Centro Ciênia Viva de Lagos


Young adventurers will especially love this science museum devoted to Portuguese seafaring in the 15th and 16th centuries. Its main exhibit covers the age of navigation from the astrolabe (an ancient instrument used to calculate latitude using the sun and stars in day and night skies) to today's GPS systems. Kids can also operate a solar-powered lighthouse, move sailboats around a pool with an air blower, use sonar and look through a periscope in a submarine.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Lagos attractions

1. Statue of Dom Sebastião

0.08 MILES

In the centre of town, this silvery sculpture by João Cutileiro, commemorating the ill-fated founder of the city in armour, was inaugurated 1973.

2. Town Walls

0.14 MILES

On the western side of the centre is a restored section of the stout town walls, built (atop earlier versions) during the reigns of both Manuel I and João…

3. Antigo Mercado de Escravos

0.26 MILES

Set in the building believed to be Europe's first slave market, when slaves from the west coast of Africa were brought here in 1444, this small museum…

4. Statue of Prince Henry the Navigator

0.27 MILES

This statue commemorates the prince of Portugal who used Lagos as a launch pad for many of the expeditions he commissioned. It was inaugurated in 1960 on…

5. Igreja de Santa Maria


The symmetrical Igreja de Santa Maria was built during the 15th and 16th centuries and retains a 16th-century entrance; the rest of the remaining…

6. Igreja de Santo António

0.31 MILES

A baroque extravaganza, this little church bursts with gilded, carved wood and beaming cherubs. The dome and azulejo panels were installed during repairs…

7. Meia Praia

0.32 MILES

Arcing in a 4km-long crescent, this vast expanse of golden sand has water sports outlets, and laid-back restaurants and beach bars.

8. Museu Municipal

0.33 MILES

The town museum holds a bit of everything: swords and pistols, landscapes and portraits, minerals and crystals, coins, Moorish pottery, miniature…