Discover the Wonders of Faro

Fabs*, Unsplash
January 3
Written by Elena Kostas

Want to know what to see in Faro? In this article, we will tell you about the top attractions and activities that this charming Portuguese city has to offer.

If you're planning a trip to Portugal, you can't miss out on Faro. Located in the Algarve region, this coastal city offers a perfect blend of history, culture, and beautiful beaches.

In Faro, you'll find a wide range of tourist attractions for all tastes. From its impressive old town with cobbled streets and charming squares, to the famous Ria Formosa, a Natural Park that is home to a rich biodiversity and pristine beaches. You can also enjoy delicious local cuisine and take part in various outdoor activities.

Discover in this article what to see in Faro and get ready for an unforgettable experience in this picturesque Portuguese city.

1. Old Town of Faro

Historical Monuments and Architecture
city pathway
Old Town of Faro / KOBU Agency, Unsplash

The Old Town of Faro is one of the main tourist attractions in the city. With its cobbled streets, historical buildings, and beautiful squares, it's the perfect place to get lost and immerse yourself in the history and culture of Faro.

One of the standout features of the Old Town is its traditional architecture. The buildings are painted in vibrant colors and have balconies adorned with flowers, giving the Old Town a unique and picturesque charm.

The Républica Square is one of the most popular points of interest in the Old Town. Here you'll find the beautiful Carmo Church, as well as numerous cafes and shops where you can experience the local culture.

2. Faro Cathedral

Historical Monuments and Architecture
gray concrete building
Faro Cathedral / KOBU Agency, Unsplash

Faro Cathedral, also known as Sé de Faro, is an impressive religious building located in the historic center of the city. Built in the 13th century, the cathedral has witnessed various historical events and remains an important place of worship today.

One of the standout features of Faro Cathedral is its impressive architecture. With Gothic, Renaissance, and Baroque influences, the building combines different styles and features beautiful ornamental details. Its main façade showcases a majestic stone door and a bell tower that rises above the city's skyline.

Upon entering the cathedral, visitors are awed by the elegant and history-filled interior. Inside, you can admire beautiful golden altars, religious artwork, and stunning traditional Portuguese azulejos. Additionally, the cathedral houses a magnificent chapel and a crypt that are worth exploring.

3. Igreja do Carmo

Historical Monuments and Architecture
white and brown concrete building
Igreja do Carmo / KOBU Agency, Unsplash

Igreja do Carmo is one of the oldest churches in Faro and a prime example of religious architecture in the Algarve region. Built in the 18th century, the church is known for its impressive baroque facade and richly decorated interior.

The building has undergone several restorations over the years but has retained its original charm. Inside the church, visitors can admire beautiful religious paintings and sculptures, as well as unique architectural details.

In addition to its artistic beauty, Igreja do Carmo also holds significant historical meaning. During the 1755 earthquake, which devastated much of Lisbon and other areas of Portugal, the church suffered severe damage but managed to remain standing.

4. Praia de Faro

Natural Spaces and Parks

Praia de Faro is one of the most stunning beaches in the region. Located on the island of Faro, just south of the city center, this beach attracts thousands of visitors every year with its natural beauty and laid-back atmosphere.

With its soft, white sand, crystal-clear waters, and breathtaking natural landscapes, Praia de Faro is the perfect destination for beach lovers and sun enthusiasts.

In addition to lounging on the beach and enjoying the sea, you can also partake in a wide range of water sports such as surfing, windsurfing, and sailing. There are also numerous beach bars and restaurants where you can indulge in delicious food and refreshing drinks while taking in the ocean views.

5. Municipal Museum of Faro

Museums and Art Galleries

The Municipal Museum of Faro is located in the former cloister of the Convent of Nossa Senhora da Assunção.

The museum houses a wide variety of exhibitions and collections that span from prehistory to the present.

Among the main attractions of the Municipal Museum of Faro are the archaeological artifacts, contemporary artworks, and regularly organized temporary exhibitions.

6. Arco da Vila

Historical Monuments and Architecture

The Arco da Vila is one of the most iconic landmarks in Faro and a must-visit for any tourist visiting the city. Located in the historic center, this imposing arch is a witness to Faro's rich history and culture.

Built in the 19th century, the Arco da Vila was originally a gateway to the walled city. Its neoclassical design and architectural details make it a historical gem and a masterpiece of architecture.

In addition to its architectural beauty, the Arco da Vila also holds symbolic meaning. It represents the connection between Faro's past and present, and acts as a welcoming gateway for visitors exploring the city.

7. Estoi Palace

Historical Monuments and Architecture

The Estoi Palace is one of the most important tourist attractions in Faro. Located in the village of Estoi, just 10 kilometers from the center of Faro, this impressive palace combines unique architecture, beautiful gardens, and rich history.

Built in the 18th century, the palace is a magnificent example of rococo architecture. Its façades are decorated with intricate details and reliefs, while inside you will find beautiful rooms decorated in the neoclassical style.

In addition to its architecture, the Estoi Palace is also known for its beautiful gardens. Take a stroll through its expansive gardens and discover a variety of plants, ponds, and fountains, creating a peaceful and relaxing atmosphere.

8. Cidade Velha de Faro

Historical Monuments and Architecture
a large white building with a green door
Cidade Velha de Faro / micheile henderson, Unsplash

The Cidade Velha de Faro, also known as the old town of the city, is one of the main tourist attractions to see in Faro. With a rich history, impressive architecture, and vibrant culture, this charming neighborhood is a place you can't miss during your visit to Faro.

The old town of Faro is surrounded by ancient walls dating back to Roman and medieval times. Within its boundaries, you will find narrow cobbled streets, historic buildings, and beautiful monuments. Strolling through these streets is like stepping back in time and immersing yourself in the city's history.

Among the main points of interest in the Cidade Velha de Faro are the Cathedral of Faro, also known as the Sé, which dates back to the 13th century, and the Arco da Vila, an old city gate. Additionally, the old town is home to a wealth of shops, restaurants, and bars where you can enjoy authentic Portuguese cuisine and have a great time.

9. Casa das Figuras

Historical Monuments and Architecture

Casa das Figuras is an impressive historic house located in Faro, Portugal. It is one of the most important tourist attractions in the city and a place you shouldn't miss during your visit to Faro.

Built in the 19th century, Casa das Figuras is known for its unique and beautiful architecture. The building features ornate details and an impressive façade that will leave you breathless.

In addition to its stunning architecture, Casa das Figuras also houses contemporary and classical art exhibitions. You can enjoy different artworks in its galleries, offering an unparalleled cultural experience.