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So much more than just being an Airport Hub

Photo by Unsplash

Faro is more than just an airport hub for the Algarve region; it is a popular destination for sun-seekers and beach lovers. It is a historic and culturally rich city boasting fascinating attractions and activities. Here are 10 must-sees and dos in Faro, Portugal.

Explore the Cidade Velha

Photo by Alamy

Step back in time and discover the charm and beauty of Faro’s old town, surrounded by medieval walls. Admire the Arco da Vila gateway, the Largo da Sé plaza, and the Paço Episcopal palace. Don’t miss the Faro Cathedral, a stunning example of Gothic, Renaissance, and Baroque architecture, with a museum, a bell tower, and an organ inside.

Visit the Museu Municipal de Faro

Photo by Câmara Municipal de Faro

Learn more about the history and culture of Faro, from prehistoric times to the present day, in this former convent, which adds to its charm. See Roman mosaics, Islamic ceramics, Renaissance paintings, and modern art in this museum, which hosts temporary exhibitions and events.

Discover the Roman Ruins of Milreu.

Photo by Alamy

Imagine life in a large Roman villa dating back to the first century AD, located in Estoi, about 10 km from Faro. See the foundations, columns, baths, mosaics, a small museum, and a chapel of this ancient site, which also offers a panoramic view of the countryside.

Enjoy the Parque Natural da Ria Formosa

Experience the beauty and diversity of nature in this network of saltwater lagoons and marshes, home to a rich biodiversity of birds, fish, and plants. You can explore the park by boat, kayak, bike, or foot and admire the scenic views and the wildlife. The park also offers guided tours, birdwatching, and educational activities.

Visit the Capela dos Ossos

Photo Bytom Delanoue/Unsplash

Dare to enter this macabre but fascinating attraction, located in the Nossa Senhora do Carmo church. The chapel is decorated with the bones and skulls of about 1,200 monks exhumed from the church’s cemetery in the 19th century. The chapel is meant to remind visitors of life's fragility and death's inevitability.

Stroll along the Jardim Manuel Bívar

Photo by Pixabay

Enjoy a relaxing and shady walk in this park in front of the marina. You can relax on the benches, admire the flowers and the fountains, and watch the boats and the people. The park also hosts events and festivals throughout the year, such as the Faro Folk Festival and the Faro Book Fair.

Take a day trip to Albufeira

Photo by Simon Hermans (top) and Martijn Vonk

Albufeira is a popular resort town about 45 km from Faro. It is known for its beautiful beaches, such as the Praia da Oura, the Praia dos Pescadores, and the Praia da Falésia. It also has a lively and cosmopolitan atmosphere, with various shops, restaurants, bars, and clubs. Albufeira is a great place to enjoy the sun, the sea, and the fun.

Visit the Estói Palace

Photo by Pixabay

Be amazed by this stunning 19th-century palace, located in Estoi, about 10 km from Faro. The palace was built in a neo-Rococo style, with ornate façades, gardens, and fountains. It is now a luxury hotel, but you can still visit the palace and admire its architecture and décor. You can also enjoy tea or a snack in the elegant salon or on the terrace.

See the Faro Motorcycle Rally

Join the excitement and the adrenaline of this annual event that attracts thousands of motorcycle enthusiasts from all over the world. The rally takes place in July and features concerts, exhibitions, competitions, and parties. The rally is also a charity event, as the participants donate food and money to local institutions.

Visit the Benagil Cave

Photo by Pixabay

Marvel at this geological wonder, with a dream-like sand beach inside. The Benagil Cave, also known as Algar de Benagil in Portuguese, is an open-sky cave with a hole on the top that lets the sunlight in. The cave is only accessible by sea; you can explore it by boat, kayak, or stand-up paddle. The cave is one of the most famous landmarks of Portugal and a must-see in the Algarve.



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