A Travel Price Comparison for Families, Couples, and Backpackers Portimao vs. Portofino for Resorts, Beaches, Families, and Couples

Should you visit Portimao or Portofino?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the activities as well as the prices of travel for Portimao and Portofino. We'll break down costs for accommodation, food, transportation and more to help you learn more about these two destinations. Then, you can figure out if either of these two places are accessible based on your travel budget, schedule, and interests. So, let's dig into it.

Portimao

Portimao is a stunning, dramatic, and active coastal city. You'll find world class beauty here as well. And you can't forget about the nightlife, scuba diving and snorkeling, and beaches.

Portofino

Portofino is a picturesque, breathtaking, and opulent seaside village. This is a great small town that is just waiting to be explored. You'll find world class beauty here as well. As it offers a special and quaint atmosphere, visitors come from all over to experience this destination. Other popular activities here include food, beaches, and hiking.

Portimao and Portofino: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Active nightlife
  • Good scuba and snorkeling destination
  • Popular beach
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Impressive beauty
Things to Consider
  • Less popular for food
  • Less walkable
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Popular for food and cuisine
  • Active nightlife
  • Scenic old town
  • Good for hiking
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Very walkable
  • Small town charm
  • Impressive beauty
  • Quaint atmosphere
Things to Consider
  • Less attractive beach
  • Less family-friendly
  • Less popular with backpackers


Is there more to do in Portimao or Portofino?

Tourists will generally find more to do in Portofino. Although Portimao and Portofino are both popular with visitors, Portofino has more sights, activities, and attractions for travelers. Portofino is more popular for its museums, food, historical sights, hiking, shopping, small town charm, and quaint atmosphere, while Portimao is known for its scuba diving & snorkeling and beaches. Portimao is popular for it's dramatic and beautiful beaches and its many activities. Portofino is popular for its picturesque harbor, high end shopping, strikingly blue waters, and popularity with superyachts. It is also home to its scenic harbor.

its scenic harbor
Its scenic harbor

How is Portimao different from Portofino?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Portofino and Portimao. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Portimao or Portofino?

Portimao
Portofino

Portofino is a moderate seaside village for its sights and museums. However, Portimao does not have museums and landmarks.

Portofino offers a handful of options for museums and historical sights. The village is mostly about soaking up the atmosphere, but you can also visit sights such as Sun Church of St. George and Cervara Abbey.

Portimao does not have museums and landmarks.


Is the Food Better in Portimao or Portofino? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?

Portimao
Portofino

Portofino is a well-known place for its local cuisine and restaurants. However, Portimao is not a good coastal city for its restaurants.

Dining out in Portofino is an experience not to be missed. Located by the sea, you'll enjoy tons of great seafood here. Make sure you try the mussels, swordfish, and salt cod.

Portimao offers some easy restaurants to choose from. Many resorts have attached restaurants where visitors often find themselves dining. For a slightly more local vibe, you can check out one of the many restaurants around town. Much of the restaurant scene is centered around the Alvor District where you'll find unique options that serve local dishes mixed in with some international choices. The city is most famous for its grilled sardines, which are considered a local specialty.

Is Portimao or Portofino Better for Nightlife?

Portimao
Portofino

Both Portimao and Portofino are superb when it comes to partying.

Portimao offers plenty to do in the evening. The city's nightlife scene is mostly found around Praia da Rocha. It's a compact area that makes it easy to hop from bar to bar on foot. Particularly during the summer months you'll find plenty of parties and all night activities that draw a crowd. Sunset boat parties are also a popular activity in the area.

Portofino has a large number of nightlife venues. Most of the nightlife is found around Piazzetta (Oliveri Square) and Molo Umberto I. Happy hours (aperitivo) start around 5pm or 6pm and then as the evening continues, the party often moves to Paraggi Beach.

Is Portimao or Portofino Better for Resorts?

Portimao
Portofino

There are amazing resorts to choose from in both Portimao and Portofino.

Vacationers flock to Portimao for its luxury resorts. The area has all types of resorts, from all-inclusive options to luxury or more family-friendly. Many of the resorts are surprisingly affordable and offer easy access to the beach.

For the ultimate resort vacation, Portofino is a great choice. Known for it's exclusive luxury, there are a number of high end resorts in the area. Popular options include Splendido, Sublimis Boutique Hotel, and Grand Hotel Miramare.


Is Portimao or Portofino Better for Scuba Diving and Snorkeling?

