5 Ideal Areas & Hotels

Ready for a dreamy beach holiday on the gorgeous Algarve coast? If so, then you’ll love this guide on where to stay in Lagos, Portugal!

I am lucky to say I live in Portugal (in Lisbon) and I got to know the country’s beach gems pretty well! So read this post and you’ll learn which are the 5 top areas to stay in town for tourists! As always, you’ll also find a list of hotels, suited for all budgets and sorted by price! 

I carefully picked all the accommodations so you can rest assured that you’ll find only the best rated options for each area.

In short, the Marina is the best area to stay in Lagos, Portugal, as this is where you’ll find the main attractions and some of the best hotels.

But as I mentioned, I covered some other neighborhoods as well, in case that’s not your scene!

Lagos is a pretty popular holiday destination in Portugal, so I recommend booking your hotel here in advance!

If you are in a hurry

Check out the most amazing hotels in Lagos, Portugal, all set in Marina de Lagos:

Psst! The city of Lagos is part of the beautiful Algarve Coast, and I have a whole article on accommodation in each part of the coast, check it out too!

This map will help you visualize where to stay in Lagos. It shows the best 5 areas I will be talking about in this travel guide:

1. Lagos Marina – where to stay in Lagos for the first-time

Harbor scene with moored sailboats, a pair rowing in a dinghy, and a traditional white building with a bell tower in the backdrop under a cloudy sky

Visiting Lagos for the first time? Then there’s no better place than the Marina de Lagos to start your adventure around this town set on the gorgeous Algarve coast!

For anyone who wants to improve their Portuguese before the trip, know that Lagos is actually pronounced as Lagush and it means Lakes!

NOTE: Make sure you always type in Lagos, Portugal when looking online, or for tickets. Since there’s another city called Lagos in Nigeria that usually pops up first.

Lagos Marina has a very convenient location to reach all of the attractions. Within a 10-minute walk, you can find yourself in the Old Town or a beautiful place with amazing cliffs.

If you’re a lover of water sports (Lagos is super famous for its amazing surfing conditions), then the Marina will be perfect for you! From here, you can go on sailing tours, watch dolphins, head to the beaches for swimming, kayaking, and surfing, or just simply enjoy a nice sunset walk on the promenade by the ships. 

Plus, the area also has vibrant nightlife. The atmosphere is always buzzing here, with ships coming in and sailing to different places and tourists enjoying their days in the restaurants and bars of the area!

Since the Lagos train station is also set here, you’ll probably see lots of people coming in and leaving, since Lagos is a great base for taking day trips to other towns and attractions on the Algarve Coast like Silves, Sagres, or Praia da Luz.

And  if you’re not renting a car to explore the Algarve coast, you can use this train to get to some of the places like Faro, Albufeira, Portimao and others. It also has connections to Lisbon if you want to visit the capital city, or if you’re coming to Lagos from there.

This is definitely a great place for some sunset drinks and dinners with stunning views! Southwest Bistro (map) is a great spot to admire the panoramic ocean views and enjoy some yummy food!

Lagos Marina is also a great starting place if you want to head off and explore other parts of the region. If you are planning on spreading your trip over multiple spots, you might want to read my post about where to stay in Algarve!

Luxury hotel

Enjoy the amazing Atlantic ocean views from the outdoor pool of this hotel that has a great location! The accommodation offers a delicious breakfast, air-conditioned rooms with a private balcony, a bar, and private parking.

Other accommodation options in Lagos Marina


Here’s a cool place for couples that has rooms with a balcony, and a kitchenette plus a spa center and an outdoor pool


This hotel has a traditional Portuguese design, a terrace, free Wi-Fi and is within walking distance of the beach


Centrally located near the beach, this Airbnb offers an amazing terrace overlooking the Atlantic Ocean and rooms with great amenities

Things to do in Lagos Marina

  • Go for a sunset stroll at Marina Lagos
  • Discover beautiful beaches with a catamaran boat tour
  • Join a dolphin watching tour
  • Take a golf lesson at Clube De Golfe De Lagos (map)
  • Go on a trip to Zoo de Lagos
  • See the Réplica Caravela Boa Esperança
  • Have a meal with a beautiful marina view at Quay Lagos (map)
  • Take a boat tour to Ponta da Piedade Grotto to discover impressive caves

2. Lagos Old Town (City Center) – best place to stay for history lovers 

Historic Lagos town center with cobblestone streets and colorful, traditional Portuguese buildings, bustling with pedestrians and casual shoppers

This charming area, which is located north of Torraltinha, is an absolute must-see while you’re in Lagos! And it’s also one of the best places to stay in Lagos. 

