The Algarve is a popular destination for holiday makers, and with brilliant beaches and party destinations such as Lagos, it’s little wonder! But what if you’re looking for something a little more from your vacation, like finding fantastic photo opportunities and spectacular scenery?

With a range of affordable accommodation options available from companies like Villa Plus, it’s easy to stay a little off the beaten track and do your own thing on a Portuguese getaway. That’s why we’ve put together these 4 well-kept secret activities in the Algarve, in the hope that it may provide some inspiration.

1. Seeing the views from Foia

Surprisingly enough, one of the biggest secrets of the Algarve is the region’s highest mountain! If you make the decision to go to the summit of Foia, you will be rewarded with outstanding views of the coastline and surrounding countryside. It’s a great place to snap a photo, as the tiny towns and villages make a perfect picture opportunity.

4 Best Kept Secrets of the Algarve - Albufeira

If you’re thinking about making the trip, consider the season. It’s possible to go on foot with the help of a local walking guide. But if it’s the height of summer you may want to take the car to avoid heat exhaustion.

2. Birdwatching at Ria Formosa

4 Best Kept Secrets of the Algarve - Garça-branca-pequena (Egretta garzetta) Ria Formosa - Tavira 2012-08-21 (3)

The Ria Formosa Natural Park has something to offer any visitor, whether they prefer shots of landscapes or like to capture pictures of wildlife. Over 200 species of bird make their home in the Ria Formosa at different stages of the year. Photographer favorites will include flamingos, who book their own stay in the Algarve from October through to around March each year.

3. Going to secret beaches and caves around Algarve

For a day at the seaside with a difference, try visiting the Praia de Benagil. This small beach nestles between golden cliffs and is really well protected from winds. Local fishermen use this beach, and they will often take payment to take visitors there, or to the nearby Algar de Benagil.

4 Best Kept Secrets of the Algarve - Benagil Sea Cave
4 Best Kept Secrets of the Algarve - Portugal - Irgendwo am Meer...

This stunning cave has been shaped into a dome over the centuries by the actions of the sea. It’s an ideal space for a spectacular photograph if you can reach the cave by boat.

4. Visiting Pego do Inferno

The name of this hidden gem waterfall means “Pit of Hell” in English, but the scenery is heavenly! The dramatic name comes from a local myth about a carriage that fell into the pool, never to be found. You can reach the area using the backroads out of Tavira. The falls and lake make for some beautiful photographs, especially in summer-time when the clear waters allow you to see shoals of fish swimming around.

4 Best Kept Secrets of the Algarve - Pego do Inferno, Tavira, Portugal

Do you have any favorite hideaways in the Algarve that provide great picture opportunities?

Tell us on the comments below or on our facebook group or share your snaps with us on Instagram. And if you’re heading to Lisbon, check out these incredible tips of Lisbon under 15 euros.

Image by Bruno Carlos via Wikimedia Commons used under Creative Commons license