Historical buildings and plazas, theatres, beaches and tavernas make Faro in southern Portugal a popular destination all year round. The city is also the capital of the Algarve region, making it a good base for anyone wanting to explore this beautiful area.
With mild winters and hot summers, there isn't really a bad time to visit Faro. Beach lovers may prefer the warmer months from April to October, with temperatures ranging from 27 to 35 degrees Celsius. During this period, the Faro International Motorcycle Rally occurs in mid July, and the 7th of September sees the kick off for two weeks' of parties, music, exhibitions and celebrations to mark the anniversary of Faro being given official city status. Architecture enthusiasts, history buffs or golf tourists can enjoy a less crowded experience outside the peak season. Winter temperatures vary from 8 to 17 degrees making Faro an easy place to visit year round.
When planning your budget for Faro, it's worth noting that in general, prices are lower than they are in the United Kingdom. Everything from eating out through to buying groceries to cater for yourself will cost you less. It's worthwhile making use of the markets for fresh produce, which are even better value than the supermarkets. The easiest way to get around Faro is by car, so most visitors hire one. During the peak season from April to October, it is worth reserving a car, and also accommodation, in advance, so as to avoid disappointment.
While most visitors to Faro hire cars at the airport, if this isn't an option, the numbers 14 and 16 bus routes, operated by EVA, run between the airport and Faro city centre. The fare for these buses is approximately EUR 2.50 and the journey time is around 15 minutes. To take a taxi will cost around EUR 16, with a price increase anytime after 9pm. Once in Faro, there is an extensive bus network that covers the Algarve which is divided into zones. A single zone journey will cost around EUR 1, with two zones costing around EUR 1.70, and all zones around EUR 2. An all day pass costs under EUR 6 or thereabouts. Taxis start at EUR 3 with an additional fee of 50 cents per kilometre. When planning your budget, it is worth noting that taxis cost more between 9pm and 6am, as well as at weekends and that there is an extra charge for luggage. Taxis are typically booked in advance and rarely hailed on the street. There are plenty of places to stay in Faro, but during busy times it is essential to book ahead. Budget accommodation can be found for around EUR 12 per night for a shared room. Hotels start from around EUR 40 per person, per night during the peak season.