Looking for some ideas on how you might want to spend a week in Lagos? Maybe you’ll find this blog helpful by exploring what we did in our week in Lagos, Portugal.
Before we continue though, if you’re interested in reading our last post about Switzerland, you can check that out here. Otherwise, if you’re new here, you can learn more about us. But either way, thanks for being here!
Our week in Lagos, Portugal
So I would recommend giving yourself plenty of time to explore all that, not only Lagos has to offer, but the Algarve in general. We, unfortunately, did not plan any extra time and only had 7 days.
We started our journey from Lisbon by taking Flixbus from Lisbon Oriente station to Lagos. The journey took around 3 hours and 50 minutes, but it was an easy ride. So, we would recommend it as there does not seem to be many other options if you do not have your own car.
One we arrived, we walked to our accommodations at Hotel Mar Azul. In our opinion, not the nicest of places but the location made up for it. It is conveniently located in the center of the old town. This meant an easy walk to the water and around the restaurants and bars.
The hotel, despite being right in the center of activity, also happened to be very quiet. At least our room was quiet, can’t speak for people who had rooms facing the main street. Also note that we were not there at the height of summer, so things might be different if you go at the busiest time of year.
Depending on what time you arrive determines the level of activity on your first day. We arrived in the evening on Wednesday, so we spent the first day checking into the hotel, eating dinner, and then exploring the area. This included walking around the winding streets of the old town and walking the beach to see the Lagos Roman Bridge.
On the second day we decided to hike to Ponta da Piedade via the cliff trails. This hike is about 36 minutes one-way and can include some steep, uneven terrain. Make sure to wear sunscreen and good shoes!
It took us much longer to get to Piedade lighthouse since we were stopping every couple of minutes to take pictures of the breath-taking views! The water is a turquoise dream.
For dinner we sought out Baffi Bar as their burgers were rumored to be some of the best. And we did agree that they were delicious.
Then we walked around the old town a bit in search of some gelato. We came across Gloosi and the person working there was extremely friendly and provided us with multiple tastings as an “experience.”
Friday we started the day at Abigail’s cafe where we stayed to do some work on our computers. The pancakes were delicious but gigantic! From there we booked our tickets for the speed boat trip the next day. Afterwards, we decided to buy some essentials for the trip, such as sunscreen and a hat.
The rest of the day was spent relaxing and walking around. In the evening we decided to get dinner at a wonderful Indian restaurant called Maharaja Tasty Indian. The staff was extremely friendly and the food was absolutely delicious.
On our fourth day (Saturday) in Lagos, we had decided to take a speed boat tour of Benagil Cave. As we had booked the tour the day before, all we had to do was wake up and head to the marina.
The boat trip was a blast! Although, if you have neck or back problems, I would not recommend doing the speed boat. Maybe take the catamaran tour, but the speed boat was bumpy and did strain our necks and backs. However, if you only have one week in Lagos Portugal, we highly recommend a boat tour of some kind.
This tour took us to Benagil Cave and the caves in the surrounding area. The guide provided us with some information about each place and gave us ample time to take pictures or videos. Just know, you are not able to get out of the boat, but you still get some great views.
After the boat trip, we got brunch at Cafe Odeon where they served the most amazing fresh orange juice and lovely food.
Later in the day, after resting, we decided to check out the town of Luz and specifically, Praia da Luz. Originally we were going to try to take the bus, but it appeared the bus service was extremely unreliable. So instead we took an Uber.
Tip: Don’t be like us! Make sure you have a location specified for where you want to be dropped off. We originally just put “Luz” into the map. This took us to a random street in the middle of nowhere. Thankfully, the Uber driver was super nice and helpful and took us to where we actually wanted to go, which was the beach.
Praia da Luz is a beautiful place. Much smaller and calmer than Lagos with a great beach vibe. We enjoyed delicious cocktails and food at Endless Summer.
On the Sunday we were in Lagos, we decided to make this a little bit of a work day. Sean went to get breakfast at Cafe Odeon. We strongly recommend this restaurant. It’s small so be prepared to either go early or wait.
They seems to only be open 9AM to 3PM Wednesday to Sunday and closed on Mondays and Tuesdays. However, we may not be accurate on the hours. Anyway, the food is absolutely delicious, the people really friendly and genuine, and the fresh orange juice is to die for!
Pardon my drooling, let’s get back to it. So while Sean went to the cafe to work, I stayed in the hotel room and did some online English tutoring.
Once done doing some work, we decided to take a walk around the marina to Praia de Sao Roque. This is a beautiful beach with pristine water. Unfortunately we did not bring any beach wear, but we did put are feet in the water. It felt fantastic after a hot walk. The beach was fairly empty (remember we were there in the beginning of June), sand was soft, and the water was clear and calm.
After spending some time on the beach and enjoying the cold water, we walked back to the old town so we could buy tickets to the museum attached to the church of Santo Antonio. In order to get inside the church, you have to buy tickets to the museum. Tickets are 3 Euros per person at the time of the writing of this blog.
The museum is small and interesting, but the real attraction is the inside of the church of Santo Antonio. The church was originally built in 1707 and rebuilt in 1769 after it was destroyed in the earthquake of 1755.
On Monday we had booked a kayak tour around the coast to Ponte da Piedade through EZRide Ocean Kayak Tours. Our tour wasn’t scheduled until 4 PM so we went for breakfast at Pom Pom Bagels. Oh. Em. Gee! These are some of the best bagels we’ve ever had. Freshly baked in house with some amazing options. Go there. NOW!
Then we spent the rest of the afternoon relaxing and walking around old town Lagos. Around 3:45 PM we made our way to the kayak meeting place. The kayaking was extremely fun but really difficult. The whole tour is 3 hours. You get to go inside a couple of caves and experience wonderful views from the water.
Once you reach Ponte da Piedade, the guides take the group to a beach where you can spend 20 minutes or so swimming or relaxing. Then on the way back, you are given the choice to either get hitched to the boat or to paddle all the way back.
Originally Sean and I decided we wanted the challenge of paddling back. However, we were paddling into the wind which made it extremely difficult to go anywhere. We got about 3/4th of the way there, before the boat came back to check on us and we decided to hitch a ride. That was fun as you just sit back in the kayak and let the boat pull you. But if you’re in the front, be prepared for face fulls of water. If you’re not an avid kayaker, also be prepared to be sore.
Tuesday happened to be our final day of our one week in Lagos Portugal. The Flixbus was to arrive around 10:45AM so we decided to get breakfast at Pom Pom Bagels again and bring some of their delicious bagels back to Lisbon with us. Thus ending our wonderful visit to Lagos!
This list is by no means complete and there can be an inexhaustible amount to see and do. However, with only one week in Lagos Portugal, here are some of the things we recommend:
- Get lost in the streets of Old Town Lagos and explore the castle walls.
- Grab a gelato and enjoy the music and vibe in the evening.
- Hike the breathtaking coast to Ponte da Piedade.
- Walk the beach to the Roman Bridge.
- Take a boat tour of Benagil Caves.
- Swim in the beautiful waters at Praia de Sao Roque.
- Kayak the caves to Ponte da Piedade.
- Explore the golden baroque decoration of the church of Santo Antonio.
- Eat! Some of the restaurants we recommend are Cafe Odeon (great breakfast for cheap), Abigail’s (for good coffee, though pricey and gets crowded), Pom Pom Bagels (amazing bagels!), Baffi Bar (delicious burgers), Maharaja Tasty Indian (highly recommend the chicken korma), Gloosi (for a gelato “experience”), The Garden (for a decent vibe and fairly inexpensive cocktails).