Rogério Conceição Bacalhau Coelho

From the Phoenicians (IV c. BC), though the Romans and the Visigoths (centuries II BC to VIII AC) to the Moors (in 713), the city of Faro, that initially was called Ossonoba, was always one of the most important urban centers of South Portugal and a commercial port for agricultural products, fish, and minerals.

After Portuguese independence in 1143, Afonso Henriques and his successors began an expansion into the southern Iberian territory occupied by the Moors. Finally, in 1249, king D. Afonso III conquested Faro.

In the following centuries, Faro became a prosperous city due to its geographical position, its safe port and the exploration and trade of salt and agricultural products of the Algarve inner part - commercial exchanges that were increased with the Portuguese Discoveries.

Faro, the capital of the Algarve region, is located in the southern part of the country and in the central part of Algarve. With 209 km2 of area, it represents approximately 4% of the total area of ​​the Algarve region and has a population of more than 60 000 inhabitants (about 14% of the Algarve population). The city is facing south and west of the Atlantic Ocean, makes a border with Formosa River, and is classified as a natural park. One of the most important characteristics of Faro is precisely that connection to the sea, along 19 kilometers of sand dunes bordering the Atlantic coast and the natural park, 26% of whose area is included in the territory of the Municipality of Faro.

Faro, given its centrality and being a regional capital, is home to some of the most important infrastructure and public services in the Algarve region and therefore has an unequal role in promoting the social and economic dynamics of one of the main tourist destinations in Portugal.

Its airport with more than 8 million tourists arriving every year, its University with a strong international position in the field of Marine sciences, Tourism management, Biotechnology, as well as its Regional Central Hospital and its six secondary schools institutions, are some of the reasons for the central role of Faro and its importance, which the city extends to the neighboring municipalities and even to Andalucia, influencing the daily life of more than 230 000 Portuguese inhabitants. 



Faro is the main gateway city of Algarve region and it is visited by millions of tourist, because of its enormous landscape impact caused by the beautiful coastline and the river, which protects and surrounds the city. Another factor that contributes to the attraction of visitors and tourists is the reflection of the proximity of the sea presented in the historic center and its oldest part Vila Adentro, where it is possible to find a rich variety of museums and cultural heritage. A space of confluence throughout the history, whether for economic reasons, human and social enjoyment, or learning and cultural experience, Faro is increasingly becoming a tourist destination for those who are looking for quality and complementary offers to the most unique sun and beach destinations.