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Faro DistrictPortugal

Explore the beaches and castles of Portugal’s southernmost district, a region with luxurious resorts and a pulsating tourist season.

With ancient churches, hilltop castles, a picturesque countryside and beautiful beaches flanking the Atlantic Ocean, Faro is a destination rich with a variety of experiences. Stretch out on golden sand, visit a chapel decorated with human bones and spend some time exploring the small towns and villages of the coast.

The city of Faro is the capital of the district and the ideal starting point for your journey through the region. Venture to the resorts, beaches and bays of the Algarve from the city, but don’t overlook the coastline surrounding the city, which boasts excellent beaches, including the Praia de Faro and the wide stretch of fine golden sand that makes up the Ilha de Faro. Other popular beach destinations in the region include the cities of Tavira and Lagos.

While many come to Faro for its coastal setting and approximately 300 days of sunshine per year, its cultural attractions share the spotlight. Explore the cobblestone streets of Faro’s compact old town. Tour Faro Cathedral, a 13th-century structure built on the site of a mosque, and the nearby Municipal Museum of Faro, which houses artifacts from the prehistoric era alongside centuries old Roman busts and paintings. One of the city's most fascinating sights is the Capela dos Ossos, a chapel decorated with the bones of more than 1,000 human skeletons.

Extend your cultural wanderings to other parts of the Faro district. Visit the medieval castle in Alcoutim, the churches and castle of Loulé and the historic center of Monchique. The countryside around this inland town features numerous hiking trails.

Faro is known for its nightlife, especially in the summer months when the population swells with visitors to the region. Sample local dishes and dance into the night at one of the region’s many bars and restaurants.

Faro city’s international airport receives flights from some European cities and regular flights from Lisbon. Buses and trains connect the city to other parts of the country. Use a rental car to get around to the ancient sites, countryside and fabulous beaches.

Popular cities in Faro District

Albufeira featuring a sandy beach and landscape views as well as an individual male
Albufeira
Known for Beaches, Dining and Bars

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Reasons to visit
  • Fisherman's Beach
  • Albufeira Old Town Square
  • Falesia Beach
Faro Island Beach showing general coastal views and a sandy beach
Faro
Known for Friendly People, Dining and Marinas

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Reasons to visit
  • Faro Island Beach
  • Faro Old Town
  • Ria Formosa Natural Park
Tres Irmaos Beach which includes general coastal views, rugged coastline and a beach
Portimao
Known for Beaches, Dining and Marinas

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Reasons to visit
  • Rocha Beach
  • Alvor Beach
  • Tres Irmaos Beach
Lagos showing a coastal town, a beach and swimming
Lagos
Known for Beaches, Marinas and Family-friendly

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Reasons to visit
  • Meia Praia Beach
  • Lagos Marina
  • Dona Ana Beach
Tavira Castle showing a city
Tavira
Known for Boating, Ferry and Bird Watching

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Reasons to visit
  • Ria Formosa Natural Park
  • Tavira Castle
  • Ilha de Tavira Beach
Marinha Beach featuring rocky coastline and general coastal views
Lagoa
Known for Beaches, Relaxing and Gardens

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Reasons to visit
  • Marinha Beach