An eco-friendly guide to Lagos travel
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With the rise of eco-travel across the world, Lagos, Portugal is a great place to visit while being careful about your environmental footprint. Read on for some tips about some environmentally places to stay, where to eat and how to get around in the area.
Lagos is a small, super friendly town on the coast of the Algarve. It has a cute center with several traditional and modern restaurants. It is the perfect base to admire the beautiful beaches and rock formations in the area.
Ponte da Piedade and Praia Dona Ana are definitely recommend to visit.
Where to stay
1. Soul & Surf Portugal
Branded as a boutique hotel, this place is a great stop if you'd like to experience some of the Algarve's best waves, daily yoga classes, and delicious veggie/vegan food all within a renovated Quinta (Portuguese for farmhouse).
The surf team not only focus on the surfing but also on the theory - which includes ocean literacy, blue health and how to build respect for the ocean in which they surf.
Soul & Surf also have a 'sustainable-ish' section which you can check on their website here, where they acknowledge that there's always more to do. Nevertheless, they've already made great steps towards making their business 'greener' where they can.
2. Casa vale da Lama Eco Resort
Credit: Casa vale de lama
This eco-resort is situated slight East of Lagos town, and its nearest beach Meia Praia is amongst the most beautiful that the town can offer. They host retreats, permaculture experiences and have a large patch of farmland with which they grow organic fruit and vegetables, which they serve in their plant-based restaurant. Come here for an escape in nature and a comfortable home.
Vegetarian and vegan cuisine in Lagos
Portugal tends to be known for its seafood and meat- bacalhua (cod) and frango (chicken) are some of the specialties. Notwithstanding these traditional dishes' place, Lagos has also seen a rise in vegetarian and vegan cuisine, here are a few standouts:
1. Abigail's café
Hours: 09h - 15h
A cute and cosy veggie/vegan cafe right by the waterfront, which serves daily breakfast and lunch. Think smoothies, burritos, salad of the day and one of the best vegan brownies on the market - worth making the trip just for this one.
They are also very accommodating for digital nomads looking to work done.
2. The Coffee Studio
Hours: 8h - 17h
Credit: The Coffee Studio
This cafe in the heart of Lagos offers delicious coffee and a daily selection of vegan baked goods - vegan cinnamon buns are a local favorite. Most of what they offer is veggie and can be made vegan too. Also a nice spot for co-working.
3. Empanadas & co
Hours: 12pm – 9pm, closed on Tuesdays
Credit: Trip Advisor Portugal
Situated above the town, right by the old Fort, this spot offers a wide selection of vegetarian and vegan empanadas at a very reasonable price. Some have more spice than others, so bear that in mind!
They're also located just by one of the main free car parks, handy if you want to catch an uber in and out of town.
4. Black & White
Hours: 9am – 4pm
Credit: Trip Advisor Portugal
Some of the best coffee in town and many vegetarian and vegan options in this modern coffee shop. Expect long queues from early in the morning, as this place is very popular!
How to get around
Most travelers who come to Lagos come by airplane, and some rent cars to explore the local area. While these are options, there are also more environmental ways to get around the area, including using public transport using Uber or car sharing.
Generally, Lagos is a very walk able town, so you won't need a car to get around. To explore other towns close-by, there are several buses a day to towns such as Sagres and Faro, that are both worth an explore.
Uber, Bolt and local taxi services also work great and a reasonably priced for short, specific excursions.
Getting to/from Lagos
1. By bus
There are many bus services that get to and from Lagos. These include local services and buses from Lisbon, Portugal's capital, and Seville, across the border in Spain. There are a few bus companies that run, so the best thing to do is to go on Rome2Rio through this link here, where you will see a selection of bus companies that are running on the required day.
There's a direct train from Lagos to Lisbon, which takes roughly 4 hours and a half. You can book on this website.
BlaBlacar is a cheap and safe way to share car journeys with others doing the same trip. Simply sign up and write where you want to go, and other drivers will pick you up/drop you off on their route. Works well in Portugal and also across the world!
I hope that this has helped open up some options to travel sustainably around one of the Algarve’s most precious towns. The region needs more environmentally conscious travelers, and these are only a few ways to do it – there are of course many more too. Até já!