Lagos, located in the scenic Algarve area of Portugal, is home to some of the best beaches in Europe. This beach guide provides all the key information you’ll need on your trip to Lagos, including key information about the beaches, facilities available and things to watch out for.
Many travellers over the years have fallen in love with the beautiful azure waters, sandy beaches and golden, imposing cliffs that line the coastline and surround many of the beaches. The beaches of Lagos are often considered to be some of the best in Europe – they’re just jaw-dropping!
Want more information on Lagos? Check out my ultimate Lagos guide which includes tips on where to stay, things to do and more!
The Best Beaches In Lagos – Things To Note
- Don’t forget to bring sunscreen!
- The water temperature in the Algarve tends to be really cold due to its proximity to the Atlantic Ocean. This means that even during the summer, if you take a dip into the ocean it will be icy cold.
- Many of the beaches in the Algarve are surrounded by cliffs, meaning rockfall does often occur and this can be dangerous. You’ll see many signs around the beaches warning of this. The best practice is to not sit too close to the cliffs, if you keep a safe distance then you’ll be fine.
I also have a guide on the top things to do in Lagos which includes other activities you can enjoy!
This post includes:
- Meia Praia
- Praia da Batata
- Praia dos Estudantes
- Praia do Pinhão
- Praia Dona Ana
- Praia do Camilo
- Praia dos Pinheiros
- Praia da Balança
- Praia do Canavial
- Praia do Porto de Mos
- Longest beach in Lagos.
- Plenty of room and never overcrowded.
- Very windy.
- Great for families.
- Great for people who want to do water sports.
Meia Praia is one of the longest beaches (4km) in the whole of the Algarve! It’s the perfect beach if you’re looking for some peace and quiet or if you’re wanting to take a long beach walk/run.
It’s never overcrowded so you’ll always have plenty of room and it’s also very close to the main town of Lagos so is super convenient.
This beach has super soft, golden sand, perfect for walking on, and is also immaculately clean. The sea is pretty calm and there are no rocks so it’s perfect for swimming – beware though that the water here is very cold, even in the summer.
Unlike Praia da Dona Ana and Praia do Camilo, this beach is not surrounded by cliffs. This does mean that it can get a bit windy on the beach so it’s something to bear in mind. You’ll need to anchor your parasol into the ground and make sure any loose items that may blow away are secured.
There is an upside to the wind – it makes this beach a great place for certain activities such as windsurfing, paragliding, surfing, kayaking and more.
How To Get To Meia Praia:
The beach is easy to get to by foot. If you’re staying in Lagos centre then you can simply walk to the western part of the beach, taking around 20 minutes. To reach it, simply cross the marina bridge and head towards the beach.
There is also a bus service that connects many of Lagos’s beaches. The bus service is operated by A Onda and Line 2 (blue line), which connects some of the beaches, runs to Meia Praia – you can check the schedule here. Please note that buses only depart once an hour and a one way ticket costs €1.20.
As Meia Praia is a flat beach, it is easily accessible so is particularly great for people who need wheelchair access or have mobility issues.
- This beach has plenty of amenities such as beach bars, restaurants and refreshments.
- Toilets and showers are available.
- Sun-beds are available to rent.
- Lifeguards on duty.
- There are plenty of parking spaces if you’re travelling by car.
Praia da Batata
- Closest beach to Lagos town centre – within close walking distance.
- Great for swimming due to calm seas.
- Great for families.
- Close to many amenities.
Praia da Batata is the closest beach to the town centre of Lagos meaning it is easily accessible. It’s also a picture perfect beach as it is surrounded by golden cliffs and has inviting smooth sand and turquoise waters.
Due to both its beauty and proximity to Lagos town centre, this does mean it tends to get very busy. You’ll often find crowds of people on this beach so you may need to get here early to get a good spot.
As it is surrounded by cliffs, this protects the beach from strong winds, meaning it has calm seas so is great for swimming.
There are plenty of activities you can access from this beach such as kayak tours or paddle boarding. These tours often take you all around the coastline up to Ponta da Piedade to explore the hidden coves and grottos.
If you head to the right hand side of this beach, you’ll find some small tunnels that lead to the neighbouring beach, Praia dos Estudantes.
How To Get To Praia da Batata:
This beach is actually the closest beach to the town centre of Lagos so if you don’t want to walk far, give this beach a go. It will only take a few minutes to walk.
You’ll easily spot this beach – it is just across from the main road (Avenida dos Descobrimentos). It’s located just up from the Castle of Lagos and Fort.
- Plenty of restaurants close to the beach.
- Toilet and shower facilities.
- Sun-beds to rent.
- Lifeguard on duty.
- Parking space at the top of the beach.
Praia dos Estudantes
- Very quiet and relatively unknown.
- Beautiful photo spot.
