Resting at the southernmost tip of Portugal, Faro is home to the country’s most popular airport – a little wonder with such natural, unspoiled beauty on its doorstep. As you fly south from Dublin to Faro Airport you might just catch an aerial glimpse of the area’s well-preserved wetlands, long golden beaches and golf links as far as the eye can see. Faro is a beautiful old city and a regional hub for a host of activities, from surfing and shopping to sunbathing and socialising. There are plenty of local attractions too; head east for the peaceful shores of Tavira, or let the magnetising nightlife of Albufeira and Vilamoura pull you west. You’ll be rolling in things to do, and with balmy temperatures all year round, there’s never a bad time to go.
Anyone thinking of booking cheap flights to Faro from Dublin has chosen well: peak season doesn’t bring the same wallet-busting spike as other sun-drenched destinations might. Fares and temperatures start to rise in May around the same time the Easter celebrations kick into full swing. Until then, March and April are dry and comfortable, meaning it’s the perfect off-peak time to escape Ireland’s chilly spring days. Between the warmer months of June and September is when the crowds flock to the south of Portugal’s many beautiful beaches. An array of local food festivals and medieval fairs spring up around the Algarve at this time, offering a picturesque day out in one of its charming towns.
There are tons of direct Dublin-Faro flights during the summer season: Aer Lingus and Ryanair take the lion’s share of holidaymakers, while Iberia and Lufthansa pepper the departures board too. You can take your pick of carriers for this 3-hour flight with a range of prices and times of departure. The volume of flights to Faro tends to reduce as the weather cools off, so Aer Lingus will probably be your best bet for an off-peak break.
A 10-minute drive from the airport, Faro town centre is a good place to start a journey even if it isn’t your final destination. Grab a taxi from the 24-hour rank and it will cost you roughly €10 into town, or hop on the 20-minute airport bus for just €2. From there, you can grab a bus or train to the Algarve’s many villages and resorts. Some hotels will offer private transfers at a cost, which is more convenient for those toting luggage or golf clubs. Car hire is also an excellent option for anyone wanting to explore nearby destinations as they please.
Faro is often overlooked for more popular resorts, so it’s worth a visit for anyone wanting to spend some time off the beaten track. You’ll find a peaceful hub within its old Moorish walls and along the charming marina. Day trips to the Ria Formosa National Park are truly spectacular on a local catamaran, which will pick you up from the town’s pier. From there, you can stop at the magical islands and cool down with a quick dip wherever you stop.
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