In my last blog post, I spoke about the amazing sunrise beach hike we did along the cliffs of the Algarve. We had already checked out of our accommodation. So after the hike, we made our way to the next Airbnb to check in. Our plan was to head west along Portugal’s south coast.
Where to stay
The drive to the next stop didn’t take longer than half an hour. We checked in at a rooftop room in Portimão for €35/night (Airbnb link). The room had everything we needed: a bed, a fridge, a coffee station, a bathroom with a shower, WiFi and free street parking. The area was quiet and there were shops a short drive away. It also had a big outdoor balcony space with lots of sunshine. It would be a great spot to practise yoga!
Exploring the old town of Lagos
There is a lot to see around the town of Lagos. The surroundings reveal great beaches, a large harbour and interesting rock formations along the coast.
We decided just to stroll through the old town since we were limited by time. We found free street parking near the town and did the rest of the exploring on foot. Since we were travelling over winter, it wasn’t too busy. The town got livelier in the evening as bars and restaurants started to open up.
Lagos has a rich history. It was once colonised by the Romans, Visigoths from Toledo and later the Byzantines. North Africans arrived in the 8th century. Changing hands often, Lagos was a popular area because of its great location and harbour. As you stroll through the town, you might notice a bunch of lovely old buildings and architectural features. One such remarkable feature is the castle and city walls (Google Maps link) that are very well preserved.
Where to eat
There are many restaurants throughout the old town. We randomly decided to stop for dinner at Restaurante Caravela. It was a straightforward, delicious meal. Surprisingly the Tripadvisor rating is 3/5 but I had a good experience and would definitely eat there again. I ordered a plate full of grilled sardines with some veggies and a side salad. The grilled sardines are served whole with the head and all (a slight challenge to someone who’s used to eating filleted fish most of the time). After eating the first few fish, I got the hang of gently lifting the meat clear off the bones. If you’re keen to try out the sardines, go for it (and be patient ).
More to see
Here are some other attractions to check out (I’ve linked to Google Maps for each one of these attractions).
- The municipal market
- The Marina
- The castle & walls
- São Roque Beach, a 20 minute walk east from the old town
- Ponta da Piedade lighthouse, a 10 minute drive south
- The neolithic Menir da Cabeça do Rochedo, a 15 minute drive inland
If you have any other tips about Lagos, I’d love to hear about them!