Portugal
Faro

Here you’ll find travel reports about Faro. Discover travel destinations in Portugal of travelers writing a travel blog on FindPenguins.

175 travelers at this place:

  • Day19

    Last night in Faro

    July 13, 2017 in Portugal

    Spent the night on a Campground in order to make the Van all shiny and ready for the takeover. And in order to clean ourselves. The
    first proper shower for quite some time. Getting ready for civilization. We smell right, but are not quite ready yet. Barefooted at the beach with a beer, enjoying the sunsets.

  • Day18

    Odeceixe & Praia da Marinha

    July 12, 2017 in Portugal

    Last nights spend in beautiful Odeceixe, beaching and relaxing. Finally getting some sun too. Afterwards we made our way to the southern coast and spend a night on the rocky caves of Marinha Beach. Startet our day with a boat tour through and into all the caves and spend the rest of the day in this amazing Bay! Paradise like!

  • Day11

    Hi folks,
    It’s Wednesday afternoon and we are safely ensconced in a lovely hotel in Praia Da Luz called the Belavista. Yes, lovely vistas as the name implies ( see enclosed photo) but we had to climb up to get them! We’ve had 5 days of varied cycling. Our first 2 days were not too long and relatively flat. On day 2 we actually biked back through Faro where we started our trip. We were able to check out the Igreja(church) do Carmo) an 18th century Catholic church known for its small chapel built out of the bones and skulls of over 1200 monks. The ossuary called the Capela de Ossos or chapel of bones has an inscription above the door « stop here and think of the fate that will befall you ».

    Speaking of befalling, so far, knock on wood, no one has come off a bike without intent. Laura tried to tangle with a bus two days ago but it all ended amicably. Helen is a fiend in the round abouts( traffic circles) of which there are many. Her daily London cycling requires a certain....shall we say, assertiveness that is needed in cases of traffic circles. Overall, the drivers have been patient and courteous.
    Day 3 had more distance from Olhao to Vilamoura and more climbing. Vilamoura is quite a resort town although still quiet at the moment. Loads of shuttered apartments and lots of empty tables at the hotel breakfast buffets. Must be the weather which is not quite beach weather but it is perfect for cycling. Our hotel in Vilamoura was one of the large chains - Vila Gale and we were able to enjoy the spa! We also cycled through a very large and deluxe golf community that day. Reminded me of Phoenix with 4 courses, lovely manicured areas, palms, shopping centres etc. Mac, it looked like your kind of place.
    Laura has been right on the job as co-navigator with me and also restaurant researcher. At Vilamoura we took a different culinary route and enjoyed excellent Mexican with guacamole made at our table. Yuuuuuum. Only problem was the very large mains which none of us could finish even with our biking appetites,
    Yesterday, Wednesday was a tough cycling day. It was a long distance made longer by unexpected detours, tough times navigating through various towns including Albufeira and a relentless headwind that felt like someone pushing you backwards. Not surprisingly The wind is howling from west to east, opposite of our cycling direction and it picks up as the temp rises in the afternoon. If anyone is tempted to bike the Algarve, you might want to look at going the other direction, just saying. We finally, literally staggered into the beautiful seaside town of Praia ( beach) Da Rocha ( of the rocks). We stayed in a small B and B with a very chatty proprietor who tried to convince me that a 2night stay would be preferable. Agreed, but we have to keep moving. Laura guided us to a cheap and delicious pizza place last night but the highlight of Praia Da Rocha besides the beautiful views was the late afternoon drink at the beach.
    Today is Thursday and our ride was much less demanding and we literally breezed into Praia Da Luz and were having our post ride drink by 230. Wéve really enjoyed such varied scenery. Lots of trails near the ocean, often skirting large estuaries. Small villages and lots of countryside. We’ve also has to do some road cycling to get from area to area. Less scenic but efficient.
    Tomorrow is our last day cycling and God willing, we’ll make Sagres and then Cape Saint.Vincent on the very western tip by 3. We are getting picked up there and driven back to Loule which is mid-Algarve. On Friday we train to Lisbon. Our bike days have been fewer this trip to allow Helen and Laura time to see some other sites.
    To answer a couple of questions: weather has been fine. Better than Helen’s very pessimistic weather app forecast. The sun is out but the heat is not an issue, so perfect. Are we having any trouble communicating? No, this area relies on tourism and with few exceptions everyone has some English. Our little bit of Spanish is useful in understanding most signs. People are exceptionally friendly and very willing to help us. See attached picture at a garage yesterday outside of Albufeira and Mike’s tire troubles,
    We have not done too much site seeing although Helen, our tour guide and historian, has briefed us on each area as we pass through. But we’ll have to come back to take in the many castles, Roman ruins and the wax museum of Portuguese historical highlights.
    Must run and get ready as Laura has another great restaurant idea for tonight.
    Hope all is well wherever you are........thanks for your notes.
    Love Heather/ Mom
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  • Day29

