Lagos is among 20 Best Surf Towns in the World, by National Geographic.
THE ALGARVE, PORTUGAL
Why You Should Go: Blessed with waves to the west and the south, plus a pulsing party scene in the summer, the Algarve is ever ripe for adventure.
The Town: Get ready for some of the best waves of your life, and the most fun finding them—that is, if you get out of bed before noon. “A lot of families and older people come to the Algarve,” says Ilonka Spronk, who runs TSE The Surf Experience, a villa and guide company. “But in summer Lagos turns into a party town.”
Perched at the south of Portugal, the Algarve’s seductive mix attracts two kinds of surfers. “The more social ones, who love to hang out with other people, surf a bit, enjoy a beer, but mainly enjoy the lifestyle. The other ... comes purely for the waves,” explains Spronk.
When: The social type? Summer. Salty surfer type? Any other time.
Learn: “Of course TSE The Surf Experience!” exclaims Spronk. “We have surfers that just join us for lessons and guests that stay and surf with us.”
Eat: Go local with Portuguese cafés and restaurants for fresh fish, boiled potatoes, and salad, along with bifana, or pork sandwiches.
Stay: Situated outside of Lagos—a healthy distance from the party scene, but close enough for ride to the action—TSE The Surf Experience has all-inclusive villas and options for self-catering as well.
Play: Daytime options abound, like visiting Sagres, known as “the end of the world” for its remote nature.