Lagos is a beautiful coastal town in the Algarve, Portugal. It’s one of the most popular summer holiday destinations in Portugal. Lagos is situated 300 km south of Lisbon. There are different ways of getting from Lisbon to Lagos including driving, taking a bus, a train, or using a private shuttle service. In this post, we explain in detail these ways and compare them.
If you’re coming to Lagos from abroad you might consider flying to Faro, the nearest airport, which is 90 km away. Getting from Faro to Lagos is much faster than from Lisbon.
Planning your holiday make sure you don’t miss any of the amazing things to do in Lagos.
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How to get from Lisbon to Lagos by bus?
Taking a bus from Lisbon to Lagos is the cheapest and the easiest way. Before we moved to Lagos and bought a car we always used buses to commute between Lisbon and the Algarve.
Step 1. Get to Sete Rios or Oriente bus station in Lisbon
Sete Rios is one of the main Lisbon bus and train stations. Two stations are not directly connected but located just 50 m apart. The easiest way of getting to Sete Rios from anywhere in Lisbon is by metro. The nearest station is Jardim Zoologico, about 50 m away. A metro ride is 1,5 euros, plus 0,5 for a transport card that you can top up and use for the metro and buses in Lisbon. You can find the best way of getting by metro to Jardim Zoologico from your location using the official website.
There used to be a direct shuttle bus line 2 from Lisbon Airport (LIS) to Sete Rios but due to the COVID, it’s currently unavailable. The metro is the best way of getting from the airport to Sete Rios. The journey takes 25-30 min.
Oriente Station (Gare do Oriente) is one of the largest transport hubs in the country. It’s more modern and comfortable than the Sete Rios Station. In my opinion, it’s one of the most interesting modern buildings in Lisbon. The famous Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava designed the project of the station. Gare do Oriente has a big mall (Vasco da Gama) with many restaurants and shops which is quite nice if you have to wait for your bus or train. There is luggage storage in the mall. Metro is the fastest way of getting to the Oriente Station. The station is just 3 metro stops from the airport. Check the metro map to find the best way of getting to Oriente from your location.
Step 2. Catch a direct bus from Sete Rios/Oriente bus station to Lagos
There are many (about 20) direct daily buses from Lisbon to Lagos. Travel time varies depending on the route and number of stops it can be anything between 3h30min. and 4h30min. Buses are new and comfortable. There are usually a couple of stops along the way where you can use a restroom and buy food.
Portuguese Rede Expressos and international FlixBus companies provide transport service from Lisbon to Lagos.
Rede Expressos buses leave from Sete Rios bus station in Lisbon (there are 3-4 daily buses from Oriente station as well). Buses depart every 1-2 hours. There is 1 overnight bus that arrives in Lagos at 5 am. Taking overnight buses might be exhausting but it’s a good way to save on accommodation. A standard price – 20 euros, they often have promo tickets for 8-10 euros. You can buy tickets and see the up-to-date timetable on the Rede Expressos website.
FlixBus buses leave from Oriente Bus Terminal. There are 2-3 daily buses from Lisbon to Lagos. Travel time is 3h50min. The prices are between 6 euros and 10 euros. Check the timetable and buy tickets online on their website.
- Travel time – 3h30min. – 4h30min.
- Cost – 6 – 20 euros
Step 3. From Lagos bus station get to your hotel
The bus station is close to the Old Town of Lagos, about 1 km. If you’re travelling light and staying in the center you can just walk to your accommodation.
Most places in Lagos are accessible by bus (ONDA blue & white buses). A ticket costs 1,2 euros. Bus #4 goes from the bus station to Old Town. Bus #2 towards Praia da Luz goes to the main beaches in Lagos: Dona Ana, Meia Praia, and Porto do Mos, the last two are popular beaches for surfing in Lagos. It doesn’t stop at the bus station it stops 500 m away, at Mercado Municipal.
Uber works great for getting around Lagos. It’s quicker than buses and cheaper than taxis. We often use it in the town. Depending on the distance you’ll pay between 3 and 6 euros for a ride. The only drawback is that you need an app to use it. If you’re not going to rent a car it’s better to install the Uber app. It is not difficult but it does take some time to set it up.