    Hi folks,
    Last Wednesday, Mike and I left the Douro Valley on a postcard perfect day. Bright blue skies, sunshine on the vineyards and the sound of the village’s old men arguing at the local cafe- likely over a strong coffee with a side of muscatel, as is their custom. We pointed the Peugeot south to find more sun and ended up in the town of Evora located in the south Alentejo region. Mike wanted to get some miles in so we wouldn’t have a huge drive on Friday. Our drive took us up, up out of the Douro onto an expansive plain. Earlier on this trip I was wondering about the source of all the cheese and milk, and beef. We found it on this huge plain. Hundreds of kms of cattle and grazing lands.
    Evora was a nice surprise considering neither of us had even heard of the place. Lots of historic sites including the ruins of an old Roman temple, an impressive ancient aqueduct and the second oldest University in Portugal. In fact there were so many ancient/historic sites in Evora that we came across a castle that wasn’t even on the tourist map- ho hum, another castle.
    We lucked out and got a room in a small funky hotel with a roof bar. Nice place to sip some local wines. And we caught some great weather. Wandered in the countryside to see the area’s cork groves. This area of Portugal produces over 50% of the world’s cork. It comes from a specific oak tree which has actually adapted to produce a thick bark to survive forest fires. The bark of the lower trunk areas of these trees are harvested every 7 years or so. Much of the cork goes to wine stoppers although you wonder if that’s a good future source of income given the move to other products and screw tops.
    Another interesting thing about the Evora area is the number of neolithic or prehistoric standing stones or (new word...... cromlechs). Mike is excited that he has a new crossword word and one with which he can baffle his friend Burns. We hiked up to a couple of these cromlech areas and wondered at the ingenuity it must have taken to create something so precise in 6000 BC. Mike said it was the structure he’s been most impressed with so far in Portugal because it was all built without EU funding ( zzzzing)
    On Friday we blasted the last 200km back to the coast to the town of Albufeira on the Algarve. We were met by our Air Band B host and some wet, rainy weather. We are reminded often that this country needs the rain as they suffered terribly from forest fires only 2 years ago and this will give them some protection. Can’t argue with that since we have experienced the same on the west coast. Anyway, the forecast is looking up!
    For the next few days we are staying in a condo within walking distance of the old town of Albufeira. Unfortunately, our first impressions of Albufeira when we biked through a few weeks ago have turned out to be pretty accurate. Lots of stag and hen parties, loud bars and sunburnt Brits. On Friday night the town felt like a bad all- inclusive resort. Lots of signs for full English breakfasts and Sunday roast beef dinners. Mike said, why don’t they just stay home? I replied, the weather of course. But the weather has actually been warmer in the UK this week. Enjoy it up there, Al and Helen. In fairness, the beaches here are beautiful and we have easy access to lots of lovely small villages which we will visit over the next few days. We have a number of recommendations for restaurants and places to see so we’ll stay out of trouble.
    Yesterday we “headed for the hills” and spent some time visiting the super well preserved castle at Silves that is the best example of moorish, military architecture in Portugal. If Helen were here she would describe it much more eloquently no doubt. We then drove up, up to the hills and had a lovely meal in the village of Monchique. Wildboar stew for me and a huge“mature bull”steak for Mike. We had lots of leftovers tonight. Away from abundant seafood on the coast, Portuguese cuisine is very heavy on meat, loads of carbs with hardly a vegetable in sight. Yesterday, the waitress asked me THREE times if I really wanted a salad with my meal as the portion was so large.
    . We head back to Lisbon on Friday to drop off our trusty Peugeot and then we take the milk-run flight route home Saturday via London and Toronto. We hope to see the girls and Malcolm enroute.
    Well that’s about it for Portugal. I don’t expect much more excitement or news over the next few days.
    We’re looking forward to getting home as much as we’ve enjoyed this latest adventure.
    Thanks for traveling with us,
    We look forward to seeing most of you soon. Until then........
    Signing off from Albufeira, Portugal.
    Love Heather/ Mom.
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  • Day8