Portimao
Portofino

Portimao is notable for its diving and snorkeling. However, Portofino is not a scuba or snorkeling destination.

Many visitors partake in scuba diving or snorkeing while visiting Portimao. The best water conditions are during the summer months but this is also when the beaches are crowded and swimmers can kick up a lot of sand. There are a variety of vendors where you can book snorkeling or diving trips in the area.

Portofino is not a scuba or snorkeling destination.

Is Portimao or Portofino Better for Beaches?

Portimao
Portofino

Portimao is an unbeatable place for the beache. Also, Portofino is not as famous, but is still a good seaside village to visit for the beach.

Travelers come from around the world to visit the beaches in Portimao. The stunning beaches are a major draw to the area. They are sandy and feature a backdrop of dramatic red cliffs. The most popular beach in town is Praia da Rocha, which can get crowded during the summer months, but it is quite large so you should still be able to find a spot. The strip behind the beach is lined with shops, bars, restaurants, and a casino. If you want to avoid some of the crowds you can make the walk down to Praia do Vau. Families often enjoy Praia de Alvor, which has a boardwalk that leads to Ria de Alvor nature reserve.

Many people head to Portofino to enjoy the beach. Like much of the Italian coast, the beaches in the area are dramatic and beautiful. They're also rocky and pebbly and can get a bit crowded during the summer months.

Is Portimao or Portofino Better for its Old Town?

Portimao
Portofino

Portofino is a well-known place for its historic old town charm. However, Portimao does not have a historic old town.

There are many historical things to see in the old town of Portofino. Despite evolving into a famous resort town, Portofino still holds on to its fishing village charm.

Portimao does not have a historic old town.


Is Portimao or Portofino Better for Hiking?

Portimao
Portofino

Portofino is a well-known place for the nearby hiking options. However, Portimao is not a hiking destination.

Portofino is a popular spot for hiking. There are many beautiful hikes and treks along the coastline that pass by scenic landscapes and breathtaking views.

Portimao is not a hiking destination.

Is the Shopping Better in Portimao or Portofino?

Portimao
Portofino

Portofino is a well-known place for its shopping areas. Also, Portimao is not as famous, but is still a good coastal city to visit for shopping.

Browsing through shops is a popular activity in Portofino. The quaint cobblestone streets are lined with high end boutiques that target the opulent jet-setter crowd that frequents Portofino. Much of the shopping is around Martiri dell'Olivetta Square.

Plenty of visitors enjoy shopping while in Portimao. It's the second largest city in the Algarve so you'll find several large and modern shopping centers including Aqua Portimão.

Is Portimao or Portofino Better for Families?

Portimao
Portofino

Portimao is an unbeatable place for its family-friendly activities. However, Portofino is a mediocre seaside village for its kid-friendly activities.

As it has a large number of activities for kids, Portimao is a very family-friendly destination. Kids will love the wide range of activities available near Portimao. They can kayak through caves, see an underwater world snorkeling, learn to surf, visit waterparks, explore nature parks, and more. There are activities that the whole family can enjoy, making this stretch of coastline the perfect option for those traveling with kids.

Portofino is not always a place people visit with their families. The town has a picturesque setting and some beautiful pebbly beaches. It's fun for kids to run around the town, explore by kayak, or play in the waters edge.


Is Portimao or Portofino Better for Couples?

Portimao
Portofino

Portimao and Portofino both amazing destinations for a couple.

Portimao is fantastic couple's destination with fun and romantic activities. This beautiful stretch of coastline offers unique beaches and stunning outdoor activities. It makes a wonderful honeymoon destination for couples who enjoy adventure, pampering, and romantic resorts. There are great restaurants as well as places to relax or activities for thrill seekers.

Portofino makes for a terrific place to visit as a couple. Set beautifully against the ocean's edge, this famous Italian town makes for a truly romantic holiday. Ogle the mega yachts in the harbor and then wander the charming streets while you soak in the atmosphere.

Is Portimao or Portofino Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Portimao
Portofino

Portimao is a popular place for backpackers. However, Portofino is a mediocre seaside village for backpackers and budget travelers.

Plenty of budget travelers visit Portimao. Most people think of high end resorts when they think of the Mediterranean coast, but there are a couple of hostels available for backpackers. You should also consider transportation options. While buses are available, many visitors prefer to have access to a car so they can experience the outlying regions. The good news is the area in general is not particularly expensive so you can enjoy a touch of luxury at a lower cost.

