FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.
WF awards

Plan a Winter Vacation in Portugal’s Sunny Algarve

by Barbara Rogers

Nov 3, 2023

© Golasza | Dreamstime.com

Destinations / Europe

While winter temperatures aren’t warm enough for swimming on southern Portugal’s famed beaches, the Algarve’s sunny days and mild weather still lure winter family travelers. The theme parks beach amusements are closed for the season, but families will find castles, Roman sites, charming villages and fantastically carved rock formations to explore.


Already a winter haven for northern Europeans, the Algarve doesn’t close up when the beach umbrellas are folded. Restaurants, shops and attractions are open; local markets are busy; and hotels are at a fraction of summer rates. Getting around is easy, and without the beach-going crowds, local people have time to be sociable and share their secret places with visitors.


You can walk for miles on golden-sand beaches and underneath sandstone cliffs eroded into fantastic shapes. Walking trails follow along the clifftops, looking down onto tiny coves cut with sea caves. Between these find tiny fishing ports and holiday towns with promenades and outdoor cafés catching the sun.


Among the highlights not to miss is the hilltop Silves Castle, the finest Moorish fortification in Portugal, where you can walk the ramparts and climb down into the massive cistern that held enough water to withstand sieges.


In Lagos and Faro, you’ll find churches with interiors covered in gold, brought by the caravels from the mines of Brazil. Dig a bit deeper into this golden era of Portuguese history by visiting Sagres, at the Algarve’s far western tip. From here, Prince Henry the Navigator sent his caravels to explore the world; standing on top of the cliffs, it’s hard to imagine sailors taking their wooden ships into the pounding sea below.


Buy a bag of juicy sweet Algarve oranges from a roadside seller, try the local wines, savor fresh-caught seafood and sample some of the local dishes inspired by the north African influences of the Algarve’s Moorish past.


Flights to Portugal’s capital of Lisbon connect easily to Faro, or you can drive from Lisbon to the Algarve in half a day. Lagos, in the western Algarve, and Tavira in the east make good bases for exploration, with lots of hotels and more of a local flavor than the beach resorts.


Insta Feed
Jul 8, 2024

Velaa Private Island’s Kids’ Week to Feature an Astronaut on Property

Take your family travel to Velaa Private Island this summer! As part of an annual tradition, Aug. 5 to 11, Velaa Private Island hosts Kids Week, an educational celebration of summer break, completely free of charge to guests 4–12 years of age.

Sunflower Accessibility Program Featured at O’Hare and Midway Airports

Travelers with invisible disabilities passing through O’Hare and Midway International Airports can now discreetly signal they need assistance thanks to a new Chicago Department of Aviation partnership that helps create more accessible and inclusive spaces.

Jul 8, 2024

Margaritaville at Sea’s “Islander” Makes Maiden Voyage

Family travelers will delight in Margaritaville at Sea’s Islander, which set sail on her inaugural voyage in June 2024, departing from Port Tampa Bay to Cozumel, Mexico, on a four-night journey. The ship boasts 12 decks accommodating 2,650 passengers. The ship will now continue to sail four- and five-night cruises to Key West and Mexico, before venturing to Belize, Jamaica and Grand Cayman on six- and seven-night itineraries in 2026.

Jul 4, 2024

Peak Pursuits Adventures Awaits from East West Hospitality

East West Hospitality offers family travelers exciting experiences in California and Colorado with its new Peak Pursuits program. With help from East West Hospitality’s expert Guest Experience team, guests may customize the curated itineraries to best fit their needs.

United Continues Its Global Expansion

United Airlines keeps soaring to new heights, recently announcing another expansion of its leading global route network. The airline added new non-stop flights between Newark (EWR) and Marrakesh (RAK), Morocco; Tokyo (NRT) and Cebu (CEB), Philippines; and Houston (IAH) and Medellin (MDE), Colombia. That’s not all: United also plans to increase flights to popular worldwide destinations including Hong Kong (HKG); Seoul (INC), South Korea; and Porto (OPO), Portugal. Following the recent agreement to increase flights between the U.S. and Chinese governments, the airline now adds four weekly flights from Los Angeles (LAX) to Shanghai (PVG).

Jul 2, 2024

7 Canadian National Parks for Family Travel

It’s time to start dreaming of your next family trip. Here’s some destination inspiration for you. Take a visual journey through these Canadian national parks with us.