sailing with kids in the Algarve

5 reasons why you should go sailing in the Algarve with kids

The Algarve, the South of Portugal, is a popular holiday destination for families from all over the world. In fact, there are many reasons why the Algarve is a great destination for those traveling with kids. The Algarve has a mild climate all year round, it’s super safe, there are great family-friendly restaurants and accommodation options as well as things to do. We went sailing in the Algarve with kids and it was one of the most unforgettable experience during these holidays in the Algarve.

We visit the Algarve quite often as my parents and sister live here and my husband and the little one just love it as much as I do. This time, on a summer-like day in March, we grabbed the opportunity to go on a half-day sailing trip in Portimão. We had such a great time that we decided to write this post to convince you to take you kids out sailing in the Algarve too!

Here are our 5 reasons why you should go sailing with kids in the Algarve:

These sailboats are very spacious!

1 – Sailing boats are very kid-friendly

Among the different types of vessels we have at SeaBookings, sailboats, be it monohauls or catamarans are some of the most kid-friendly. Especially on private charters, you have plenty of space for you and your family. While some may be actively helping in the sailing, others may be relaxing in the sun and the youngest ones may even be napping in the shade. When the sea is calm, sailing boats are suitable for all ages, from babies to grandparents!

Why such a serious face if sailing is so relaxing?

2 – You’ll be involved in the sailing and your kids too

On the sailing trip we did in Portimão with the kids, we were actively participating in the sailing. If you prefer not to, of course, you’re free to simply sit back and relax, but for us, learning some new skills was super exciting!

Is sailing a new hobby or will she continue preferring to draw?

3 – You and your kids may discover a new hobby

As you’ll be sailing yourself, pushing the ropes and steering the boat, you may discover that you actually really like it and want to learn more about sailing. Or maybe, you’re an avid sailor and would like to show your kids what sailing is all about. Well, here you’ve got the perfect setting to do so: great boats, experienced skippers and incredible scenery and some of the best conditions in Europe!

Just being outside and exploring nature would be a reason to take the kids sailing!

4 – You’ll be doing an outdoor activity together

It’s scientifically proven that experiences bring more happiness than things. Spending time together with our kids is one of the most valuable things we can do. We can guarantee you that the morning we spent out sailing with the kids in the Algarve won’t be forgotten soon! And how healthy is breathing the fresh sea breeze and charing up some vitamin D?

Enjoy the stunning coastline around Portimão

5 – You can adapt the experience according to your preferences and needs

With our 6-year-old, we thought a full-day sailing experience might be a little too much this time of the year. In March, the weather can still be a bit tricky in Portugal but fortunately, we were blessed with 20 degrees and a blue sky. In reality, time flew by while we were sailing along the beautiful Algarve coastline! Next time, we’ll probably go for a full-day experience to have more time to explore some of the many cute secluded beaches of the area. And one day, we already promised the little one, we’ll be spending a night or two on a boat. How cool is that?

As you can see, sailing with kids in the Algarve is a great thing to do when visiting Portugal. And you don’t need to worry about catering as this can be arranged (and we highly recommend it! We had a delicious brunch on board!). The only thing you need to care about is to bring a wind-jacket (which we did not use this time, but you never know) and a hat and sunscreen (yes, even this time of the year the sun can be strong already!).

Feel free to book your sailing experience here or contact us if you’ve got any questions or suggestions about sailing or other boat tours with kids in the Algarve. Happy holidays!

Westcoast of the Algarve 1

Our top 6 beaches at the Westcoast of the Algarve

While most of the tourism in the Algarve is centred around the hotspots like Albufeira, Portimão and Lagos, the Algarve also has an entirely different side to it! Did you know that if you drive a bit further West, north of Sagres, there is a whole other landscape and climate of the Algarve to be discovered?

The Westcoast of the Algarve has become more and more popular especially among surfers and travellers looking for a bit less tourism and more nature! The wild and dramatic cliffs, good wave conditions and hidden beaches are worth visiting! Let us share with you our top 6 beaches at the Westcoast of the Algarve! 

Praia do Castelejo

Praia do Castelejo
Praia do Castelejo and Cordoama are right next to each other

If you come by car from the Southcoast of the Algarve, you will just have to pass through the cute town of Vila do Bispo to get to Praia do Castelejo! This beach is especially popular among surf schools, as it usually is blessed with great conditions for beginners

The beach is located in the middle of Costa Vicentina Natural Park, being surrounded only by nature! There is only one restaurant at the beach where you can enjoy some snacks and drinks, looking down at the ocean! At the restaurant, you also have toilets, which is definitely a plus! 

One of the best things about this beach is that at low tide you can walk all the way beneath the impressive cliffs to Praia da Cordoama! The walk is beautiful: the sea by your left side, the raw landscapes of the Algarve to your right! At Praia da Cordoama you can also enjoy a drink or go for a dive in the sea before walking back! 

The broad sandy beach also means that you can usually always find a quiet place, even during high season when the beach can get pretty crowded. Just walk a little further and enjoy the view while relaxing in the sun!

Ponta Ruiva

Ponta Ruiva is less easy to reach, a pure gem!

Ponta Ruiva is one of the beaches that are still very untouched, but it is becoming more and more crowded due to the good waves you can find here! However, be aware: Only try to get to Ponta Ruiva if you have a stable car that can also drive off-road, as the road there is… well, not a real road 😉

Also, you should maybe ask someone before going there what the best way is, as some navigation systems get lost in the countryside and you can easily get lost, also because there are not many signs leading you to Ponta Ruiva. It is close to Castelejo, so you also access it from Vila do Bispo.

Once you get there, it is worth it though – It is a really wild beach with no restaurants or any construction at all! You have to walk down a rather steep road to get to the sandy beach, where you have quite a lot of rocks, depending on the tides! Surfers really like this beach because if the swell is big enough, you have a really nice point break here! 

But also surf schools are starting to come here more and more often to play in the white water with beginners! Just make sure you bring enough water and snacks when you come to Ponta Ruiva because the next supermarket is a long drive away 😉 

Praia da Amoreira

SUP Paradise!

Praia da Amoreira is a little bit further up the coast than the last two beaches! What makes this beach so special is the river mouth, that ends up in the sea. This means that you can not only lay at the beach but also far behind it along the river where you can enjoy swimming in the much calmer water – perfect for families with kids

You can access the beach either from “behind”, by walking along the river and the sandy dunes up to the beach or you park at the main car park by the restaurant and don’t have to walk far! At the restaurant, they serve drinks and food and they also have toilets there.

At Praia da Amoreira you can also catch some fun waves, depending on the conditions! This beach has a pretty good road leading up to it, which is why it usually gets a lot more crowded than the other two beaches during high season! However, if you go along the river you will always find a quiet space! 

Did you know that you can also do a SUP Tour along the river? This Amoreira SUP Tour is a great way to explore this region and paddle through the vast landscape! It is very easy, so no previous experience is needed!

Praia do Amado

This is where SeaBookings’ founders – Femke and Bo – learned surfing!

Praia do Amado is probably one of the most famous beaches along the Westcoast of the Algarve! Reason for this would be the great waves and the famous surf schools that have been here for decades! But of course, the beauty of the sandy beach in front of the steep cliffs also does its part! 

You can park at the top of the beach and walk down the road to the beach, or you can also access the beach from behind from the Natural Park nex to it. This is also a nice walk and you come out at the left end of the beach.

At low tide the beach has a lot of space, so you can walk quite far to both sides and enjoy the beauty of nature! There are bathrooms at the car park as well as some snack bars where you can get food and drinks to restore your energy levels after surfing or just a day at the beach. 

You can book surf lessons at Amado Beach and learn the sport together with one of the oldest surf schools of the Algarve right at the beach! Sounds good right? We think so too, that’s why it is one of our top 6 beaches at the Westcoast of the Algarve.

Praia da Arrifana

During winter, the beach is nice and calm.

Another of the top 6 beaches at the Westcoast of the Algarve has to be Praia da Arrifana! This little beach has become one of the hippest beaches of the region, and there is always something fun going on around the village and the beach! 

The beach is the heart of the village with the same name, so you have quite a lot of cafés, restaurants and bars around the beach. However, you should have good fitness if you wanna go down to the beach because you will have to go back up again 😉 The road to the beach is long and veeeery steep! But there are also “shuttles”, so if you don’t feel like walking up you can just drive back up to the car park!

