Although Lagos is beautiful and the beaches are a lot of fun there isn’t a whole lot to do in the town so we rented a car for our second full day in Lagos. It’s actually pretty neat because they drop the car off at your Airbnb or hotel and pick it up there. Drew drove us about 45 minutes to the start of a hike called the Seven Hanging Valleys. The hike is about 2 hours along the ocean cliffs – think Torrey Pines but longer and with water that looks tropical. We stopped frequently and took lots of photos but it was still a medium difficulty hike since the trail wasn’t always well marked and sometimes you had to use your hands and feet to continue.
The hike ended at the Praia de Benagil, a pretty popular beach, and we had a lovely lunch at a fancy seafood restaurant overlooking the water (sweaty shirts and all). After lunch we took a boat tour of the local caves along the water. There are tons – some that are large and easy to get a boat into and some that I was surprised our driver was able to get us in and out of safely. We also saw some secluded beaches and we got to see the famous Benagil cave. After the hour long boat tour we hiked back to the car but since we knew the way and didn’t stop for many photos it only took us 1 ½ hours. After hiking in 80+ degree weather we all agreed that we had earned a cold glass of wine so after cleaning up we went down to dinner at a place called Bafi which is owned by an Italian couple. The service was extremely slow and the food was ok but the owner gave us free drinks so we’ll give it a thumbs up!
The next day we decided to go on a tour to see the other side of the Algarve region. We booked it through Vagabundo, which is owned by an eclectic, funny and calm Australian dude, Brodi, who has been living in Lagos for several years now. Our first stop was an old medieval fort, apparently there used to be loads of medieval buildings along the Algarve coast but when the massive Lisbon earthquake of 1755 hit it created a huge tsunami off the coast of Portugal and destroyed almost every single man made building. Considering the fort was on a massive cliff and the fort itself was an impressive stone structure the wave must have been unbelievable huge and scary!
While we were exploring the fort, Brodi told us some fun facts like there are 6 other Portuguese-speaking countries other than Portugal and Brazil and most are in Africa. When we were done taking photos we went to our next stop, which was a beautiful beach (although the beauty was a little marred by the 6 stark naked men in their 70s walking around and then diving into the ocean like dolphins) and we had a picnic lunch.
Our final stop of the day was used to be considered the end of the world (before the Americas were ‘discovered’) here we took a lot of fun photos including Drew and I pretending to jump off the cliff!
That evening we decided to experience the nightlife that Lagos is famous for and we joined Brodi and the other Vagabundo tour members out. Brodi quizzed us on some of the trivia from earlier in the day and Drew won a Vagabundo t-shirt (he’s very proud of this, although he found out later it was a size small). We had a ton of fun but were worse for the wear the next day so we just did some errands, enjoyed the beach, and went to an absolutely amazing Portuguese dinner at Casa do Prego – a perfect way to end our time in Portugal!