The Algarve is one of our favourite destinations in Portugal, and also one where we have a lot of different awesome boat tours for you! The caves and grottos around Ponta da Piedade in Lagos are very impressive and definitely worth a visit, as well as the most famous and beautiful caves of Benagil.
However, every now and then all these amazing tours become the victim of a higher force – the sea! Usually, the Algarvian coast in the South of Portugal is blessed with calm waters, allowing all our amazing boat tours to take you along for a relaxed and calm ride. But from time to time we get a South swell, the so-called “Levante” or “Sueste, that brings a lot of waves in the Algarve.
With waves in the Algarve, crashing on the cliffs and caves, it’s neither safe nor a lot of fun to go for a boat tour. So when that happens, unfortunately, there is not much we can do to be able to still provide you with the fun boat tours we all love so much. But that’s no reason to get upset, as there are still many things you can do in the Algarve even when there are waves! In this post, we want to give you just some ideas about what to do instead of boat tours when there are waves in the Algarve!
Things to do when there are waves in the Algarve
While all the skippers and boat tour operators start panicking and get annoyed by the South swell, all the surf schools around the Algarve are more than happy! Why? Because south swell means waves in Lagos and the surrounding beaches! Also, Armação de Pêra is good for surfing! This means that you don’t have to drive much more than 10 minutes to find great waves to go surfing. And it gets better – since the swell comes from the south, the water around Lagos gets much warmer!
So if you see that the boat tours are all cancelled due to the waves in the Algarve, just go ahead and try out surfing! These days are the best days, as the waves around Lagos are usually very easy to learn surfing. And a lot of times you can even go surfing only in a bikini or with your boardshorts! This is heaven, don’t you think!? Use those waves and have the most fun surfing in Lagos! Kitesurfing can also be a great idea with the Southern winds and waves! Check out the piture of this post by João Coelho.
Go for a SUP tour on the lake
Our SUP tour in Lagos usually goes to the impressive caves and grottos around Ponta da Piedade. However, when there are waves in the Algarve, this just gets too dangerous (and too difficult to stay on the board!). But again this is no need to worry, only an opportunity to visit yet another amazing place in the Algarve!
On wavy days, our instructors will take you out to a lake about 20 minutes away from Lagos, called Barragem da Bravura. This lake is in the middle of a forest, with nothing around you but nature. Even in high season, you will see almost no people around this hidden gem of the Algarve. A SUP tour on the lake is great because of the warm and sweet water. Since the water there is super calm, you are assured to have a lot of fun, even without any previous experience SUPping.
Go on a Jeep Safari
If you just decide to stay away from the water during the wavy days, there’s still some stuff you can do! Have you already heard of Monchique? This area not far away from Lagos is very beautiful and almost magical with the dense forest. Here you can even find some waterfalls!
From Lagos you have the option to go for Jeep Safaris in Monchique or other places like Sagres or Praia do Amado! The west end of the Algarve is very different and definitely worth a visit to admire the wild and untouched nature!
Go on a boat tour in Ria Formosa
If you’re staying further east, closer to Faro, you should definitely use those wavy days to go on a boat tour in Ria Formosa. This natural reserve is blessed with unique flora and fauna and is a very special place in the Algarve! And since it’s a river mouth, it does not get affected by the waves!
Join us on one of our tours to Ria Formosa to explore the beautiful islands of the reserve, like Ilha Deserta, Ilha do Farol, Ilha da Culatra and Ilha da Armona. If you enjoy nature you will love Ria Formosa. There are even some bird species that can only be found in Ria Formosa, and you can also go for a seahorse observation here!
Stroll around the town of Lagos
For all those who just want to take it slow, why don’t just enjoy and explore the cute town of Lagos a little bit more? Lagos has so much to offer, and even just walking through the little streets and admiring the colorful houses is already quite a lot of fun! And it makes for some pretty good photographs as well.
Also, there are more and more great coffee shops popping up all around Lagos. Take Café Goldig for example – here you get everything from delicious Banana Bread over daily changing lunch menus and really good coffee and juices!
As you can see, even when there are waves in the Algarve you still have loads of options to enjoy your holidays in the Algarve to the fullest. So don’t miss out on the fun options of things to do when there are waves in the Algarve!