6 Beautiful Places You Need to See in Lagos, Portugal

6 Beautiful Places You Need to See in Lagos, Portugal

The Algarve Region has been a dream of mine for so long, I never thought I’d actually get to see it with my own eyes. But after exploring the capital and visiting the fabulous Pena Palace in Sintra, we hopped into a rental car in Lisbon and drove down the Western part of the Algarve Coast. We’d end up spending 6 wonderful days on the Portuguese coast of the North Atlantic Ocean, of which 2 entire days were in Lagos. The small town blew us away the moment we did a quick Google Search 9 months prior to our trip, with its colorful streets, chill atmosphere and out-of-this-world beaches.

So without further ado, here are a couple of the most beautiful places in Lagos, the small coastal town of Portugal:

The town and the narrow streets of Lagos

Lagos (not to be confused with Nigeria’s largest city) is a charming little Portuguese town with a population of just a little more than 22,000 residents. It’s highly popular among tourists for its exceptional Atlantic coast, boasting tons of fascinating rock formations. Two of its beaches – Dona Ana and Camilo – are always included among the top beaches in the Algarve region. Its look-out point called Ponta da Piedade is an amalgam of grottos, cliffs and rock pillars offering an unforgettable scenery. Albeit the town is often overshadowed by its natural features, in my mind it’s still worth a short stroll. You should at least check out the town centre, the castle, its main church and get lost between its narrow streets before hitting the beach.

Streets of Lagos, Portugal | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Igreja de Sao Sebastiao Lagos, Portugal | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Igreja de Sao Sebastiao

Streets of Lagos, Portugal | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Castle of Lagos | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Castle of Lagos

Praia da Batata

Although not the prettiest of the town’s beaches, I somehow liked the vibes of this place. Locals were on the lookout for tourists who’d like to take a boat tour. A couple of people were enjoying the morning sunshine. A yacht was approaching the coastline. And even though the beach is close to the Castle of Lagos, one of the most-visited, busiest places in town, the beach had a sense of calm in the commotion. We didn’t actually spend any time here, but I can honestly say that it’s ideal for those who want to stay in the proximity of the city center and all its amenities.

Praia da Batata | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Praia da Batata | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Praia dos Estudantes

We didn’t stay at Praia da Batata because we saw a curious little entrance to another beach in the rock. Although we were wandering around aimlessly, I’m really glad we stumbled upon Estudantes beach, since it has a cool bridge connecting two cliffs. A lot of boat trippers actually came into the bay to admire this man-made treasure, so we were pretty happy we could leisurely enjoy its view for free for a couple of hours.

Praia dos Estudantes | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Praia dos Estudantes  | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Praia dos Estudantes | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Praia dos Estudantes | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Praia Dona Ana

After a well-deserved rest at Praia dos Estudantes we packed our stuff and went for a short walk to Dona Ana Beach. It’s one of the most popular beaches of Lagos, but since we arrived in the afternoon, the place wasn’t crowded. We didn’t take the main road, but rather decided to climb atop the cliffs. This way we could get a great look of the beach from above before we got there.

Praia Dona Ana from above | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Praia Dona Ana  | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Rock Formations at Praia Dona Ana

The cliffs of Praia do Camilo seen from Praia Dona Ana

The cliffs of Praia do Camilo seen from Praia Dona Ana

Praia do Camilo

This was actually the first beach we visited in Lagos. We drove down from Lisbon right to Praia do Camilo (you can probably see why). At first we entered the full parking lot and couldn’t see the beach at all – we were right above it. But after we climbed down a set of stairs the beach unfolded before our eyes. I immediately noticed the crystal clear water and the amazing rock formations and ran down the stairs to get into the water. Remember when I told you that we visited Portugal in June? Well, as it turns out the water is quite cold then, so I’d definitely advise you to take a neoprene suit, especially if you’d like to go snorkeling.