This beach is a lesser known beach and one of Lagos’s best kept secrets. As already mentioned, you can reach this beauty via a tunnel leading from the neighbouring beach of Praia da Batata. This is a much smaller and quieter beach.
This is a very unique beach and has some epic photo opportunities. For a great Instagram photo, you’ll find an incredible archway that sits between two cliff tops. This used to be part of a fortress but today just the small archway remains. The best time to visit is during low tide as if you go during high tide, this whole area will be covered in water!
For photo ideas, check out my post on the top 15 photo spots in Lagos – it will give you lots of inspiration!
How To Get To Praia dos Estudantes
A tunnel connects this beach to the neighbouring beach, Praia da Batata which is within close walking distance to the main town of Lagos.
- There are virtually no facilities but as Praia da Batata is so close, you can use the amenities there.
Praia do Pinhão
- A natural, non-commercialised beach.
- Peace and quiet.
This hidden gem is a little cove tucked away behind Lagos’s famous golden cliffs. You would only really come across this hidden beach if you knew it was there or if you luckily stumbled across it.
This beach is great for those that want an untouched paradise – you won’t find any shops, parasols, sun-beds or anything down here. The beach is empty and has a real natural feel to it. If you’re looking for a sun-bed or beachside restaurant, then this isn’t the beach for you. However, it does offer immense, unspoilt beauty.
It’s a great alternative to Praia Dona Ana or Praia do Camilo as you’ll experience the same beauty but without the crowds. This beach is just as stunning as other beaches in the area and really showcases the beauty of the Algarve.
To access the beach, you’ll need to descend down a steep stone staircase that weaves its way down the cliff-face – this may be difficult for people with mobility issues.
How To Get To Praia do Pinhão:
You can walk here from the main town of Lagos and it will take you around 10-15 minutes. You could also take a taxi. Unfortunately, there is no bus route to this beach.
- There are virtually no facilities here so you’ll have to bring your own snacks/refreshments.
Praia Dona Ana
- One of the Algarve’s most famous beaches.
- Incredibly beautiful.
- Does get very busy.
Praia Dona Ana beach is another one of the Algarve’s near perfect beaches with lots of unique rock formations surrounding the beach.
With golden sandy beaches and crystal clear, azule waters, it’s truly beautiful. It is often regarded as one of the best beaches of the Algarve and is often the beach you’ll see on postcards and in brochures.
It is an ideal place to spend a relaxing day at the beach and is close to the main town of Lagos (around 20 mins). It is actually the largest beach along the Ponta Da Piedade coastline however it is still only 160 metres so it does also get very packed, especially in the summer.
It’s a great place to sunbathe and you can always take a dip in the sea whenever you like. One thing to note is that the waters here are very cold! It tends to have a very calm and tranquil environment – you won’t find many beach activities or water activities here and it is also very clean.
You can access the beach by descending down the long wooden staircase that leads to the beach – it may pose a problem if you have mobility issues/use a wheelchair.
You’ll get impressive views from the top of the cliffs here and can see all of the surrounding area which is very picturesque.
How To Get To Praia Dona Ana:
You can easily reach this beach by walking from Lagos centre – it takes around 20 minutes.
If you’d prefer not to walk you can take a taxi or the bus. The bus is operated by A Onda. Line 2 (the blue line) will take you to the beach. This line actually connects Meia Praia, Praia Dona Ana and Praia do Porto de Mos. It’s great for if you’re wanting to explore the beaches of Lagos. One-way tickets cost €1.20 each and the buses depart once an hour. You can view the schedule here.
- Lifeguard on duty.
- There are parking spaces at the top of the cliffs, overlooking the beach but spaces are limited.
- Sun-beds to rent are available.
- Toilets and showers are also available.
Praia do Camilo
- One of the Algarve’s most famous beaches.
- Incredibly beautiful and secluded.
- Can get very busy.
- Calm waters – great for swimming.
Praia do Camilo is a secluded, picturesque beach. To get to the beach, you’ll need to descend a long wooden staircase of around 200 steps that winds down the cliffs. The staircase is also a sight itself as you get a panoramic view of the coastline and beach below.
It’s a picture perfect beach with soft golden sand and pristine waters. One thing to note though is that Praia do Camilo is actually a pretty small beach and as it is also one of Lagos’s most famous beaches, this does mean that it can get very busy so you’ll have to arrive early to get a spot!
The beach is divided into 2 by an enormous rock formation – it has a small tunnel running through it so you can access both sides.
The cliffs surrounding the beach offer protection from the wind, meaning the waters are calm and it’s not too windy here. This means it’s a great spot for swimming.
The water is almost transparent making it great for snorkelling too! It’s a great place to explore the ocean and you’ll even sometimes see fish in the waters.
