautiful church with Manueline (16th Century) details based in the centre of Messines, and next to it there is a covered space where the Portuguese man always playing cards, domino, or sit and watch life going by…. But not during almoço (lunch), lunch is the main meal for the Portuguese, therefore many shops will be closed during lunch, streets become quiet…. but apart from lunch time, Messines in Portugal is a lively town, Portuguese have a habit to drink coffee (bica) outdoors, they generally have no coffee machine at home. It is cheap (0.50 per bica) and a social habit. The Portuguese like to talk, talk, talk and drinking a bica outdoors, giving them opportunity to hear the latest gossips of town etc…
Every month Messines Algarve has the so called gypsy market, and is always the last Monday of the month and also well worth a visit, as well gypsies, but also lots of Portuguese selling there products, from Portuguese crockery, chickens, house hold goods, tools, plants, vegetable and they grilling chicken, and of course you can drink a bica (coffee) or cerveza (beer) amongst the Portuguese. For the Portuguese a nice day out, they come from all over the area, dressed up to meet friends and family!
Beaches S.B. de Messines
Although Messines located in the interior of the Algarve, it is only a 20 minutes drive to beaches like Albufeira and Armacao de Pera. A little further you find Carvoeiro beach, with its pretty golden rock formations, and Alvor beach. Due to Messines Algarve central location, you have easy reach to the calm beaches like Sagres or to the East, like Faro Beach.
Activities and Events S.B. de Messines
Messines Algarve is located inland. The beautiful surrounded nature give the opportunity to explore by foot, mountain bike or on a horse back. There is an sign posted walking trail, this makes it easy to find you way around Messines Algarve. As it is easy reach to the coast, from Messines Algarve you can do water sports such as sailing, surfing, and dolphin safari trips. Messines Algarve is ideal for jeep safari trips, a more lazy way to enjoy the beautiful surroundings of Messines Algarve!
Bars and Restaurants S.B. de Messines
Apart from the pastelaria’s, there are a many bars, and some do live music in the weekends. A few restaurants, where you can find mainly traditional Portuguese food on the menu like chicken piri, lamb (Borrego) and various fish dishes, like the Cataplana which is a stew of shell fish/fish and meat.
Fatinha, used to be the butcher of Messines Algarve, they serve excellent chicken dishes, but also the other food is good value for money!
Restaurant Joao do Deus, is a nice restaurant with a large choice of traditional Portuguese dishes.
The Cacadores, is one of my favorites restaurants of Messines Algarve, they do nice fish dishes, like shrimps.
Joaquim da Praca, is a bit more expensive, and they have a good steak.
Surroundings S.B. de Messines
Messines lies in the centre of the Algarve, only 20 minutes north of, for tourist famous Albufeira, beautiful beaches like Armacoa de Pera, 1 hour from Lagos, Western Algarve, and 1 hour from Tavira in the east Algarve. A little bit north of Messines there are two baragems (artificial lakes), that supply water to various parts of the Algarve. Those lakes have beautiful hilly surroundings, worth a visit.
A few little nice villages in the same area with nice restaurants and bars like Vale Fuzeiros and Amorosa. Mountain village Alte is 15 minutes drive away, and historic town Silves is also 15 minutes drive away, all worth a visit!
So Messines Algarve is my place to live, away from the tourism, but close to all amenities, enjoy the famous beaches and then back home to relax and enjoy the real Algarve!
Accommodation S.B. de Messines
Most our villa located in the Algarve Portugal. Would you like to stay in the central Algarve, Messines Algarve, this is the ideal area to explore the Algarve, as it is very central in the Algarve, so easy reach to beaches, West and East Algarve. Please have a look on our section central Algarve; here you find a wide choice of accommodations in this area, from rustic windmills to luxury villas! All with private gardens and pools, in quit surroundings.