Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Faro is both a city and a district in southern Portugal.
Faro is the administrative centre for the whole of the Algarve region. The city has about 55,000 inhabitants. Most of its present attractive older buildings were constructed after the disastrous earthquake of 1755 and the earlier one of 1532.
The Moors who occupied the place in the 8th Century originally gave to it the name of Ossónoba and developed it into a trading port until 1249 when they were defeated by the forces of the Portuguese King Afonso III. With the decline of the importance of the City of Silves this town took over the role of administration of the Algarve area.
Another interesting item is that during the 500 years of Moorish occupation there were some Jewish inhabitants in Faro who were busily writing copies of the Old Testament.
Faro is also the home of the Ria Formosa lagoon, a nature reserve of over 170 km² and a stopping place for hundreds of different birds during the spring and autumn migratory periods. The beach is almost 7 km distant from the city and is a long sandy spit reached by crossing a bridge.
The city has an autonomous public University (the University of Algarve ) and an International Airport.
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