Top attractions in Faro
Faro offers visitors attractions that encompass the idyllic holiday on the Algarve Coast. Its historical center exudes an old-world charm, and it's close to picturesque villages and a unique nature reserve. What's more, a deserted island is a boat ride away.
Enter through the Arco da Vila and stroll along the cobblestone streets. The city walls, which envelop the old town, date as early as the Roman era and later under Moorish rule.
Initially built in Gothic design, the cathedral suffered severe damage during the earthquake of 1755. The tower and the door are all that remain from the original structure.
Originally a 16th-century convent in the former Jewish Quarter, the museum houses artifacts from the region, including the Mosaic of the Ocean from the 3rd century.
The noteworthy church in the town of Almancil is famous for its exquisite interior, which illustrates the life of Saint Lawrence in traditional Portuguese tiles of blue and white.
Built between the 8th and 13th centuries, it's the best-preserved Moorish fortress in Portugal. The robust structure dominates the hill over the town of the same name.
The natural park, which comprises lagoons and islands, extends 37 miles along the coast. It's home to migrating and nesting birds, including flamingos, during spring and fall.
Also known as Deserted Island in the Ria Formosa Park, it's a boat ride away to this perfect place to cast your cares away on unspoiled beaches of a sun-drenched coastline.
You could spend up to one week or even 10 days in the area. Faro is a great place to base yourself, in order to explore not only its cultural riches but also those of the region. Miles of beaches and a unique natural reserve are at your fingertips.
It's very easy and fun to explore Faro's old town. If you plan to explore the surrounding region, it's best to have a car and enjoy your independence. You can also find affordable train connections, however, to towns in the surrounding area.
There are accommodations just outside Faro's old city walls. Though, if you're looking to stay seaside, you'll find hotels in small towns along the Algarve coastline.
There are four daily departures by boat to Barreta Island. It takes about 1/2 an hour to reach it and costs only 10€ round-trip.
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- Best time to visit
- The weather is warm enough to swim from April to October, so planning when to go depends on how hot and crowded you want the city to be. July and August offer hot temperatures, but also bigger crowds.
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What people are saying about Faro
The reservation was fast,once on the spot I just show the confirmation number and they printed the ticket for me. Ilha Deserta itself it's amazing...in September it was really like a dessert, which means almost nobody there. If you are looking for a relaxing day on the beach with cristal clear water and white sand, this is your spot! The ride on the catamaran was also an atraction and the staff was very nice, even waited for my friend few minutes as she couldn't find the starting point. Ps: the docking place it's behind the actual port, in front of old city walls. Ps2: Note- there is no shops on the island so take water and all you need. There is a restaurant there ( the only building in the island) but it's a bit pricy, which is understandable considering the location, behind the restaurant there is a snack bar which has more economical version.
This is without doubt one of the best excursions we have ever done, the Ria Formosa National Park is amazing and on a sunny November day the colours were amazing (the guide said the colours are actually better at this time of the year). Each of the islands we visited were quite different. So I say definitely do this trip but obviously try to plan the trip on the best day weather-wise. The only slight thing to be aware of is if you booked your tickets online the address given is not exactly right. If you go to the meeting point given from the marina area (Hotel Faro) you need to go another 200 metres approx to where there is a jetty which cannot be seen from the given meeting point.
We are part time Portuguese residents so this was an unusual thing for us to do. Not an exciting day out ... no history lesson or interesting narrative, just a look at the sparsely inhabited Portugal and the hard work that goes into putting the very expensive grilled fish onto your plate at the swish restaurants. The last stop a very charming one with a great restaurant. If I only had a few days in the Algarve this would not have been the way to spend a day especially if you are in a beautiful resort already but a good day out with interesting photo ops.
This was a great trip. Good value for money. Philip was a wonderful guide with lots of local knowledge. As well as the information on the islands we visited, he stopped to show us birds, crabs, a sea cucumber and he even let us drive the boat on the way home. He was very handsome too, which always helps. The Ilha Deserta was my favourite, as you get dropped in a spot away from the main tourist point and it truly is a glimpse of heaven.
A memorable day in the safe hands of the informative and friendly Miguel. We give him 5 stars! A very relaxing catamaran tour, visiting Isla Deserts with its flora and fauna, followed by Farol, boasting a fantastic beach and lighthouse. Next came our highlight, the flamboyantly colourful fishing village of Culatra. Review by Neville and Debbie.