After Porto, we proceeded down to the southern coast to the Algarve region of Portugal. The Algarve is made up of several cities along the Mediterranean, and the town we chose to spend our last few days was called Lagos (considered by many to be the most beautiful of them all).
To get to Lagos we had to take a 5 hour train ride down to Tunes, and then transfer to a local train (which runs hourly) to get to the beach town. The local train that takes you there actually is on the line that runs through all the towns in the Algarve region and takes about another hour to get from Tunes to Lagos. There are more direct trains to Lagos from Lisbon, but not from Porto Porto. When we got to Lagos, we realized quickly that there were not a slew of taxis waiting for passengers at the train station, so note: Have the hotel’s number that you’re staying at ready to go. Give them a call and have them get a taxi over to the train station to pick you up.
Lagos is definitely a beach town and during the peak season (which is when we were there) the town is packed with European tourists. Although all the guide books warned us of this, and although it was busy, at no time did the crowds ever feel claustrophobic or oppressive. While the main part of the town was packed with bars, the outer part consisted of several beautiful beaches, all with their own unique properties. I’ll go over the beaches in the next post, but for now I have to talk about the place we stayed at.
Costa D’Oiro Ambiance Village is a great little resort with a good location. It’s walking distance from both the beaches and the bar scene, but it’s far enough from the main center that you’ll be able to get a good night sleep and not have to listen to the partying crowds. If you’re looking for that scene, don’t stay at Costa D’Oiro. Find a hostel near the main square. Costa D’Oiro is much more relaxed and more suited to the families rather than the backpacking college kid.
What made this hotel stand out from the rest of the places we stayed in Portugal was the size of our hotel room. I wouldn’t even call it a room, it was more of a suite with a full kitchen, fully stocked with all the cooking supplies we could have needed, living room with satellite TV, spacious two bedroom with another satellite TV, porch and outside area with a table. They also offered a full complimentary breakfast in the morning (with all you can drink mimosas), but don’t bother with their restaurant – the food there is so so.
The price was reasonable: 198 Euros ($277) a night for that huge room.
Where I stayed:
Costa D’Oiro Ambiance Village
Rua Costa D’Oiro, Lote 38
8600 – 544 Lagos
+351 282 770 079