Is Lagos Portugal Worth Visiting?

Is Lagos Portugal worth visiting? Well, it’s a question I get a lot and if you’re here, I assume you’re wondering the same. Personally, I’ve been to Lagos more times than I can count.

There are so many reasons to visit Lagos Portugal, and I love to use it as a base to explore the rest of the natural beauty and cute towns in Algarve.

The beaches in Lagos are some of the absolute best, but its proximity to places like Ponta da Piedade, the cliffs of Sagres, and Benagil Cave makes this a top-notch base for any Algarve vacation.

Whether it’s the right place for you to visit, however, is up to you to decide. That’s why I’ve created this post so that you can figure out if Lagos is worth visiting on your next vacation or not.

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. That means that if you make a purchase through one of those links, I will get a small commission at no extra cost to you.

a pedestrian street with restaurants and bars - reasons to visit Lagos Portugal.

Is Lagos worth visiting?

Before I get into why visit Lagos Portugal, I want to provide you with some pros and cons so you don’t have to read through the entire post if you don’t feel you need to.

Lagos is a wonderful destination to visit, but I recognize that it might not be for everyone.

Pros of visiting Lagos:

  • Beautiful rock formations
  • Stunning beaches
  • Laidback vibe
  • Prime surf destination
  • Plenty of outdoor and water activities
  • Easy to explore the rest of the Algarve by tour or car

Cons of visiting Lagos:

  • Many of the best beaches are only reached by long flights of stairs making them poorly accessible for people with mobility impairment
  • It can be challenging to explore smaller places in the Algarve by public transport

Reasons to visit Lagos

Quaint old town

Lagos Old Town is full of life and boasts a quaint atmosphere. Compared to other places to visit in Algarve, Lagos holds a unique balance of energetic and calm.

The bohemian and surf vibes somewhat overthrow the touristic feel of the town turning it into my favorite place to stay in Algarve.

There are plenty of restaurants and bars, vegan eating options, and tourist attractions to visit like Igreja de Santo António and the Slave Market Museum.

Wonderful nature

The nature around Lagos Portugal is arguably the most beautiful in Portugal. The spectacular rock formations in Ponta da Piedade are just a 10-minute drive from the town center. But you can also hike from beach to beach to get there or book this boat tour to see it from the water (I highly recommend it!)

That said, my favorite way to explore the cliffs, hidden beaches, and sea caves around Lagos is by taking a kayak tour. This way, you truly get close to nature!

Ponta da Piedade rock formations jutting out of crystal clear water.

Epic surf

The best surf on the Algarve is around Lagos and the rest of the west coast making Lagos the best place to stay when you want to surf in Algarve.

There are plenty of surf hostels organizing surf trips and whether you’re a newbie or a seasoned surfer, you’ll find waves to ride from Lagos to Arrifana up the west coast.

Incredible beaches

The beaches in Lagos Portugal are from another world! With mesmerizing rock formations, hidden caves, and golden sand, they’re truly hard to beat.

Make sure you visit Camilo Beach, Dona Ana Beach, and Praia dos Estudantes, they are truly magnificent. Just note that some of these beaches are reached only by long flights of steps so they’re not very accessible. However, there are more accessible beaches you can reach from the town itself.

Camilo beach

Fantastic hostels

If there’s one place on the Algarve I highly recommend checking out the hostel vibes it’s in Lagos. One of the best reasons to visit Lagos Portugal is to connect with other travelers and experience the hostel vibe.

Most hostels organize surfing, pub crawls, and other activities, so it’s easy to meet other travelers. If you prefer the comfort of a private room, most of them have that too. This way you can retreat to yourself when you want to and enjoy the common areas when you feel like hanging out.


There is a lot of history in Lagos too, especially at the Slave Market Museum where you can learn more about the slave trade between Africa and Europe that took place there.

Lagos was also an important maritime town with 2000 years of history. You can learn a lot by exploring the historic Lagos fortress which was used to protect Lagos from pirates from the 17th century. But I also recommend visiting Museu Municipal which exhibits items from Neolithic, Islamic, and Roman times.

Is Lagos Portugal worth visiting

Laidback vibe

Lagos really has a laidback vibe and you feel it the moment you enter the old town, step inside a restaurant or bar, or check into your hotel.

This is likely the main reason why I’ve set my base to explore the Algarve to Lagos so many times.

It’s as if the surf vibe has settled over the entire town and you’ll be influenced whether you surf or not. Even the nightlife has a more chilled vibe than for example the nightlife in Albufeira.

Is Lagos Portugal safe?

Especially if you travel solo, you might be concerned with safety before choosing a destination. Lagos is a safe place to visit as is the Algarve in general.

I’ve never had any uncomfortable situations in Lagos, even walking back to the hostel at night. On the contrary, I’ve had very positive experiences with locals and tourists alike making me feel very safe each time I’ve visited.

That said, you should always keep your belongings secure, especially in crowded areas (pickpockets exist everywhere) and I always recommend removing all valuables (or items in general) from visible places in your car.

Conclusion: Is Lagos Portugal worth visiting?

So, is Lagos Portugal worth visiting at all? If you ask me, YES absolutely! There are so many wonderful things to do and sites to explore.

Not to mention the laidback vibe. Is it for you? That’s up to you to decide, but I hope I’ve provided you with enough in this article to make a decision on whether to go or not.

Happy travels!