Sprawling along the Algarve around the historic city of Faro, Faro District is the southernmost district in Portugal. It encompasses golden beaches and whitewashed fishing villages that cling to the low cliffs, as well as a nature reserve that’s been designated as an Important Bird Area.
Things to do in Faro
Spend a day sightseeing in the capital of the Algarve, Faro, which centres around an atmospheric old town accessed via the Neoclassical-style Arco da Vila. Watching over the cobblestone streets is the 13th-century Faro Cathedral and the Paço Episcopal, an 18th-century palace that once housed Faro’s bishops. Medieval artefacts and religious artworks are on display at the Museu Municipal, which occupies a 16th-century convent.
Extending along the coast of Faro District is a nature reserve that encompasses the wetlands and lagoons of the Ria Formosa. It’s an important stopover for birds migrating between Europe and Africa and provides habitat for rare Portuguese species such as the purple swamp hen. Join a guided boat tour to spot flamingos, spoonbills and ospreys feeding in the shallows while learning about the cultivation of mussels, oysters and clams by local fishermen.
Faro District is dotted with beautiful beaches, including the sands of Ilha da Culatra and Ilha Deserta that lie just a short boat ride from Faro. You can kick back on the golden beach of Praia do Ancão or head to dune-backed Praia do Almargem, which features a restaurant serving locally caught fish.
Getting around Faro
Faro Airport is the main aviation gateway to Faro District and has flights to destinations across Europe. High-speed trains connect from Lisbon to the Faro railway station and regional trains travel along the district’s coastline. Having your own vehicle is the most convenient way of exploring Faro District.