By Darren Griffiths

Best Day Trips from Faro, Portugal 

1st February 2024

There are plenty of Day Trips from Faro just a drive away! It can be hard to leave this vibrant city in Southern Portugal, but it’s worth taking a few day trips during your holiday because surrounding Faro are stunning beaches, historic towns, Moorish culture, and offshore islands. Here are our 9 favorite day trips from Faro.

1. Benagil Cave and Marinha Beach

One of the best day trips from Fargo, just an hour’s drive away, is a trip to spend the day exploring Benagil Cave and Marinha Beach.

Benagil Cave

Known as the “Eye” Cave because of the cave’s unique formation, it’s located just a five to 10 minute walk from Benagil Beach.

Once guided into the cave, spend your time taking photos, swimming in the shore that washes up into the cave, or just simply relaxing and enjoying the view. 

Afterwards, make your way to Marinha Beach where you’ll have an hour to soak in the panoramic views from above.

Benagil Cave 2

This beach is often described as one of Portugal’s most stunning beaches, so don’t forget your camera and selfie stick!

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2. Ria Formos Island Hopping Tour

Explore Ria Formosa’s three barrier islands on a fun-filled day trip of island hopping!

Ria Formos Island

Desert Island is your first stop, where you can enjoy the peaceful wildlife on this inhabited island. Visitors can join in on a walking tour, visit the island’s lighthouse, or just soak up the sun at the beach.

Next, set off for a small village on the island of Farol. Enjoy a walk on the beach, then grab a cocktail from one of the many beach bars.

The last stop on this day trip is a small island called Culatra. This island is a small fishing village where you can mingle with locals and observe the oyster farms during low tide.

Are you interested in spending a little bit more time on a certain island that catches your eye? Well, good news! This day trip is extremely flexible, so you can choose your time spent on each of the three islands!

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3. Exploring Algarve 

Spend the day exploring and taking in the natural beauty of the historic, beautiful area of Algarve.

On this full-day tour, you will find yourself at the highest point of the Algarve, in the mountains of Serra de Monchique.

Exploring Algarve 

Then you will make your way down to the city center of Lagos, soaking in all the culture and history the city has to offer.

You will stop many times, including at historical castles, churches, and visit the first indoor slave market in Europe.

Lastly, take a visit to an area known as the “end of the world.” Which, not to worry, really just means the southwestern-most part of Europe.

4. Silves 

Silves, which is the former capital of the Algarve, is filled with history and Arabic culture.

On this seven-hour day trip, you’ll have the chance to take in the sights of Silves as well as visit the beautiful red sandstone Slives Castle and Silves Cathedral. 

Silves 

Fancy a glass of wine at the end of sightseeing? You will then make your way to a guided tour of Quinta dos Vales.

Have a tour of the vineyards and cellars, learning about the wine-making process.

Try the locally produced wines and enjoy the flavors of homemade goods like bread and olive oils. It’s the half day trip from Faro!

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5. Sintra 

Consider yourself a romantic? Sintra is considered one of the most romantic cities in Portugal. On this day tour, you will spend the day walking through the historic streets, taking in the magic of this ancient city. 

Sintra

Visit the famous Penna Palace and Quinta de Regaleira. The Penna Palace stands on the top of a hill in the Sintra Mountains, above the town of Sintra.

Learn about the myths of the palace and have plenty of time to explore the grounds.

A visit to Quinta de Regaleira can’t be missed. Spend your time exploring the luxurious garden that features lakes, grottoes, underground tunnels, statues and sculptures, and so much more.

It’s the one day trip from Faro you should take if you’re not going to get a chance to visit central and northern Portugal.

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 6. Sailing the waters of Ria Formosa

Are you looking to try something new? Why not spend a day trip out on the waters of the beautiful Ria Formosa? And better yet, on a sailing trip!

Sailing the waters of Ria Formosa

With a skipper to guide you on your half day tour, you’ll have the opportunity to enjoy a private trip and, if you want, even help with the on-board tasks!

The Ria Formosa is one of the most beautiful natural parks in the world, so as you sail along, take in the stunning views and relax while surrounded by thousands of birds of all different species.

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7. Biking Tour through Ria Formosa natural park

Want to stick to land instead? Embark on a biking adventure on a half-day trip from Faro around the national park of Ria Formosa!

Biking Tour through Ria Formosa natural park

Accompanied by a guide, you’ll explore the stunning landscape and the ocean Blue beaches, taking in the sites and learning about the importance of this protected habitat.

You’ll be able to do some birdwatching. From flamingos to storks, there are many birds to see in this national park!

Biking Tour through Ria Formosa natural park 2

Your journey will finish at the Praia de Faro, a crystal-clear super popular beach destination, where you can unwind and take a refreshing swim after your long, hard day of pedaling and exploring!

It’s a day trip from Faro with breathtaking sight-seeing and a great workout! 

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8. Loule

If you want to experience the Portuguese way of life, then take a trip to Loule! Loulé is a popular Portuguese market town lined with craft workshops, many restaurants, and friendly locals.

Loule

One of the biggest attractions of this picturesque old town is the central market. The market comes alive on Saturday mornings, when the regular market expands to include a farmers’ market.

The busy atmosphere and so many goods to choose from make it a great place to pick up unique souvenirs to take home!

Loule is located just ten miles from Fargo and can be easily reached by taxi or bus. It’s not the most small town Algarve life you can experience in southern Portugal, but if you choose a quiet weekday, it comes close!

9.  Cabo de São Vicente

Located on the southwestern tip of Portugal, Cabo de São Vicente is a must-visit destination!

Located around an hour and a half drive from Faro, this beautiful and rugged coastline is home to towering cliffs, crashing waves, and picturesque views of the most southern area of Portugal!

Cabo de São Vicente

One of the most popular activities is hiking along the cliffs and exploring the landscape just off the Algarve coast.

You can also visit the lighthouse, which is popular among visitors who take advantage of the spectacular views of the surrounding area.

Cabo de São Vicente 2

You may want to make this a day trip, as it takes an hour and a half to two hours from Faro. Hiring a car or taking the city bus are both reliable ways to reach the beautiful Cabo de São Vicente.

Other Great Day trips from Faro

Tavira island

Tavira island

Small town Algarve life with the most beautiful old whitewashed buildings with teracotta roofs – just as you dreamed Portugal would look like!

Lisbon

lisbon

Spend a day wandering the narrow streets of the medieval old town in neighborhoods like Alfama. You can fly from Faro airport, or take a guided bus tour.

Carvoeiro

Carvoeiro

Another sensational fishing village come beach town just under an hour from Faro.

I love the buildings hugging the beach and smal harbour, but make sure to hike the Hanging valleys trail on a day trip to Carvoeiro.

Related Faro articles:
18 Best Things to Do in Faro
Where to Stay in Faro – The Best Areas