The location couldn’t be better! Old Town Lagos is across the river from Marina Lagos, and they’re connected by a bridge (here’s the official website of the marina where you can learn more about it). 

If you are a fan of Portuguese tiles, charming cobbled streets, medieval buildings, and cool street art (which you can admire on R. Lançarote de Freitas), then you will love Lagos Old Town!

This is a very vibrant place with lots of shops, cafes, restaurants, and bars. It also has a convenient location to access the beaches on foot (the nearest beach is only a 10 min walk away). Although you can also take the train to the beaches, which aren’t so close, if you’re not a fan of walking in that heat. 

You’ll find that the hotels here are much cheaper compared with the other areas. Most of them have a traditional touch, and they’re set in the local houses (so not many have pools or fancier facilities, but they look so nice)!

I always like to get a real taste of every town I visit and there’s no better place to do that than the markets! Definitely head to Mercado Municipal de Lagos (map) in the Old Town and try all the mouth-watering fruits and fresh fish!

Besides exploring all the gorgeous streets and taking pics of the iconic whitewashed houses in the Old Town, you should also visit some of the attractions. Castle of Lagos, Centro Ciência Viva de Lagos, and Porta de São Gonçalo, are just some of the places that you should see!

NOTE: If you’re coming by car, I’d recommend booking a hotel that offers parking as there aren’t many parking places here, except the one near the train station (map) which is free but during high season (June, July, August) it’ll probably be very hard to find a spot.

Luxury hotel

This luxurious hotel is located at the heart of Lagos town center. Residence Lagos offers a nice rooftop terrace where you can enjoy some Portuguese wine while watching the sunset, spacious rooms, free parking, and a great breakfast. The best beaches and restaurants in town are just a short walk from the hotel!

Other accommodation options in Lagos Old Town


Here’s a place that offers a free shuttle bus to the beach, 3 pools and rooms with a balcony


The Olive Hostel is within walking distance to the beaches, has a bar and terrace where you can take yoga lessons


This Airbnb has a great location in the city center and offers fully equipped rooms with free wifi

Things to do in Lagos Old Town

  • Visit the Chapel of Bones at the Church of San Sebastian
  • Go to Castelo de Lagos 
  • Enjoy the sun on Batata Beach
  • See the beautiful church of Igreja de Santa Maria
  • Check out the historic Porta de São Gonçalo
  • Learn about local history at Museu Municipal Dr. Jose Formosinho
  • See the Statue Infante dom Henrique 
  • Take a day trip to Faro

3. Porto de Mós – where to stay for surfing

Breathtaking view of the Ponta da Piedade cliffs with their rugged natural arches overlooking turquoise waters, as seagulls glide in the bright blue sky

As I mentioned earlier, Lagos is famous for its amazing surfing conditions! Lots of avid practitioners come here precisely for that!

For anyone who doesn’t know how to get to Lagos, depending on where you’re coming from, you can book your plane to Faro, or Lisbon, and from there, take the bus, train, or rent a car!

If you’re one of them, then I think you’ll definitely enjoy staying in Porto de Mós! Located 4 km (3 miles) away from Lagos Marina, around a 45 min walk, this area has the 2nd largest beach in Lagos, just after Meia Praia. 

The breeze is very strong on Porto de Mos beach, making it perfect for surfing/bodyboarding!

Although it’s not just that that brings tourists to this part of town! Just like other beaches in Lagos, this place has a gorgeous coastline filled with rugged cliffs that just take your breath away! You’ll easily find some incredible sunset spots on Porto de Mos Beach!

