Vamos a Lagos
Lagos is the beautiful sun-drenched southern tip of Portugal, it’s a part of the Algarve. The Algarve, just saying it makes me feel like I’m on vacation. Truthfully I was so thankful someone else on my crew had made the decision of where to head out on a small overnight trip from Lisbon, as it seems Portugal is just littered with quaint beach towns. (what a problem to have).
We reached our coastal paradise by bus, which took approximately 3.5 hours from Lisbon’s Sete Rios Station, and cost approximately 18 Euros one way. I’m never the first person to jump on a bus excursion, however I actually really enjoyed the ride and as we were headed to the end of the line I wasn’t afraid to doze off for its duration. You can also reach Lagos by car (duh) or by train.
Arriving in the evening we were eager to check into our comically named accommodation – The Rising Cock Hostel. Cheeky, very cheeky. The hostel was a great option for us as a group of travelers and very inexpensive at 25 euros per person. On a return visit I would jump at the opportunity to book an Airbnb or stay at one of the many beautiful vacation villas closer to the beaches. Villas D. Dinis is the perfect example of where I would like to stay.
A walk around the cobblestone streets of town reveals countless restaurants, beautiful street art (seriously its everywhere) and a small dose of quality shopping.
I must admit I didn’t think I would want to shop in Lagos – but once confronted with the adorable accessory shops and multiple cork vendors I regretted not budgeting in a bit extra. Also, there was this carousel in one of the squares which just melted my heart.
On day two we awoke early excited for the wonders that lay ahead. Bathing suits in tow we began our (uphill) walk to find sandy beaches nestled between towering cliffs. A definite perk of visiting Lagos is that almost everything is in walking distance and there is a beach to accommodate every endurance level.
Having a chill day? Head to Praia De Batata. Down for a long walk and a hefty staircase? Praia De Estudante or Praia Do Pinhao are for you.
Finally, if you want the rock scaling, adventure seeking, secluded beach experience try making your way to Praia dos Pinheiros. We settled for Praia De Estudante and were quite happy bronzing among the other tourists.
One thing we weren’t expecting was the rising of the tide and by 3 o’clock everyone left on the beach was crammed onto a small slither of sand together. Quite honestly, I didn’t mind in the least because the beach and sunshine were just too good to be bothered.
Lagos is just one of those places where time seems slower, worries wash away with the tides and I couldn’t help but get lost in the moment. My flights seemed a world away and I found myself in perma-smile mode for most of that day.
I think what I like most about Lagos besides the very obvious breathtaking scenery is that it has personality. Unexpected street art, cool restaurants and a relaxed ‘vibe’ helped me feel instantly at ease in the tiny European town. I mean a restaurant we went to had a “Punani Colada” on their drink menu. Can’t get more at ease than that.
Plus I met this adorable dog, who looked like a cat from behind and a special boy from the front. It took all of me not to place him in my beach bag and run for my life.
Finally, if you are headed to Lagos I would recommend trying the toucan burger at Nah Nah Bah. (the sophisticated joint with the punani colada) It's actually an award winner and ticked all my boxes for "awesome burger". What an accolade. Also, although we were unable to I would suggest stopping in at The Garden which is a cool and downtempo courtyard restaurant with affordable food.