The information has been obtained from printed
timetables and other local sources (like taking the bus) and is
given in good faith.
Everything is correct to the best of my knowledge as of 5th April 2017 - checked on official websites but not in person.
VERY DIFFERENT SUMMER TIMES APPLY DURING JULY AND AUGUST. Make sure you are looking at the correct times.
|Portimão – Monchique|
|Portimão – Lagos - Sagres and Cape St Vincent|
|Portimão – Ferragudo – Praia dos Canieros|
|Portimao - Lagoa - Carvoeiro - Praia do Carvalho|
|Trains at Portimão|
|Water Taxi Portimão Marina - Ferragudo
(external link opens in new window)
Portimão is linked with the rest of the Algarve by the
inter-urban and express bus routes listed above.
The railway station is just to the north of the city centre, with trains along the Algarve route and connections with Lisbon via Tunes.
Long-distance buses (coaches to UK readers) run to Lisbon and more distant parts including Seville.
Below - Alameda square in Portimão
The city of Portimão and its suburbs are served by a network of
mini-bus routes under the banner ‘Vai e Vem’. Services start at
0700 and finish between 1930 and 2000hrs. On December 24th last
buses are at around 1900hrs. In summer there are later buses between
Portimão and Praia da Rocha.
Many routes no longer
operate or haev very limited service at weekends and public holidays.
The mini-buses used for most journeys are grossly inadequate at
busy periods (eg school start and finish times) so be prepared for
overcrowding and even for a full-up bus sailing past your stop.
The picture below is one of the minibuses used most of the time. They do
have some larger buses used at busy times eg when schools are starting and finishing.
These buses do not go across the river to Ferragudo etc!
There are maps and timetables at the city centre bus
stops, but many other stops have no information at all.
The links below are to the official timetables. Timetables are
annotated in Portuguese and English. The official website itself,
only in Portuguese, is here.
THE OFFICIAL SYSTEM ROUTE MAP IS HERE. All stopping places are shown.
All the links below are to the official maps and timetables
on the Portimão council website and will open in a new window.
Most routes serve the Largo do Dique in the City
Centre. The Alameda is the large square in the older part of
the city about 5 minutes walk from Largo do Dique. Some routes
start/end at Rua das Hortas rather
than the Alameda or Largo do Dique. Rua das Hortas is near the
municipal market and quite a walk (about 750 metres) from the
Largo do Dique.
Inbound buses that stop at the Centro de Saúde (Health Centre)
stop at the city market outbound. The Health Centre is a short
walk from the market. See the map.
In Praia da Rocha, inbound buses stop at the Hotel Jupiter, Hotel Oriental and the Fortaleza. They return via a parallel street without stopping. See the map.
The route between Portimão city centre and Praia da Rocha has
late evening service in July and August. This is now the only
route operating after about 2000hrs.
In ALVOR all buses in all directions call at the bus stop at the
large roundabout junction at the entrance to the village. At the time of
my last visit (30th march 2017) no current timetable were on display.
There is a local agent selling Vai e Vem bus passes called Papelaria d'el Rei
nearby at Rua Marquês de Pombal, nº 3. Open every day.
CRUISE LINER SHUTTLE
- the port of Portimão operates shuttle buses as required between the
cruise dock and the city centre at Largo do Dique. The distance is about
1 mile / 1.6km and is easily walkable.
Route 14 City Centre (Largo do Dique)
- Portimonense Stadium - Poeta Ant.Meixo School - Vale França - Praia do Vau -
Clube Prainha - Torralta (Dom Jõao II Hotel) - Alvor Praia - Alvor
Centro. Runs via Alvor Praia in this direction only. To go to Praia do Vau
etc take the inbound bus and go via Alvor Centro (Roundabout)
runs every 30 minutes on weekdays only.
For weekend and holiday service see
route 1P below.
Route 33 City Centre (Alameda) - Portimonense Stadium (southbound only) - Largo do Dique - Marina - Praia da Rocha runs every 30 minutes DAILY/DIAREMENTE/TOUS LES JOURS/täglich
Route 3N City Centre (Largo do Dique) - Marina - Praia da Rocha runs in July and August only, every 30 minutes from city between 2030 and 2330, from Praia da Rocha to city 2039 to 2339. SÓ EM JULHO E AOGOSTO / SEULEMENT JUILLET ET AOÛT / BETRIEB NUR JULI UND AUGUST
Route 35 Ladeira do Vau - Hospital - Cardosas - City (Largo do Dique) - Jardins da Rocha - Praia do Vau every 25 minutes for most of the day, every 40 minutes during the late morning. Runs weekdays only
Route 1P City Centre (Largo do Dique) - Portimonense Stadium - Jardins da Rocha - Praia do Vau - Clube Prainha - Torralta Hotel Dom João II - Alvor Praia - Alvor Centro (Roundabout). Runs about every 30 minutes in summer, about once every hour in winter and only on Saturdays, Sundays and Holidays. Apenas aos fims de semana e férias, seulement les weekends et fêtes, nur am Wochenendes und Feiertagen. (via Alvor Praia in this direction only. To go to Praia do Vau etc from Alvor Praia, take the inbound bus and go via Alvor Centro.)
