Estômbar

Rural village near Lagoa and Portimão in the western Algarve, Portugal
Estômbar
  • District: Faro > Municipality: Lagoa > Parish: Estômbar
  • Population: 4.985
  • Distances: Faro Airport 64 km, Lisbon Airport 272 km
  • Tourist Info: Posto de Turismo de Carvoeiro

Estômbar is a village (vila) in the municipality (concelho) of Lagoa, district Faro (Algarve). Together with neighbouring Parchal it belongs to the parish (freguesia) of Estômbar e Parchal.

This typical village, almost untouched by the mass tourism, is situated on a hill east of the lower course of the river Arade. Estômbar is one of the oldest settlements in the Algarve. During the Moorish period its name was Sanabus, when D. Sancho I conquered the fortress Abenabeci in 1191 on his way to re-conquer Silves. Even today the architecture of the white painted houses is a reminder of its Arabian past.

In the nineteenth and twentieth century Estômbar was a centre for fish canning which led to urban growth and prosperity. The beautiful parish baroque church of Igreja de São Tiago situated on a hilltop in the town centre with a portal in Manuelinik style can already be seen from a far. Visitors may like to park their cars at the entrance to the old town and explore the steep, narrow lanes by foot. A beautiful cemetery opposite the church affords great views towards the valley of the river Arade.

The limestone springs of Sitio das Fontes with a water mill,  are located on a side branch of the river Arade, and are the largest of their kind in the Algarve. The area has been converted into a leisure park with BBQ facilities, an open air stage and an educational trail. The nearby winery Quinta do Vales with an exhibition of modern statues located in the vineyard is also worth a visit. The popular water park Slide & Splash can be found half way between Estômbar and Lagoa.


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