Down at the beach, you have a pretty cool restaurant with delicious food, where there are a lot of concerts and parties during summertime. And if you come here around the end of July, you can enjoy a weekend full of fun at the harbour of Arrifana – first the traditional Sardine fest on a Saturday where you pay entrance and can eat as many Sardines as you can get. And the day after there is usually the Arrifana Sunset Fest – a night full of fun and amazing music underneath the stars!

Praia da Arrifana is definitely one of the hot spots for all people looking for a fun time and to meet new like-minded people from all over the world! There are also plenty of surf camps and hostels around the area. And you can also do some fun SUP Tours at Arrifana, during the day and at sunset!

Praia do Vale dos Homens

https://www.seabookings.com/destination/portugal/45-aljezur
The stairs to Praia Vale dos Homens are worth it

The last one of our top 6 beaches at the Westcoast of the Algarve would be a secret spot – Praia do Vale dos Homens! This beach is located just before Odeceixe, and you should be fit to get there: To walk down the beach, you have to descend A LOT of stairs!

Once you get down, you can enjoy a wild beach with not many people. There is no restaurant or any other construction around this beach, so be sure to bring enough water and food! But it is worth it if you’re looking for some peace and quiet at the beach.

At low tide, you can even sit in some natural pools that form between the big rocks at the shore. And here you can also walk a little bit to the right side and explore the steep cliffs that give the beach a mystical touch! As there are no lifeguards, you should be able to swim and read the sea if you would like to go for a swim, as there are quite a lot of big rocks! 

Be impressed by wild flora, fauna and rock formations

There are many many more beaches along the coast, but these ones were our top 6 beaches at the Westcoast of the Algarve! If you would like some more tips about any of the beaches or the Algarve in general, just send us an e-mail!

Beach An Alternative Travel Guide To The Algarve

An alternative travel guide to the Algarve

The Algarve is a holiday haven, packed full of character. With almost year-round sunshine, golden beaches and fresh local delicacies, the Algarve is a location which will likely entice you back again and again. 

Each visit to this area of Portugal can be different from the last, as there is so much to see and do and the Algarve is one of the most unique holiday locations in the world. With a coastline stretching almost 100 miles, UNESCO protected parks and nature lands, this region of Portugal offers one of the best tourism experiences in Europe. 

However, if you’re looking for travel experiences which are slightly different from the usual holiday offerings, then the Algarve has plenty to offer. Here is an alternative guide to visiting the Algarve.

Things To Do in the Algarve

Underground Wine Tasting

8 meters underground, the Cave de Vinhos wine cellar is over 150 years old and holds 11,000 bottles of wine, from a number of different regions in Portugal and locations across the world. The Algarve is home to endless vineyards and wine regions, meaning that wine tastings and experiences are plenty. 

If you want a wine tasting experience which is unique and memorable, then a visit to the Cave de Vinhos is a must. As well as wine tasting, the cellar also hosts private dinners for up to 12 guests and cheese and wine tastings throughout the day. 

The Chapel of Bones

Capela dos Ossos (Chapel of Bones) is in the village of Alcantarilha and is perhaps one of the spookiest, yet most intriguing, buildings you will ever see. At first glance, you might think that the chapel is merely just decorated with bones, but actually the walls are constructed from femurs mixed with mortar. The bones in this chapel are the remains of 1,245 monks, whose bones were displaced during the building of the chapel. 

Oyster An Alternative Travel Guide To The Algarve
Oyster tasting is a must!

Fresh Oyster Tasting

The Algarve is renowned for its seafood dishes and sure you can order oysters at a seafood restaurant, but why not go on a fresh oyster tasting trip? On this excursion, you can eat oysters which have been plucked straight from the ocean and opened right before your eyes. 

There are numerous food tours and oyster tasting experiences which leave from Ilha de Culatra in Ria Formosa, where you will learn all about oysters from a local producer, try fresh oysters and enjoy a crisp, cold glass of white wine, all by the ocean.

Norvacortica Cork Factory Tour 

Something which many people don’t know about the Algarve is that it is famous for quality cork, which is used by global brands such as Rolls Royce, NASA and Moet Chandon. Cork oaks line much of the Algarve countryside and tours around cork farms and factories are a great way to learn more about the history and get an insight into the cork industry and the Norvacortica factory is one of the most popular.  

Places to Stay in the Algarve

Depending on the amenities you want nearby and who you are travelling with, there are plenty of places to stay in the Algarve which are popular with tourists. 

Albufeira

If you are looking for a fun-packed holiday with plenty of family-friendly activities, then Albufeira is the destination for you. Albufeira is perhaps the largest and liveliest town in the Algarve and has something to offer everyone. You’ve got a charming historic centre at the heart of the town, whilst “The Strip” is just a stone’s throw away and is full of late-night clubs and bars. 

Albufeira beach is one of the best in the region and with beautiful water and sand stretching along the length of the town. Albufeira is an extremely popular holiday destination and has almost completely handed over to tourism, so if you are looking for traditional Portuguese culture, other destinations may be best. 

Vilamoura

Vilamoura is a sprawling resort with 4 golf courses, a large marina and beautiful sandy beaches. The town is well known for its luxury and sophistication and is one of the pricier destinations in the Algarve. Vilamoura has a mature atmosphere and is more catered towards older people, golfing enthusiasts or those looking for a little extra luxury. 

Vale do Lobo

Vale do Lobo is a luxurious and self-contained resort and is unique to Portugal. Vale do Lobo was the first major development in the Algarve and today is the largest luxury resort of its kind in Portugal. With endless facilities and services, all located in a unique area, Vale do Lobo is a must-visit if luxury is at the top of your holiday list. There are two highly accredited golf courses – the Royal and the Ocean – in Vale do Lobo, which are perhaps the biggest attractions. 

Loulé

Famous for its markets and laid back atmosphere, Loulé is located in the middle of the Algarve. This historic market town is steeped in history and even has a 13th-century castle. The traditional cobbled streets are lined with bars, restaurants and cafes and there are plenty of charming shops packed with pottery and handcrafted goods all from within the local area. For a true taste of Portuguese culture, a visit to Loule is a must. 

There is also the Loule Carnival, which is one of the biggest highlights of the year in the Algarve’s calendar. This colourful carnival takes place in February over three days, usually starting on the Sunday before Shrove Tuesday, and has been said to rival Brazil’s world-famous Rio Carnival with its dancing and costumes. 

Wherever you’re staying, a visit to Ponta da Piedade in Lagos is a must!

Traditional Dishes to Try in the Algarve

Portuguese food is heavily influenced by Mediterranean cuisines and relies heavily on fresh seafood, which it has in abundance and spices and olive oil. A visit to Portugal, and the Algarve in particular, will bring you a whole host of tasty traditional dishes to try. 

Cataplana de Marisco

Cataplana de Marisco is a dish which originates in the Algarve and is a true seafood feast. This dish gets its name from the copper pan in which it is cooked – a cataplana, which is a dish with rounded sides and is connected by a hinge which opens and closes like a clam would. Onions, tomatoes and garlic are stewed with white wine, chorizo, clams and prawns.

Cozido à Portuguesa

Cozido à Portuguesa is a dish which is often referred to as a Portuguese boiled dinner, but is better known as a traditional stew. Whilst the ingredients sometimes change, depending on where in Portugal it is prepared, it is essentially a platter of slow-boiled meats, sausages and vegetables. In the Algarve, you’ll traditionally find it made with a mixture of potato, lamb, chicken and fresh mint. 

Pastel de Nata An Alternative Travel Guide To The Algarve
You can try the Pastéis de Nata at every small “café”

Pastéis de Nata

Pastéis de Natas is perhaps Portugal’s most known, and most loved, dish. These palm-sized desserts are made from puff pastry which is filled with a yellow custard, made by whisking egg yolks, sugar, lemon zest and cream which are then baked until golden. Whether you choose yours topped with powdered sugar or cinnamon, they are traditionally eaten for breakfast, as a snack or for an evening dessert.

Natalie Wilson is a freelance writer in the travel niche, and can provide advice on anything from hidden gems to the best Algarve villa accommodation. When not writing, Natalie can be found reading a good book with a cup of tea or planning her next travel destination – the Amalfi Coast is next on the list. You can connect with her on Twitter @NatWilson976

Activities in the Algarve - Easter holidays

Tips for your Easter holidays in the Algarve

Tips for your Algarve Easter holidays

It’s almost Easter! Are you lucky to have booked your Easter holidays in the Algarve, the South of Portugal? Cool!

