Faro is a colorful town in the south of Portugal, from which it is worth starting to get acquainted with the history, traditions and cuisine of the country. Among the main attractions worth seeing are the Bone Chapel, the University of Algarve, the stadium that was used during the 2004 European Football Championship. It will be possible to get acquainted with the peculiarities of local architecture by going on excursions to the monastery of St. Francis, the Episcopal Palace, the church of St. Barbara. Walking around the port, you should look into one of the restaurants and try fish soup-roast, seafood prepared according to local recipes, wine. Faro is a great place to shop. After exploring the sights of the city, take a look at the Forum Algarve shopping center, which is considered the largest in the region.
National Faro Airport ( Faro International, Airport then ) - download scheme
The following car rental companies operate at Faro Airport: Avis-Budget, Europcar, Goldcar, Guerin, Hertz, Sixt. Car rental desks are located in the arrivals hall. There are several parking areas near the airport. You can get acquainted with the rates and make a reservation on the airport website.
Praca 1 de Maio
Having rented a car, set off to look at the old and at the same time one of the most amazing places of Faro - a chapel of bones. The name is not just a metaphor for tourists eager for spectacles. The walls of the chapel are literally made up of bones and skulls of monks. Built in the 16th century, it seems to recall the transience of being and that no one is eternal, even saints. Interestingly, the appearance of the attraction is associated with certain circumstances. In those days in Faro there was a high mortality rate of the monks, and over time, burial places were not enough. It was decided to dig out the old remains, and to bury new ones in these places. Bones and skulls were piled into the cellars, when the place was over there, and the smell reached the church, they decided to clad them over the chapel walls.
You can get acquainted with the oldest exhibits, including those preserved from the time of the Roman Empire, by going on an excursion to the Museum of Henry the Navigator. At one time, he opened a maritime school, in which Columbus later studied. The museum is small, while the concentration of interesting artifacts is huge. No matter what company you come to, everyone will have something to see and be surprised at. To make the tour as intense as possible, you should use the services of a guide.
Continuing the tour of the Faro museums, it is worth allotting time to visit the local history. The collection features unique exhibits telling about the history of the city and province of the Algarve. It will be especially interesting to see the works of Italian, Spanish, Portuguese artists, artifacts of churches, objects of the Roman period and the Middle Ages. The main value of the collection is the mosaics of the Roman era, dating from the II-III centuries.
After seeing the Cathedral and the city seminary, take the time to visit the Episcopal Palace, located nearby. Built at the end of the 16th century, it attracts the attention of tourists with a gable roof and a portal. You can stay for a short while and immediately go inside, take a walk around the courtyard, see a rich collection of books in the library and a collection of paintings. It will be more convenient to get by renting a car.
Built in the middle of the 13th century, the castle was literally “built-in” into the city building dating from the 9th century. It was reconstructed several times, but the most extensive was made at the end of the XVI century. The main objective of the building was to counter artillery. Several centuries ago, the building passed into the possession of the Artillery Regiment, respectively, the premises were converted into barracks. Later, production facilities for the operation of the brewery were brought into the castle. Today, tourists are unlikely to be able to go inside, but to inspect the old city walls and the building from the outside is still worth it.
If you want to diversify your tourist route, it is worth driving a few kilometers from Faro to visit the Estoy Palace. Built in the 17th century in the Rococo style, it is still considered a masterpiece of architecture. Outside, romantic gardens and ancient Roman columns, combined with paintings from tiles and sculptures, fascinate the eye. The main highlight is the upper terrace with fountains, stained glass windows, niches. Having examined the beauty of the landscape, it is worth going inside the palace. The first thing that catches your eye is absolute luxury in the interior. Antique furnishings and furniture, a collection of paintings on the background of pastel colors - all this seems to transfer to another era, revealing all the cards.
If you rent a car, you should go to the Ria Formosa Natural Park. It is replete with barrier islands, canals, swampy marches, which makes it seem fabulous. The lagoon is considered a conservation area, and on its territory there are many rare birds that can be found while staying in a hut or small house on one of the islets. It is better to stay longer: enjoying the beauty of the place, you can go sailing, diving, fishing, tennis. For lovers of meditation and yoga, there is no better place. There are also restaurants on the territory of the park, on the menu of which, in addition to the main national dishes, seafood is perfectly prepared for every taste.
Want to learn about the lifestyle of the population in the I century? Embark on a tour of the Roman ruins of Milreu. Once the estate was large-scale and luxurious, this is evidenced by the layout, in particular, the presence of a dressing room, bathtub, underground heating system. The marble sculptures found here and preserved mosaic images of fish surprise no less. It is interesting that in the time of the rural house in those days there was a water sanctuary. Later, the building was converted into a church, and after a few centuries - into a mosque. Despite the long history, the ruins are well preserved, so those who wish to touch the history will be surprised.
An equally spectacular place to visit when traveling around the area is Cape San Vicente. Even ancient people considered the place sacred. They believed that it was here that the gods live, and the cape itself was considered magical. Later the place was an important strategic object, near it there were many naval battles. Today, tourists come here for the most incredible panoramas, look at the old lighthouse and see from above how the sun goes into the sunset. Others prefer to arm themselves with a camera and capture unique sunrises. Historical fact: it was in this place where the school of captains Enric Navigator was once located.
