A review of Praia da Luz – June 2024

A brief recap: Since arriving at Ocean Villas Luz in August 2020, writer David Lugg has been experiencing all aspects of Luz Life. This is his review of June 2024:

It’s that time of year when noise levels increase by a few decibels. When jet skis and inflatable rubber rings zip across the sea with wild abandon. When waterparks have spiral queues down each scary-looking ride. When the supermarket runs low on sun cream and fizzy drinks. Yes, that’s right – it’s the school holidays.

Far from dreading this time of year, I actually really enjoy it. Praia da Luz has a welcome fervent buzz of anticipation. Mums and Dads are here to make lasting memories with their children. Perhaps it’s their first swim in an outdoor pool together or their first game of football on the beach. Or perhaps it’s a chance for the family to wind down after school exams. Sometimes, a comfy sunbed and a trashy summer novel is the perfect remedy.

Despite the natural beauty on our doorstep, I am often faced with the question of how Mum and Dad can entertain little Johnny on their two weeks in Praia da Luz. Resisting the temptation to say take a bucket and spade to the beach, I have compiled a useful list of activities to keep even the most energetic of children happy. When you’re next staying at Ocean Villas Luz, pop in to see me in the office and I will be delighted to run through the options. Here are a few of my lesser-known highlights:

So you’ve kayaked, been on the rubber rings, visited the waterpark and tried surfing? That’s okay, how about going on a family-friendly hike in the hills. The ever-fabulous Kiki (kikitrips.com) offers a range of great trips including a walk to an organic blueberry farm where the kids can eat as many blueberries as their tummies will allow, or a gentle stroll to find the 27 degree hot springs. On a similar theme, the Happy Donkey sanctuary offers a fun morning where you have the opportunity to walk in the hills with a family of donkeys.

If you can’t get the kids enthused about walking, why not let four legs do the work for you? Tiffany’s Horse Riding Centre is less than 5km from Ocean Villas. They offer splendid rides in the hills or around their farm for ages four and up and cater for all levels of experience. I had the recent pleasure of a ride myself and I can highly recommend them.

For adrenaline-fuelled fun, try the nearby Parque Aventura, home of rope walks, zip lines and paintball. Rope walks and zip lines are accessible for children over one metre high, whereas paintball is open to children from ten years and up. For water-based thrills, Luz beach offers kayaks, stand-up-paddle, jet ski, wakeboard and water-ski. You can even hire a pedalo where everyone can pretend to pedal whilst Dad does all the hard work.

But, when all is said and done, the lure of the west Algarve’s wonderful beaches is what brings most people to this fabulous region. Countless times, I have seen teenagers put down their phones and pick up a frisbee or jump in the waves. Even the grumpiest of teenagers usually ditch social media to become social butterflies – well, perhaps agreeable moths, but it’s a start.

So yes, I’m going to embrace the next couple of months. I’m going to enjoy the vibrant bars and restaurants and giggle as the next willing group of participants/victims go flying off their speedboat-propelled rubber ring. I’m going to laugh along with the happy babies and I’m going to smile knowingly as the next grumpy teenager forgets that Facebook even exists. It’s a fun time to be in Praia da Luz.- Mum’s and Dad’s can rest easy knowing that little Johnny will be entertained.

More news next month.

David Lugg

#oceanvillasluz #davidluggwriter

All photo images owned by David Lugg

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