Your own private paradise is just a short boat ride away from Faro.
Faro is often seen as the gateway city to the Algarve. Granted, it’s a region that entices you with all its natural beauty: think cliffy coastlines awash with sandy beaches and clear-blue waters; spa towns like Caldas de Monchique in the Monchique Mountains; the dizzying heights of Fóia mountain; and its rolling hills dotted with vineyards galore. And did we mention the region bathes in 300 days of sunshine a year?
But before you leave Faro to head off on all these adventures, do make sure to go island-hopping in the Ria Formosa natural park, which stretches over 18,000 hectares. This lagoon system is composed of various canals and barrier islands which are home to diverse flora and fauna. Barreta island (or Ilha Deserta) is the least developed of the bunch, yet easily reachable by jumping on a ferry at Faro.
Welcome to your very own private paradise. Here, the beaches stretch for several miles, and the only building in sight is the one belonging to Estaminé restaurant. It subtly stands out for its crab-inspired shape, a tribute to the island’s animal neighbours, and it operates with the natural surroundings in mind. The restaurant boasts eco-friendly credentials powering the restaurant with solar energy, and they serve up local seasonal cuisine that’s fresh from the sea and direct to your plate (clams, the catch of the day, prawns…). So savour the flavours, soak up the serene views of the endless shoreline and lose yourself in this gastronomical heaven.
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