So my first full day in Lagos was a great one – and a fantastic workout. The day started off with a bike ride I had scheduled with the The Mountain Bike Adventure team and it was a blast. After the bike ride, with my legs shaking, I went back into the old town section to explore.
First, the bike ride. I had come across The Mountain Bike Adventure as I was researching for my trip and wanted to rent a bike. Turns out they offered “rides” – a fully guided ride of your choice. I e-mailed them, we discussed what I wanted, and settled on the beach ride as I didn’t want to start off my time in Portugal taking a fall off a bike. This turned out to be a 2 1/2 hour ride along the beach, the coast, through the old town, and in the country side. It was a GREAT way to see the Lagos area – in a way most will never see it.
I ride often while home in Houston and was used to distances and such, but I was not used to the climbs and it seemed as though the ride was 90% up hill! I was fortunate that I was the only rider so off I went with Jim leading the way (I’m trailing him in the video). We chatted for part of the ride – when I wasn’t panting from the climb – and he couldn’t help but show off his wheelies every once in a while.
We headed out toward the coast, then back through the old town, down to the beach for a stop at a coffee shop for some espresso, then along back country roads, and back to the old town. The cost of the ride was 30 euros, inclusive of bike, helmet, liter of water, and a backpack to carry it in. This was a fantastic way to get my trip started and the actual ride wound up being close to 25km! I highly recommend The Mountain Bike Adventure if you’re in the area.
After the ride was completed, I started my walking exploration of the old town. I wanted to see some of the areas that I had ridden through and get some photos. I also knew that I was going to need food. I had some protein bars with me which I had already had and found myself at that uncomfortable place known as “too late for lunch, too early for dinner” – specially in Portugal where dinner service doesn’t usually start until about 7:00 PM. It was also my second day in Portugal so I knew jetlag would hit me.
Armed with my camera, I proceeded to wander the streets of the old town and eventually came across a restaurant that was still serving good food. A Forja was just the right place – I thoroughly enjoyed the Sea Bass and beer – and it was near the main square where I could continue my exploring after the meal. This was the first of many delicious meals during this trip.
Walking around and wandering got me a great feel for the old town and I was able to enjoy some good street art.
By the time I was done, it was nearly 6:00 PM and I was totally wiped out. I headed back to my little apartment, showered, and crashed for the night. The next day would be a day of exploring the southwestern coast near Lagos and I knew it’d be a full day.