Faro, Portugal

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This article is about the Portuguese city. For other uses, see Faro.
Faro
Municipality
Panoramic view of Faro.
Panoramic view of Faro.
Flag of Faro
Flag
Coat of arms of Faro
Coat of arms
Location in Portugal
Location in Portugal
Coordinates: 37°02′N 7°55′W / 37.033°N 7.917°W / 37.033; -7.917Coordinates: 37°02′N 7°55′W / 37.033°N 7.917°W / 37.033; -7.917
Country  Portugal
Region Algarve
Subregion Algarve
District/A.R. Faro
Founded 1266
Government
 • Mayor Rogério Bacalhau (PSD)
Area
 • Total 201.59 km2 (77.83 sq mi)
Population (2011[1])
 • Total 64,560
 • Density 320/km2 (830/sq mi)
Parishes (no.) 4
Municipal holiday September 7
Website Official website

Faro (Portuguese pronunciation: [ˈfaɾu]) is a city and a municipality in the Faro District of the Algarve region, in southern Portugal. It is the southernmost city in Continental Portugal.[2] The city proper has 50.000 inhabitants,[1] and the entire municipality has 64.560 (2011).[3] It is the seat of the Faro District and capital of the Algarve region. The Algarve and Faro district cover the same territory.

History[edit]

Faro is the chief city in the Portuguese region of Algarve.
Estoi Palace, Faro

The Ria Formosa lagoon attracted human occupants from the Palaeolithic age until the end of pre-history. During that time a settlement grew up – Ossonoba – which was an important town during the period of Roman occupation and, according to historians, the forerunner of present-day Faro. From the 3rd century onwards and during the Visigothic period it was the site of an Episcopal see.

With the advent of Moorish rule in the 8th century Ossonoba retained its status as the most important town in the southwest corner of the Iberian Peninsula. In the 9th century it became the capital of a short-lived princedom and was fortified with a ring of defensive walls. At this time the name Santa Maria ("Shantamariyyat al-Gharb" in Arabic) began to be used instead of Ossonoba in the 10th century . Later on the town was known as Faro (Pharaoh). During the 500 years of Moorish rule there were some Jewish inhabitants in Faro who wrote copies of the Old Testament. One of Faro's historical names in Arabic is أخشونبة (ʼUḫšūnubaḧ). The Moors were defeated by the forces of the Portuguese King Afonso III in 1249.[4] With the decline of the importance of the city of Silves, Faro took over the role of administration of the Algarve area.

The Earl of Essex sacked the town in 1596 and seized the library of the Bishop of Faro. These books appeared later in the University of Oxford as part of the Bodleian Library. One of the books sacked was the first ever printed book in Portugal - a Torah in local Hebrew / Judeo Español - printed by Samuel Gacon at his workshop in Faro.

Lagos had become the capital of the historical province of Algarve in 1577 and remained so until 1756, the year following the destruction of much of the town by the 1755 Lisbon earthquake. The earthquake damaged several areas in the Algarve, where a tsunami dismantled some coastal fortresses and, in the lower levels, razed houses. Almost all the coastal towns and villages of the Algarve were heavily damaged, except Faro, which was protected by the sandy banks of Ria Formosa lagoon. Since then Faro has been the administrative seat of the region.

Parishes[edit]

Administratively, the municipality is divided into 4 civil parishes (freguesias):[5]

Facilities[edit]

The Estádio Algarve opened for Euro 2004.

The city has a public university (the University of the Algarve), an international airport (Faro airport), a seaport, a marina, a railway station and complete inter-regional bus services.

Its 30,000-seater stadium Estádio Algarve, shared by the neighboring cities of Faro and Loulé, was one of the venues of the Euro 2004. Louletano Desportos Clube (a club from the city of Loulé) and Sporting Clube Farense (from Faro) also use smaller municipal stadiums. The stadium is also used for concerts, festivals and other events.

Faro airport is not too far away from the city itself. In recent years the numbers of visitors traveling through the airport has increased as more and more low-cost airlines compete to offer cheap flights to the Algarve. The transport facilities to and from Faro airport with the centre of Faro include taxicabs and a bus line.

Climate[edit]

Faro has a Subtropical-Mediterranean climate (Köppen climate classification: Csa). Summers are warm to hot and sunny with average daytime temperatures of 27–35 °C (81–95 °F). The weather in the autumn and winter months is generally mild with temperatures around 8–17 °C (46–63 °F). Faro receives most of its rainfall over the winter months; rain is very rare between June and September. The annual average temperature is around 17 °C (63 °F) - 18 °C (64 °F) and the annual rainfall is around 500 mm (19.69 in). The average sea surface temperature is 15–16 °C (59–61 °F) in January rising to 22–25 °C (72–77 °F) in August.

