Lagos, Algarve

Feb 22nd, 2007, 04:56 AM
  #1  
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Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 437
Lagos, Algarve

I am attending a wedding in Lagos in late October. We will be staying at Romantik Hotel Vivenda Miranda for the wedding. We can stay for 3 nights or 5 nights, and depending on the length of stay we choose, mandatory dinners at the hotel are part of the deal. I believe if we stay 5 nights, we have to eat 3 dinners at the hotel. Does anyone know anything about this hotel? How are the dinners? Would we prefer to dine locally in Lagos? Is 3 nights or 5 nights a better option?

I would appreciate any info anyone has on the hotel and surrounding area.

In addition, since we are turning this into a vacation, where else should we consider going? We will be flying into Faro. Someone had suggested also staying in Sagres (Pousada de Infante). Should we go to Madeira? Should we end the trip in Lisbon? I have heard Sinta mentioned on this site, but do not know anything about it.

Any help anyone could offer would be appreciated. Thanks.
Lizzie518 is offline  
Feb 26th, 2007, 01:18 PM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 48
We were in Lagos in early Oct. last year. We didn't stay at your hotel, but I understand it's very nice. 3 days should be plenty to see the area; Sagres is only 30 minutes up the road, so no point in switching hotels. While in Lagos, you should take a sailboat tour from the marina to see all the fabulous rock formations. You can also hike along the cliffs above the beach for a different view. Try to eat at least one evening meal in old town, sitting outside on the lovely pedestrian-only mosaic street for the ambiance. (Don Sebatiao was great - try the pork with figs).
There is a lot of information on this forum, so read the trip reports and see what sounds good to you. Lisbon is fun with lots to see and do and Sintra is lovely. We also enjoyed Madeira (stayed at Cliff's Bay - fabulous place); if you like hiking, that's the place to go - unbelievable natural beauty.
newcomer1 is offline  
Feb 28th, 2007, 03:57 AM
  #3  
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Thanks for the quick reply. How long did you stay in Madeira? What else is there to do besides hiking? Are there very good restaurants to be found? What's the best way to get to to Madeira? And finally, should we go to Madeira, or consider a spot in the Azores?

Thanks in advance.
Lizzie518 is offline  
Feb 28th, 2007, 11:59 AM
  #4  
 
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If you type in "Madeira" under the forum and scroll down, you will find my trip report (under "Portugal trip report - newcomer 1); that will answer many questions. We pretty much ate at our hotel, as we had half board, but there were many places we would have liked to have tried in Funchal.

Two websites I used to book excursions were www.lido-tours.com/ and www.mb-travel.com, so you might want to take a look at those to see what is out there. You should also look at some guidebooks - they discuss the botanical gardens, etc. The Azores, as I understand it, are more of a beach destination, so it depends upon the kind of trip you want. Madeira is a unique mountainous volcanic island, similar in some respects to the island of Hawaii, and has no sandy beaches (though you could visit the nearby island of Porto Santo for beaches). We totally enjoyed our 4 day stay there and found TAP (Air Portugal) to be reasonable, though we had to book on Expedia. Hope this helps!
newcomer1 is offline  
Apr 4th, 2007, 12:17 PM
  #5  
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
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Lizzie518:

We stayed at http://www.vivendamiranda.com/index-en.htm for just last week and it was wonderful, as are most of the Romantik Hotels. It's in a quiet area just outside Lagos, right on the cliffs overlooking the ocean. Not all of the rooms have the spectacular view. If you have a choice of rooms request the junior suite with a sea view room at the far end of the corridor in the main building. I believe it was room #205. It is the most requested room in the inn. The dinners at Vivenda Miranda are truly gourmet. The staff people are extremely helpful especially the gal I negotiated with from day 1, Bettina.

The place is a bit difficult to locate initially. As you near the place there are a couple of very small signs but then when you're within about 1/4 mile there's nothing! The inn is just inside a large pinkish archway that almost looks like you're going into a private estate.

We spent a week in the area and I would suggest that in general the section west of Portimao is the best of the Algarve. The places we visited that we were most pleased with were the town of Alte, Sagres, Lagos Old Town, Cabo St. Vincente and Salema. In those places we found what we consider the quintesential Portugal . . . quaint little fishing villages, some untouristed places and a lot of history and culture. We stayed in Portimao for a few days, also. It is a big, modern city with a lot of high rise resorts and gambling casinos all along the waterfront. Not at all what you could call charming. We felt that Faro ranked sort of inbetween Lagos and Portimao.

We also stayed a few days near Lisbon, at Sintra. As far as a totally laid back accomodation is concerned we stayed at a restored ancient convent near Cabo de Roca, just west of Sintra. http://www.saosat.com/ Convento de São Saturnino What a fantastic experience and setting with lots to see and do in the immediate area.

Although we did not stay at this place http://www.quintadasequoias.com/ please go to the site and view the streaming video in the 'Sintra' window. What you'll see is exactly what you'll find in the Sintra area.

We only stayed 1 day and night in Lisboa, mainly as a convenience to the airport.

If you would like more information or restaurant recommendations in any of those areas I would be happy to try to help.
pef1234 is offline  
Apr 4th, 2007, 12:32 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
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hi, lizzie,

I love the idea of those mandatory dinners - do they tie you down?

seriously, I know it's frustrating to be tied into paying for meals you don't want, but if you decide on this, why not try it the first night, then you'll have a better idea of what you want to do the rest of the time.

regards, ann
annhig is offline  

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