Algarve-spaRelax your body and mind in the picture-perfect surroundings of the Portuguese Algarve region. Get away from the hustle and bustle of modern life and check yourself into a divine spa for a few days – or more – of rest, relaxation and nourishment for the soul. Ditch the tedious pre-breakfast yoga routines at home, tip away the cheap bubble bath and get yourself on a plane to the Algarve to reap the benefits of its little-known spa network.

One such healthy haven is the Longevity Wellness Resort, situated in the idyllic setting of Monchique in an area known as the ‘Garden of the Algarve’ thanks to its vibrant flower fields and flourishing foliage. The dense forest surrounding the area makes it feel delightfully secluded, so you can rest assured that no prying eyes or outside distractions will disturb your stay. A number of nutritionists, therapists and instructors are on hand to create a tailored programme to address your specific needs. Themes include relaxation, weight-loss and detoxing, so whether you’ve been hitting the post-work cocktails too hard recently, want to shift some pounds or just learn to chill out, there is a set of activities which will suit you perfectly.

AlmaVerde Village and Spa is found a short distance away from Faro. Treatments range from the relaxing to fitness improvement to beauty, with offerings including acupuncture, Thai massage and manicures. For a more personal experience, you can book a personal trainer or personal yoga or meditation classes to make sure you get the one-to-one support you need to get the most out of your visit.

The Western Algarve’s luxurious Spa Floresta offers a range of conventional and alternative therapies for men and women. Hydramemory and Alphatherapy Collagen treatments are among the more modern approaches to relaxation and beauty treatment, or you can go the classic route with massages, hair and nail treatments. It also has its own state-of-the-art gym which is comprehensively equipped with a variety of cardiovascular and strength training machines and personal trainers on hand to help you improve your workout. The heated pebble pool is ideal for a blissful relaxation session, and the exquisite views over the Algarve are perfect for putting you in a peaceful frame of mind.

If you’re happy to go a little further afield, the Grande Real Sante Eulalia Resort is just a 40 minute drive away from Faro in the beautiful Albufeira.  It is well-equipped with a range of top spa facilities and is particularly popular with couples, and if you’re lucky you might get a room with a spectacular sea view.

Of course, if you’re on a budget, the Algarve has many pockets of calm, from the multiple nature reserves to the laid-back ilha beaches which can be reached by ferry from the harbor. Lots of hotels contain their own spas where you can book yourself in for a mini-treatment, such as a manicure or a mini-massage if you don’t want to commit to the full spa experience. But when the choice on offer is this good, do you really want to deny yourself a true Algarve spa holiday?

Emma Lawson is a lover of all things rest and relaxation, and frequently visits Europe to find the best spas and health retreats.

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