Silves is a town and a municipality in the Algarve, southern Portugal. Silves is the former capital of the Algarve and is of great historical importance. The municipality is crossed by the river Arade, which was navigable in historical times and was key to the prosperity of the city of Silves. The waters of the river form the dams of Arade and Funcho. The landscape of the municipality is generally hilly. To the south the municipality borders the Atlantic Ocean.


This historic town contains one of the best castle fortifications in the region, dominating the surrounding skyline and countryside around it. On approach to the town it cannot be missed, particularly stunning at night, when lit up.

A powerful citadel favoured by the Romans, further enhanced by the subsequent conquering Moors, to become the cultural centre of the region. Visited by poets, artists and scholars alike the area became known as the birthplace of Arabic poetry. Reconquered by the Christian Crusaders the castle is steeped in myth and legend.

Towering Gothic arches stand upon impressive pillars of varying size, to dominate its interior, whilst the Gothic and Baroque facade stare out across the white washed buildings of the town below.