We’ll share some tips on the best activities during this time of the year. Most activities and things to do in the Algarve depend on the weather and ocean conditions.

The good news is that temperatures have been ranging between 10 and 18ºC. January and February normally are quite rainy months, but between rain sunny days can defenitly be enjoyed.

Today was a sunny day, but you never know what to expect from tomorrow. Given the volatility of the rain, we recommend you to be prepared for both.

Bring some outfits for sunny spring weather but also for rainy days. Spring,  considering March & April as rainy months, and May, the first extreme sunny days can be enjoyed.

The Algarve is mostly visited to enjoy nature and specifically the ocean. In fact, the south of Portugal has stunning beaches and an impressive coastline. That’s why most of the activities are related to the ocean.

On easter sunday, some families just prefer to enjoy family holidays in a region with many things to do.  Outdoor activities, boat tours, watersports, day tours, and a lot of others.

We’ve seen a trend over the years and realized that boat tours, either to the caves or the dolphins, are the most popular activities during your Algarve Easter holidays.

Tips for your Easter holidays in the Algarve

The best things to do in Easter in Lagos are:

Dolphin watching

Dolphin watching in Lagos is, with no doubt, one of the most popular activities in the Algarve.

Out of all boat tours and water sports, the dolphin watching boat tours are the favourite under families. Kids love dolphins and adults get emotional on seeing these mammals in their natural habitat.

Most dolphin watching tours take about 90min and depart from the Marina of Lagos. There are several kind of boats that do these tours, from big stable ones to speedy and agile rigid inflatable boats. Choosing the type of boat is a matter of personal preference.

The dolphin watching tours from Lagos are suitable for all ages, from two-years-old to 80-years-old. We even went on a tour on a rigid inflatable boat with our 80 years old granddad once.

If you’ve got back or neck problems, then you might want to check the ocean conditions before and choose the boat accordingly.

observação de golfinhos de Lagos

Dolphin watching tours are a true adventure. The dolphins are wild animals and as they are not fed, you never know when and if you’ll find them.

Dolphins and other marine life are spotted on about 90% of the tours, so the chance is very high. Yet, please bear in mind that seeing marine life is not given.

Dolphin watching tours are very safe and life-vests are mandatory.

Cave boat tours

The whole coastline of the Algarve is known for its amazing rock formations and marine caves.

The regions of Lagos and Benagil are particularly known for their unique beauty. To be able to enjoy the beauty of the coastline, boat tours are very popular.

grotten boot trip lagos, Grotto boat trip from Lagos, Passeio as grutas da ponta da Piedade,

Many families and groups of friends choose the grotto tours as the outdoor activity of their Easter holidays in the Algarve.

Among all activities in the Algarve, the cave tours are mostly sought by families and elder people as the tours are very calm.

These boat trips are ideal for nature lovers and people who like to take pictures. The rock formations and grotões are very photogenic!

The cave boat tours can be one to two hours and there are also several different types of vessels you can choose from.

Some days the boats cannot go out because of the ocean conditions, but fortunately, this is rare. Cave tours in Lagos are very safe and life-vests are mandatory.

Benagil cave boat tour

Benagil is one of the most impressive marine caves of Portugal and even Europe. The best way to observe this impressive cave is by boat.

That’s why the boat tours to the cave of Benagil are a very popular activity for Easter holidays in the Algarve.

Again, there are several types of vessels and even different locations of departure. While some boat tours to Benagil start at the fishermen beach called Carvoeiro, others start in Armação de Pêra.

We are specialized in Benagil boat tours, and offer over 30 tours to this cave.

Lagos Benagil SeaBookings (3)

Cave and dolphin boat tour in Albufeira

If you’re staying near Albufeira, you’re lucky because you can go on the cave and dolphin boat tour.

This tour combines the best out of the activities in the Algarve described above. This is one of the most popular things to do during any holiday in this region.

This tour will show you the beauty of the rock formations and caves of the coastline in the region of Albufeira and also take you on a dolphin watching adventure.

This boat tour departs from the Marina of Albufeira and there are two different types of vessels.

Cave & dolphin watching albufeira - Albufeira dolphin watching - Dreamwave

If any of these boat tours sound good to you and you’d like to include them into your plans for your Easter holidays in the Algarve, we recommend you to book as soon as possible. We also recommend to book your flights and hotel or villas in the Algarve on time to benefit from the best prices!

During the holiday season, some boat tours, like these that are the most popular ones, may get fully booked. So, book now and avoid disappointment and waiting lines.

If you’re looking for more or other tips for your Algarve holiday, let us know. We’d be happy to help! Happy Easter and enjoy the region!

Benagil cave Algarve

Top 10 blog posts about Portugal

2019 was a busy year on our blog and the top 10 of our most-read blog posts were all about Portugal! Traveling to Portugal soon? Don’t miss out on our top 10 blog posts about Portugal. Within Portugal, some of the most-read blog posts were about the Algarve while others about Madeira. And, no surprise! Blog posts about Benagil are very popular.

Read our Top 10 blog posts about Portugal:

Tips for your Easter holidays in the Algarve
Discover the prettiest beaches in the Algarve

Our top 6 beaches in Lagos, Portugal

One of SeaBookings’s founders, Femke, has been living in Lagos for more than 20 years now. Living in Lagos is lovely and the beaches in Lagos continue to surprise every single day. Lagos is worldwide known for its stunning beaches. Femke shares her top 6 of beaches around Lagos. The beaches in Lagos are all stunning and all different.

Her favorite 6 are Porto de Mós, Praia da Batata, Meia Praia, Praia do Pinhão, Praia Dona Ana and Praia do Camilo. But it is hard to choose and herself usually goes to quieter beaches that are a bit further away from town.

SUP tour in Madeira
Doing a SUP tour in Madeira can be done all year round

9 reasons to visit Madeira during the Fall / Winter

Thinking about Madeira as a trip during this Winter? Good idea! We went to visit Madeira in low season and had a great time. That’s why we’ve shared 9 reasons to visit Madeira during the Fall/Winter.

SUP or kayak to Benagil
The epic Benagil cave is just one of the many caves of the region

Algarve Caves: Top 5 – Caves of Portugal

If you’re planning your holidays to the Algarve, you’ve most likely already heard of the Algarve caves. In this article, we’ve shared the top 5 caves in the Algarve you can’t miss.

To write this article, we’ve spoken to some of our partners who know the Portuguese coastline like no other. Check them out and book a boat trip to visit them!

SUP or Kayak to Benagil
SUP or Kayak to Benagil

Benagil – the best way to discover the cave

The Benagil caves are the most impressive sea caves in Portugal. As a result, the cave has been the most popular cave to visit in the Algarve. There are several ways to visit this cave. In this blog post, we tell you some of the possibilities and the pros and cons of each. 

Lisbon’s enchanting during sunset!

How to get from Lisbon to Benagil

Traveling to Lisbon and dreaming about visiting the famous Benagil sea caves in the South of Portugal? How to get from Lisbon to Benagil is one of the most frequent questions our customer support gets. This is why we decided to make a blog post about how to get from Lisbon to Benagil!

It is possible to visit Benagil from Lisbon on a day tour. However, if you can spare one night, it is much more relaxed if you take your time and make it at least a two-day trip. But that’s just a suggestion.

Sesimbra is a great spot for nature lovers

How to get from Lisbon to Sesimbra

And another “how to get from A to B” blog post in our top. If you’re visiting Lisbon, you have many possibilities for fun day trips to discover more of Portugal! One of the day trips we recommend is Sesimbra!

We love going to Sesimbra so now and then and think you should too, so we decided to make a post about how to get from Lisbon to Sesimbra! The easiest way to get from Lisbon to Sesimbra are our transfers, which start at 25€ per person and pick you up and drop you off at your accommodation in Lisbon. But of course, there are more options.

On a boat ride along the coast, you get to see many caves

Algarve Caves: Top 5 – Caves of Portugal

This blog post was already mentioned above. Interestingly, its German version is also in our list of most-read blog posts about Portugal 😉

From a boat, you’ll enjoy the coast from a different perspective

How to get from Faro to Benagil cave

If you are on holidays in the Algarve, you might be looking for some tips about how to get to the famous Benagil cave. That’s why we want to help you find out how to get from Faro to Benagil cave. Remember that there are boat tours to Benagil with many different departure points in the Algarve (from Lagos to Vilamoura), which might be easier to reach than the Benagil Beach itself, by land.

grotto trips in Lagos
Welcome to paradise (aka Ponta da Piedade)!

