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Portugal > Tourism > Algarve > Lagoa
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It is not known when Lagoa was founded, and it was only after 1773, when it was elevated to the status of a town; that its history was first documented; but it is known that Estombar and Porches were important centres in the Islamic and medieval periods and that Ferragudo had defensive ramparts. Nowadays Lagoa is at the forefront of the modern Algarve.


Viewed from the sea, the coast is a series of brightly coloured cliffs, strangely shaped outcrops and caves, whose almost unreal beauty is set off by the clarity of the waters. Between the rocks long stretches of sand alternate with tiny coves that can only, be reached by boat.

Angrinha & Praia Grande - Two beaches next to Ferragudo separated by the Fort of São João de Arade. On Angrinha beach there are facilities for windsurfing and canoeing.
Pintadinho - A small beach where the water is calm.
Caneiros - Situated between cliffs of great beauty. Opposite, the colourful rock of Leixão das Gaivotas. Very tranquil.
Mato - Little visited. Access difficult.
Carvoeiro - The charm of a fishermen's beach and a small bay with crystal clear water. A cosmopolitan tourist centre. Boats can be hired to visit caves and isolated beaches.
Vale Centeanes - Scenic location between rocks and cliffs. Good conditions for surfing.
Benagil - Charming beach next to a pretty fishing village. It is possible to hire boats to get to isolated beaches.
Carvalho - Stretch of sand between ochre cliff's. Peaceful. Tourist facilities.
Marinha, Barranquinho, Albandeira & Barranco - A series of small beaches which can be reached along the coast by nay of rocks and natural tunnels. Little visited and quiet.
Praia Nova & Senhora da Rocha - Two beaches separated by the spur of rock on which stands the Chapel of Nossa Senhora da Rocha...
but connected by a tunnel. It is possible to hire boats to explore the coast or get to isolated beaches.
Cova Redonda - Small and charming beach between cliffs. Tourist facilities.


Quinta do Gramacho
With just nine holes, Quinta do Gramacho has nevertheless a complete course layout, thanks to its double tees and greens.
Vale da Pinta
Situated near Carvoeiro in an old olive grove, Vale da Pinta is a championship course that is, nonetheless, adaptable to any kind of game.
. Vale do Milho
This is a short nine hole course which is visually very attractive, yet surprising because of its challenging nature. Ideal for practising with short irons.


A hill rises above flat lands where in days gone by, as tradition has it, there was a lagoon. At the top, the tower of a church is visible, above a labyrinth of whitewashed houses. This is Lagoa, where Manueline doorways, windows edged in blue and the imposing turret of the monastery create a feeling that time has stopped and suggest ways of life now long forgotten.

Historical centre
The town grew up around its main church. There is still a feeling of the past in the streets of white houses where, here and there, it is possible to spy a chimney trimmed with the delicate decorative filigree typical of the Algarve. The winding streets are dotted with altars marking the stations of the cross used in the old Holy Week ceremonies, and more) than a dozen Manueline doorways and windows (16th century).

Main Church
All that remains of the place of worship built in the 16th century is a Nianueline doorway to the bell tower. The current building dates from the end of the 18th century and the beginning of the 19th, and has an attractive baroque facade with neo-classical elements. Beneath its three naves; the chief point of interest inside the church is the retable on the main altar, with a perfect 18th century representation of Nossa Senhora da Luz (Our Lady of Light), the church's patroness, attributed to the sculptor Machado de Castro, and A São Sebastião (St. Sebastian). On the other altars, and in the upper choir and the registry office are to be found a large number of icons and reliquaries from the 17th and 18th centuries, including an interesting Baby Jesus lying on a wooden bed in the "rocaille" style (end of the 18th century). The sacristy houses a magnificent chest in Brazil wood; valuable religious objects (an 18th century silver incense boat and other items) and stones from the original Manueline building found in the church.
Misericórdia (Mercy) Church
Plain fronted and small in size, this church has a carved main altar dating from the 18th century, with a statue of the crucifixion and two other art works from the 18th century. The walls are covered in patterned tiles dating from the end of the 17th century.

Monastery of São José (St. Joseph)
Built at the beginning of the 18th century in a sober, rural style, it has been rebuilt and repaired on many occasions since. It boasts a chapel with carved altars from the former Chapel of the Compromisso Maritimo (Maritime Agreement), in Lagoa, and an 18th century depiction of São José (St. Joseph) with the infant Jesus. There is an interesting belvedere with an arch over the street. At the entrance to the monastery there is an "outcast hatch", which was once used for receiving abandoned children. The cloister is plain, with four arcade and a cistern in the centre. In the garden there is a menhir from Porches (5;000 to 4,000 BC)

A fishing village since time immemorial - there were Roman salting tanks next to the Fort of São João de Arade, it had defensive walls in the Middle Ages, vestiges of which are still visible today. It has preserved its original character, with rows of houses cascading down to the river, crowned by the outline of the church high on the hill, and pretty streets of whitewashed walls and roofs intersected by decorated chimneys.
Church of Nossa Senhora da Conceição (Our lady of the Conception) - The architecture of this building is typical of a country church.

