Faro
Water Sports

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Our most recommended Faro Water Sports

Faro: Deserta Island and Farol Island Catamaran Boat Trip

1. Faro: Deserta Island and Farol Island Catamaran Boat Trip

When you’re in Portugal make sure to experience this exciting catamaran boat to Deserta and Farol islands that will take you through the spectacular nature of the Ria Formosa. Come see why this region was elected one of the 7 Natural Wonders of Portugal. Depart from the Marina of Faro sailing slowly through the channels of the Ria Formosa to fully enjoy the beautiful landscape. Along the tour you will see birds like the Grey Heron, the White Stork and many other birds that use this area as a feeding habitat. As you approach the islands and beaches you see the lighthouse of Culatra Island where you make our first stop. Looking around, one can observe the hard work of the people in the oyster and clam farms. A closer look towards the coastline and you will notice the market of the city of Olhão - an important fishing town. And off toward the ocean you can glimpse one of the most important sea entrances of the Ria Formosa. The next stop is Farol Island. Here, you can enjoy a walk around the streets of this small but friendly community. When passing by the lighthouse, go on until the very end to admire an extensive beach of fine white sand washed by calm warm waters. Leave the Farol Island and make your second stop at Deserta Island. This island is also known as Barreta Island. Here lies the most southern point of Portugal - the Santa Maria Cape. In this second stop you can choose to explore the fauna and flora of the island by an easy walk or simply enjoy the sunshine and bathe in the clear waters of the beach.

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From Faro: Ria Formosa Faro Islands Catamaran Tour

2. From Faro: Ria Formosa Faro Islands Catamaran Tour

Sail to the beautiful Ria Formosa Natural Park by catamaran, with regular departures scheduled from Faro. The journey follows the Ria Formosa channels and includes stops at the magical islands of Farol and Deserta. Don't forget your swimsuits and towels - there will be plenty of breaks for swimming! The guide on board will provide information in Portuguese, English, French, and Spanish. The modern catamaran has a capacity of up to 11 passengers and provides a pleasant and comfortable way of exploring the islands.

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Algarve Coast: Dolphin Watching & Cave Tour

3. Algarve Coast: Dolphin Watching & Cave Tour

The Algarve coast brings to mind pirate adventures, and pristine beaches. Today you will explore the coast between Albufeira Marina and Capvoeiro beach on a luxury boat that offers you the chance to swim, relax, and maybe even see a dolphin or two! Begin with a relaxing ride through the caves and rock formations that make this landscape so unique. Then head out to sea in your search for the dolphins who call these waters home. Your boat is the perfect vessel for dolphin exploration, and these playful and fun animals are truly a sight to behold! Your expert guide will share with you interesting facts and history on this memorable trip.

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From Faro: 4 Islands, 4 Stops in Ria Formosa Catamaran Tour

4. From Faro: 4 Islands, 4 Stops in Ria Formosa Catamaran Tour

Enjoy a tour on a comfortable Catamaran, taking in the fauna and flora of the Natural Park of Ria Formosa. Cross the channels of the park and stop for 45 minutes at Deserta Island, where you will the opportunity to take a swim. Then, proceed to Farol Island where you will have another 45 minutes to discover its lighthouse and take photos. Sail to Hangares and see the culture of oysters and the military reserve. Lastly, arrive at Culatra Island where you will have 1.5 hours of free time to explore the traditional fishing village. You will also have the option to have lunch in a typical restaurant on Breech Island where the main course varies between fresh fish or seafood.

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Ria Formosa Natural Park Kayak Hire from Faro

5. Ria Formosa Natural Park Kayak Hire from Faro

Paddle through the Algarve's famed blue waters in a kayak. The Rotomod sit-on-top kayaks are stable, safe, comfortable, and easy to use, making them the perfect way for you to explore the waters of the Algarve. You don’t need any experience to get the most out of your very own kayaking adventure. Various types of kayaks are available for rent. The first is the Rotomod Ocean Duo, a comfortable double kayak that can seat up to 2 adults and 1 child, making it ideal for both families and solo travelers. There is also the Rotomod Ocean Quattro, perfect for families. This kayak can seat up to 2 adults and 2 children, although it works best with 2 adults and 1 child. The Rotomod Tango is a heavy duty solo kayak, ideal for bigger paddlers or people travelling with a lot of heavy gear. If you don’t have that much gear, then the Toromod Mambo might be for you, with excellent maneuverability from this solo kayak. Just for your safety, your kayak hire will also include light paddles and comfortable safety vests.