And if you’re a fan of dramatic coastlines, you should definitely go explore a super famous attraction which is set a 50 min walk away from Port de Mos, called Ponta da Piedade, a dramatic coastline made of sea pillars, rock arches, and hidden grottos.

You can explore this place either on the coastline footpaths (there are 180 steps that lead down to the base of Ponta da Piedade) or on the sea, on a boat tour (here’s a great tour that you can try out)

There are also lots of resorts and great hotels in the area, so let’s check them out

Luxury hotel

Set within walking distance of Porto de Mós Beach, this Lagos accommodation has a pool that overlooks the sea, amazing spa facilities and rooms with a balcony. They also offer bike rentals for those who want to explore around!

Other accommodation options in Batata Beach


a great villa that offers apartments with a private balcony, a kitchenette and a flat-screen Tv


chill by the pool of this place that has rooms with a small kitchen

Things to do in Porto de Mós

  • Catch the amazing waves 
  • Enjoy a sunset on Porto de Mos beach
  • Admire the views from Point Praia Viewpoint (map)
  • Explore the Praia da Luz area
  • Climb the 182 steps to Ponta da Piedade
  • Grab dinner at O António restaurant (map)
  • Go hiking in the Trilha Renata Veras areas (map)

4. Meia Praia – the best place to stay in Lagos for families

Spacious Meia Praia beach with scattered sun umbrellas, loungers, and a wide expanse of golden sand leading to a calm sea, with Lagos town in the distance

Meia Praia Beach is located 5 km (3 miles) east of the Old Town and is the largest beach in Lagos, it is 5 km long (3 miles). 

You can easily take the train from Lagos Marina and come here if you just want to visit the area, or the other way around. 

Its laid-back atmosphere, the sandy beach great for family-friendly water sports, as well as the carefree beach resorts, make this the perfect area to stay in Lagos for travelers with kids. 

In Meia Praia, the water is calm and protected and the beach has lifeguards in summer. So you can enjoy swimming in the crystal clear water, making sandcastles with the kids, and trying new water sports such as kayaking and paddleboarding. 

NOTE: It’s worth knowing that in the previous years, the Lagos beaches were invaded by seaweed, making it hard to swim or fish. It’s hard to know in advance when these waves of seawood come but it’s usually during the warmer months. 

Here you will also be able to find many nice shops, cafes, and restaurants. Make sure you drop in for dinner at Restaurante Jardim (map), a traditional Portuguese dining spot that serves yummy food!If you get tired of the beach here (although it’s so big) you can also head to Sao Roque beach, which is technically part of Maia Praia.


Luxury hotel

One of the best 5 star hotels which is set on one of the most amazing beaches in Lagos that boasts fabulous sea views! This Algarve resort offers luxurious spa treatments, a restaurant and swimming pool!

Other accommodation options in Meia Praia


This beachfront hotel offers a rooms with a sea view and a private balcony and free parking


A centrally located hotel that has a nice sun terrace where you can relax, and family rooms


This beautifully decorated place has an outdoor swimming pool, comfortable rooms, and is right by the beach

Things to do in Meia Praia

  • Take the kids to the Parque Aventura Lagos
  • Play some golf at Onyria Palmares
  • Go hiking at Meia Praia hiking trails 
  • Have a nice meal with a view at Palmarez Beach Club (map)
  • Chill and swim at Meia Praia beach

5. Dona Ana Beach (Torraltinha) – for the best beaches

Busy beach scene with visitors enjoying the sandy shores bordered by dramatic cliffs and a cloudy sky, as seagulls fly overhead

Ready to see some of the beaches that made Lagos so famous? Then check out Dona Ana Beach (Praia Dona Ana) which is located in the larger Torraltinha area, just a 20-minute walk south of Lagos Old Town. 

This is where you’ll find the iconic steep steps near the ocean and some stunning coastline views! It really is one of the best places for beach lovers who just want to chill and relax on the sandy shores as the water is super calm and clear, perfect for swimming and snorkeling! 

The cliffs are absolutely stunning here and you can definitely snap some incredible pics here! Especially at sunset! There’s even a special spot called Mirador Praia Dona Ana (map) which is super popular and for good reasons! 

