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Lagos Portugal’s beaches
Lagos is surround by a beautiful coastline of vast sandy beaches ideal for surfing or much smaller cove beaches that are in idyllic settings. Within walking distance of central Lagos there are four outstanding beaches, while a short drive provides even more excellent beach choices. This guide will provide an introduction to the beaches of the Lagos region, detail the best beaches and provide links to further detailed information.
Beaches that are within walking distance of Lagos
Meia Praia Beach
The Meia Praia is the largest beach within the vicinity of Lagos, and is probably the beach where most tourists spend the majority of their time. Meia Praia is massive, with a beach that extends for almost 5km and clean waters with waves suitable for beginners surfing or body boarding.
The huge Meia Praia Beach
From central Lagos it is just a short walk across the harbour bridge and past the train station to the western edge of Meia Praia. This beach does get crowded in the summer but walking eastwards provides much quieter sections. There are multiple cafes, snack bars and small restaurants along the beach, all ideal for lunch or refreshments. The Meia Praia is suitable for families and is the best all round beach of the region.
Meia Praia translated means “Half Beach” and is named so, as the Odiáxere River divides the beach into two. The other side of the beach is called the Praia do Alvor and stretches on for another 3km to the sleepy town of Alvor but there is no means to cross the river.
Praia da Batata
Batata beach is a pretty little beach that is situated between the Lagos’ fort (Forte Ponta da Bandeira) and the cliffs of the southern headland. Batata beach is the closest to central Lagos but due to its size and location it gets very crowded in the summer months.
Batata beach and the Forte Ponta da Bandeira
The beach is sheltered from the prevailing winds and tides, therefore the waters are calm and suitable for families. Praia da Batata is divided into two by a headland and the section closest to the fort overlooks the marina entrance. Batata beach is where many of the kayak tours depart from.
The Praia don Ana
The Praia don Ana beach is one of the most visually stunning beaches of the Algarve coastline. The small beach is sheltered by high sandstone cliffs and turquoise waters lap the golden sands. In 2016 the beach was greatly extended by adding dredged sand from the seabed and this has covered many of the submerged rocks that were fun to snorkel and swim through.
The stunning Praia Dona Ana
From central Lagos it is a 20-minute walk but the beach is connected by the mini-train and local bus services. There is a selection of shops and cafes at the top of the cliffs and a small restaurant on the beach. This beach is only accessed via a steep footpath and stairway. For a guide to the beach please click here.
Praia do Pinhão
The Praia do Pinhão is a small scenic beach part way between the Praia don Ana and Praia da Batata. Since the expansion of the Praia don Ana, the Praia do Pinhão is considered the prettiest beach of Lagos.
Beaches which are a little further out
Praia de Porto de Mos
The Praia de Porto de Mós beach is to the south-west of Lagos and is on the far side of the Ponta da Piedade headland. It is another large sandy beach with similarities to the Meia Praia. There are waves which are suitable for surfing and body boarding and decent facilities along the beach front.
The Porto de Mos is a popular surfing beach
As this many of Lagos beaches it does get crowded during the summer months but is generally quieter than Meia Praia. The beach is 3.5km from central Lagos but there are a number of excellent hotels along the beach front.
The Praia do Camilo
The Praia do Camilo is on the way to the Ponta da Piedade headland and is another idyllic beach set amidst the sandstone cliffs of the coastline. There are soft golden sands and calm crystal clear waters but expect the beach to be busy during the summer. At the top of the cliffs is the popular Restaurante O Camilo.
Tourist advice for Lagos Beaches
Beach weather in the western Algarve last from May through to September but there may be pleasant weather both earlier or later. The summer season is the busiest time of the year and the whole Algarve region can feel very busy.
On most beaches deckchairs and parasols can be hired for approximately €15 per day. Sunscreen and sun tan lotion are very expensive in Portugal it is always advisable to bring your own from your home country.
One thing that surprises most new visitors to the region is the shockingly cold sea temperatures. This is due to the sea waters coming from the Atlantic Ocean and not the comparatively warmer Mediterranean.