Praia do Camilo  | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Praia do Camilo | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Praia do Camilo  | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Ponta da Piedade

I’ve deliberately saved the best for last. One of the most memorable places we visited in all of Portugal is definitely the Ponta da Piedade. The look-out point from the lighthouse offers unobstructed views over the rocky coastline of southwestern Lagos. You can visit it either by foot and even walk down to the mouth of the bay. Bare in mind that there are more than 180 steps that lead the way, but luckily there’s another option for those less agile. You can go on a boat trip that will take you among the cliffs so you can see them from below. We personally chose walking and spent more than an hour just taking it all in. If you ever get to Lagos, this is definitely a MUST!

Ponta da Piedade  | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Ponta da Piedade  | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Ponta da Piedade  | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Ponta da Piedade  | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Ponta da Piedade  | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Ponta da Piedade  | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Ponta da Piedade  | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Ponta da Piedade  | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Ponta da Piedade  | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Ponta da Piedade  | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

Ponta da Piedade  | 6 Best Places to Visit in Lagos, Portugal

 

Practical Info – How to Get to Lagos from Faro

The largest airport in the Algarve region can be found in Faro, approximately 90 kilometers east of Lagos. You have a number of options to consider if you want to get to this lovely coastal town. I would recommend taking a train from Faro’s center to Lagos. You can take a bus from the airport to the city center (2.25 euros) or a taxi right to the train station (about 10 euros). 9 direct train routes head from Faro to Lagos daily, take about 2 hours and cost 6.5 euros. Check out their official website for further details.

You can also take the bus, since there are 7 routes daily between the two big cities. A ride takes approximately 2 and a half hours and costs around 6 euros one-way. Browse through their timetable to find out more.

Lastly, if you are the comfortable type, you can always hire a taxi to get you to Lagos, which will set you back more than 100 euros.

How to Get to Lagos from Lisbon

If you’re coming in from Lisbon, you can either fly to Faro and choose between the options enlisted above,hire a car and drive yourself, or use the local public transport. We got to the Western part of the Algarve region via rent-a-car, but went back via public transport, so we’ve experienced both options.

The buses in Portugal are quick and modern and you don’t need to break the bank to get a ticket. A round trip from the capital costs 36 euros, whilst a one-way ticket is 20 euros. There are two big companies who operate this route, check out their details here and here.

There aren’t any direct train routes from Lisbon. You can, however, take the express train from the Portuguese capital to the city of Tunes. A second-class ticket costs 20 euros, while a first-class ticket costs 26 euros (both one-way). The journey takes 3 hours. From Tunes you can get to Lagos on a less elegant, but OK train, setting you back 5 euros and taking about an hour. We actually traveled by both trains and were highly satisfied with the rides and the budget-friendly prices.

Where to Stay in Lagos

If you’re more of an adventurous soul, I’d definitely advise you to check out the campsites in Lagos. This is especially for you frugal travelers who, like myself, don’t like to splurge on accommodation. We spent two nights in Camping Trinidade, a very basic and cheap campsite. Although it might not seem like much, the place is quiet and very centrally located. The highlight of it that it’s just a short walk away from a few beaches. We even walked to Ponta da Piedade from there in, like 30-40 minutes. Another huge advantage for us that it costs 10 euros per person.

I totally understand if you don’t want to sleep on the ground, so I recommend checking out a few cool apartments on Airbnb. I always look at private apartments with kitchens here, and I’ve never been disappointed so far. Click here to get $20 off your first booking with Airbnb.

If you’re more of a hotel person, I recommend checking out HotelsCombined for the best prices.

Which place would you definitely want to see in Lagos?

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6 Beautiful Places You Need to See in Lagos, Portugal

3 Responses to “6 Beautiful Places You Need to See in Lagos, Portugal

  • Amazing experience and great photos! I loved the article about Lagos, it’s a beautiful place, off season is even better 🙂

    • Thanks so much for your comment, Alexandra!
      We were there in June, and even then it wasn’t crowded (I was pretty surprised by this, honestly).
      But as an avid off-season traveler, I totally agree with you!

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