RIA FORMOSA NATURAL PARK/Parque Natural da Ria Formosa (PNRF)
The Parque Natural da Ria Formosa (PNRF) Ria Formosa Natural Park is one of the natural wonders of Portugal and indeed a very special area for all Algarvians.
It was formed as a National Park in 1987 but of course it has evolved over many thousands of years. It covers approximately 18,000 hectares and is made of 5 barrier islands and 2 peninsulas that enclose a system of tidal lagoons. It extends along the leeward coast of the Algarve through the municipalities of Loulé, Faro, Olhão, Tavira and Vila Real de Santo António.
Because of the natural features and unique location it is included as a wetland of world-wide interest and designated as such under the Ramsar Convention.This is an intergovernmental treaty that provides the framework for national action and international cooperation for the conservation and wise use of wetlands and their resources. In this protected area you may witness many different habitats such as barrier-islands, marshes, tidal flats, islets, dunes, salt-pans, fresh water lagoons, agricultural areas and woodlands which hold an impressive diversity of flora and fauna.
Ria Formosa Tours
There are some great local organisations that provide guided tours and walks within the Ria Formosa. We have list below those that can be arranged from Tavira and a couple that are based in neighbouring Olhão. Have a look and see what you think. Please mention this website if you decide to book.