The information has been obtained from printed timetables and other local sources (like taking the bus) and is given in good faith.
The stopping place for Rede Expressos, Expresso Qualidade (EvaTransportes) and other long distance
services is the bus station in Rua da
Abicada. This is 1.5km from the town centre. Services to and from Lisbon, Seville etc stop there.
Map here. Other relevant information is here
All regional buses still stop in Avenida Guarané by the river. Most of the local Vai e Vem buses stop at Largo do Dique close by..
THE VAI E VEM BUSES AROUND PORTIMÃO AND ALVOR
ARE RUNNING TO THEIR NORMAL TIMES AND ARE FREE TO USE.
|Portimão – Monchique|
|Portimão – Ferragudo – Praia dos Canieros|
|Portimao - Lagoa - Carvoeiro - Praia do Carvalho|
|Fast bus to and from the airport
|Trains at Portimão|
|Water Taxi Portimão Marina - Ferragudo
(external link opens in new window)
||International coach / bus services to and from Huelva and Seville|
Portimão is linked with the rest of
the Algarve by the inter-urban and express bus routes listed
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’. Service starts at
0700 and finishes between 1930 and 2000hrs. On December 24th
service ends at around 1900hrs. In summer there are later buses
between Portimão and Praia da Rocha but not elsewhere.
At weekends and public holidays some routes have very limited service, several have none at all, The
mini-buses used for most journeys are grossly inadequate at busy
periods (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 on some routes.
These buses do not go across the river to Ferragudo etc!
There are maps and timetables at some 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.
There is a useful interactive map at https://www.cm-portimao.pt/ptmapa/
click Vai e Vem and a route number to see the complete route and all
the stops. When a route is shown, click a stop to see the times of the
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
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 no current timetables 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 flat and easily walkable.
ON VAI E VEM BUSES SUMMER TIMES APPLY ONLY DURING JULY AND AUGUST. Make sure you are looking at the correct times.
At the time of my most recent visit, no current timetables
were visible at the main Largo Do Dique bus stops nor at Alvor.
Many bus stops do not indicate which bus stops there, some are
still carrying the numbers for routes discontinued 2 or 3 years
The diagram below shows the main routes likely to be used by visitors.
Click the map to see it full size. There is no direct Vai e Vem service between Alvor and the eastern end of Praia da Rocha.
Route 13 is the quickest
route between Portimão and Alvor, but does not run at weekends nor on
public holidays. At weekends and holidays it is Route 1P that you need -
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 14 City Centre (Largo do Dique) - Alameda - Portimonense Stadium (outbound only) - Poeta Ant. Meixo School - Vale França - Praia do Vau - Clube Prainha - Torralta (Dom Jõao II Hotel) - Alvor Praia (beach) - Alvor Centro. Runs via Alvor Praia in this direction only. To go from there 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 (outbound only) - Largo do Dique - Marina - Praia da Rocha (Fort) runs every 30 minutes DAILY /DIAREMENTE/TOUS LES JOURS/täglich
Route 3N City Centre (Largo do Dique) - Marina - Praia da Rocha (Fort) 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 and late
afternoon. Runs on 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.
Parque de Feiras e Expo* and Portimão Arena. The next stop on routes 32, 32 and 37 is at the bus station for long distance services.
Route 11 - Penina Church - Centro de Saúde - City (Largo Dique) -
Poeta Ant.Meixo School - Praia da Rocha (Fort) about every 45
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 15 - Campanheira - Hospital - Penina - Montes de Alvor - Alvor Roundabout - Alvor Praia (beach) runs eight times a day at irregular intervals. Campanheira is served only at peak hours in winter.
Route 21 - Sargoçal - 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 - Parque de Feiras e Expo* - Cardosas - Hospital every 45 minutes
Route 32 - CIRCULAR ROUTE City (Largo do Dique) - Rua Infante d'Henrique - Railway Station - Parque de Feiras e Expo* -Hospital - Cardosas - Centro do Saúde - City (Largo do Dique) every 45 minutes. Quicker than route 31 for journeys to or from Railway Station and Hospital.
Route 34 - Campanheira - Hospital - Cardosas - Retail Center - Centro do Saúde - Bemposta eight journeys at irregular intervals. Not shown on the map! Does not operate in July, August and the first two weeks of September, i.e. main school holidays..
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. Service finishes at 1725hrs. Runs
only on Saturdays.
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. Fares have not increased since 2013!
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. Children under 4 travel
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's old 'bus station' used by local and regional buses is
an open air facility near the Largo de Dique, which is not far
from the old bridge over the river and the main city centre
NB - bus stops are not lettered as per map - this is just for convenient indexing!
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 the bridge.
EVA, REDE-EXPRESSOS AND RENEX LONG DISTANCE SERVICES NOW CALL AT THE NEW BUS STATION 1.5km (nearly a mile) from the town centre. CLICK FOR MAP. a limited service of shuttle buses runs between this area and the new bus station - times here. Local routes 31, 32 (weekdays) also 37 (weekends and holidays) stop at the new bus station. It is not known at this time when or if other local routes will be adjusted.Portimão railway station is a few minutes walk to the north of the city centre. Routes 31 and 32 stop there on weekdays, at weekends the 37.
PORTIMÃO'S SHOPPING CENTRES
Portimão has several retail parks and shopping centres around the
edges of the city. Most of the buses mentioned below DO NOT run at
Centre and the nearby Vila Marché shopping centre are served by routes 31,32, 34, 36
and 37 as well the Frota Azul bus (no route number) from Lagos
via Mexilhoeira Grande.
The Continente Portimão Cabeço do Mocho hypermarket in Rua das Papoilas is passed by route 21 and 36, also the same bus to and from Lagos.
The Center Comercial
Continente on Rua São Lourenço de Barrosa is served only by
PORTIMÃO AND ALVOR 'CITY TOUR' - download the information leaflet here.
In Portuguese, French and English. It does not tell you the times at
which their buses call at each stop. Adult ticket is €15 for 24 hours,
€20 for 48 hours. Reductions for children aged 6 to 12, those under 6
travel free. I have no idea whether this runs every day through the
winter or what service will be offered for next year. Official website
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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