Portofino is a challenging destination for budget travelers and backpackers due to the higher prices. Known for it's high prices, the town isn't particularly popular with the backpacker crowd. It is possible to stay outside of town and head in for a day trip.

Is Portimao or Portofino Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?

Portimao
Portofino

Both Portimao and Portofino offer decent public transit options.

Public transit is generally limited in Portimao. There are local buses around town but many routes don't run on weekends.

Public transit is mostly limited in Portofino. The closet train stations are Santa Margherita Ligure and Camogli. You can catch a bus from the Santa Margherita train station. There are also some ferry options.


Is Portimao or Portofino a more walkable city?

Portimao
Portofino

Portofino is renowned for its ease of walking around. However, Portimao is not a good coastal city for its walkability.

It is easy to get around Portofino on foot. It's easy to walk around the village and then explore the countryside on one of the nearby trails.

Portimao is generally not a very walkable coastal city. While there are some nice walks along the coastline, the city is fairly large and spread out with many resorts located far from the center of town.

For even more information, also check out Is Portimao Worth Visiting? and Is Portofino Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Portofino or Portimao?

How long in Portimao or Portofino?

In either Portimao or Portofino, you'll find plenty of activities to fill your time. Most visitors tend to spend more time in Portofino than Portimao because of the overall number of sights and activities. Usually, 2-4 days is a good amount of time for Portimao, and 2-5 days is enough time in Portofino.

Families should spend more time in Portimao than Portofino. Because of the many family-friendly attractions and fun things to do for kids in Portimao, it's a great place to visit with the whole family.

Couples should spend more time in Portofino than Portimao. You'll find plenty of romantic sights and fun activities in Portofino that are perfect for a weekend getaway or a longer couple's trip.


  • How many days in Portimao or Portofino? Ideal Length of Stay
    Portimao 2-4 
    Portofino 2-5

One day in Portimao or Portofino?

You'll find scuba diving and snorkeling and shopping around the coastal city of Portimao. People often spend their time relaxing at one of the resorts. Since there is so much to do in the area, one day is probably not enough for all of it. It has many unique tourist attractions and fascinating things to do.

Portofino is a small town where visitors enjoy the nightlife and food. Many visitors also spend a good bit of time hiking. With so much to do, one day is probably not enough time to see everything. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

A weekend in Portimao or Portofino?

You'll find shopping and nightlife around the vibrant destination of Portimao. People usually spend lots of time at the beach. This is a popular place to visit for a weekend.A weekend should give you a good understanding of everything this coastal city has to offer. This coastal city offers a variety of activities to choose from.

Portofino is a popular place that is full of things to see and experience. If you have a weekend, this seaside village makes for a great vacation. People enjoy relaxing at one of the resorts. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Portofino, a weekend is sufficent for most. Take your pick from the many activities offered here.


Five days in Portimao or Portofino?

Travelers enjoy the nightlife and scuba diving and snorkeling when visiting the active coastal city of Portimao. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision. It's also a relaxing resort destination. Most people head to the area for the beaches. Five days is plenty of time to see everything, even with extra days to spare.

Portofino is a popular choice for travelers. Five days here is typical. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Portofino, five days is sufficent for most. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.

A week in Portimao or Portofino?

Portimao is a popular choice for travelers. People enjoy relaxing at one of the resorts. One week is usually plenty of time to spend here with extra days to spare. With this much time, visitors often visit nearby destinations or take day trips. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

Portofino is a great place to explore. Hiking can easily take up a good amount of your time here, too. One week is more than enough time to enjoy everything. Take some day trips to nearby places to fill the extra days. This seaside village offers something for everyone.


For some great organized tour ideas, see Tours for Outdoor and Nature Lovers in Portugal, The Best Bicycle Tours in Portugal, The Best Historical Tours in Italy, and The Best 10-Day Tours in Italy.


Which place is cheaper, Portofino or Portimao?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Portimao is €152, while the average daily cost in Portofino is €326. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Portimao and Portofino in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Portimao 78
    Portofino 190
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Portimao 156
    Portofino 380
Compare Hotels in Portimao and Portofino

Looking for a hotel in Portimao or Portofino? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Portimao


Hotels in Portofino


Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.


Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Portimao Hotel Prices and Portofino Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Portimao 37
    Portofino 23

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Portimao

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Portimao:

  • Transfer Lagoa - Alamos Golf (Portimão): $34
  • Transfer Alvor - Alamos Golf (Portimão): $34
  • Transfer Ferragudo - Alamos Golf (Portimão): $34
  • Transfer Praia da Rocha - Alamos Golf (Portimão) : $34
  • Transfer Lagoa - Balaia Golf (Albufeira): $41
  • Transfer Carvoeiro - Balaia Golf (Albufeira): $41
  • Private Transfer from Armaçao de Pera to Faro (FAO) Airport: $55
  • Transfer Armação de Pêra - Alamos Golf (Portimão): $55
  • Transfer Alvor - Balaia Golf (Albufeira): $58
  • Transfer Portimão - Balaia Golf (Albufeira): $59
  • Transfer Lagoa - Boavista Golf (Lagos): $60
  • Private Transfer from Josper Grill Steakhouse Dry Aged to Faro (FAO) Airport: $80

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Portofino

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Portofino:

  • Private Transfer from Portofino Cruise Port to Genoa Airport(GOA): $49
  • Private Transfer from Portofino Cruise Port to Genoa city hotels: $49
  • Portofino hotels to Genoa Airport (GOA) - Departure Private Transfer: $54
  • Private Transfer - Portofino Cruise Port to Florence Airport(FLR): $158
  • Private Transfer from Portofino Cruise Port to Florence hotels: $158

Is it cheaper to fly into Portimao or Portofino?

Prices for flights to both Portofino and Portimao change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.





Food
  • Food Meals for one day
    Portimao 45
    Portofino 118

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Portimao

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Portimao.

  • Algarve wine tour and mountain top trip with lunch or dinner at sunset time: $147

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Portofino

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Portofino.

  • Portofino Boat and Walking Tour with Pesto Cooking & Lunch: $246

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Portimao 41
    Portofino 27

Tours and Activities in Portimao

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Portimao are as follows:

  • Stand Up Paddleboard tour in Benagil: $14
  • SUP - Stand Up Paddle Algarve Adventure: $16
  • Benagil Cave Sunset Cruise: $19
  • From Portimão to Paradise 90 minutes Sunset Tour: $22
  • Express Tour - Benagil Cave: $22
  • Portimão: Benagil Caves Speedboat Tour: $24
  • Portimão to Paradise 2 Hours Sunrise Tour: $25
  • Two Hours Tour from Portimão to Paradise : $25
  • Portimão to Benagil: Adrenaline Wave - 90Mins Cave Tour: $25
  • Benagil Cave Kayak Self-Guided Tour: $27
  • 2 Hours Cruise Portimão to Benagil Cave & Marinha Beach: $27
  • Stand Up Paddle Boarding Guided Experience in Praia da Rocha: $27

Tours and Activities in Portofino

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Portofino are as follows:

  • 1-Hour Snorkeling Tour in Paraggi Bay, Portofino: $42
  • Snorkel Tour in Paraggi Bay: $43
  • Portofino Stand Up Paddleboard Experience: $52
  • Easy Kayak Tour to Portofino with Optional Snorkeling: $52
  • Paddle Boarding Experience in Portofino: $54
  • Portofino Kayak Tour: $54
  • Coasteering Tour: $73
  • Portofino and San Fruttuoso Boat Experience: $106
  • Scenic Private Hiking Tour from Portofino to S. Fruttuoso: $240
  • Portofino and Santa Margherita Private Tour of Ligurian Gems: $245
  • Portofino Private Walking Tour: $266
  • White Boat Tour Tigullio Portofino: $447

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Portimao 30
    Portofino 16

Sample the Local Flavors in Portimao

Here are a few nightlife and alcohol tours and activities from local tour providers in Portimao:

  • Algarve Wine Tasting & Music Experience: $60
  • Algarve Wine Tour of Two Wine Estates: $74
  • Algarve wine tour and farmer's lunch at wine estate: $182
  • Alentejo Wine Tour from the Algarve: $210


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Portimao and Portofino, we can see that Portofino is more expensive. And not only is Portimao much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Portimao would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Portimao and be able to afford a more luxurious travel style by staying in nicer hotels, eating at more expensive restaurants, taking tours, and experiencing more activities. The same level of travel in Portofino would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Portofino than you might in Portimao.

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Portimao Expensive? and Is Portofino Expensive?.


Which is Bigger, Portimao or Portofino?

Portimao has a larger population, and is about 70 times larger than the population of Portofino. When comparing the sizes of Portimao and Portofino, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit along with the activities and attractions that interest you.