5 Ways to discover Ponta da Piedade Lagos

Ponta de Piedade is another popular landmark of the Algarve. It’s a must place for nature lovers and photographers thanks to the beautiful colours of the setting which make an incredible postcard portrait. 

For the most sporty ones and if you dare climbing up 182 steps to the top of the lighthouse, you’ll have a view of the Ponta da Piedade promontory, which marks the limit between land and sea. This lighthouse can also be reached by car or foot from Lagos. Of course, we are a fan of the kayak, SUP and boat tours to Ponta da Piedade. To discover the best way to discover this area for you, read further.

Albufeira Holiday Tips
Enjoy the many things to do in Albufeira

20 Things to do in Albufeira – Algarve, Portugal

We’ve been writing quite some blog posts about things to do in Albufeira because it’s one of the Algarve’s most popular holiday destinations. Albufeira has long been one of Portugal’s most popular resorts because it combines an interesting cultural heritage, stunning beaches and there are many things to do in Albufeira for all age groups.

We hope you liked our list of most-read blog posts. Let’s see if next year, we get some articles about our other destinations in this top 10! Happy 2020!

Playing in the sea

Things to do with children in the Algarve

The Algarve is a perfect destination for families with children of all ages! Long sandy beaches, crystal-clear waters, lots of nature and family-friendly hotels and accommodations invite families from all over the world to spend a great time here! 

Going to the beach is of course on top of the list!

We know that kids are already happy if they can play at the beach all day long and make new friends. However, to make sure your holidays in the Algarve really become unforgettable, we have found the best activities to do with children in the Algarve! From surfing to fishing to fun boat tours, the Algarve has a lot to offer for families with young children!

Sure, there are water parks like the Slide and Splash that are quite a lot of fun. But if your kids love being out at sea, there are many boat tours in the Algarve that are specially designed for your children to have a great time onboard! For those of you staying looking for a special experience, here are some great family activities s where your kids can really have a super fun time.

Boat tours are great if your kids love the sea!

There are private and shared options for boat tours with children in Lagos. If you prefer to spend some real quality time during your family holidays, we have a unique private family cruise in Lagos. Onboard of the stylish yacht, the parents can relax in the sun while the kids have a lot of fun playing on deck and diving in the crystal-clear waters. You even have the option to add some fun watersports like wakeboard, banana or SUP.

For the families who prefer a shared tour where the kids can make new friends, we have a fun family boat trip in Lagos. The big and stable catamaran is perfect for kids of all ages, as they can play on the deck and meet other kids to play with. Parents can enjoy a drink at the bar and relax in the sun. During this cruise in Lagos, you can enjoy the view over the rock formations while the children have the best time onboard! 

Surfing or inflatables, just enjoy the sea!

Now, while boat tours are always fun, we also have some more exciting great activities to do with children in the Algarve! One of them is an unforgettable kids surf lesson in the Algarve! This surf school is specialised in taking kids out to ride some fun and easy waves around the beaches of Lagos. This surf lesson is one of the best activities with children in the Algarve because they can learn a fun new sport in a safe and fun environment! 

Around the area of Albufeira, we have another fun boat trip on a real pirate ship! The Captain hook cruise in Albufeira is tailored for families with kids, and a whole lot of kids entertainment is included. As the name already gives away, the theme of this boat trip is Pirates! The children can play on the deck and feel like real explorers, while your parents can enjoy the cruise along the Algarve coastline! 

Some boat tours require life jackets, others not, but they’re always available, of course!

Another one of the best activities to do with children in the Algarve is our family fishing trip from Alvor. This fishing trip is specially made for families so that even the youngest can catch some fish! The safe and stable fishing boat is suitable for all ages, and all the equipment for the entire family is included. If someone from your family doesn’t want to fish, they can join anyway and support the rest of the family! 

And don’t forget to check if your accommodation has a swimming pool!

For those of you staying around either Armação de Pêra or Vilamoura, there is the option to ride on a banana! This fun experience is always great to do with kids! You can even make a competition to see who can stay on the banana the longest! Riding a banana is one of the best ways to spice up your beach day in the Algarve!

There are also some other fun watersports to do in the Algarve, like the Aquatwister in Vilamoura, as well as the Crazy Sofa, Crazy Cookie or even the Aqua twister in Armação de Pêra! Lots to choose from, or maybe you can even do all of these activities during your holidays? Your kids sure will love it! 

Dolphin watching tours are available from many locations

If you have kids who love animals, you should also think about joining one of the dolphin watching tours in the Algarve. There are many options, and most of them are done on board of fast and stable RIB Boats. These boats are not suitable for very young children, but if your kids are 4 years or older, this will be the highlight of their time in the Algarve! There are dolphin watching tours from all destinations in the Algarve.

For those families with younger kids, there are some great alternatives to the dolphin watching tours on RIB Boats. For example, we have a dolphin tour on board of a glass-bottom boat from Albufeira. This is a great experience for kids, as they can even admire the underwater world from board additionally to observing wild dolphins! The dolphin watching tour on the Dreamer, a bigger and more stable boat, is also a great alternative for families with younger children!

Just enjoy the sun, on a boat or on the beach 😉

There are many great things to do in the Algarve, but these were the best activities to do with children in the Algarve! You see, there are lots to choose from to make sure your holidays will be unforgettable for the entire family, no matter what age your kids are! And we’re sure they will love it so much, you will be coming back very soon to try some more fun activities in the Algarve!

Romantic things Algarve

Romantic things to do in the Algarve

Is it the first time you are planning to go to the Algarve and would you like to know where the most romantic spots are? Carry on reading, because in this article we listed the most romantic things to do in the Algarve

When you are in Portugal, there is so much to see and do. The South of Portugal is famous for its golden sand beaches with spectacular sandstone rock formations, cliffs and caves. By renting a car you can drive easily to some nice places and admire the beautiful beaches and impressive rock formations while standing on the top.

At SeaBookings, if you’re looking for something special for the two of you, we, of course, recommend taking a romantic boat trip to see all the beauty of the Algarve from the sea. 

Check out some of the most romantic things to do in the Algarve

Welcome to lovely Ponta da Piedade

#1 Admire the impressive rock formations of Ponta da Piedade

One of the places you can’t miss when you are in the Algarve is Ponta da Piedade, situated in the western Algarve. You will find these beautiful rock formations in Lagos.

Ponta de Piedade has very capricious shapes due to erosion and weather influences. The coast between Lagos and Albufeira has several stretches of coastline with huge limestone rock formations but those of Ponta da Piedade is very special, especially during sunset. 

The coast of Lagos lends itself very well for beautiful walks, just like the rest of the Algarve coast by the way. You can easily park your car on the large parking lot (free of charge) at the lighthouse, from where you can look down along the steep cliffs within a few minutes.

A very original and romantic things to do in the Algarve is to admire the impressive Ponta da Piedade is during a champagne sunset cruise in Lagos where you will have spectacular views from a unique perspective: the Atlantic Ocean.

Sunset sailing, what else?

#2 Explore the natural park of Ria Formosa

Do you want to escape the busy touristic places in the Algarve? Then you should definitely go to the nature reserve of Ria Formosa. When you arrive at the airport of Faro, you can already see the blue lagoons, white-sanded beaches and the green little islands. 

You can visit Ria Formosa from different places. In Olhão we have for example this romantic private yacht island tour where you can discover Ilha do Farol, Ilha da Culatra up to Ponta Culatra together with your beloved one.

It is even possible to stop at a picturesque fishing village on one of the islands to eat some fresh fish for lunch. Or what do you think of a Ria Formosa boat tour on a cute little boat for an intimate and super romantic thing to do departing from Tavira?

Romantic Sunset Algarve
Stunning sunsets

#3 Visit Praia da Rocha

Portimão is one of the bigger towns on the Algarve coast about one hour’s drive from Faro. The beach area of Portugal is known for its beautiful red coloured cliffs. It is nice and warm in the summer and Praia da Rocha is definitely worth a visit.

At the top of the beach, there are some nice restaurants and bars where you enjoy Portuguese cuisine. You can taste the best fish dishes or just relax in the shade. On the beach of Praia da Rocha, you can rent sunbeds, so you do not have to carry them yourself.

It is also possible to see this beautiful beach from your own private sailing boat. The crew will serve you a delicious glass of champagne and you can enjoy your time together while seeing how the sun sets slowly in the Atlantic Ocean. 

