Bus - local Albufeira' 'GIRO' bus network

SIGNIFICANT CHANGES CAME INTO EFFECT ON FEBRUARY 1st 2015 THE MOST IMPORTANT OF WHICH IS A BIG REDUCTION IN THE HOURS OF SERVICE.

BUSES NOW OPERATE ON ALL ROUTES  EXCEPT LINHA LARANJA (ORANGE) AS FOLLOWS :

Weekdays - every 30 minutes 0700 - 2000hrs in winter, until 2200 hours 1st June to 30th September.

Weekends and Holidays - every 30 minutes 0700 - 1400 then only one bus each hour until 2000hrs in winter, 2200hrs in summer.

This means no bus after 2000hrs in winter and 2200hrs in summer so the only options to get home after a night out will be a taxi or, for some, the tourist 'train'.

Linha Laranja (Albufeira Bus Station - Ferreiras - Albufeira Railway Station) is still operating at 30 minute intervals every day 0630 - 2130 in winter, 0630 - 2330 in summer.

(Yes, bus service change  information is NOT published even nearly six months after the event!)

THERE WERE CHANGES TO CERTAIN ROUTES AT THE SAME TIME

Linha Azul (Blue) also servea the Torre da Mosqueira area, Linha Vermelha 1 (Red 1) the Varzea da Orada area near the marina and Linha Vermelha 2 (Red 2) is extended to serve Branqueira village and the Vale Navio roundabout just beyond..

Summary of operations

There is a comprehensive network of local buses operating in Albufeira. These are marketed under the GIRO name and operate between 7am and 8pm all year, seven days a week, with buses on most routes until 10pm in the summer months. Buses run every 30 minutes on all routes on weekdays and on Saturdays until until 1400hrs. On Saturday afternoons, also all day on Sundays and Holidays, buses now run only once each hour.

Five routes connect the bus terminal with the districts of Oura, Montechoro, Sta Eulalia, Camping Albufeira, Ferreiras, Vale Serves, the  Railway Station (which is 6km/4 miles from town), Páteo, Vale Santa Maria, the Marina, Areias São João (for 'The Strip') Branqueira and the old town (Centro Antigo) which please note is 1.6km/1 mile from the bus terminal.The Giro map and stops are here in pdf format (it takes a minute to load). For 2015, there is a slight change to Verde (Green) route, not shown on Giro Map or Stops .... green now goes from Town Hall to Alves Correia, both beginning and end of its run, which means a green to Cerro Malpique and Terminal will pass both Town Hall and Alves Correia around the same time as the outward green going to Main shopping and Montechoro (roughly 15 and 45 mins). One green will pass Cerro Mar Garden Hotel .. not previously available from Old Town centre.

Information, maps but no timetables (timetables are not published!) can be obtained from the offices at the main bus terminal or the Bus Shop in Avenida da Liberdade in the old town. An unofficial printed timetable is available at Albufeira Guide

Single fare cash for any journey is €1.40 - your ticket is valid for one journey. The previous validity of one hour including a change of bus has been abolished. If your journey involves two buses you now  have to pay twice. If making more than 2 journeys per day and payng cash, a one day ticket saves you money.  Day tickets  (€4,00) give unlimited rides and multi-journey passes are available. The latter will save you a lot of money if you intend to use the buses more than six times, as the fare is reduced to €0.80. The rechargable card costs €3. Passes can be obtained from the bus offices in Avenida da Liberdae (old town) or at the main bus station.

A monthly pass with unlimited rides is €18 - photo required.

Bus - further afield

Local buses to nearby towns and villages are operated mainly by the EVA bus company - www.eva-bus.com - and some routes by Frota Azul.

Their websites do have timetable information, but on the EVA website it is not comprehensive and the most important routes do not have printable timetables.

Complete timetables with maps and more can be found on this private website www.algarvebus.info/albufeira.htm

Buses to and from other towns and villages do not run after about 8pm.  For the most part, buses run at irregular intervals and are mostly rather infrequent, especially at weekends. Timetables must be carefully checked.

Tourist Train/Trolley

This links the old town, with 'The Strip' via Brisa Sol/Camara area. It runs every 20 minutes, seven days a week from 0900 until about midnight in summer, from 0900 to 1800 in winter then every 40 minutes until about 2230. Timetables and fares are displayed clearly at each of the four stops. The Old Town stop is at the top of the escalators near the pier.

The official website is http://www.turistrem.com/

This service now also stops at the Tres Palmeiras roundabout outside the Forte do Vale hotel.

Tourist Bus (double decker)

This is a 90 minute open top double decker tour of the main sights in the town. It goes farther than the tourist train (as far as the marina), though it covers some of the same route.  Hop on/ hop off as ticket is valid 24 hours (other tickets such as 4 days available).  Commentary by headset in English, Portuguese, German, French, Spanish, Italian, Dutch, Russian (but keep the headset if you do hop off).

  • Start Point: Stop 1 - Municipio
  • Duration: 90 mins
  • Frequency: Summer: every 30 mins ; Winter: every 60 mins
  • Season: all year

You can download a route map, leaflet and/or timetable for your phone/ tablet or to print. You can pre-pay, but you must be able to print your ticket if you do.  CARE: as at 30 May 2014 Check the route map which shows stop 1 near the Municipio (the Tourist Train stop), now outside the hotel Paraiso.

The official web site is  http://www.city-sightseeing.com/tours...

As with most buses in Portugal, time is not that vital. The tour in summer is every half hour, but be prepared to wait up to 45 minutes or more. Nowhere is there any indication of what times the bus arrives at a particular stop.

Taxi

Taxis are readily available except in the evenings in July and August! There are several taxi ranks around town or telephone 289 583 230. Taxis cannot be hailed on the street, nor can they ordered in advance. All taxis are metered. Base fare €3,25 and €5 will get you just about anywhere in town. Fares increase by 20% at night, weekends and public holidays. 80 cents is added if you phone for a taxi, €1,60 is added if you put bags in the boot.

There are very few 'big' taxis. If you need a six seater, ask especially but there may be a longer wait. There is an additional charge of 25% on the fare.

There is more information on the official Albufeira Taxi website here.

Minibus hire

Several of the airport transfer companies will provide transport to golf courses, waterparks etc. If there are five or more passengers, this may be more economical.

DISTANCE CALCULATOR LINK

The following link can be used to calculator the  distance and obtain directions from Albufeira to various destinations:

http://www.distance-calculator.co.uk/...