Romantic Luxury Holidays in Lagoa Algarve
Lagoa is a small and picturesque town in the western Algarve full of whitewashed housed that used to be located above a lagoon (Lagoa). Nowadays the lagoon is gone, but the name remains, and so does the top-quality wine of the region.
During our latest trip to the Algarve, we decided to spend 4 days exploring the area around Lagoa and we were surprised by the number of great activities you can encounter in such a small area.
The town of Lagoa is a mix of new and old houses, and the town gives you a lovely vibe about the traditional Algarve. Less than 10km away from the town you have some breath-taking beaches known for their coloured cliffs and crystal clear waters.
Lagoa is an interesting region to stay and visit if you are looking to escape the crowds from other popular touristic areas in Algarve and get an authentic and local experience of the southern Portuguese region of Algarve.
During our 4 days in Lagoa, our primary goal was to experience local activities and have some quality couple time without too much stress. Having a car to explore is a must if you want the flexibility and freedom to go anywhere whenever you want. If you are flying to Faro airport, Lagoa is located around 60km west of the airport and the journey takes less than 40 minutes.
We hope our 4 days plan inspires you to visit Lagoa and gives you a glance at the relaxing and incredible activities you will be able to do in the area.
# DAY 1
We left Porto early in the morning and arrived at Tivoli Carvoeiro Resort around check-in time. We were welcomed by the team and were able to check-in straight away. Our room was on the 6th floor with ocean views (make sure to pick the ocean view rooms, you won’t regret it)
The hotel is located right next to one of our favourite beaches in Algarve (Vale Covo Beach), and we love the feeling of waking up and looking out of the window with such an incredible view.
After being settled in our room, we went for a walk around the hotel and walked down to the beach since the hotel has direct access to it. The beach was pretty much empty, and we could finally get our first dip in the ocean after our journey from the north of Portugal.
Around 8 pm, we left the hotel and headed to Chef’s Kitchen Carvoeiro for dinner. If you like to walk it’s around a 20 minutes walk and you get to see the village of Carvoeiro and do some shopping on the way.
The restaurant is located right in the centre of the village and has a truly unique and classy vibe. The outdoor area is perfect for a summer evening, and the food was delicious.
I opted for a steak, and Marina tried one of the fish specialities, and we both loved it. Everything was fresh, and the presentation of the plates was classy. The staff and the owner were always checking on us and making sure we had a pleasant experience.
After dinner, we walked to the beach and enjoyed the views before heading back to our hotel and calling it a night.
# DAY 2
We started our second day early in the morning with breakfast at Tivoli Carvoeiro. We woke up early to make sure we get a spot over the swimming pool with the best breakfast views in the area. The breakfast is buffet style with the staff, helping you with it to follow all the safety measures with the current situation.
After breakfast, we decided to try a different beach for the day. We headed over to Praia da Cova Redonda where we spent the morning relaxing in the beach area managed by Vilalara Thalassa Resort. The beach is huge, and since we came early in the morning, it was super quiet and perfect for a walk around the area and to chill and sunbathe in one of the beach beds. We enjoyed a refreshing pineapple mocktail before heading for lunch
We then drove to O Molhe. A lovely small family-run restaurant with a stunning view above the pier to Praia da Rocha and the river. The drive was around 25 minutes, but the seafood Cataplana was totally worth the drive. The fish and seafood were so fresh and delicious that we stayed for almost 2 hours enjoying it and drinking some local wine.
Since we woke up early in the morning, we decided to head back to our hotel and relax a bit by the pool before our sunset experience.
Around 6 pm, we drove to Portimão Harbour to meet the team from ProRent Algarve. We meet with Manuel, a member team of ProRent that knows every corner of the region and that was about to take us on a boat ride we wouldn’t forget.
If you have a skipper license, you can rent the boat and head to the waters to discover the coast. If you don’t, you can get a local skipper to show you around, and that’s what we did. We left the Pier around 6 and spent the next 2 hours exploring the coast, discovering the best caves in Lagoa and getting the local insights from Manuel about the coolest spots for our photos while enjoying some delicious local Rose wine from Quinta dos Santos.
It was probably our favourite experience since we have wished to visit Benagil Caves for such a long time and this was the perfect way to discover it and enjoy the place without any crowds.