Romantic tours Algarve
There are many private boat tours to Benagil

#4 Discover Benagil 

You’ve probably heard many good stories about Benagil. This unique sea cave is the most famous marine cave of Portugal. Why? Benagil has an impressive skylight from above and a beautiful beach contained within.

During sunrise and sunset, the cave is bathed in sunlight which pours in from the top, this makes the rocks turn red and yellow. Doing a sunrise SUP tour to the Benagil Cave does not only gives you the opportunity to see this beautiful light entering the cave, but you will also have some quality time with your beloved one before it gets really busy around the cave.

Do you have something special in mind and would you like us to help you organize the best boat tour or water sport activity in the Algarve? Feel free to contact us at any time by mailing to [email protected] and we will send you the best suitable and romantic things to do in the Algarve. For options in Potugal as a whole, check out this article. Enjoy your days in the Algarve!

Ponta da Piedade - Lagos - Algarve - Portugal

Tips & tours in Lagos Portugal

Boat Tours Lagos Portugal

Ponta da Piedade

If you’re looking for holiday inspiration about southern sunny Portugal or if you’ve already booked your trip to Lagos, Algarve, this article about tours in Lagos is for you.

We, the SeaBookings.com team, are from Lagos. We grew up there and some of us still live in this beautiful idyllic Portuguese fishermen town.

We’d like to share, from our own experience, some of the best tours in our home town to enjoy a day or few around the city, some inside tips and of course the best water sports and boat tours.

We definitely recommend you to check out the city itself. Grab your friends and family and go wandering to the city centre, the beautiful and lively old town.

Due to its history (Lagos is an ancient maritime town with more than 2000 years of history), it has a great abundance of historical sites and an intricate Moorish architecture.

In the main street and around the city centre you will find many restaurants with friendly terraces and coffee shops, and of course the boutique shops where you can buy bikinis and souvenirs.

Best things to do in Lagos city center lagos

Wandering around the city

To assure you get the most out of the several tips & tours in Lagos, we recommend you to check Cultural Centre (Centro Cultural). From our experience and especially during the summer season, there is nearly always an act worth seeing.

Maps, which also may include information about the activities in Lagos, are available at the several tourist information points. Also, “Free Maps” are available at several hotels, shops, restaurants and real estate agencies.

Logistically, Lagos is rather small and public transport works fine but don’t forget that Lagos is a hilly town, so bring your comfy walking shoes to avoid unnecessary pain.

Please don’t forget that parking can be difficult in Lagos centre during the summer. The best parking places in Lagos are paid (very cheap if compared to other European countries, though).

If you want to go out for dinner or walk around the city, try finding space along the paid parking places along the main avenue “Avenida dos Descobrimentos”.

When the Avenida has no free space to park, you can also check the paid parking garage that is situated on the main avenue, next to the “Infante Dom Henrique” statue.

If you’re planning to park for the full day or longer, we suggest you to park for free, on a considerable good and safe place at the back of the Lagos Marina.

Portugal

Marina de Lagos, Lagos, Portugal

Historical attractions – things to do  for culture lovers

Museu Regional de Lagos – Town Museum

Lagos has got a few small but worth to visit museums if you like to get a better taste of the local history.

The Town Museum of Lagos presents some local archeological findings, religious costumes, international coins dating back to 300 AD and unique currencies for each municipality of the region.

Also, you will find historical attributes related to the city’s link to the ocean and the Discoveries like fishing (and farming) equipment, sea shells and minerals and assorted weapons.

The entrance fee is a symbolical 2€. The opening times of the museum are from 9:30 to 12:30 and 14:00 to 17:00; Tuesday to Sunday.

Don’t forget that, like most museum in Portugal, the Town Museum is closed on Mondays.

Museu da Cera dos Descobrimentos – Wax Museum of Portuguese Discoveries

Lagos hosts a Wax Museum of the Portuguese Discoveries where you and your family can get to know a bit more about this era by meeting the main individuals that represent Portugal’s Discoveries around the world.

We think this museum is a must-do activity for families with kids who are eager to learn about history.

Entrance fees are 5€ per adult and 3€ for children. The wax museum of Portuguese Discoveries is opened from 10:00 to 19:00 all days of the week.

Wax museum Lagos

Wax museum

Igreja de Santo António – Saint Anthony Church

The Church of Santo António should surely be on your list of things to do in Lagos. Originally constructed in 1707, and rebuilt in 1769, this church, named after Saint Anthony, is rather simple and plain on the outside and astonishingly impressive inside.

It’s a true surprise, don’t forget to walk in the church to appreciate the brilliance of the ornate wood carvings that contrast with the intense colorful dome ceilings.

The interior church walls are covered with typical local 18th century “azulejos” (tiles) of blue and white. A statue of the patron saint, Santo António holding Baby Jesus is located on the throne within the altar. The church is located on Rua General Alberto da Silveira, in the city centre.

Mercado de Escravos – Slave Market

This historical city once housed Europe’s first black slave market. The market was built in 1444 and during the 15th century, here the first slaves, captured and transported from Africa, were sold.

The trade of slaves brought a considerable income to the Portuguese monarchy and merchant classes.

The major sponsor of these expeditions was Infante Dom Henrique (Prince Henry the Navigator), who’s statue appears on the square where the market is located. The Navigator received 20% of the selling price of all the slaves.

Nowadays, the Slave Market  holds a museum with ancient findings. On one of the walls of the building there is a stone dating from the 17th century.

Beside the ancient findings, the building now serves as an art gallery presenting a rotation of local artists from across the Algarve. António Alonso is a local artist that we highly appreciate, for example.

The Slave Market has no entrance fee and is open from 9:30 to 12:30 and 14:00 to 17:00, Monday to Saturday. 

slave market Lagos Portugal

The slave market Lagos, Portugal

Castelo dos Governadores – Governors Castle

As we mentioned before, the town of Lagos played a decisive role in the Portuguese Discoveries. It was from Lagos where the caravels left in 1419 to discover the Madeira archipelago and in 1427 the Azores archipelago.

This city was also the point of departure of the ships that conquered Alcácer-Ceguer, Arzila and Tânger in Africa.

The castle of the Governors has its origin during this epoch. Around 1642, during the Portuguese Restoration War from Spain, the Castle’s walls were reinforced for the use of artillery. With the big earthquake of 1755, many of the castle’s walls were destroyed again.

Nowadays the Castle of Lagos does not maintain much of its initial construction, but it is an important heritage, classified as National Monument. 

If you walk from the city centre in direction of Praia da Batata, you will pass by its very well preserved walls which are still is one of the main references.

Castelo Lagos Portugal

Castelo histórico

Lagos City walls

The old part of the town is circled by the old stone city walls. The Lagos city walls were constructed in the 16th century to protect the city.

Once this city was the capital of the Algarve, when the territory needed to be protected by city walls.

A fun way to experience the old city is to enter from the back of town, through a beautifully arched entry hole in the wall.

You can park your car near the old walls. From there you can wander around the typical narrow back streets of Lagos and feel like a local.

Many of the old street walls are draped with the vibrant color of bougainvillaea.

Also, street art is becoming more and more common in Lagos and you encounter some walls covered by artistic graffiti paintings, sometimes with a political touch.

Statue of São Gonçalo

Situated on the main Avenida dos Descobrimentos, right on top of Praia da Batata beach, you can find the statue of São Gonçalo de Lagos. The statue illustrates the Algarve’s only Saint, São Gonçalo.

The statue is in a spectacular position overlooking east of Lagos the Meia Praia and Praia da Batata, Alvor and beyond. São Gonçalo is the protector of the local fishermen.

statue of sao goncalo Lagos

The statue of São Goncalo

Sculpture of Dom Sebastião

Dom Sebastião is a statue in Lagos, right in the city centre.  Dom Sebastião I was King of Portugal and the Algarves from 11 June 1557 to 4 August 1578. As such, he was the penultimate Portuguese monarch of the House of Aviz.

He disappeared in the battle of Alcácer Quibir in Africa. Sebastian I is often referred to as “O Desejado” (The Desired) because the Portuguese people longed for his return. The decline of Portugal occurred because of his death.

Statue of Infante Dom Henrique

The statue of Infante Dom Henrique may be found on the square next to the Slave Market we mentioned before. Infante Henrique of Portugal, Duke of Viseu was born on 4 March 1394 and died 13 November 1460.

He is better known as Henry the Navigator, or “O Navegador” in Portuguese. He was an important figure in the 15th-century Portuguese politics and the beginning of the Portuguese Empire.

