Hello again everyone! You may have guessed judging by my lack of blog posts over the past couple of weeks that yes, I have been on holiday again. It’s a hard life, I know, but someone’s got to do it. And I am lucky enough to have spend the past two weeks working on my tan in the super buzzy, exciting town of Lagos in the Western Algarve of Portugal. I’ve been going there with my family most summers for about ten years now, so I feel I know the place pretty well.
What did I do on holiday, I hear you ask… Well, I lay. By the pool, at the beach, in my bed, on the sofa. All interspersed with meals. That’s what holidays are really about, aren’t they? It was delightful. Of course, if you wanted to go off on boat trips, to theme parks and do generally active stuff, you could, as there’s lots to do in Lagos, but that’s just not the type of relaxing holiday my lazy family were after. Don’t judge us. So, here is my guide to eating and drinking in Lagos.
As far as I’m aware there are two branches of this delightful cafe-slash-bakery-slash-ice cream place in Lagos, one at the marina and one in the town centre. They serve an incredible array of freshly baked pastries, buns and cakes, my favourite of which is their coconut bun. Deee-lish. My family have a tradition of having breakfast there overlooking the BEAUTIFUL marina, with freshly squeezed orange juices all round. It is bliss.
Linda The Beach Bar
This fantastic beach restaurant has been a family favourite of ours since our first visit to Lagos. Situated to the west end of the beautiful Meia Praia beach bay, you can expect colourful smoothies, cocktails, burgers, sandwiches, salads, pitta breads and more – all with a beautiful view of golden sands and a deep blue sea. (One of the things I always loved most as a little girl is the sparkly sticks they stick in the burgers to keep them together!) They also do a BBQ every Friday night. I had a delumpcious pitta bread filled with chicken, onions and peppers and a “honey rider” smoothie.
Another great little place at Lagos’ gorgeous marina, serving pretty much everything you could want to eat – including home-made burgers, nachos, English-style fry-ups, baguettes, salads and chicken nuggets. There’s also an impressive ice cream sundae menu and a takeaway counter where you can make your own wraps, sandwiches and more. It may not be typically Portuguese, but it sure is yummy. I went for their New Yorker baguette: burger meat, onion rings, fried onions (usually with cheddar cheese but I don’t like it) and BBQ sauce, served with salad and coleslaw. YUMMA!
Marina de Lagos, 8600-780 Lagos, Portugal – 968 364 192
Padaria do Wini
Whilst all the main supermarkets sell yummy cakes, our favourite place for home-made, interesting cakes is a teeny German bakery. It’s pretty difficult to find, but really worth it. This year I had a cherry crumble cake, my mum had “Mornstrudel” (made with poppy seeds) and my sister had an apple and cinnamon cake. Here’s how you find it according to simplylagos.com: At the back entrance into town, as you enter the old wall archway, you pass Praça d’Armas on your left; the road turns into a V; stay right; you are on Travessa do Forno; keep walking until you reach a 4-way intersection; the bakery in on the left corner; the bakery is not well signed; it has a stand-up chalkboard just outside promoting its baked goods.
This restaurant has a fantastic location, right in the heart of Lagos, making it a great place to go for dinner to watch day turn to night (the city really comes alive in the evening). Sitting at their outside tables (all of which were taken on a Monday night!), I was spoilt for choice on the menu. In the end I settled on a delicious ravioli, whereas my brother had a tuna steak and my sister went for a pizza – that just shows the diversity of their menu… all at reasonable prices, too!Rua 25 de Abril, 14, Lagos 8600-763, Portugal
Pizzeria ItaliaAnother longtime family favourite, Italia is not just your classic pizzeria, serving up a wide range of other dishes too (like pasta and meat). However, I always go for the pizza, without fail, as it is fab. One of the best things about Italia is their “cover” – as opposed to your standard sour dough bread with butter and tinned sardines, they offer freshly baked pizza bread with garlic butter, tzatziki, olives and peppers. The garlic butter melting on to the warm bread is not to be missed!Rua Garrett 26, Lagos, Portugal
Miam Miam Glou Glou
You will find a lot of places offering scoops of ice creams in all sorts of flavours, but we have discovered that Miam’s is the best. From Bounty and Ferrero Rocher to cherries & cream and passion fruit… it is divine. They also offer yummy chocolate covered fruit kebabs.Rua Marquês do Pombal 22-24, 8600-753 Lagos – 00351 282762406
The Popcorn Man
If you want to eat the most delicious popcorn in the world (well, the best I’ve ever had), make sure you go to the Popcorn Man. Every night he’s there with his cart opposite Italia, freshly popping up both sweet and salty warm popcorn. It’s crunchy and full of flavour, not to mention super cheap. He puts cinemas to shame with prices around a mere one Euro!
Also situated at the marina, this bar has an incredible list of cocktails for five Euros each, and they bring you bowls of (yes, more) salty, peppery popcorn for free, which always goes down well. I had a Pink Butterfly, which was a yummy mix of Malibu, strawberries and cream.