A History of Luz


Praia da Luz, or Luz, is a village and resort located approximately 6 kms west of Lagos on Algarve, Portugal.  Now officially called Vila da Luz, Praia da Luz means 'Beach of the Light'. It originated as a small fishing village however the industry is now dwindling and is only found in isolated areas towards the west.  Over recent years it has been transformed by several apartment and villa complexes into a holiday location

Luz is dominated by its beach which extends as far as the cliffs on the south coast and is part of the Algarvian Gold Coast

The blue flag beach in Praia da Luz is of intermediate size and features two distinct zones - the white sand beach and the rocky cliff, both characteristics of the Algarve. The waters are typically clean and transparent but the temperatures are variable due to the influence of the Atlantic currents

 

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A History of Lagos

 

Lagos (meaning lakes) is a municipality at the mouth of Bensafrim River and along the Atlantic Ocean, in the Barlavento region of the Algarve, in southern Portugal.

The main town of Lagos has a population of approximately 20,000 residents. These numbers increase during the summer months with the arrival of tourists and seasonal residents.

Lagos is one of the most visited cities in the Algarve and Portugal, due to its variety of tourist-friendly beaches, bars, restaurants, and hotels, renowned for its vibrant summer nightlife and parties. Yet, Lagos is also a historic centre of the Portuguese Age of Discovery, frequent home of Henry the Navigator, historical shipyard and, at one time, centre of the European slave trade.

In 2012, travel website TripAdvisor, classified Lagos as the favourite travel destination, on a list of 15 cities worldwide.

 

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Albufeira

 

The picturesque town of Albufeira, with its white-washed buildings, was built up on a spectacular crescent-shaped seaside cliff and offers the hustle and bustle of a busy tourist town. There are many hotel resorts, restaurants and bars. It's a great spot to meet tourists from all over the world. If you like action and nightlife, Albufeira is for you! There is a Casino with a disco, restaurant and floor show.

Albufeira features a maze of pedestrian streets that are filled with clothes shops, shoe shops, restaurants, bars and many British-style pubs. As you wander around and get lost in the web of activity you may come across musicians entertaining guests at an outdoor patio, often somebody playing guitar or mandolin.

 

 

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Aljezur Coast

 

For a day of "getting away from it all", for endless breaths of fresh Atlantic air, for the feel of ocean mist on your skin, take this excursion up the Aljezur coast. The Aljezur coast takes you north from Sagres along the Atlantic coast. The coastline has endless remote and unspoiled beaches.

The ocean current along these beaches is very strong so to venture into the sea you must be a strong swimmer. This coastline is popular with surfers from around the world and offers great entertainment to see the masters at work.


 

 

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Lisbon

 

Lisboa - A truly cultural and historic experience. A visit to Lisbon offers a variety of flavours and a blend of cultural experiences with endless options of things to see and do in each Barrio (neighbourhood).   From the old historic Alfama with its maze of alleys and streets carved into the hill side ..... To the bustling Baixa with it's wide avenues, open plazas and pedestrian streets lined with cafes and designer shops, the diversity of choices are endless..…

As you explore the city, remember to look up and observe the impressive architecture, intricate carvings and the wrought iron work that is prevalent in every Barrio.....

The city has a constant buzz, no matter where you find your self lingering.

 

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Market - Fish & Meat, Lagos

 

The "new" Fish Market re-opened in July 2004, fully renovated and is the town's pride.  It had been under renovation for some considerable time.

There are three floors of fresh produce to meet all your shopping needs. The ground floor offers the daily catch of a variety of fish from 33 vendors, 4 quality butcher shops and ice purchase. The 1st floor shops provide an abundance of fruit and veggies as well as a coffee shop while the 2nd floor profiles a terrace and restaurant overlooking the harbour front.

 

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Monchique

 

Situated just north of Portimao is the Algarve’s highest peak, Foia (900mts).  Having extensive views of the western coastline, an excursion to Monchique will make you believe that you are no longer in the Algarve, but instead in a tropical jungle amidst flourishing mountain valleys. The mountain sides are covered with lush vegetation and terraces of orange and lemon groves. Little villages dot the roadside with a few interesting shops selling pottery and cork crafts.

Caldas de Monchique, (the Spa) which is well known for its spring waters, used for the treatment of rheumatism and chronic illness of the respiratory tract, with its crystal clear streams and gurgling waters is a must for all nature lovers and a major point of interest in the region.

 

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Sagres & Cape St Vincent

 

To see and feel the raw beauty of the Algarve countryside venturing west of Luz and Lagos through rolling hills to Sagres and Cabo de São Vicente with wide-open views and endless stretches of cliff-bound coastline. If you decide you only want to leave Luz once, then this is the excursion you really must take!

Make your first stop at Cape St Vincent (Cabo de São Vicente) which is the most westerly point in Europe.  Take a walk into the lighthouse courtyard where your senses will be tested with the serenity and remoteness of the cliffs mixed with the fierce power of the thundering waves

 


 

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Silves

 

If you love old forts then definitely take a drive to the town of Silves, where you'll not only find an old Moorish fortress, but also a hillside town that is full of life and great views. As you approach the town from the highway, pull over with extreme caution and take in the panoramic view of the town adorned with the old fortress.

 

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Tavira

 

Tavira is truly an experience.  The town is separated by a canal running right through the middle of it and joined by several bridges.  Tavira has endless surprises that await you and that can only be discovered as you casually wander its streets.

The Gilão River meets the Atlantic Ocean in Tavira.

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Zavial, Ingrina, The Megaliths and Gaudalupe Chapel

This is one of our suggested short excursions to explore and discover the beautiful unspoilt beaches of Ingrina and Zavial to the west in The National Park of Costa Vicentina.  En route stop to see the 13th Century Gothic Chapel of Gaudalupe, one of the oldest National Monuments in the Algarve. Then as you pass through the National Park look out for The Megaliths,  upright stones that were erected by the Megatlithic culture five to six thousand years ago. It is thought these stones were positioned to track astronomical phenomena such as the position of stars at the spring solstice.  The round trip is approx 45 kms from Luz Church.  This is a short car journey but it deserves a full day for sightseeing, walks and time to laze on the beaches and enjoy a leisurely lunch at one of the beach bars.

Full directions, additional photographs and info on the link below.

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