Things to Do in Lagos, Portugal

things to do in Lagos Portugal

Lagos’ historic center is worth exploring on foot, with a stroll through its cobbled streets and cozy squares. You’ll find a mix of traditional buildings and the beautifully ornate Igreja de Santo António, which features carved woodwork and azulejo-tile facades.

Learn about one of Lagos’ darker sides at the Slave Market Museum, on the site of the first slave market in Europe. The soaring vistas on the Seven Hanging Valleys Trail are jaw-dropping.

1. Take a Boat Tour

Whether you’re traveling solo, with kids, or in a group, take a Ponta da Piedade Boat Tour and see the dramatic rock formations of this stunning headland. Here you’ll find limestone sea stacks, natural arches, and secret grottoes in the glittering waters.

This is one of the best Lagos boat tours for those with limited time as it allows you to visit multiple sites of beauty in a short amount of time. Plus, you’ll get insight from your guide along the way!

If you’re looking for something more active try a kayaking trip around Ponta da Piedade. Here you’ll be able to kayak into the cliffs and explore all the grottoes and caves.

2. Visit the Slave Market Museum

The Mercado de Escravos (Slave Market Museum) is a town museum housed in the seventeenth-century building that was the first slave market in Europe. It also served as an Inspector’s Office, Customs House and Guard House.

Take a guided tour with an experienced forager, teacher and cook to learn how to harvest wild edible herbs from the beautiful coastline of Lagos. Then, enjoy a delicious outdoor picnic!

Visiting the Porto Mos beach is another fun thing to do in Lagos. Its rocks have a layered look and the water is calm, making it ideal for swimming. A great choice if you’re travelling with kids.

3. Visit the Igreja de Santo António

While Lagos is known for its beauty, it also has a dark past. Learn more about this sad chapter of its history at the Slave Market Museum.

This ornate 18th-century church is across from the Castelo dos Governadores, a 17th-century fort that was once used to keep watch over the city.

One of the best things to do in Lagos Portugal is to walk along the cliffs and beaches. It’s an easy way to see some of the most picturesque scenery in the Algarve.

Another must-see is Ponta da Piedade, a stunning coastal area with sea grottos and cliffs. If you aren’t up for walking, there is a tourist train that can take you here in the summer.

4. Visit the Science Museum

The science museum here is small but it’s fun and educational. Kids especially will enjoy this exhibit which is centered on the Portuguese Discoveries. It features different kinds of sailing knots, maps, and other scientific facts presented in a very kid-friendly way.

If you’re looking for something a little more active, then I highly recommend taking the hike to Ponta da Piedade. It’s a great way to see some of the caves and beaches in Lagos. The trail also passes by Praia do Camilo which is one of our favourite beaches in Lagos. You can also do a kayak tour of the Ponta da Piedade area with local guides for two and a half hours which is a lot of fun too.

5. Visit the Marina

During the summer, you can find lots of tour operators at the Marina. However, the best way to visit Lagos is by walking along the water and taking in the scenery at a leisurely pace.

Alternatively, you could take a kayak tour of the Benagil Cave. It is one of the most popular things to do in Lagos.

The Igreja de Santo António is another memorable church. With 18th-century azulejos and jaw-dropping detail, it is a must-see! A 3 Euro fee gets you entry to the small museum.

6. Visit Ponta da Piedade

A cliff walk is one of the best things to do in Lagos, especially when it’s not too hot and you can take some time to enjoy the views. You can also take a boat tour that takes you along the coastline or kayak around the grottoes.

If you want to be active, there’s a relatively new boardwalk that spans from the lighthouse of Ponta da Piedade all the way to Praia do Barranco do Martinho in the west and even further to Praia do Canavial in the east. The view is absolutely breathtaking!

Just make sure you bring plenty of water, as walking in the sun can easily dehydrate you.

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