In fact, he is regarded as the main initiator of the Age of Discoveries as he was responsible for the start of the Portuguese exploration and maritime trade with other continents through the exploration of Western Africa, the islands of the Atlantic Ocean while searching for new routes.

Tours in Lagos

The famous Grotto boat tours

grotto tours lagos things to do in lagos

Boat tours are surely one of the best things to do

Lagos is worldwide known for its particular coastline. In fact, the region around Lagos, in particular from Praia da Batata to Ponta da Piedade is characterized by distinctive and magnificent cliffs with rock formations and grottos.

That’s why, one of the most popular tours are the so-called “grotto tours”. The famous Ponta da Piedade is a place to visit.

If you are in the city for the first time, you need to do this! Step into a small typical fishing boat and let your local fisherman be your guide.

Your guide will navigate around and under the breathtaking rock formations and take you into the caves including the “Elefante”, “gruta do amor”, “A capela” and more.

It’s also a great way to decide which beaches you want to go during your holidays as your guide will point out the many beaches that surround the town.

Our favorite grotto tour is the two-hour grotto boat tours to the Ponta da Piedade caves. This tour is a two in one as you’ll depart on a beautiful sailing boat and later step over to a smaller boat to enter the caves. It’s a real taste of Portugal.

We also provide many boat tours, including day tours, boat trips with lunch, boat cruise to the famous Benagil caves,

Sailing boat trip with lunch from Lagos

Sailing boat tours in Lagos with lunch on board

If you are staying in Praia da Luz, you don’t need to come to Lagos to enjoy a grotto tour. We recommend you to go with the local provider that departs from Praia da Luz.

grotto trip luz

Grotto boat tours to Ponta da Piedade

We’re sure you will enjoy these boat tours that depart from Praia da Luz. On this tour, you’ll also get to know the cliffs from Praia da Luz, like the famous “Rocha Negra”, Black Rock, with a volcanic origin.

If you’re in Lagos for only one day and you’re short on time, don’t worry, because there are many one-hour grotto tours that depart from the Marina of Lagos. These tours are all very similar, they differ a bit in the type of boat.

We always recommend the smaller boats, because those are the ones that can easily manoeuvre inside the grottoes. Usually, these tours will take you to the direction of Ponta da Piedade, close to the cliffs and in the caves, and on the way back, speed up a bit to reach the Marina one hour later.

Parasailing

windsurpoint parasailing fun lagos

Parasailing in Lagos

Parasailing is definitely a thing to do if you love adrenaline. Parasailing combines the ocean and the sky while adrenaline flows through your body. It is, with no doubt one of the most exciting ways to explore your holiday destination and also to enjoy a unique view.

Parasailing is a recreational kiting activity where you are towed in the air behind a boat, while attached to a kind of parachute – the parasail wing, which is specially designed for this purpose. Two or three people can parasail at the same time.

On this parasailing adventure, you sail along the coast of Meia Praia beach. Parasailing in the Algarve can be done from only 45€ per person for 15 minutes in the air. And believe us, 15 minutes is enough as this experience is rather intense.

Jet ski charter

windsurpoint jetski

Jetski Lin agos

In Portugal, you need a boat licence to take a Jet ski to open waters. Don’t you have a boart licence but really want to enjoy the adrenaline of speeding on a Jet ski? Good news! On Meia Praia,  you can ride a Jet ski without any licence as long as you stay within the limits set by the operator.

Prices start at 40€ for 15 minutes.

BBQ boat tourLagos, Portugal.

Boat trip in the baia de lagos

BBQ boat tours in Lagos

This sailing boat has become an icon from the city. The boat appears on Lagos postcard and everybody loves it. These boat tours have been operating in the Algarve for many years. They are on the most popular things to do.

We recommend booking in advance because the boats can become fully booked for several days in a row during the high season. The tour will take you on a lovely cruise along the Meia Praia beach.

The staff will serve a typical Portuguese BBQ of grilled chicken and salad and there is plenty of time to relax, swim and make stunning pictures of the coastline.

Dolphin watching tours

Dolphin watching tours in Lagos

Dolphin watching tours in Lagos

Dolphins are animals that fascinate everybody, no matter the age. The waters from the Algarve are very popular for local and migrating dolphin species.

It’s a truly unforgettable experience to see these charming animals in their natural habitat. That’s why the dolphin watching boat tours  should also be on your top things to do. Your children or friends will love the adventure!

There are three dolphin tours in Lagos that we highly recommend.

  • Do you dare to come aboard of “Tornado”, Europe’s biggest rigid inflatable passenger boat? Feel the boost of its twin-engine while speeding over the Atlantic on a very safe way. We’re sure your family will love this boat tours in Lagos. Your husband will love the boat and your kids will remember this as the best things to do in Lagos, Portugal.
  • The other tour we highly recommend is on the Prince of Whales, a smaller boat. On this boat tour, your guide is actually a marine biologist. The biologist will be happy to share all the interesting facts about the creatures you’ll find during this boat tours in Lagos.
  • Also from Praia da Luz there are daily departures for a dolphin watching adventure during the summer. These dolphin watching boat tours in Lagos are excellent for families with kids from 4 years old.

All operators mentioned above have a very high chance of seeing dolphins because they are specialized in this kind of tour.

Finding wild dolphins is not guaranteed because the animals are totally wild and are not fed. Don’t forget to book in advance. These tours are very popular during the summer and may become fully booked for several days in a row!

Windsurf lessons

windsurpoint windsurf

Windsurf  lessons in Lagos

Lagos is a windsurf paradise. Given the privileged location of Lagos, there’s always a spot where the wind is just right. The bay of Meia Praia is one of the most common places to practice windsurf in Lagos. If you’d like to learn to windsurf, there are amazing windsurf lessons on Meia Praia.

We work with a watersports center that is specialized in this sport and has been teaching the art of windsurfing to many tourists over the years. Starting at 60€ for 2 hours you get a very personalized windsurf lesson given by a local and certified instructor.

If you’re based in Praia da Luz, there is no need to come over to Lagos to learn how to windsurf. The local watersports specialist, based on the beach of Praia da Luz, provides a five hour windsurf course for only 120€. These courses are suitable for all ages (as long as you can swim and feel comfortable in the ocean) and levels of experience.

Kayak Tours

Kayak tours in Lagos

Kayak tours in Lagos

To explore Lagos stunning coastline, nothing better than the Kayak tours in Lagos. Like that you’ll be environmentally friendly, you’ll exercise and have no noise while enjoying the fantastic sights!

Another great advantage of kayaking along the coast is that due to the fact they’re so small, you’re able to go inside all of the caves at Ponta da Piedade. Kayaking is a great activity in Lagos for the younger generation or for active families.

Surf Lessons day tours

Learn how to surf in Lagos

Learn how to surf in Lagos

Also for surfing on the waves, there are a great option! The location on the Southwest point of Europe guarantees there are good waves to surf either on the South or West Coast

So, if you are looking for a surf safari for one day, you are at the right place.

We surely recommend this experience for young adventures people. The atmosphere of the surfing scene is really cool and you’ll definitely have a fun and sporty day.

Kitesurf lessons

kitesurf in Lagos

Learn how to kitesurf

Kitesurfing is, along with windsurfing, a very popular sport on the beaches around Lagos, and in particular on Meia Praia.

In Lagos, you can take kitesurf lessons, suitable for all levels of experience. Don’t forget that kitesurfing is way more complex than surfing and windsurfing and therefore it will take a bit longer before you can actually do it.

SUP tours in Lagos

SUP in Lagos

The SUP tours  are a great way to explore the coastline

Stand-up paddle is one of the sports in the world that grows fastest. Why? Because it can be done by all ages (as long as you can swim and feel confortable in the ocean) and because it’s rather easy to learn.

You have several options to do SUP tours in Lagos. If you prefer, you can go to an area far away from all the tourists, in Sagres.

If you prefer to stay in the city, you can go SUPping at Ponta da Piedade. This region of the Algarve is known for its fantastic rock formations and caves and stand-up paddle is definitely a cool way to explore it.

Aqualand, Alcantarilha

Looking for a day excursion with the kids or youngsters and want something different than the sea? Aqualand is an all-inclusive waterpark about 45 minutes from Lagos. If you don’t have a rental car, you can go by bus, but it may take a bit longer.

Aqualand is a world of water attractions for the whole family or group of friends. Here you can experience a broad variety of water slides of all different shapes and sizes.

