Algarve promoting motorhome tourism

By Bruno G. Santos, in News · 31-10-2020 14:00:00 · 12 Comments

The Algarve Tourism Region (RTA) has launched an awareness campaign aimed at campervans looking for a holiday destination, directing the extraordinary international demand that campervans have been generating in the region to the Algarve Caravanning Network in the Algarve Region (RAARA) and promoting the enjoyment of these infrastructures for the legal practise of camping.

Under the motto “Make the best choice”, the campaign challenges campervans to stay overnight in one of the 35 units of the network that comply with the applicable legislation for campervans and offer all the comfort and safety conditions, providing water, electricity and wi-fi, among other services. The aim is to discourage motorhomes from staying in informal spaces, which lack basic infrastructure and services, nor comfort and safety conditions.

“In the Algarve, there is a network of reception spaces offered to the motorhome drivers that allow you to enjoy the main attractions of the destination by the legislation in force. This is, in recent years, a modality with increasing demand across Europe, which the pandemic has made even more evident”, said the president of RTA, João Fernandes.

“The overnight stays in places such as beach car parks, cliffs, dunes and pine forests poses serious problems in terms of hygiene and public health, changes the delicate environmental balance of classified places and constitutes an unnecessary safety risk for motorhomes. This campaign challenges them precisely to make the best choice, which will always be the choice of one of the Camping and Caravanning Parks, Rural Camping Parks or Service Areas for Motorhomes that are part of RAARA”, concluded João Fernandes.

Algarve motorhome campaign

The units that are part of RAARA are licensed spaces that comply with the applicable legislation in force and are duly identified on the website

The campaign's media plan includes the sharing of posters on outdoor supports, social networks (to make the network known and generating traffic to the website), Google Ads (search and display campaign) and other online and offline means to reach motorhomes, including the RTA's means.


I read this news article and people's responses with interest and sadness. We've been travelling around Portugal in a 'Motorhome', whilst looking for a property to purchase. Staying in a Hotel/renting a car for 6 months would take a ridiculous amount of money away from what I'm prepared to spend on a property. Judging by a lot of your responses (Jenny Washington!! WOW), we'd be classed as grubby hobo dirty hippies. Even though we have a shower and toilet that we empty in the appropriate places. We've travelled many miles and visited many places from North to the Silver Coast. Luckily in EVERY SINGLE PLACE we've been made to feel welcome by every Portuguese person we've met. They've gone out of their way to help us and we've been treated as part of an extended family. It's been a beautiful and humbling experience. We contribute to the local communities with purchasing our food in local shops, we eat out in local restaurants when we can. We don't leave our litter around. I'm totally and utterly humbled by the amazing people that we've met and want to make Portugal my home. We were going to head to the Algarve and rent a place for 6 months BUT I was warned by PORTUGUESE people that we wouldn't be welcome in the Algarve because of the age of our van and our appearance (a bit too HIPPY for the Algarve apparently - despite our age). With the recent government rules we changed our plans and decided to stop for a few months on the Silver Coast. Having read these posts I'm glad we ended up renting here and spending our money here. Where we're welcome! We'll do what the Portuguese people said ... avoid the Algarve (unless I rent a car and stay in a hotel). What a shame.

By Sarah from Lisbon on 07-11-2020 06:41

Foreign residents in Portugal are from all over the world, not just the UK! We are a diverse population, part of our local community, and we feel it is important to express our views on issues that affect us in our neighbourhood. With all respect to our adoptive country and local administration.

By Annie from Algarve on 05-11-2020 05:12

I wonder how many of those leaving comments, are UK EX-Pats enjoying their 'Retirement' years in Portugal's Algarve ? Jenny Washington is really showing her bitter side. Then you have 'upper class Jeremy'.

By Paul Simpson from UK on 05-11-2020 11:03

As an all year resident on the west coast I am also sick of the dirty, scruffy hippy campers who contribute nothing to the economy and leave nothing but waste. They are a winter infestation, mostly German and seem to be in competition with each other to be the dirtiest/hippies. We call them the dippies (dirty hippys).
Respectful, normal campers are most welcome but how to remove the scum is the question? Bigger fines or the vehicle is towed may be the way?

By M. Hunt from Algarve on 05-11-2020 09:34

A lot will have to change to make this type of holidaying environment-friendly.
On 4th November the National Guard issued 96 fines in the municipality of Vila do Bispo for wild camping or illegal motorhome parking. And we are not even in a busy tourist season!

By Annie from Algarve on 04-11-2020 05:32

Jenny Washington, your statement is not entirely true, don't blame the motorhome owners for all the mess left around. Most motorhomers are respectful to the counties they visit and I say most because in all walks of life you will get the ones that don't including local residents and countrymen visitors. I have seen it for myself where say on the coastal parking people getting in and out of cars and throwing their rubbish on the ground when there are bins just yards away.
Dog poo everywhere. I just witnessed recently a local lad taking his dog over a very large car park in the town where they also have market days, the dog did a poo watched by the lad who then just walked off and left it.

By Sbeila from UK on 03-11-2020 12:04

It upsets me to read your negative responses to motorhomers.
I have been motorhoming for many years and can safely say that I have never left my rubbish behind.
To tar us all with the same brush is narrow minded and is an assumption that is unsubstantiated.
When we visit an area we eat out and spend money visiting local attractions.

By Linda Haynes from UK on 03-11-2020 09:14

There are remaining areas of pristine beauty and spectacular nature remaining within Portugal unscathed by development for the un-imaginative concrete dwelling infestation. It is possible to inhabit any form of living space albeit static or mobile, but it is both a crime to complain that mobile is not noble as it is to disrespect the ineptitude of those who have permanent vistas.

By J Es from Alentejo on 02-11-2020 08:54

This is great news. I was thinking of taking the van down to Portugal. Looking forward to driving down to the Algarve with some friends. Jenny, do you need anything driving down?

By Stu Grant from UK on 02-11-2020 03:11

Motorhome owners have zero respect for the countries they visit. They leave rubbish and dump their effluent where ever they want.

YOU ARE NOT WELCOME in the Algarve!

Stay in your own country or book a holiday which will actually help the economy in their respective countries.

I own land and am tired of cleaning up the mess these scummy motorhome owners leave.

By Jenny Washington from Algarve on 01-11-2020 09:25

Well done to the authorities for making safe spaces available for motor homes. It is now up to them to crack down severely on those selfish wild campers who defile Algave's hospitality.

By Ian from Algarve on 31-10-2020 10:51

I dont believe that Portugal should continue to develop cheap tourisme because Portugal has so much to offer to the up market tourist with beauty,gastronomy, climate and security .
Why no go for the up market tourist clientèle
We are also tired of having cheap rusty camping cars blocking the roads and leaving tonnes of rubbish in the countryside and on the beaches
Apologies to the respectful campers but you suffer because of the hundreds of non respectful campers who bring nothing to Portugal but rubbish and bad behaviour

By Jeremy from Algarve on 31-10-2020 07:08
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