We travel to Portugal to explore Madeira and The Algarve to discover which is the best holiday destination

We sent a writer to each destination to experience what it has to offer for the adventure-seeking holidaymaker.

The Island

Fabulous’ Acting Deputy Art Director Nikki Ackerman packs her bags for lush Madeira

THE PAD Super-modern The Vine sits in the heart of Madeira’s capital city Funchal, with high-street and boutique shops right on the hotel’s doorstep.

Inside, decor is minimal and sleek. Nab a deluxe prestige room for a huge double bed and a bathtub of dreams – it even has an integrated head massager!

Head to happy hour on the rooftop bar and sip a piña colada, £3.50, by the pool while soaking up the beautiful views.

Or robe up and pop down for a sauna in the underground spa. Doubles start from £137 B&B.

EXPLORE The picturesque Vereda dos Balcões trail will lead you to a stunning view of the Atlantic.

Feeling adventurous? Canyoning in Ribeiro Frio will get your heart rate up with climbing, jumping and swimming in natural surroundings, £52.

Or explore on wheels with a guided mountain bike tour, £60.

If you’re all exercised out, try the traditional Monte sledge experience, speeding down 2km of road in a wicker toboggan, £22 . Just keep hold of your hat!

REFUEL On the edge of the National Park, Abrigo Do Pastor is a cosy lunch spot.

Feast on the Gambas a Pastor garlic prawns and potatoes, £16.50, washed down with a £1 local beer.

For a typical Espetada dinner of delicious beef skewers, £9, Adega da Quinta in hotel Quinta do Estreito is a must.

Or if you’re after somewhere special, DC Atelier overlooks the harbour in the Nini Design Centre.

Expect an indulgent set menu of dishes like pork cheeks, £48 for three courses.

Fancy a nightcap? Head to Barreirinha in Funchal’s quirky old town for a passion fruit poncha, made with 50% rum for only £2.50. A good night guaranteed!

DON’T MISS Catch a speedboat out to sea for an unforgettable whale and dolphin watching experience, £43.

BOOK IT Plan your trip at Madeiraallyear.com. Return flights cost from £111 (Jet2.com).

The Mainland

Writer Laura Jackson checks into a brand-new hotel on the Algarve coastline

THE PAD With killer gin cocktails, an Insta-worthy pool and Palm Springs vibes, The Magnolia Hotel doesn’t disappoint.

Twenty minutes’ drive from the city of Faro, this place is an affordable retreat in the classy Quinta Do Lago resort, with boutique restaurants and world-class sports on your doorstep.

Rooms are compact, but the super-fast WiFi, rain showers and gigantic fluffy bath towels mean it’s a total bargain from £69 B&B.

EXPLORE Never heard of padel? This mash-up of tennis, squash and badminton is played with foam paddles – try a two-hour session at The Campus sports centre, £44.

Or hire bikes, £17 for a half day, and head along the coastal paths to spot flamingos and stunning villas.

Make a pit stop at Quinta do Lago’s custard-cream-coloured sands – it’s well worth the 10-minute stroll across a wooden bridge.

In Faro, don’t miss the beautiful Igreja do Carmo church and its chapel of bones – over 1,000 adorn the walls and ceilings.

REFUEL There are 10 restaurants around the resort.

For a seafood feast of crispy calamari, smoked salmon mousse and grilled turbot washed down with a Douro valley white, have lunch at Casa do Lago, where mains start from £20.

At Bovino, steak is presented on mini grills at the table, from £20.50.

Save space for the belt-busting potato gratin and creamed spinach, too.

Fancy mingling with celebs? Pure, with its salads, wraps and smoothies, is where we spotted Duncan Bannatyne enjoying lunch.

Back at The Magnolia, chef Tom’s home-made burgers are magnificent, while the chocolate granola means skipping breakfast isn’t an option.

DON’T MISS On Saturdays head to the covered market in the arty town of Loulé.

Cakes are piled high, including chocolate pastéis de nata custard tarts.

Splurge on handmade cork purses at Atelier Daniela Costa, while Antiga Caldeiraria Louletano sells beautiful copper jewellery.

BOOK IT Return flights cost from £74 (Ryanair.com).

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