Aqualand is suitable for the whole family; while some relax on the lawn, others enjoy an adrenaline rush while the little ones enjoy themselves at their very own water playground.

During the summer months, be patient with the crowds as Aqualand draws locals and visitors from across Portugal.

In general, queues may appear big but are rather fast. For the girls: do not wear a strapless bikini top or you’ll lose it! Tickets are available at hotel receptions.

Lagos Zoo

Lagos Zoo

Have some fun time with the kids in the local zoo

A nice tip for families with kids: the Zoo of Lagos. The Zoo is located near Barão de São João, a village about 20 mins from the city and you can either go by car or a bus.

The zoo is home to more than 120 animal species and about 200 botanical species from around the world in a natural environment. We consider this smallish zoo ideal for families with young children who look for activity out of the city.

There are no big animals like tigers and elephants, but you will encounter plenty of birds, monkeys and wallabies. Also, some regular farm animals that the children can pet. There is a restaurant on site. The zoo is opened daily and all year around.

Cliff walks

Ponta da piedade most beautifull beaches in the world - Boat trips Lagos , Algarve, Portugal

Ponta da piedade

Ponta da Piedade can be viewed by many perspectives. We prefer the perspective from the ocean by boat or kayak or SUP tour in Lagos, but you can also explore the top of the cliffs.

If you park your car near Ponta da Piedade you can find some nice signed walking trails. You may expect amazing views, so don’t forget your camera.

The most beautiful beaches can be explored, in many different ways. Like even the small hidden beaches like Praia de Estudantes.

Also, be careful, because rain and wind are constantly eroding the edges of the cliffs, so don’t get too close to the edge and stay on the trails.

Do not forget to bring your hat and sunscreen, because the sun is very intense next to the ocean.

Horse riding

Best things to do in Lagos - Horse Riding

Best things to do in Lagos – Horse Riding

For nature and animal lovers, there are several horse clubs in the neighborhood of Lagos where you can go for a ride.

In the winter, you can fulfil your dreams by booking a West coast ride. On this ride, you will gallop over an extensive beach and have a lovely ride through the countryside of Portugal guided by a local who knows the trails and the horses very well.

The beach ride can only be done during the winter because otherwise, the beaches would be too busy. So, during the summer months, you can book a pick-nick ride, and go swimming with the horses in a stunning lake.

These tours are highly recommended for nature lovers and are suitable for all levels of experience and ages. Lagos, Portugal.

Golf in the Algarve

Golf in the Algarve

Golf in the Algarve

The Algarve is home to some of the finest golf courses of Europe. Thanks to its slightly hilly terrain and pleasant weather conditions, the Algarve is renowned for its world-class golf courses, most of which are open all year round.

The town is a very popular destination for golf lovers because of its proximity to a multitude of great golf courses. Lagos is a good home base for a golf holiday, as great selection of luxury golf courses lies within less than a 15-minute drive from the city.

Penina Golf Course is one of the most popular golf courses, as it offers a selection of three courses, bordering the town.

Boavista Golf is another popular course which has scenic views over the bay of Lagos. Some of the courses are quite hilly, so we recommend you to take an electric cart.

The best beaches

One of the best things to do is to spend a warm day is to enjoy your time one of the many beaches along the town coastline. The beaches along the Lagos’ coastline are all stunning and all different.

During the high season, some of the most popular beaches can become quite crowded.

To find a more non-touristic quiet beach you need to hire a car and drive a few kilometres. Please don’t forget to protect yourself against the heat and bring a sunshade, hat, sunscreen and water.

Some of our favourite beaches around Lagos are Porto de Mós, Meia Praia, Praia do Camilo and Praia D. Ana.

Praia Porto de Mós, Lagos

Praia Porto de Mós, Lagos

Nightlife & parties

Lagos is not only known for its natural beauty and as a nice picturesque Portuguese town. Lagos is also known for its lively nightlife. The town has an abundance of pubs, bars and cafes with awesome atmosphere and for all tastes.

To have dinner, the city centre  has many restaurants with lovely terraces to enjoy a local dish or foreign ones, like Italian, Japanese or Indian.

We really like Taberna de Lagos, a bit more chique than the average, with trendy music and a modern Portuguese / French menu. Adega da Marina, on the main avenue, is the best if we consider price/quality.

Grilled sardines in Lagos

Grilled sardines in Lagos

Typical Portuguese food, like fresh fish and meat. Here you can try some sardines if its sardine season. Come early or you risk a queue during the summer months.

For people who like a food-experience, we recommend Pizza Pazza. Pizza Pazza is a Pizzeria owned by a German-Italian family who makes the most amazing thin pizzas.

You have to drive a lot, about half an hour from Lagos, and it’s not easy to find. If you went to the west coast for the day, it’s an ideal way to finish your day. Located in the small surfer village Pedralva, it’s a lovely place to go on your holidays. Try to reserve because it might be very busy.

Another tip if you want to leave the citylife for a bit to escape from the tourists, is Atabai in the old “Hippy” village of Barão de São João. It is just 15 minutes from Lagos and also a true experience. They serve great dishes for a great price.

In terms of bars, we usually go to Red Eye bar for a nice night out with surfer music (indie-rock) and some beers to play pool or darts. Joe’s Garage is the craziest bar of Lagos. If you look for a “noite louca”, go here and feel the real summer nights! Great cocktails and popular music!

Stevie Rays is a bit more classy and are the place to hear some funky of jazz music.  We think Stevie’s is the coolest place to go out in Lagos as they often have live music.

Black Cat Bar, right next to Stevie’s, is a bar that’s all year round frequented by the Portuguese locals.

Always a nice atmosphere for a beer on the street. For the after hours, Duna Beach Bar on Meia Praia is the place to be. Grab one of the transfers provided or a taxi and dance until the sunrise by a pool on the beach to the beat of local DJs.

Transport

The city is well accessible with public transport, such as bus and train. We recommend to hire a car or arrange your transport with a transfers provider.

In a nutshell, and as you may have realized after reading about the best tips & tours in Lagos, this town is a dream holiday destination for all ages and tastes.

Lagos is only 45-minute drive from Faro airport and there are low-cost flights from all major airport around Europe. So, what are you waiting for? If you have got any questions about the tips & tours mentioned in this article or anything else about Lagos, feel free to contact us.

Algarve Caves

Algarve Caves: The 5 best caves

Algarve Caves: Top 5

If you’re planning your holidays to Portugal, more specifically to the Algarve, you’ve most likely already heard of the Algarve caves. 

In fact, the coast of Portugal is known for its impressive caves and rock formations. In this article, we’ll share the TOP 5 Algarve caves you can’t miss.

Therefore to write this article, we’ve spoken to some of our partners who know the Portuguese coastline like no other.

Local fisherman and skippers of the popular cave boat tours are experts on the caves of Portugal. Most importantly, they were proud to share their knowledge about the caves in the Algarve for instance.

In other words, we have experienced many cave tours along the Algarve, the caves are a must on your next holiday.

The top 5 ocean caves of Algarve you can’t miss are:

  1. “Algar de Benagil” – The Benagil Cave

The Benagil cave is the highlight of most cave tours in the Algarve

The Benagil cave is the highlight of most cave tours in the Algarve

The worldwide known ocean cave of Benagil is originally named “Algar de Benagil”. The cave of Benagil in Portugal is one of the most remarkable sea caves in the world.

In 2014, this popular ocean cave of Portugal was listed in the world’s “Top 10 Coolest Caves” by American magazine The Huffington Post.

Well, if this is a worldwide know cave, it surely is one of the best of the Algarve’s caves!

Where and how to get to the caves of Benagil?

The cave of Benagil is located in the Algarve, on the south coast of Portugal. Just next to Benagil beach.

The nearest city to this grotto is called Lagoa. Benagil itself is a small village mostly dedicated to fishing. The Benagil cave is located just next to Praia de Benagil.

The amazing Benagil sea cave is not easy to access. The caves and grottoes are only accessible by boat, kayak, SUP or if you’re a good swimmer, swimming.

However, if you like adventure and would like to swim to the Benagil cave, make sure the ocean is very calm. As entering the caves by boat is already a great adventure.

The safest way to reach the grottoes is by boat and this is suitable for all ages. Boat tours to Benagil depart daily from the Carvoeiro beach, Lagos, Portimão, Alvor, Albufeira, Faro or Armação de Pêra.

  1. “Zorreira” – The Zorreira Cave

The boat reaches the caves very closely

The boat reaches the caves very closely

The cave of Zorreira is another cave in Portugal you shouldn’t miss. It’s located in the area of the cave of Benagil. By going on a boat tour to the cave of Benagil, most likely you’ll also visit this cave.

