Lagos and the Algarve

Trip Start Jun 10, 2007
Trip End Ongoing

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Flag of Portugal  ,
Friday, October 5, 2007

Lagos is the main resort destination of the Algarve region in Portugal.  It can also be mistaken for the latest English colony.  It seems that virtually all of the tourists here are from England.  Something that the local businesses are well aware of.  You can find many English staples in the grocery aisles.  Baked beans, UK style potato chips, and even many ciders and English beers ready to drink in the fridges (much to Megan's excitement).  It almost felt like we were in an English coastal town as opposed to the Portuguese Algarve.  It was very different from what we saw in the north as virtually all of the tourists there were Portuguese.
After finding our accommodations in the maze of winding cobblestone streets, we checked out the beaches and beautiful little coves all along the waterfront. We hung out watching the sun set before we headed for some dinner.  The food here is wonderful, it isn't Portuguese, but it is fabulous.  They have countless restaurants lining their streets that cater to the hordes of English tourists.  We had Thai food that made up for the bland Portuguese cuisine all at once.  Mmmmmmm.
The next beautiful morning we headed back to the waterfront to soak up some sun in the quaint little coves only steps from the town.  After as much vitamin D as we could absorb, we left to visit "the most beautiful spot in the Algarve".  The Ponta da Piedade is only a few kilometres out of Lagos and is filled with cliffs and grottos that provide the most stunning views stretching for almost the whole length of southern Portugal (see pictures and video).
After the trek back, we headed out for more incredible food.  This time it was Indian and just as fabulous as the Thai from the night before.
The next day the weather was once again glorious.  We decided to take advantage of it and head to the end of the world...well sort of. Back in the day when it was thought that the earth was flat, this was the most southwestern point in the then "world" - before the discovery of the new world of course. Anyway, Sagres is the name of the place. It is also where famed mariners such as Vasco da Gama and Magellan apprenticed. The experience of standing there was surprisingly emotional and breathtakingly beautiful. The pictures are great, but they don't do it justice. We imagined the sun setting in dramatic fashion, dropping off the face of the earth only to emerge on the other side the next morning. The cliff is a sheer rock face - where you can understand why people thought that the earth stopped there. Our favourite moment so far without question.
There were more sights to see there, but we thought that spot couldn't get any better, so we went back to Lagos. We went to the main beach to enjoy a daquiri and awe at the fine white sand that stretches for miles - not bad at all.
Off to Faro!
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