Getty Images/AWL Images RM

Faro

The Algarve’s capital has a more distinctly Portuguese feel than most resort towns. Many visitors only pass through this underrated city, which is a pity, as it makes for an enjoyable stopover. It has an attractive marina, well-maintained parks and plazas, and a picturesque cidade velha (old town) ringed by medieval walls. The old town's winding, cobbled pedestrian streets, squares and buildings were reconstructed in a melange of styles following successive batterings – first by marauding British and then by two big earthquakes – and are home to museums, churches, a bone chapel and al fresco cafes.

On Faro's doorstep are the lagoons of the Parque Natural da Ria Formosa and nearby beaches, including the islands of Ilha de Faro to the southwest and Ilha da Barreta (aka Ilha Deserta) to the south.

Explore Faro

Top attractions

These are our favorite local haunts, touristy spots, and hidden gems throughout Faro.

Guidebooks

Learn more about Faro

Uncover the heart of travel and be inspired to see new sights with one of Lonely Planet’s in-depth, award-winning guidebooks.