When traveling in a rental car around Faro, take the time to visit the ancient town of Lagos. Someone will be delighted with the seen natural attractions, someone will remember the ancient monuments of architecture. Among the places worth visiting are the customs building of the 15th century, the chapel of St. John of the 8th century, the church of St. Sebastian of the 17th century, the church of St. Mary dating from the 16th century, the church of mercy of the 16th century. No less spectacular places are the Meia Praia Fort, the Fonte Cobert Dam, the fortress castle of the Virgin Mary. Tourists in Lagos have many options for fun leisure activities, for example, exploring small bays on a boat, dolphin tours, sea safaris.
R. Vasco da Gama 36 www.facebook.com/quente.frio.pt
You can have breakfast in Faro, for example, in the cozy Quente & Frio. The menu includes croissants with jam, yogurts, crepes, ice cream and a large selection of desserts. As drinks - juices, teas (including fruit), coffee. In order not to spend a lot of time choosing, ask the staff to offer you something special. The establishment is small, but incredibly cozy. Whatever company you look at here, you will definitely want to come back again.
R. do Forno 21 www.facebook.com/tascadoricky.restaurantebar
Would you like to taste national cuisine for lunch? Take a peek at Tasca do Ricky. Whatever your preferences, dorado with sauces, salmon, squid will appeal to everyone. If you want to try something special from national dishes, you should ask the waiter for advice. While waiting for the order, you will be given compliments from the chef, and the owner of the restaurant will not make you bored. A welcoming atmosphere reigns here, so having finished the meal, there will certainly be a desire to return here again.
R. Ivens 7 http://faaronsteakhouse.com/
If you want to diversify Portuguese cuisine with a juicy steak, head to Faaron Steakhouse. The highlight of the institution is compliance with the degree of roasting and competent service. Want to try a good wine that complements the meat? Ask the waiter for advice. Shrimp steak, black angus, assorted meats and cheeses, and potatoes are the perfect set for a hearty meal. It will be more convenient to get to the restaurant in a rented car.
R. do Montepio 24 www.facebook.com/31-Bistro-Vinho-Ca
If you want a snack, but there is not much time between excursions, go to 31 Bistro Vinho & Comp. The first thing that impresses is the original interior and the cozy atmosphere. For any occasion, the menu has suitable dishes: main dishes, snacks, desserts. Pleasant music plays in the background, and a well-chosen glass of wine brightens up the meal. Helpful staff will not only help you choose the dishes to your taste, but also take care that everything ordered is prepared as quickly as possible.
R. do Castelo 13 fazgostos.com
Looking for a cozy place to pass the evening leisure? Head to Faz Gostos. The restaurant has its own wine cellar, so if you want to taste something special, just ask the waiter. If you want to have a satisfying meal, you can order seafood prepared according to the chef's signature recipe or take snacks and enjoy the atmosphere of the establishment. In addition to delicious food, Faz Gostos offers fast service.
Hire a car and are looking for a comfortable hotel near the airport? Hotel 3K Faro Aeroporto is perfect. The rooms are bright and spacious, equipped with everything necessary for a comfortable stay. The staff is extremely helpful and polite to the guests. With any request, you can safely seek help. Despite the fact that it is located near the road, noise is not heard in the apartment, so with children and after a long flight here you can have an excellent rest. You can spend your free time in the pool or in the hotel bar.
Hotel Faro is a romantic hotel overlooking the marina. In the mornings, guests can enjoy a varied breakfast in the traditional Portuguese style. If you want a variety of food, you can go to one of the restaurants located nearby. The highlight of the hotel is the well-equipped rooftop terrace with swimming pool, which offers stunning panoramas of the city. Relax after a busy day at the spa treatments at Hotel Faro.
If you want to stay close to the center, Casa de Estoi is perfect. The main advantage is the proximity of attractions, restaurants, shops. The hotel staff is attentive to each guest, so you will feel at home here. After a delicious breakfast in the morning, you can go to the pool or on an excursion. The rooms are spacious and bright, equipped with everything necessary, which means it will be comfortable with friends and with children.
When looking for a hotel with first-class service, make Hotel Eva your choice. The historic center can be reached in 10 minutes, which is very convenient if you are determined to see all the sights of Faro. The rooms offer stunning views of the marina. If you need help, the hotel staff can safely contact any question. It offers a swimming pool, fitness center, spa. Tourists using rental cars can use the free parking.
R. Gen. Teofilo da Trindade 20
+351 289 889 800 www.bestwestern.pt/hotels/best-western-hotel-dom-bernardo double room - from € 91
Are you looking for a reasonably priced hotel while still appreciating comfort? The Best Western Hotel Dom Bernardo is the best place to stay in Faro. The rooms are spacious and comfortable, if necessary, the staff can provide everything you need for a comfortable stay. The hotel is small, so each guest is given special attention. In the mornings, a variety of breakfasts are offered, in addition, a bar, a conference room, room-service are available to guests.
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© Anastasiia Voloshina, 2017