How To Get To Praia do Camilo:
You can get here by walking – it takes around 30 minutes from Lagos centre.
If you don’t want to walk, you can get a taxi or Uber.
Unfortunately, there isn’t a bus service to Praia do Camilo. You can take the bus to Praia Dona Ana (detailed above) but you’ll still need to walk 15 minutes to reach Praia do Camilo.
- There is a small restaurant at the top of the staircase – this restaurant has some limited parking.
- There are limited facilities at this beach so it is best to bring your own refreshments/snacks.
- There is a lifeguard on duty during the peak summer period.
Praia dos Pinheiros
- Secluded beach.
- Calm water with caves/grottos to explore.
- Often frequented by nudists.
This beach lies between the rock formations and cliffs of Ponta da Piedade. This is one of Lagos’s most secluded beaches.
It is more difficult to reach that others – there is a steep stone stairway leading down the cliff-face that will give you access. It tends to be pretty empty due to its limited access.
This beach is surrounded by steep, high reaching golden cliffs providing a lot of shelter from the wind so this beach is very calm. There are lots of rock formations here and lots of little caves and grottos to explore.
This beach is also known to be a nudist beach due to the seclusion.
How To Get To Praia dos Pinheiros:
You can walk to this beach from Lagos town centre, it will take around 35 minutes. There are no direct bus routes so you’d need to take a taxi or Uber to access it if you didn’t want to walk.
- There are no facilities here, so it’s best to bring your own snacks/refreshments.
Praia da Balança
- Very secluded beach.
- Quiet beach.
This is another stunning beach that lies within the rock formations of Ponta da Piedade. This beach is very secluded and tends to be very quiet due to the difficulty of access.
We visited this beauty by kayak as many kayak tours stop for a break on this beach. Access down the rock face is difficult and risky however this does mean that crowds are kept to a minimum.
How To Get To Praia da Balança:
If you’re up to walking, it will take around 35 – 40 minutes to reach from the main town centre of Lagos. The only other option would be to take a taxi or an Uber as there is no direct bus route.
- There are no facilities here so again you’ll have to bring your own snacks/refreshments.
Praia do Canavial
- Plenty of room.
- Far from Lagos town centre.
- Great for surfing as it is very windy.
This beach is just to the west of the rock formations of Ponta da Piedade meaning it is a little further away from Lagos centre. This beach is lined by sandstone cliffs but doesn’t have rock formations and coves, like other Algarve beaches. It is quite a long beach so there is plenty of room and the sand is smooth.
There is little shelter from the wind here so it can get very windy on the beach. This makes it a good beach for surfing!
It is best to visit this beach during low tide as the strip of sand itself is narrow so during high tide you would be sat right under the cliffs which can be dangerous.
How To Get To Praia do Canavial:
It is to far too walk here from Lagos town centre (unless you like really long walks) so it’s best to get here by taxi/Uber or using a bus.
This beach sits right next to Praia do Porto de Mos which is reachable by bus (please see below).
- Amenities are limited here, but there are a few vendors if you want to grab a drink or a snack.
- There are plenty of facilities on the neighbouring beach – Praia do Porto de Mos.
Praia do Porto de Mos
- Second longest beach in Lagos.
- Plenty of room – never overcrowded.
- Can get very windy – good for surfing.
This is the second largest beach in Lagos, after Meia Praia. It is situated a little further away from Lagos town centre compared to the other beaches. It is located just to the west of the Ponta da Piedade cliffs.
It is around 1km long making it good for long beach walks. It’s a pleasant sandy beach, free from rocks (apart from on the far right side). You’ll also find 2 nice beach restaurants, perfect for a midday snack or a refreshing drink during a long day of sunbathing.
As the beach is less sheltered, it can get quite windy. It is a popular beach for surfing due to the powerful waves. It is located in a really nice area, amid luxury villas and resorts.
One of the main benefits of visiting this beach is that it tends to be a lot quieter than the other beaches – this is probably because you have to travel a little to get here, but you will be rewarded with pristine sands and turquoise waters, without the crowds of Praia Dona Ana or Praia do Camilo.
How To Get To Praia do Porto de Mos:
To reach this beach, you will need to take a taxi or a bus from Lagos town. If you’re going by bus, you’ll need to take the A Onda bus. Line 2 (blue line) will take you to the beach from Lagos centre – buses come once an hour and cost €1.20 for a one way ticket. Check their schedule here.
- A restaurant for something to eat.
- Parking spaces.
- Toilets and showers are available.
- Sun-beds to rent.
- Lifeguards are on duty during the peak summer months.
Thanks for reading this ultimate Lagos beach guide discussing all the best beaches in Lagos! I hope you found it useful and enjoy your trip to Lagos.
For more information on Lagos, check out my ultimate Lagos guide which includes all the information you’ll need when visiting Lagos!