(A piece of heaven in Portugal)


Faro, (Algarve, Portugal) is a city of a very respectable age: once it was a trading outpost of the Phoenicians and the Greeks, and the Romans built the first fortress and called it Ossonoba - "fortification". In the Renaissance, the town of Faro was thriving, and only a major earthquake put a quick end to its fortunes. Nevertheless, it recovered quickly enough - after all, it was a capital, although a provincial capital.

Faro is small: small houses bleached with lime give it a distinctive flavour. In the old town, they are especially worth seeing: one-story, red-tiled roofs, edged in yellow on the corners to ward off evil spirits, with windows and doors in blue and green, to attract the well-being.

Faro is truly a postcard city. The Arab heritage is unmistakably present in Faro: narrow streets, terraces, and curly chimneys. The main theme of the city is its distinctive rhythm: a modern city, it is relaxed, calm and mellow.

Explore the ancient city walls, the Roman-Gothic cathedral church of St. Peter and St. Francis, and the Monastery of the Assumption. Not too many temples are to be found in Faro: it seems that the Portuguese Catholicism was less boisterous than Spanish.