Some slice of heaven in Southern Portugal
Wednesday 7, July 2010
Tucked in at the very bottom of the Algarve is the town of Lagos, (pronounced Lagosh), a lovely remote getaway, with plenty of golden sand beaches, and endless blue seas.
The Algarve region of Southern Portugal is famous for its sweeping beaches, its day-glo landscapes that seem to shine when viewed from Mountain tops under that big Mediterranean sun. Tucked in at the very bottom of the Algarve is the town of Lagos, (pronounced Lagosh), a lovely remote getaway, with plenty of golden sand beaches, and endless blue seas.
Around and throughout the Algarve you will find many wonderful, and some surprising, privately owned short term holiday rentals from luxurious villas to holiday apartments and farm houses. Perfect for days spent lounging by the pool, taking in the rays of sunshine as they shimmer in the water. Here you can take things at your own pace, happy to be removed from the everyday world, with your own slice of privacy and seclusion, as you relax in to your vacation.
From your holiday home you can take things at your own pace, and Lagos has a lot to offer those wishing to bask under a vivid sun. Here it is remarkably stress free, with little need for masses of travel fares spent on taxis or trains, you can easily make your way round by foot. One of the nicest things to do here is explore the diverse beaches that are on offer, there are some that stretch along the front of that bluest of oceans, while others are more hidden away and private, little surprises along the coastline waiting to be discovered. Around here there are sprawling cliff sides offering a grand views, if you are willing to explore them, this is how you will find your own private space, tucked away for just you and your family. Along the coastline is Ponta da Piedade, which has a charming lighthouse from which you can view the glorious sun glistening ocean right to the horizon, and from here you can take a boat tour to the natural caves around Lagos. There is also a harbour that fizzes with excitement in the morning, if you are wishing to make a full day of your trip, getting up early and watching as this spot comes alive.
With such a spot as this you will quickly find many water activities to do, on a summer's day you can go on a dolphin tour, whisking away on that clear sea, looking out for dolphins as they swim along the boat, well mostly, you may be unlucky and not see a single one, though it is always a worthwhile trip, boasting some wonderful sights, and the thrill of riding in the high powered boat. Along with this there is water tours and sea kayaking both to be enjoyed.
Within the city, there is much to be seen one of the highlights being the Capela dos Ossos attached to the church, the bone chapel, one of the 3 of the Algarve region. It is a macabre location with walls lined with human bones and skulls as if the building were somehow once alive, it is easy to feel as if you are being watched, to glance over your shoulder and find skull seemingly gazing right at you. From the church the bell tower is certainly to be scaled, offering one of the finest views of the town and beyond, to the borders of the Algarve, to the horizon of the ocean.
Nearby is the town's fish market, the Algarve region is famous for having some of the best seafood in the world, if you know Portuguese cuisine you will be well aware of the quality on offer as fresh catches are sold. Particularly popular here are the sardines, which are cooked on doorsteps here, blowing a delicious smell throughout the city and most appetites imminently quickly find themselves desiring some of the local produce. There are many wonderful little family run cafes here in Lagos serving up piri piri chicken and barbecued chicken piri piri, or any of the seafood from the region.
As night begins to descend on this town the bars come alive, many filling with a crowd of young travelers socialising with a few beverages. The local drink which is guaranteed to take its toll is the Medronho, aptly known as the fire water, though for a more refined after dinner drink try the almond liqueur.
Lagos really runs at a very easy pace, for those wishing to recharge their batteries in between their busy job it will not fail to disappoint. There is no pressure to do anything, if you should wish you may simply relax on some of the nicest beaches in Western Europe, yet there is also much to see and take in, and the city stands to show a insightful view of Mediterranean life. After taking in the calm of the city, and resting in your own private haven villa, anyone will be back and ready to take on the world again.
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