OTHER WEEKDAY ROUTES - these DO NOT RUN AT WEEKENDS OR ON PUBLIC HOLIDAYS.
Route 11 - Penina Church - Centro de Saúde -
City (Largo Dique) - Poeta Ant.Meixo School - Praia da Rocha (Fort) about every
Route 12 - City (Rua das Hortas) - Bemposta - Montes do Alvor (near the aerodrome) every 30 - 45 minutes during peak hours, every 90 minutes otherwise.
Route 13 - City (Largo do Dique) - Tres Bicos - Bemposta - Hospital Particular - Alvor Roundabout every 25 minutes during peak hours, every 50 minutes mid-morning and mid-afternoon. This bus starts from a different stop at Largo do Dique than the other buses to Alvor - check the map or you might miss it like I nearly did!
See Route 16 below for limited Saturday service along this route.
Route 15 - Campanheira - Hospital - Penina - Montes de Alvor - Alvor Roundabout - Alvor Praia runs eight times a day at irregular intervals; Campanheira is served only at peak hours in winter.
Route 21 - Sargaçal - Mexilhoeira Grande - Rotunda Autodromo - Montes da Cima - Alcalar - Hospital - City (Rua das Hortas). Four journeys each way plus schooltime journeys. A rather complicated timetable to understand!
Route 31 - City (Largo do Dique) - Rua Das Hortas - Railway Station - Cardosas - Hospital every 45 minutes
Route 32 - CIRCULAR ROUTE City (Largo do Dique) - Rua Infante d'Henrique - Railway Station - Hospital - Cardosas - Centro do Saúde - City (Largo do Dique) every 45 minutes.
Route 34 - Campanheira - Hospital - Cardosas - Retail Center - Centro do Saúde - Bemposta eight journeys at irregular intervals. Not shown on the map!
Route 36 - Poeta Ant.Meixo School - City (Rua das Hortas) - Retail Center - Chão das Donas - Alfarrobeiras. Every 30 minutes except that Alfarrobeiras is served only once each hour.
THESE ROUTES RUN ON SATURDAYS, ROUTE 37 ALSO RUNS ON SUNDAYS AND HOLIDAYS
Route 16 - same
as route 13 above but extended to also serve Montes de Alvor near the
aerodrome. Four buses Portimão to Alvor, five buses Montes do Alvor via Alvor to Portimão.
Route 37 - Hospital - Cardosas - Centro de Saúde - City (Largo do Dique) - Railway station - Parque de Feiras e Expo - Hospital. Every 60 minutes. On Saturdays some buses run to and from Ladeira do Vau.
Route 38 - City (Largo do Dique) - Rua das Hortas - Sesmarias - Chão das Donas - Alfarrobeiras. Saturdays only. Two outbound and three inbound buses only.
Route 39 - City (Largo do Dique) - Bairro Independente / Estadio 2 Irmãos - City (Largo do Dique). Saturdays only, seven buses at irregular intervals.
The current official fares leaflet can be downloaded here - available in Portuguese and English.
There is a flat fare on Vai e Vem buses. Cash fare is €1,50 for a
single journey. A one day
ticket (unlimited journeys) is 3,50 Euros; buy that from the
driver. There is no discount for seniors or children except for residents.
Pre-paid single journey tickets are 80 cents. 10 or 20 journeys
can be loaded onto a rechargeable card, costing 3 Euros, which you
can buy at the Largo do Dique bus office and other places around
town, including in Alvor: Papelaria El Rei, Rua Marquês de Pombal,
nº 3. This pre-pay system will save you money if you intend to use
the buses more than about 6 times during your stay.
Children under 4 years old travel free. Monthly passes are also
available at €24.00 and you need a photo. Enquire at the bus
office. Children, senior citizens and those of reduced mobility who are residents can get half
price passes, but you will need to provide proof of address etc. Tourists are not eligible for these discounts.
Vai e Vem tickets are not valid on EVA or Frota
Azul buses, nor vice-versa.
Portimão bus station is an open air facility near the Largo de Dique, which is not far from the old
bridge over the river and also the main shopping area.
NB - bus stops are not lettered as per map - this is just for
Check which stop your bus leaves from. Do
not leave it to the last minute! (Personal experience was not a
good one!). The bus stops are fairly clearly labelled as to
the destinations served. There is a bus ticket and enquiry office
but no waiting area. There is small shop and café attached to the Repsol
Garage (petrol station). Inbound local buses from Lagoa and Ferragudo
don't turn immediately towards the Largo do Dique. They go along
the Rua Infante de Henrique as shown, before embarking on a tour
around the city. If
it's the city centre shops you want, get off at the first stop after crossing
Portimão has several retail parks and shopping centres around the
edges of the city. Most of the buses mentioned below DO NOT run at weekends.
Centre , the nearby Vila Marché shopping centre and the big
new Continente hypermarket are also served by routes 31,32, 34, 36 and 37 as well
inter-urban bus (no route number) from Lagos via Mexilhoeira Grande.
The Center Comercial
Continente on Rua São Lourenço de Barrosa is served only by route 36.
For a list of all the timetables on the site,
For an alphabetical list of places in the Algarve, click here
For some important general notes about buses in the Algarve, click here
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