A journey through Formosa
A train ride between Faro and Vila Real de San Antonio, with the beautiful landscapes of the Ria Formosa filling the window on your right with color and light, and then, by the end of the ride, with the views of the marsh of Castro Marim.This ride by train begins at the station of Faro, where the fast Intercidades trains arrive from Lisbon. Do not miss the sights in the early moments of the trip because the train goes around the marina and the historic center of Faro, passing right next to the Largo de São Francisco. Until Olhão you will have successive perspectives on the Ria Formosa.
As you get nearer Olhão, the focus lies on the salt evaporation ponds and on the cubist fishermen' neighborhood. During the following kilometers, the train will move a little further inland, and, then, will get closer to the coast, through a beautiful stretch that marks the arrival in Fuseta. Leaving this fishermen's village, the line describes a very broad curve which is like a farewell to the landscape of the estuary, since from now on you will go further inland, through higher grounds, the view of the sea being episodic.
The stretch near Tavira is another interesting moment of this tour, crossing the Gilão river by a high metal bridge that allows you to enjoy views of the city and the river to a large extent. In the section that remains to Vila Real de Santo Antonio, note the passage near Castro Marim station that allows a glimpse of the marsh that extends to the Guadiana, which is classified as a natural reserve. Upon arrival in Vila Real, enjoy the architecture of the station, a masterpiece of modernism (Cottinelli Telmo, 1936) and get ready for a relaxing stroll to the pombaline center of the city.
Access By Algarve Line, until Faro station.
To have into account The station is at a 15 min walking distance form the center of Vila Real.
Other You can interrupt this tour to visit Olhão or Tavira.
Meals Casa de Pasto Algarve (T. 289702470) in Olhão and Vela 2 (T. 281323661) in Tavira.
Other spots to visit Head-offices of Ria Formosa Natural Park in Quinta do Marim, Olhão; Faro historic center.