The journey from Faro to Tavira, both towns in the Algarve region, is a short distance of 24 miles (38 km). Driving and taking the train are the easiest ways to arrive in Tavira. Both options take the same amount of time, about half an hour. The train is a cheaper option if you factor in tolls, but having a car gives you flexibility.
There are two routes you can take by car, though both pass through toll roads. You can use other routes to avoid tolls and will only add 5 or 10 minutes to your journey.
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Duration: 35 minutes
The drive is simple and direct driving 23 miles on the Algarve highway, A22, until you reach Tavira. You can also take the N398 and the A22, which is a few miles shorter but a couple of minutes longer. Neither route has views of the ocean so it's a matter of preference.
Like most roads in Portugal, this route has electronic tolls. The A22 has ViaVerde toll booths, requiring a ViaVerde pass, a device that's connected to your car and license plate. If you rent a car, this will likely be taken care of. Tolls will be added to your rental car bill.
If you have your own car, you can register your car to use the electronic toll booths. It's a good idea to have cash on hand and a credit card, just in case.
If you want to avoid paying for tolls, you can take the N398 and N270, which takes around 5 minutes more than the A22 or you can take the N125, which takes around 45 minutes.
Duration: 35 minutes
Trains are an easy and relaxing way to get around, especially in the Algarve region. Trains run often during the weekdays with the first departure in the morning and the last at night. A tourist/2nd class seat is a good choice, especially for a short 35-minute ride. A first-class ticket offers more amenities, such as power outlets if you need to charge your phone, laptop or tablet as well as more comfortable seats.
There are 13 trains per day during the week, some depart every hour with some gaps in the late morning and in the afternoon. On the weekend, there are 10 trains per day, offering services in the morning until night. Buy your ticket at the train station or buy online direct from the train company, Comboios de Portugal.