The Ria Formosa is one of the natural wonders not only of the Algarve, but also of Portugal. That’s why we invite you to take a walk to get to know the corners and corners of this Natural Park that stretches along 60 kilometers of the coast of the Eastern Algarve.
To begin this trip, we invite you to visit the Miradouro de Santo António do Alto or the Arco da Vila, both in Faro, to have a wide panoramic view over the Ria Formosa. And Vila Adentro deserves some time for it.
Follow us in Facebook.
Without losing sight of the Ria, we proceed to Olhão, a city that seems to have been brought from North Africa to the Algarve leeward. It is worth visiting the typical neighborhoods and the Market, where you will find some of the best flavors that the Ria offers.
From Faro or Olhão, you can take the connections made by boat to the islands of the Ria: Barreta, Culatra and Armona. From there, you can enjoy the healthy coexistence between the man, the landscape and what the Ria can offer. And if it’s good weather, rest on the long sands.
Outside of the urban center of Olhão, there is the Marim Environmental Education Center, where you can visit the Marim tide mill, archaeological remains or recovered traditional dwellings. The Center has a walking path, easy to reach, where you can still see the wild birds.
Continuing towards this, it is worth visiting the Tower of Aires, a tower of circular plant in masonry, that is supposed to have Arab origin. The tower had the function of guarding the coast of possible pirate attacks and is still a fine example of the defensive system that existed in the Region.
During this tour, Santa Luzia, the fishing village near the Ria Formosa, also deserves a visit and a stop to taste the traditional octopus recipes, or else it was not the only national port dedicated exclusively to the fishing of this mollusk.
In Tavira, take some time to discover the alleys of the historic center, the castle, the Roman remains and the reminiscences of the Arab presence. Looking at the view, the treasure roofs give a rare architectural identity, before long and cut salinas can be glimpsed, from where salt and salt flower with Protected Denomination of Origin are extracted. To watch the salt collection, it is best to come in late summer. If you have time, be sure to visit one of the more than 20 churches in the city.
We arrived, then, to the last point of this tour: Cacela-Velha. Village classified as Property of Public Interest will leave you gaping with the view over the Ria Formosa. The small village encaved on the cliff is also of interest for the archaeological findings and its heritage value. Romans and Arabs settled here and there made a point of great interest. Down below is one of the few beaches that still remain almost in the wild: Fábrica Beach, which was once considered one of the best in the world.
This tour can be done by car, but also by bicycle. In some areas, there are even routes intended for bicycles. And you can always go for the rails and discover many other beauties of the Ria Formosa Natural Park.