    Rolling Along the Algarve

    April 1 in Portugal

    The Algarve is Portugal’s southern-most region and covers the area from the eastern border with Spain to the western most corner at Cape St. Vincent. We are biking the 200 km or so this week. Not an epic journey, but one that gives us lots of time for stops along the way. The Algarve became popular in the sixties as affordable flights became available but it has never had the crowds of Spain . The coast is a series of white- washed fishing villages, lovely low-lying marshes and salt flats, sandy beaches and lots of holiday destinations. So far the predominant language we’ve heard besides English and Portuguese is German.
    On Thursday, Mike and I flew from the UK to Faro and rendezvoused with our bike-trip buddies Helen and Laura of the Danube trip fame. We stayed in a lovely boutique hotel and toasted our reunion with some excellent and inexpensive local wine and some fried sardines. We had a chance to explore Faro on Friday and then we were transported east to the border of Spain to a lovely town called Vila Real de Sant Antonio ( lovingly Referred to as VRSA).
    In VRSA we got our bikes for the week from the rental company. They are not quite what we expected. To begin with Mike’s is far too big - perhaps because he insisted I tell them that he is 6 ft tall! The ladies’s bikes are very klunky and more like commuter bikes that you’d put a basket and poodle in. Great for cruising gently allng the flat areas but it could be harder as we have any hills and climbing to do. We’ve contacted the rental agency and hope to get one or more exchanged but we’ll see. Being the Easter weekend, everything is shut down. Mike has had to be our super roadie. Every big bump seems to create another noise or problem and he has been continuously adjusting brakes, raising seats and investigating weird non-bike like noises.
    Our first 2 days of biking have been easy and very scenic. First day from Vila Real de Santo Antonio to Tavira. Today from Tavira to Olha. Lots of winding trails around the coastal marshlands and salt flats. We have passed huge piles of salt - a thriving industry in these parts. The fragrance in many areas is overwhelming of orange blossoms. There are lots of citrus trees. And succulents. There are huge stork nests in all kinds of places. Very scenic. The ocean is always on our left side (or we’re going the wrong way).
    Helen has briefed us all back up on architectural lingo. We needed to be reminded since the last trip. As we wander through the towns she points out the various styles and eras of the buildings such as phoenician, roman, classical, baroque, rococo, modern etc. Mike, Laura and I are now adept at nodding knowingly and mumbling things like - « hmmmm, that baroque - so over the top...... ». Actually , the tile work is noticeable. It is a big industry here and many buildings are beautifully clad in colourful tiles. Most of the roads in the villages and towns are still cobble-stone making biking a bit of a teeth rattling experience. Fortunately a good feature of our bikes is their wide, thick tires.
    We have particularly enjoyed the food so far. Lots of wonderful sea food. Grilled tuna and sea bass. Sardines, shrimps and tonight squid. It will be awhile before we are tired of it.
    Today is Easter and we found a church in the town of Tavira , where we stayed last night, that celebrated Easter mass with a parade. We were alongside as the churchgoers came out of the beautiful old church lead by the incense -waving priests followed by small children spreading flower petals. The local band followed the procession playing suitably religious sounding music. They wound through the old town to the river where something else happened but we couldn’t stay as it was time to hit the trails.
    Tonight we are overnight in the town of Olha -pronounced nothing like it looks. There’s a harsh J sound in there somewhere. Tomorrow we may have rain and our distance will be a bit further so things are getting serious. I’m the navigator and my job is to make sure we don’t get lost and to make sure we arrive at thenext hotel before everyone dies of thirst. So far, so good!
    That’s the news for now. Thanks for all of your notes. Love them.
    Fi and Jiggs- enjoy Mexico.
    Love from Portugal,
    Heather/ Mom xxxx
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  • Day13

    Ein kleiner Traum geht in Erfüllung!

    September 2, 2017 in Portugal

    Ich wollte es schon immer - alleine in einem Cave stehen. Früh um 7 Uhr hat der Wecker geklingelt und ich habe mich mich Surfboard und Neopren ausgestattet auf den Weg zum Bengali Beach gemacht. Mein Tipp: Bucht keine Bootstour. Die Caves sind nur 50 Meter um die Ecke. Und geht früh am Morgen hin!!! Dann habt ihr die Chance alleine in den Caves zu stehen!
    Mehr Reisetipps: www.lilies-diary.com

  • Day24

    Coolste Beach Bar in Portugal

    September 13, 2017 in Portugal

    Dieser Strand ist echt besonders. So weitläufig, so viel Sand, dahinter eine Dünenlandschaft und die coolste Strandbar in Portugal. Kurz fühlt man sich wie in der Karibik mit seinem Pina Colada in der Hand. Ein Muss.

  • Day26

    Das australische Portugal

    September 15, 2017 in Portugal

    Dieser Strand ist echt krass! Man fühlt sich wie in Australien wenn man die rote Steilküste entlang läuft. Irre! Ich war zum Sonnenaufgang da. Noch schöner ist es beim Sonnenuntergang. Dann leuchtet die Felswand richtig rot.

  • Day362

    Was für eine Aussicht

    December 28, 2017 in Portugal

    Ich hatte noch nie eine Unterkunft mit so einer fantastischen Aussicht! Morgens aufwachen und direkt aufs Meer schauen 💕 Im Dezember war es so wunderschön ruhig und wir waren in 5 Minuten zum Surfen am Strand!

  • Day11

    Wunderschöne Bucht

    August 31, 2017 in Portugal

    Es geht los. Unser Roadtrip durch Portugal. Mit einem Indie Camper werden wir uns die nächsten 2 Wochen treiben lassen. Erster Stopp - Portimao. Die Stadt gefällt mir gar nicht, aber sie grenzt an einen fantastischen Strand - der Praia dos Tres irmaos. Geht von Bucht zu Bucht bis es nicht mehr weiter geht. Ihr werdet Felsgänge finden und mega schöne Felsformation. In einem Gang sitzt ein Muschelverkäufer. Gesammelte Muscheln, nicht zum Essen ;)
    Mehr Reisetipps: www.lilies-diary.com
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You might also know this place by the following names:

Distrito de Faro, Faro

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