Climate data for Faro
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 21.9
(71.4)
24.7
(76.5)
28.9
(84)
30.1
(86.2)
33.6
(92.5)
37.1
(98.8)
44.3
(111.7)
39.6
(103.3)
37.4
(99.3)
33.3
(91.9)
28.6
(83.5)
24.0
(75.2)
44.3
(111.7)
Average high °C (°F) 16.1
(61)
16.9
(62.4)
19.1
(66.4)
20.4
(68.7)
22.8
(73)
26.4
(79.5)
29.2
(84.6)
28.8
(83.8)
26.6
(79.9)
23.2
(73.8)
19.6
(67.3)
17.0
(62.6)
22.2
(72)
Daily mean °C (°F) 12.0
(53.6)
12.8
(55)
14.8
(58.6)
16.1
(61)
18.4
(65.1)
21.9
(71.4)
24.2
(75.6)
24.1
(75.4)
22.3
(72.1)
19.3
(66.7)
15.7
(60.3)
13.3
(55.9)
17.9
(64.2)
Average low °C (°F) 7.9
(46.2)
8.7
(47.7)
10.5
(50.9)
11.8
(53.2)
14.0
(57.2)
17.3
(63.1)
19.1
(66.4)
19.4
(66.9)
18.0
(64.4)
15.3
(59.5)
11.7
(53.1)
9.6
(49.3)
13.6
(56.5)
Record low °C (°F) −1.2
(29.8)
−1.2
(29.8)
2.3
(36.1)
3.6
(38.5)
6.7
(44.1)
8.0
(46.4)
11.9
(53.4)
13.1
(55.6)
9.9
(49.8)
7.8
(46)
2.7
(36.9)
1.2
(34.2)
−1.2
(29.8)
Precipitation mm (inches) 59.3
(2.335)
52.0
(2.047)
39.4
(1.551)
38.6
(1.52)
21.7
(0.854)
4.3
(0.169)
1.8
(0.071)
3.9
(0.154)
23.2
(0.913)
60.1
(2.366)
90.4
(3.559)
114.1
(4.492)
508.8
(20.031)
Avg. precipitation days (≥ 0.1 mm) 12 13 9 10 7 4 1 1 3 9 10 11 90
Mean monthly sunshine hours 170.5 165.2 232.5 252.0 313.1 333.0 368.9 353.4 273.0 226.3 183.0 167.4 3,038.3
Source: Instituto de Meteorologia,[6] World Meteorological Organization[7] (precipitation days), Hong Kong Observatory[8](sunshine hours)

Nature[edit]

A boat stranded on the coast of Ria Formosa in Faro.

Faro is located next to the Ria Formosa lagoon, a nature reserve of over 170 square kilometres (66 sq mi) and a stopping place for hundreds of different species of birds during the spring and autumn migratory periods. The beach is roughly seven kilometres (4.3 miles) from the city, and consists of a long sandy spit reached through a bridge.

Events[edit]

The Faro International Motorcycle Rally, usually held in mid-July, is a famous festival, renowned in Europe for being one of the biggest of its kind.

The city holiday is on 7 September.

The students' festival (Semana Académica da Universidade do Algarve), organized every year by students from the University of the Algarve, is also an important event in Faro.

Gallery[edit]

Other locations named after Faro[edit]

International relations[edit]

Faro is twinned with:[9]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Resultados Provisórios dos Censos 2011". Retrieved 7 February 2012. 
  2. ^ Detail Regional Map, Algarve- Southern Portugal, ISBN 3-8297-6235-6
  3. ^ INE Census 2011
  4. ^ History of the Algarve
  5. ^ Diário da República. "Law nr. 11-A/2013, page 552 48" (pdf) (in Portuguese). Retrieved 22 July 2014. 
  6. ^ Faro - Instituto de Meteorologia, 1981-2010 (provisórias)
  7. ^ "Monthly Averages for Faro, Portugal". World Meteorological Organization. Retrieved 5 September 2012. 
  8. ^ "Climatological Information for Faro, Portugal" Hong Kong Observatory. Retrieved 5 September 2012
  9. ^ a b c d e f g "Geminações de Cidades e Vilas". Associação Nacional de Municípios Portugueses (in Portuguese). Retrieved 2013-07-20. 
  10. ^ "National Commission for Decentralised cooperation". Délégation pour l’Action Extérieure des Collectivités Territoriales (Ministère des Affaires étrangères) (in French). Retrieved 2013-12-26. 

External links[edit]