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  • Writer's pictureTania Andreea

Faro, Portugal, travel guide

Updated: Apr 18, 2023


Looking for a vacation location, for November, with good weather for exploring and staying outside as much as possible, Faro came my way.


The flights were among the cheapest, and I was surprised that the other things related to planning a trip: accommodation, food and car rental, were equally affordable. If I add up that there were no tourists, that we had almost the entire Algarve region "just to ourselves" and that we had 20 degrees every day, I think that we made the best choice. I wrote a different post about how we spent our vacation in Algarve.


In this article I will only tell you about Faro, being also the town where we stayed and where we spent the most time.


HOW TO GET TO FARO


Faro has its own airport that has flights from most of European cities. For flights outside Europe, Lisbon airport is more popular and it's about 2 hours and a half away of Algarve.


There are buses that run regularly from Faro airport to the city. There is also the option of taxi or private transport, the prices being similar. For private transfer book here.


WHERE ARE YOU STAYING IN FARO?


We chose to stay at the Ibis Hotel, which was among the cheapest options at that time. The hotel is not right in the city, I only recommend it if you rent a car, otherwise it will be difficult to get to the Faro's center or the beach.


Other accommodation options:


- 5 star hotel: 3HB Faro.


For those who chose to rent a car, they can enjoy a hotel a little further from the center, but with many more facilities at a much better price: - 5 star hotel: Real Marina Hotel & Spa, Pousada Palacio de Estoi,



WHAT TO VISIT IN FARO


Praia do Faro is the only beach of the city, 5 km long, which means that it is spacious enough, so that you have the distance between towels, even in summer, when it is the most crowded.


the beach in faro portugal in november

The entrance to the water is smooth, without stones, with fine sand. The ocean water is somewhat colder than the Mediterranean Sea, even in summer, so take this into account, especially if you are planning a vacation for swimming and snorkeling. It has free parking and showers, and there are bars and restaurants in the area. During the summer, part of the beach is equipped with sunbeds and umbrellas. In 2022, the price in July was 15 euros for two sunbeds and an umbrella.

the parking near faro portugal

Ludo Trail The hike on the Ludo Trail, looking for Flamingo birds, was definitely the activity I liked the most from my vacation in the Algarve. I have to admit that I didn't know about the existence of this route, I discovered it while looking for Flamingos. It is not a trail with differences in level, it is easy to do and I recommend it to wildlife lovers.


the walking path at lido trail in faro portugal, the path to see the flamingos

The entrance to the route is between Faro and the bridge on the Ria Formosa. There is no entrance fee, and Flamingo birds can be seen between November and March.

flamingo birds on ria formosa in algarve portugal

If you don't want to hike, but want to see the birds, you can book a boat tour, tickets here. Igreja do Carmo If I were to make a list of the strangest churches that I have visited, Igreja do Carmo would certainly not be missing. The exterior is built in baroque style.

the church of carmo in faro portugal

In the main part of the church, both in the area of ​​the altar and on the architectural details of the walls, you can admire gold-plated works. During the construction of this building, Portugal brought a lot of gold from the colonies in Latin America, a small part of which was kept right in this church.


interior of igreja do carmo from faro algarve

Passing the opulence of the first hall, there follows a somewhat more modest but equally spectacular area of ​​the church, this time the star material being wood, very meticulously worked.


the interior of igreja do carmo from faro

The last part, which I have to admit, I didn't like, is a chapel that has human bones glued to the wall. I have visited such a church in Milan, I liked that one, but this one did not convince me. The purpose of this type of "decoration" of the wall is to emphasize the ephemerality of life.


igreja do carmo from faro decorated with human bones

Arco da Vila and the historic center The Arco da Vila building represents the entrance to the historical center of the city. This arch has existed since the medieval era, but the earthquake of 1755 seriously damaged it, and the building that can be admired and visited today was built in its place.


building from the historic centre of faro portugal

Passing the arch, in the historic center you can admire both newer buildings, built in the same period as the Arco da Vila, after 1812, as well as older buildings, such as the Faro Cathedral.

the cathedral of faro algarve portugal

The city port can be an option for a short promenade. There are venders in the area, where you can buy souvenirs and traditional, handmade items.


the harbour of faro portugal

If you do not want to rent a car, but want to explore other areas of the Algarve region, there is the option of day trips: - trip to the most famous beach in Portugal, Benagil, reservations here. - trip by catamaran to 4 islands on the Ria formosa, reservations here. - boat trip, in search of dolphins, reservations here.



CONCLUSION: Both Faro and the entire Algarve area pleasantly surprised me and I'm glad I made the decision to travel there in November. Sitting on the beach is not for me, so I didn't mind the fact that the weather wasn't for staying on the sunbed or to get in the water.


The prices were decent and seemed to me to be among the lowest in Europe. Although I don't like to give details about the prices, because we are different and have different expectations from a holiday, to give you an idea, I spent two people, 800 euros (4 nights' accommodation, rented car with full cover insurance , food at the restaurants, flights and others). Obviously, the time of the year in which we went was very important, for sure, in the summer the prices explode.



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Thank you for reading!






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