Best Things To Do in Praia da Luz
October 18, 2023
Praia da Luz, officially Luz, is a small fishing town in the Algarve that has grown to be one of the most popular family hotspots in the region, while still maintaining its original charm. Located in the western Algarve, only 5 km to the major city of Lagos, Luz sits right on the seafront with pretty, quaint little cobbled streets winding their way through the town and offering things to do around every corner. While its pristine beach is undoubtedly the star attraction, there’s so much more to explore and enjoy in this charming town. Whether you’re seeking relaxation, adventure, or a taste of local culture, Praia da Luz has something for everyone. Let’s dive into the best things to do in Praia da Luz…
Enjoy the Tranquil Praia da Luz Beach
No visit to Praia da Luz would be complete without spending time at its eponymous beach. This crescent-shaped stretch of golden sand is perfect for sunbathing, swimming, and water sports. Take leisurely walks along the promenade, relax with a book, or simply bask in the gentle sea breeze. The calm waters make this an ideal spot for family beach days.
Discover more beautiful beaches near Praia da Luz in our blog.
Explore the Enigmatic Rocha Negra Cliffs
Rising majestically along the coastline, the Rocha Negra cliffs (also known as Black Rock) are a geological wonder. Formed approximately 150 million years ago by volcanic lava from the Monchique mountains, their striking black and red hues create a dramatic backdrop, especially during sunset. Hiking along the cliff top trails offers breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean and is a favourite activity among nature enthusiasts. It can be a challenging climb to the top but the views are certainly worth the effort.
Visit the Historic Nossa Senhora da Luz Church
Immerse yourself in Praia da Luz’s history by exploring the Nossa Senhora da Luz Church, which translates to Our Lady of the Light. Sitting above a cobbled promenade overlooking the beach, this pretty white-washed church dates back to the 16th century and is a serene place to admire intricate Portuguese architecture.
Try Out the Water Sports
Praia da Luz is not just about sunbathing and leisurely beach walks; it’s also an aquatic playground for those seeking an adrenaline rush. Head to the beach hut nearest to the bars, and you’ll discover a treasure trove of watersports waiting to be explored. Whether you’re a seasoned water sports enthusiast or a first-time adventurer, there’s something for everyone, including pedalos and banana boats. You can also sign up for kayaking, wakeboarding and parasailing. Plus, when the offshore wind known as the Nortada blows in, the windsurfing really comes into its own.
Catch Some Waves
Surfing in Praia da Luz is a thrilling experience that perfectly complements the town’s laid-back coastal vibe. The waves of the Atlantic Ocean offer fantastic opportunities for surf enthusiasts of all levels, from beginners to seasoned pros. The nearby Praia de Porto Mós is particularly popular among surfers, known for its consistent swells and sandy bottom, making it an ideal spot for learning the ropes.
Savour Local Delicacies
This picturesque destination offers a diverse array of dining options, from quaint seafood shacks to upscale waterfront restaurants. Freshly caught fish and shellfish grace the menus in various preparations and Portuguese cuisine, rich in flavours and tradition, takes centre stage, offering dishes like Bacalhau à Brás (salted cod) and hearty Feijoada (bean stew).
Hike from Praia da Luz to Ponta da Piedade
If you’re seeking adventure and stunning vistas, the 13 km hike from Praia da Luz to Lagos, passing through Ponta da Piedade, is an ideal choice. This hike marks the final stretch of the Fisherman’s Trail, a 263-kilometre coastal route that commences in Porto Covo. The trail begins at Praia da Luz, where you’ll ascend steep inclines offering alluring views of the Atlantic, the Algarve coastline, and the charming village of Luz. Follow the blue-and-green way markers along the clifftops, with a stop at Praia do Porto de Mós, Lagos’s second-largest beach, before reaching Ponta da Piedade after approximately two hours of walking.
Take a day trip to Lagos
Just a short 10-minute drive away is Lagos, with its quaint streets, bustling markets, and a rich historical heritage. Stroll through the picturesque old town with cobbled streets and historic architecture, and don’t miss visiting the iconic Forte da Ponta da Bandeira, a historical fortress overlooking the sea. The town’s lively atmosphere, colourful markets, and a myriad of shops provide an excellent chance for souvenir hunting. Your day in Lagos can be as relaxed or as adventurous as you wish, from leisurely sightseeing to exploring sea caves on boat tours. Read our Best Things To Do in Lagos blog to find out more.
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