There are official taxis parked at the bus station. If you want to get to your hotel quickly and easily you can use one of them. A taxi ride will cost you between 4 and 8 euros (depending on the distance, number of people, luggage, etc.).
Accommodation near Lagos bus station
There are several nice hotels and guesthouses next to the bus station.
Getting from Lisbon to Lagos by train
Step 1. Get to Oriente/Sete Rios station in Lisbon
All trains leave from Oriente train station, some stop at Sete Rios Station. Check the explanation of how to get to these stations above.
Step 2. Take a train to Lagos
There are no direct trains from Lisbon to Lagos. In order to get there by train, you have to switch trains in Tunes. The connection is short between 2 and 12 minutes it doesn’t really affect your travel time. A train ticket for this route is more expensive than a bus ticket. The travel time is about the same as by bus.
There are 5 daily trains from Lisbon to Lagos with a connection in Tunes. Trains leave from Oriente Train Station. All trains stop at Intercampos Station in Lisbon. 3 trains make a stop at Sete Rios Station as well. Consult the current timetable and buy tickets on the official website.
- Travel time – between 3h45min. and 4h06min.
- Cost – 22-24 euros (second class), 28-31 euros (first class)
Step 3. Get from Lagos train station to your hotel
The train station in Lagos is at the Marina de Lagos about 1 km from the historical center. If you stay near the Marina and don’t have much luggage you can walk to your hotel.
Uber works great to move around in Lagos. A car usually arrives in 5-10 minutes. You can order one 5 minutes before arriving in Lagos. A ride with Uber within Lagos costs 4-7 euros.
You can take a taxi from the train station to your hotel. There are always a couple of them parked at the exit. A taxi ride will cost you anything between 5 and 10 euros. If your accommodation is outside Lagos taxi be more expensive.
Accommodation near Lagos train station (Marina de Lagos)
Driving from Lisbon to Lagos
Driving is the most expensive way of getting from Lisbon to Lagos especially if you rent a car. You can rent a car at Lisbon Airport on arrival. In the peak summer season it’s better to book a car in advance. To rent a car for one week at the airport costs from 200 euros (for a smallish car) for 7 days or 28 euros per day. The cost includes insurance. During the offseason car rental prices are significantly lower.
We often (at least twice a month) drive from Lagos to Lisbon and back. We always use a toll highway (E1) the fastest though quite an expensive road. To drive one way from Lisbon to Lagos costs 21 euros. Add to this petrol which works out about 30 euros (depending on your car).
The road is good you can drive 120km/h. Every 40 km there is a petrol station with a restaurant, shop, toilets, and changing rooms. If you travel with young children our advice is to stop at Colibri stations they have the best changing rooms.
There are two toll gates on the way from Lisbon to Lagos. At the beginning and at the end of the highway. If you don’t have a Via Verde tag (ask about it when you rent a car) then you go through manual tolls. You get a ticket at the beginning and pay it at the exit from the highway. There will be more tolls on the way to Lagos on a different road (A22), the Algarve highway. These tolls are automatic, manual payment is impossible. If you want to use that toll road ask about it when you rent a car. Otherwise, you can drive on free roads to Lagos though it takes longer.
- Driving time – 3 hours
- Cost – 21 euro (toll roads) + 30 euro (petrol) + car rental
Taking a private shuttle to get from Lisbon to Lagos
It’s the most expensive and the easiest way of getting from Lisbon to Lagos. A big advantage of using the shuttle service is that you don’t have to worry about driving or using public transport. It doesn’t matter what time of the day you arrive at Lisbon Airport. You can arrange a pickup for any time and day. If you’re a family or a group of people traveling together it might be worth using the shuttle service. The price of the transfer from the Airport of Lisbon to any address in the Algarve is 300 Euros (up to 4 people). It’s better to book your shuttle in advance during the peak season it’s often sold out.
- Driving time – 3 hours
- Cost – 300 euros