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Explore Faro with Expedia’s Travel Guides to find the best hotels, flights, holiday packages and more!
Faro is the capital of Portugal’s Algarve. With winding cobbled streets and a busy marina, it is made for idle wandering, but hire a car and venture outside the city and you’ll find a country made for exploring.
From great surfing beaches to hills and vineyards, Portugal crams a lot in, so pick up a hire car in Faro and begin your adventure.
The best way to enjoy the wonderful beaches, scenery and picture postcard villages of the Algarve is to hire a car, and most visitors will do so when they arrive at Faro Airport.
It pays to book ahead, even outside peak season, to ensure you get the car you want.
The most popular type of hire car in the Algarve is a small hatchback, ideal for driving in towns and villages, but there are plenty of models to choose from. Think about a larger vehicle if you are planning longer road trips or inland adventures.
Ideal Passenger Numbers
Purpose of Travel
SUV / People carrier
There are car rental facilities outside the main terminal at Faro Airport. There is a choice of companies that can provide a rental car in Faro. Hertz, Avis, Budget, Europcar, Goldcar, Enterprise by Alamo, Sixt and Thrifty are some of them and most can be collected at Faro Airport, or in town.
6am – 12 am
+351 289 810 120
8am – 9pm
+351 289 810 120
7am – 12am
+351 21 942 6300
7am – 12am
+351 289 889 447
7am – 12am
+351 289 800 670
Guerin / Enterprise
7am – 12am
+ 351 289 800 883
6am – 12am
+351 289 247 595
Other local operators have offices near the airport, although you may need to take a shuttle.
You can also find Faro car rentals in the town centre and at resorts and some companies will deliver your car to the airport or accommodation.
Booking ahead is essential during the summer and is advisable all year round, particularly if you want to hire an automatic transmission model.
You may also have to wait in line during the summer months when the flights coming into Faro will be full.
Remember to inspect the car for any damage before driving it away and also make sure the petrol tank is full.
It is worth hiring a pre-paid transponder that will pay tolls on the main A22 motorway that runs through the Algarve, and it is also useful to invest in a car with GPS as phone signals can be patchy.
Hiring a car in Faro is the best way to explore the Algarve, but there are certain things that are worth remembering. Driving is on the right and always give way to cars on the left at roundabouts. Speed limits are 35mph in built up areas, 55mph on open roads and 75mph on highways.
If you're driving on motorways, bear in mind that some are toll roads so have change handy in the car and note that the green lanes are reserved for drivers who use the automatic payment system.
The drink-driving limit is 50mg of alcohol per 100ml of blood, which is low even by European standards, so it pays not to run the risk.
Seatbelts are compulsory and children under 12 should not travel on the front seat. It is illegal to use a mobile phone when driving.
On your first day with the hire car, try driving west to the old city of Albufeira. Half an hour’s drive from Faro (less than 30 miles), the beaches are beautiful and sandy and the water is calm and clear. Praia dos Pescadores, or Fisherman’s beach, is surrounded by seafood restaurants, a great spot to try Portugal’s most famous fish – the sardine.
Another 50 minutes along the A22 and you get to Luz, an area popular with tourists. The beaches are sheltered and family-friendly and there are long promenades perfect for an evening stroll.
Tavira, a half-hour drive east of Faro, is a pretty fishing village with terracotta tiles and quaint old churches, on the edge of Ria Formosa Natural Park. From here you can get take a boat to Ilha de Tavira, an idyllic sandy beach where flamingos are often seen wading.
If you are around on a Saturday try the morning market at Loule for some souvenirs. It’s a drive of 20 minutes, or 10 miles, inland and there are plenty of shady plazas and cafes for those who are less keen to mooch. Midweek there is also a popular municipal market, which mainly sells food. The photogenic stalls are laden with fresh fruit and vegetables, Portuguese cured meats and cakes.
Further afield, Lisbon is a drive of two and a half hours from Faro. It is a fairly easy drive up the E1 road and there are numerous car parks. Lisbon is a compact city full of fun stuff to do. There are often fiestas that bring with them a constant sense of celebration and a lively nightlife, and the beaches are plentiful. Whether you want to relax or try some water sports, there is something for every visitor.
To start organising your holiday to Faro and other parts of Portugal, use the Expedia search tool to help you find the best car hire in Faro, as well as flight and hotel deals and research the most popular attractions.
Remember that Expedia car hire comes with no hidden fees. The price you see is the price you pay!