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Olhão: Ria Formosa Boat Cruise

6. Olhão: Ria Formosa Boat Cruise

Set sail from the port of Olhão and travel through the Ria Formosa National Park. Discover beautiful scenery and rich biodiversity with your expert crew. Learn more about the national park and local culture with your expert captain. Cruise by marshes, barrier-islands, islets, dunes, sand bars, and saltpans which are home to a rich variety of flora and fauna. Spot local birds, marine life, and beds of clams and oysters. Make a short stop at Praia Deserta and enjoy the serenity of a tranquil location accessible only by boat. While there, enjoy some time for a swim and to take photos, before returning to Olhão.

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Faro: Guided Benagil Cave and Marinha Beach Tour

7. Faro: Guided Benagil Cave and Marinha Beach Tour

After gathering at the tour meeting point, your van will depart from Faro for the approximately hour-long journey after which you will arrive to Benagil Beach. It will be from this location, together with your instructor, that you will enter the cave. It will take between 5 and 10 minutes to enter the cave, after which you will have 40 minutes inside to enjoy its unique environment. You can choose to spend your time taking photos, swimming, and just generally relaxing. It will soon be time to head to Marinha Beach, which is considered the most beautiful beach in Portugal. At this location you will have an hour to discover the amazing cliffs and views, following which you will head back to Faro.

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Pirate Ship Cruise along the Algarve Coast

8. Pirate Ship Cruise along the Algarve Coast

We hoist our pirate flag, lift the anchor, and away we go! On the beautiful Pirate Ship Leãozinho ("little lion"), we will explore the most treasured spots along the Algarve Coastline and discover why these hidden caves and grottos became the favored home of generations of daring pirates. As we set sail, we'll see enchanting rock formations and spectacular caves on our historical ship. If you feel like a sip from the ol' barrel of rum to lift your spirits for our cruise, we've got an onboard Pirate Bar that's perfect for quenching your thirst. The wind whips through the sails, and your comfortable seating lets you look out on all of the most beautiful beaches and breathtaking formations along this coastline. We will even have the chance to head out onto the Atlantic, passing the soft, sandy beaches of San Rafael, Castelo, and Praia da Gale. Of course, no pirate adventure is complete without having to "walk the plank", and you'll be happy to do so as you end up in the refreshing and beautiful waters below! Your swim in the clear waters is the perfect rejuvenating dip before we set sail and return to the Marina of Albufeira.

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From Olhão: Ria Formosa Full-Day 3-Island Tour

9. From Olhão: Ria Formosa Full-Day 3-Island Tour

Explore the islands of Ria Formosa in Olhão and Faro for an unforgettable and rich experience. Start in Culatra, an island located in the Natural Park of Ria Formosa with about 750 inhabitants, most of them fishermen. Learn about the local history and visit all the small streets and typical houses of the region. Discover the lighthouse and continue to the most peaceful beach in the Algarve on Culatra, which separates the dark blue of the Atlantic Ocean and the light blue of the Ria Formosa. Dive, swim, relax and enjoy the sun. Don’t stress about bringing anything for your beach relaxation, as everything you could need will be provided.

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From Olhão: Ria Formosa Sunset Tour

10. From Olhão: Ria Formosa Sunset Tour

After boarding your boat, head out into the sheltered waters of Ria Formosa. Your first stop will be at on Praia Deserta at one of the most pristine beaches in the Algarve. From the beach, head to the village of Ilha da Armona and enjoy a refreshing drink while you contemplate the amazing views. The final stop on your tour is at a deserted beach where you can relax and, in summer, enjoy some swimming or snorkelling. From the beach, you can also enjoy beautiful views of the sunset over the ocean at the end of the day when your group will almost certainly have the beach to yourselves. After about 30 minutes to enjoy the beach and the sunset, you'll board your boat for the return trip Olhão.

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Other Sightseeing Options in Faro

Want to discover all there is to do in Faro? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Faro

The tour was was well run and Guilherme a knowledgeable captain and guide. Good observance of Covid measures. The weather was not great but the direction of travel was adjusted slightly to minimise choppy seas. There was ample time to spend on each island and observe the differences. An excellent opportunity to compare how the island beaches compared to those of the mainland.

Had a wonderful time kayaking with Luis in Ria Formosa. He was very knowledgeable about the wildlife in the lagoon and we could tell his love for nature and the sea. We had a picture-perfect morning despite the recent rains in the Algarve, saw a great variety of birds, and did not want our kayaking tour to end.

In time pick up, with clear and good instructions about the bodyboard usage. I found it's way less time - 40 mins to spend in the cave. Generally, good value for money

It was an unforgettable day with a very careful and experienced skipper :-). I would do the tour again at any time and can only recommend it to everyone.

Wonderful, very warm welcome and a top captain thank you to you and the whole team