A little bit after 8 pm we were back to the Harbour and ready to head to a truly memorable and well-known dining experience among Locals. We headed to O Charneco, one of a kind traditional dining experience where you just sit and wait for your food. You don’t actually get to decide what you eat. The owner will bring you 7 different local delicacies and share with you some cool stories about the area. The restaurant is a classic and genuinely local spot with the best of the old-school food of the region. If you are into local food, this place is a must. We left the restaurant 3 hours late, extremely full and happy with all the dishes we have tried.
# DAY 3
As usual, we started the day with our early breakfast at the hotel before heading to Vale D’Oliveiras Quinta Resort and Spa. We arrived around 9 and started the morning with a gym class in the Hotel Health club so we could burn some of the calories from the previous dinner. Right after we opted for their Oriental Sensations massage, and we both got an exfoliation massage with clay stones, and it was great to relax after our workout. We finished our visit to Vale D’Oliveiras with a glass of champagne by the pool before heading out for lunch.
We had lunch at Casa do Rio, a lovely hidden gem by the river. We are so happy we found this place. The location is incredible, and the views from the outside tables are fantastic. You get to enjoy the peaceful vibes of the river and still be super close to the beach areas, so it was the perfect break for lunch. If you are into music, they have live performances every Friday evenings. I had a traditional pork sirloin, and Marina went for the Seafood curry, and we both loved and recommend it.
After lunch, we drove to Quinta dos Vales for a unique experience. We started by walking around the property and learn a bit more about the history of Quinta dos Vales and enjoying the unique statues that are displayed around the vineyards before we “blend our own wine”.
This place is one of the most well-known wine producers in Algarve, and it was awesome to get to try and blend our own wine bottle. We tried different wines, and a local guide showed us how the blending process is done, and we finished the experience with a custom bottle of wine blended by us. Now we just need to wait a few months before we get to enjoy it at home and remember this experience.
The last stop of the day would be in the town of Lagoa for a delightful dining experience. We headed to Gaspacho & Migas, a local restaurant that we both loved. The staff and the owner were the nicest people ever, and they had such a passion for the project that we got inspired and left the place with a huge smile. The goal of the restaurant is to bring you back to the gastronomical roots of the Algarve and Alentejo. Their motto is “Cook slow, eat slower and if possible, with a good company” and that’s exactly what we got from our dinner. The food was all about traditional dishes and local organic ingredients with a twist of modern and fusion.
# DAY 4
We met with Marco, a golf lover that has been working with Pestana Golf for almost 2 decades. He showed us around the property and agreed to give us some friendly advice for our first golf experience. In less than one hour, Marina was able to hit a ball to the 100 meters flag, and she seems to be a natural talent. The property is incredible, and the golf course is in really good shape. The views from the bar over the final hole were excellent, and it was so much fun to give it a try with Golf that we both feel we will be back for more in the future.
After our experience with golf, we headed to the small village of Ferragudo. This place is so beautiful. The little streets full of flowers and picturesque houses was the perfect walking experience on our way to Borda do Cais.
For lunch, we tried Turbot for the first time, and it was just delicious. They bring the freshly picks of the day to the table so you can choose the fish you want before they grill it right in front of the restaurant, so you get to experience the entire process and eat delicious and fresh fish.
One of the restaurant specialities is Razor Clam rice, and we had it as a side with our fish, and it was just perfect. This was the kind of experience we love the most. Having freshly prepared fish while we see the fisherman arriving on the pier with the days catch.
During the afternoon we walked a bit more around the village of Ferragudo before heading to Tivoli Carvoeiro to enjoy the swimming pool and finish our day with a rooftop experience and see the sunset from Sky Bar Carvoeiro. This was probably one of the most beautiful sunsets we have experienced in a long time.
For our last dinner, we went to The One restaurant right on the ground floor of Tivoli Carvoeiro. We finished our trip to Lagoa with a delicious and classy dinner with Ocean views to end our romantic and luxurious experience in Lagoa.
This was our first time in Lagoa, and it won’t be the last. Lagoa has so much to offer and is the perfect blend of beach, culture and food delight. Being able to have such a diverse and complete holiday in just one small region of Algarve was awesome and made our holiday much more relaxing and enjoyable.
We hope you get to enjoy Lagoa Algarve as much as we did and that the recommendations we shared here will make your trip memorable and unforgettable.