Things to do in

Faro

The Algarve’s capital charms explorers with its walled old town, eclectic architecture, and nature reserve.

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The 7 Best Things to Do 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.

  • Old Town

    1. Old Town

    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.

  • Faro Cathedral

    2. Faro Cathedral

    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.

  • 3. Museu Municipal Arqueológico

    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.

  • Church of São Lourenço

    4. Church of São Lourenço

    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.

  • Castle of Silves

    5. Castle of Silves

    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.

  • Ria Formosa

    6. Ria Formosa

    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.

  • Barreta Island

    7. Barreta Island

    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.

Frequently asked questions about Faro

What top attractions are a must-see in Faro?

Planning Your Visit

  • How many days to spend in Faro?

    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.

  • Getting around

    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.

  • Where to stay in Faro

    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.

  • Getting to Barreta Island

    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.

Good to know

  • Language
    Portuguese
  • Currency
    Euro (€)
  • Time Zone
    UTC (+00:00)
  • Country Code
    +351
  • 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.

Other Sightseeing Options in Faro

Want to discover all there is to do in Faro? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Faro

Overall rating

4.6 / 5

based on 4,191 reviews

Excellent activity, supplied by the owner with very deep knowledge of the Ria and it's fauna. The boat is also excellent, very silent allowing proximity with the fauna without scaring them. The supplied binoculars where a nice touch, allowing us to watch the birds crabs and fish very near. We will be back for another ride.

Our trip to visit the 4 islands was very nice, each island is different. Our skipper, Louis, gave us a lot of interesting explanations (in particular about oysters). I recommend this company and in particular our skipper Louis.

Very good venture into Atlantic. Alfredo was very knowledgeable. Saw a variety of dolphins and wild fowl. Highly recommended.

This was such a lovely boat trip with some amazing hosts. Lovely atmosphere and definitely worth booking

Very nice small zoo. Lots to see and all looks natural for animals. We had a great day there.*****