Whilst they are amazing, Dona Ana is not just about the nice beaches, if you are into outdoor activities then this town also offers scenic hiking trails. Camino Praia Camino y Farol (map) is a great hiking and running area! 

You’ll probably be famished after all the walking and hiking! Luckily, this area is packed with incredible restaurants where you can indulge in some yummy Portuguese dishes like Casinha do Petisco (map), Casa do Prego (map) and Ala do Castelo (map). 

Luxury hotel

This 4-star luxury resort offers a relaxing atmosphere! You’ll love its modern apartments, the swimming pool, the garden, and the lovely restaurant. You can have delicious Portuguese food in their restaurant while listening to traditional music and enjoy cocktails at the bar. The city center and beaches are within walking distance of the resort.

Other accommodation options in Dona Ana Beach


Set right on the beach this hotel offers a rooftop pool, a restaurant and an airport shuttle


Located near the beach this hotel offers rooms with a private balcony, a kitchenette and free Wi-Fi


This place has an epic terrace overlooking the beach and has fully furnished modern rooms

Things to do in Dona Ana Beach

  • Enjoy chilling and swimming on Praia Dona Ana
  • Relax on the beautiful Praia do Camilo (Camilo Beach)
  • Try the delicious seafood at ​​Luca’s Rooftop Restaurant (map)
  • Go on a day trip to a distillery in Algarve
  • Spend some time at ​​Praia de Porto de Mos further down the coast
  • Explore Praia da Boneca and Praia do Pinhão
  • Go hiking at Ponta da Piedade

FAQs about Lagos, Portugal accommodation

Aerial view of a coastal cityscape showing sandy beaches, towering cliffs, and a built-up area with buildings stretching into the distance

????️ Where is the best area to stay in Lagos, Portugal?

The Lagos Marina is the best area to stay in Lagos for first-timers as it offers many attractions, fun things to do and great hotels like Lagos Avenida Hotel.

????️ What are the best hotels in Lagos?

???? What are the best Lagos boutique hotels?

Residence Lagos and Villa Mar Azul are some of the best boutique hotels in Lagos, Portugal! Both have traditional designs and unique aesthetics. 

⏱️ How many days do you need in Lagos, Portugal?

I suggest you stay at least 3 days in Lagos, Portugal. That way you can explore the beaches, the Old Town and even go on some tours.

???? What are the main areas of Lagos, Portugal?

The Marina, Old Town and Meia Praia are the main areas in Lagos, Portugal. 

????️ What are the best beaches for swimming in Lagos?

Meia Praia, Praia do Camilo and Praia dos Estudantes are some of the best beaches in Lagos, Portugal! 

???? Is Lagos, Portugal a walkable city?

Yes! Lagos, Portugal is a pretty walkable city, although if you want to explore the more secluded beaches you might need a car.

⚖️ Where is better to stay, Lagos or Albufeira?

Both places are amazing! But Albufeira has more upscale, all-inclusive resorts and a colorful nightlife while Lagos is more for solo-travelers and has lots of hostels and budget accommodations. 

???????? Should I stay in Lagos or Alvor?

It depends on your preferences, just know that both have great beaches! Lagos is bigger than Alvor and has more of a city feel to it, while Alvor is a bit smaller.


Stunning natural arches and rock formations in clear turquoise waters with small boats floating nearby, as seen from a high vantage point

These dreamy beaches in Lagos, Portugal make you want to book your holiday ASAP!

Well, now that you’ve read this post on where to stay in Lagos, Portugal, you’re more than ready to start planning your trip!

And I’d recommend that once you decide on your preferred area or hotel, to book it in advance! Lagos is a super popular holiday destination that gets so many tourists (especially during the summer time). 

If you’re not sure, which hotel to pick, then check out my 2 favorite options below, both set in Marina de Lagos:

  • Lagos Avenida Hotel – one of the best luxury hotels that has an outdoor pool and a restaurant that overlooks Lagos Bay
  • Marina Club Lagos – chill by the pool of this hotel that has apartments with a balcony

Woohoo! Ready to take Portugal by storm?

Enjoy your holidays and if you’ve got any questions, you can always drop me a comment below! 

Happy exploring,


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