Out of the about 20 caves that are part of the boat tours to the Benagil cave, the cave of Zorreira cave is definitely one of the most impressive one.

  1. “Arcos de Marinha” – The arches of Marinha

Arcos da Marinha

Arcos da Marinha

The beach of Marinha is one of the most emblematic beaches of Portugal. This beach is also located in the region of Lagoa. Thus this beach is certainly a beach you should visit on your holidays in Portugal.

The Michelin Guide considered “Praia da Marinha” as one of the 10 most beautiful beaches in Europe and as one of the 100 most beautiful beaches in the world.

Marinha Beach is very popular for its stunning rock formations and crystal clear waters. As the ocean is generally very calm here, it’s a great spot for snorkelling.

The wide range of rock formations are a preferred habitat by local marine flora and fauna.

The rock formations around the Marinha Beach have two arches. The arches of Marinha are one of the known symbols of the Algarve.

Therefore, local fishermen and skippers consider these arches as a place of Portugal you should not miss.

We conclude, the best way to explore the two arches of the Marina beach is by boat. Most boat tours to the Benagil cave mentioned above also pass by these breath-taking arches.

  1. “Gruta do Capitão” – Captain’s Cave

Captain's cave Algarve Portugal

Algarve caves – Captain’s cave

The Captain’s cave as locals call this impressive cave in the Algarve is also one of our favorites. This cave is located in between Carvoeiro and Armação de Pêra. Next to Praia da Estaquinha and Praia do Barraquinho.

This cave is very difficult to access. In fact, it’s a privilege to be able to access this Algarve cave as you cannot reach it by for or swimming, only by boat. Even by boat, this cave is hard to access.

Capitan’ cave can only be seen closely if the ocean conditions are perfect. Low tide and no waves are the perfect conditions required to visit the Captain’s Cave in the Algarve.

A visit to this Algarve cave is part of the Caves & Dolphins boat tour which departs from the Marina of Albufeira.

This boat tour is one of the most popular boat tours of the Algarve, as it combines two things: dolphin watching and visits to the stunning caves of the Algarve. Most of the cave tours in the Algarve visit this cave in small fishing boats.

  1. “Elefante” – Elephant

Elefant cave Portugal

Algarve caves – Elefant cave

The cave called “Elefante” is located in the area of Ponta da Piedade, Lagos. Lagos is a picturesque fishermen village (or city). When visiting Lagos, the “Elefante” ocean cave is the one you should not miss.

The local fishermen and skippers of the boat tours in Lagos are sure that the “Elefante” is one of the most impressive ocean caves of Portugal.

So, when you’re visiting the Western Algarve, you should go to Ponta da Piedade.

What, where and how to get to Ponta da Piedade?

Ponta da Piedade is not a beach as there’s no sand to lay on. Instead, Ponta da Piedade is a magical place where high rock cliffs reach from the blue sky into the deep blue ocean.

Around Ponta da Piedade you can find many grottoes you can visit on a boat tour, kayak tour or standup paddle tour.

The “Elefante” rock formation in Lagos is a cave of Portugal you should not miss, because it’s included in the most beautiful set of caves.

Kids love to recognize these figures in the rock formations and the “Elefante” is with no doubt a favourite!

For example, looking for figures in the rock formations of Lagos is like looking for figures in the clouds. A fun game for the little ones.

As mentioned before, according to the local experts, “Elefante” is the cave of Portugal you can’t miss.

Algarve caves

The coastline

The best holiday with the best cave tours

There are many places where you can take a cave boat tour from, most of the locations have easy and free car park. However, in the summer season, the cave boat trips get very busy, thus book in advance to avoid any disappointments.

In conclusion, there are many more amazing caves, which we would love to share with you. We wish you a beautiful adventure to discover the best sea caves of Algarve, Portugal. If you’ve got any suggestions or questions, please feel free to contact us.

best things to do in Lagos,

The 10 best things to do in Lagos Portugal

The 10 best things to do in Lagos, Portugal

If you are going on holidays in Lagos Portugal, you will have many fun and cheap things to do. Lagos is a beautiful holiday destination if you are flying to Faro airport. The local people are very tourist-friendly, it’s a great destination for young to older people. For the younger generation, Lagos is a very cool place to go out and get drunk. The beach parties are definitely a must do for this generation. 10 best things to do in Portugal

For families, it also a great destination, as you have many beautiful beaches where you can relax, swim & play in or out the water. All beaches have lifeguards, and criminality is almost inexistent. For the older generation, September & October are the recommended months, there is less tourism and the city is emptier so you can walk around, without worrying.

10 best Things to do in Lagos Portugal

1.       Go to the most beautiful beaches of Europe

In Lagos, there is a beautiful place called Ponta da Piedade. At Ponta da Piedade, you can find the most amazing and stunning beaches of Europe. Go to Praia D. Ana, Praia do Camilo e Praia do Pinhão. Or have a better look at Ponta da Piedade, by boat;

Things to do in Lagos, Boat trips Algarve - Ponta da Piedade - Lagos - Boat trips from Lagos- Lagos, Portugal

The 10 best things to do in Lagos Portugal

2.       Discover the historical center of Lagos

Lagos is known for the discoveries, thus you should check the slave market and the 16thcentury city walls. In Lagos you will definitely feel some of its history;

Best things to do in Lagos city center lagos

Lagos – The 10 best things to do in Lagos Portugal

3.       Do a grotto boat trip to Ponta da Piedade

One of the best things to do in Lagos are definitely the grotto boat trips from Lagos. On this boat trips, you will be able to go inside all of the caves in Lagos on a small boat.
This boats, normally take about 10 persons. Book in advance to avoid disappointments. This boat trip from Lagos is suitable for all ages;

grotto tours lagos things to do in lagos

Ponta da Piedade – The 10 best things to do in Lagos Portugal

4.       Do a dolphin watching trip from Lagos

In the Algarve, there are many species of dolphins and other wildlife. It’s definitely an ultimate experience, a must do of the things to do in Lagos. When choosing the company with who you are going, take into account, that only on the Rigid inflatable passenger boats you are almost able to touch them. The dolphins are never guaranteed, because they life in total freedom and are not fed.

Dolphin watching Lagos - SeaLife - Enjoy the Algarve, Portugal!

Dolphin watching – The 10 best things to do in Lagos Portugal

5.       Go horseback riding in Lagos

In Bensafrim, just about 10 min. from the center of Lagos, you have amazing spots to go horseback riding. Have a look at Quinta do Paraíso Alto, the most trusted British riding school in Lagos;

Best things to do in Lagos - Horse Riding

Horse riding – The 10 best things to do in Lagos Portugal

6.       Go to a traditional farmers market

Every week, on Saturday morning there’s a traditional farmers market opposite the Marina footbridge, and near the bus station. Here you can find many traditional and local quality food.

Best things to do in Lagos Portugal - farmer market

Market – The 10 best things to do in Lagos Portugal

7.       Go Snorkeling or Scuba Diving

In Lagos, you have a great scuba diving school, who can take you out for snorkeling along the beautiful Ponta da Piedade or take you on a boat dive to the most amazing underwater cliffs and wrecks. 10 best things to do in Portugal

diving tours Lagos - best things to do in Lagos

The 10 best things to do in Lagos Portugal – Diving

8.       Eat the best fish in Lagos

If you are looking for a typical fish restaurant, o “Bar da Lota” is the place to go. You can find it next to train station and fish auction buildings in Lagos.

Best fish reataurant in Lagos best things to do in Lagos

Sardines – The 10 best things to do in Lagos Portugal

9.       Eat the best shrimps ever

In Lagos, you can find a very long white beach, it’s called Meia Praia. At Bar Quim, at Meia Praia, you can enjoy the best shrimps you have ever tried before. Ah, and don’t forget the amazing beach view. 10 best things to do in Portugal

shrimps - best things to eat in Lagos Portugal

Shrimps – The 10 best things to do in Lagos Portugal

10.   Book your activities early

In Lagos, you can do many activities, from boat trips, parasailing,  kayak tours, SUP or Surf, there is always something to do for the whole family. In June, July and August, expect many tourists, thus don’t forget to book your things to do in Lagos early. Avoid disappointments on your family holidays in Lagos.

Enjoy your things to do in Lagos! 🙂

P.S. If you are going to stay in Albufeira, check out the best trips & tours.