Fort of São João de Arade
With the facing fortress of Santa Catarina, this foil constituted the main defence of the Arade estuary. It began life as a lookout tower in the 15th century and was extended in the 17th and 18th centuries. A great deal of work was done at the beginning of the 20th century to turn it into a home, at the initiative of the poet Coelho Carvalho; and it is to this that it owes its current romantic appearance. It is now private property. Along the coast, where tiny beaches of great beauty are tucked away between looming cliffs, the remains of two medieval watchtowers, which were once used to give warning of attacks by pirates and corsairs, can be seen at Ponte da Atalaia and Quinta da Torre.

An urban centre defended by a castle during the Arab period, it had a thriving economy based on salt production and trade along the Arade river. It was the birthplace of the luloslem poet Ibne-Amman (11th century) and also the homeland of the warrior guerrilla leader (1796-1838) who for many years struck fear into the heart of all in the Algarve. The historical centre retains the charm of a typical Algarve town, and has some interesting chimneys.
Church of Sant' Iago (St. James) - Built in the 16th century, it was extensively rebuilt in the 18th century. Its facade shows the influence of the 'rocaille' style, with two towers and a Manueline doorway (16th century).
Misericórdia (Mercy) - One of the first founded in Portugal, it had a working hospital as early as 1531. Its facade and interior are plain. 18th century main altar and statues.

A short way away from this typical Algarve village sitting atop a hill, there stood an old Roman and medieval settlement known as Porches Velhos which possibly gave rise to the present community. In one of its narrow streets a chimney of monumental proportions, two storeys high is to be found, and this has become a symbol of the village as a whole.
Main Church - The church was built in the 19th century on the site of a previous edifice dating from the 16th century, of which the main chapel remains.
Hermitage of Nossa Senhora da Rocha (Our Lady of the Rock) - Built on a narrow tongue of rock extending into the sea, its origins are lost in time. The hermitage used to be surrounded by an old coastal defence fort (built in the 15th century) which was destroyed by the earthquake of 1755.

It is a long time since the fishermen readied their nets for the fray and set off from Carvoeiro beach in their boats to hunt for tuna. But the houses still curve around over the port where the colourful fishing boats chug back and forth and the fishermen continue to eke out a living as they have done since time immemorial. But toady's Carvoeiro is also an international tourist resort. Perched on the top of a cliff are the vestiges of the walls of the fort of Nossa Senhora da Conceição (Our Lady of the Conception) (17th century). Inside the fort lies the hermitage of Nossa Senhora da Encarnação (Our Lady of the Incarnation), revered by fishermen.
Nearby are the rock formations of Algar Seco; strange shapes and profiles sculpted by the wind and sea; and the romantic Lovers' Balcony. On days when the tide is high, the sea turns the many fissures and hollows into booming organ pipes. A naval battle took place off Cape Carvoeiro in 1574. A Portuguese flotilla attacked the Turkish corsair karamet, who was ravaging the Algarve coast, and destroyed his fleet.


Tivoli Carvoeiro****, Carvoeiro
The Tivoli Carvoeiro has 293 rooms, including 4 suites, 61 double rooms, 221 twin rooms and 7 triple rooms. Fully equipped with full bathroom, individual air conditioning, satellite TV and radio, direct outside telephone line, mini-bar, safe, 24h room service and sea view (most rooms).

Hotel Apartment Cristal, Carvoeiro
Hotel Cristal is only 300 meters from the beautiful Vale de Centeanes beach, with the finest sand and a series of natural coves.
Hotel Cristal has at its disposal 120 rooms:1 superior suite with land view, 8 suites with side sea view, 9 junior suites with land view, 6 suites with sea view, 9 twin / single-rooms with land view and 47 twin / single rooms with sea view .

Hotel Apartment Solferias, Carvoeiro
The Aparthotel Solférias is located near one of the most beautiful beaches in Algarve - Carvoeiro. This 4 star unit has all the facilities our guests need to enjoy a relaxed stay. It has a pool, a tennis court, restaurant, games room, mini market, and two golf courses nearby.
This is the most attractive place for your holidays.

Carvoeiro Sol , Carvoeiro
Situated in the heart of the typical holiday village of Carvoeiro, within walking distance of shops, restaurants and entertainment and only 25 meters from the beach. Here local fishermen can still be seen mending their nets and unloading the day's catch for the nearby market. It is also an excellent base from which to explore the Algarve. Sports enthusiasts will find golf, tennis, water sports, fishing and horse riding all within easy reach.

Colina da Lapa****, Carvoeiro
Colina da Lapa Club is in a quiet, peaceful location close to Carvoeiro and Caneiros beaches as well as Carvoeiro's golf clubs. The villas and apartments are surrounded by pretty lawned gardens, terraces and verandas. The Resort has 24 hour reception, adult and children swimming pools, restaurant, bar with terrace, two tennis courts and childrens playground.

Colina da Lapa

Colina Village***, Carvoeiro
Colina Village is located on the edge of Carvoeiro midway between Lagoa and Carvoeiro center. It is 2 km to the beach. The complex consists of 73 well constructed and beautiful furnished villa-apartments. The facilities which are available include a large open air swimming pool, a childrens playground, indoor pool (heated in winter), two tennis courts, bar, restaurant, mini-market, reception and games room.

Colina Village

Rocha Brava, Carvoeiro
(Self Catering)
Rocha Brava covers an area of 23 acres and offers a variety of one floor constructions from T1 to Villas with private swimming pool, all with typical Algarvean characteristics, they are very well maintained and perfectly integrated into the evolving landscaping.

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Portugal > Tourism > Algarve > Lagoa
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