Praia da Luz: A Beach Goer's Guide

Praia da Luz was once a small fishing village but today, it is one of the most popular tourist resort towns (and one of the best beaches!) in the Algarve!

Just 6km from Lagos and an hour-long drive from Faro airport, Praia da Luz is the perfect place for your dream beach holiday!

This guide will help you plan your stay and get the most out of this warm and welcoming town!

Praia da Luz: What to Expect

Don’t let the popularity of this town deter you, for when you arrive, you will discover a friendly place with beautiful weather, delicious food, and plenty of things to do!

Located on a sandy bay and sheltered from the Atlantic ocean by the Rocha Negra headland, Praia da Luz has calm, clean, shallow waters and is the perfect beach destination for families with small children.

The blue flag beach has soft golden sand is ideal for taking a walk along the shore or lounging in the sun. The water is on the cold side but still more than comfortable. On a nice hot day, the water will be perfectly refreshing.

Praia da Luz is often crowded in the summertime but on the eastern end of the beach, near Rocha Negra, it becomes less crowded and you can often find a patch of sand to call your own. On the western end of the beach is a little rocky area that contains a cove. Inside the cove, you will find a small beach called Prainha. This beach is usually pretty quiet and the waters are calm and crystal clear.

When spending the day on the beach, you can find anything you’d need within walking distance. The beach is lined with cafes and restaurants so should you need a bite to eat, you can easily find one. There are also public restrooms located on the western end of the beach.

Unfortunately, water sports like surfing are a no-go here, the waves are too small and inconsistent. But that doesn’t mean you can’t still have some fun.

In the summer months, you can rent kayaks or go out in a banana boat. Windsurfing, stand up paddleboards and water skiing are also options!

But if you’d rather just relax on the beach, there are sun loungers and sunshades available to rent.

Things to Do

Beyond hanging out in the sun and sand, there is plenty to do around Praia da Luz.

Go Hiking

The Rocha Negra is one of the beach’s most unique features. This massive black rock was formed around 150 million years ago from cooled lava from the volcanoes that were once active near Monchique. And, if you have the right footwear with you, it is the perfect place to hike and see the sunset! When you reach the top, you will be treated to one of the most breathtaking views of the Atlantic.

Walk the Promenade

Running behind the beach is a lovely promenade. Go for a nice stroll and pop into the many restaurants, bars or shops that line the path. Here you can also find many small stands selling handcrafts and unique jewelry pieces.

See the Roman Remains

Found just behind the promenade are the ruins of a Roman spa and fish salting tanks. Dating back to the 3rd to 5th century, these ruins are a pretty special archeological find.

You can find the ruins yourself by passing through a gate in the promenade wall, about halfway along the Av dos Pescadores. The entry is free and the site is open from 10am to 5pm each day.

Visit the Church of Nossa Senhora da Luz

This church, located in the village of Luz, was first built in 1521. It was damaged in the earthquake of 1755 and restoration was completed in 1874. The church is a national monument and in many ways, the fact it still stands is a testament to the craftsmanship that went into building it.

Visit the Fort

Built in the 17th century, this fort was once used to protect Luz from pirate attacks. Now, it houses a restaurant and some lovely gardens. You can reach the fort directly from the promenade and look out over the Atlantic. Take a moment to stop and imagine what it would have been like to stand guard and watch as pirate ships approached in the distance!

Go Golfing

One of the most popular activities in the Algarve is golfing. Just outside of Luz you will find the Boavista Golf Resort. Opened in 2002, it did not take long for this 18 hole, par 71 course to become one of the top courses in the Western Algarve. This championship course has all the facilities you would need and if you don’t want to stay in Praia da Luz, you can stay at the golf resort itself. The resort has incredible villas and apartments for rent, a spa, and an outdoor swimming pool.

To book an apartment or a villa at Boavista, contact us and we’ll make sure you find the right space for your vacation needs.

Where to Stay

Being a resort town, there are lots of options when it comes to places to stay in Praia da Luz. Here are some of the best options:

  • Hotel Belavista Da Luz. This four-star accommodation offers spacious rooms and private balconies just 600 meters from the beach. This site has not one pool but two, a gym, a tennis court, and many spa/wellness facilities on-site to make sure you have a truly relaxing stay.