Faro Airport is the gateway to the Algarve in Portugal, that more than 200km long stretch of soft, golden beaches, shimmering blue seas and almost endless sunshine.
The Algarve's popularity with British, Irish, Dutch and German tourists ensures great competition among airlines. There is no shortage of cheap flights to Faro.
Many tourists will see the city, administrative centre of the Algarve, only fleetingly as they make to resorts along the coast, but this small city has plenty of attractions. The Ria Formosa is a large lagoon system protected from the sea by 60km of beaches and sand dunes. The natural park - pink flamingos are a highlight - is made up of two peninsulas and five barrier islands. As far as Faro is concerned, this region includes the Ancao peninsula and Barreta and Culatra islands. Praia de Faro and Praia da Culatra are two of the most popular beaches. In the summertime, there is a regular boat service to Culatra.
Other sights include Faro Harbour where you can watch the fishermen at work, the cathedral and museums - municipal and maritime. The Arco da Vila (archway) marks the entrance to Faro's Old Town, an atmospheric quarter with shops and restaurants.
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Faro’s southern location gives it a mild Mediterranean climate. Summers are usually in the mid 20s (Celsius) and dry. Winters range from the upper single digits to mid teens with most of the rain between October and January.
When to fly to Faro
Faro is always packed with sun worshippers in summer, especially during July and August. As a favoured family destination, the beaches are busy during half-term breaks in Spring, Autumn and around Easter.
The shoulder seasons of spring and autumn (excluding the school half-term weeks) are great times to look for cheap flights to Faro. The weather is still warm, and there are fewer tourists.
For a late autumn or early winter visit, make sure to bring rain gear.
Getting around Faro
When your cheap flight to Faro lands at the airport, hail a taxi to get downtown. Faro doesn’t have a metro, but you’ll be able to get around easily on foot. Head elsewhere in Portugal on the many connecting trains and buses.
Faro insider information
- The capital of the Algarve is often only visited by people passing through on their way to the resorts of the coast. However, the town has enough of interest to keep holiday makers entertained for at least a few days.
- The oldest part of the town, that nearest the beach, is still surrounded by the old city wall. The Arco de la Villa is the oldest and most impressive gateway leading into the town. The neo-classicist arch is a huge monument and was inaugurated in 1812. Today, it is just as impressive. Nearby, the cathedral is also worth a visit. The original cathedral on the site was built in the 13th century, but the one standing at the moment was rebuilt in the 18th.
- From the top of the tower are stunning views out across the town and sea. Faro is set on the Formosa Lagoon, with endless islands of sand and long stretches of beach to explore.
- Visit the nearby Ilha de Faro, which is linked by a road to the mainland, and enjoy one of the least crowded beaches in the whole of the Algarve.
- The town of Tavira is an easy day trip away. It’s a quaint, old town well worth visiting and the journey there is also pleasant – passing orange and fig groves. The town has four beaches as well as two golf courses.