Three weeks is the right amount of time to visit at least six regions of Spain and Portugal. First-timers will find a mix of activities on a cultural highlights tour, while those who prefer flexibility should opt for a road trip that includes self-driving. Foodies will enjoy pastry-making in Ávila and more on a culinary-focused trip, while outdoorsy travelers will appreciate the abundance of nature-based activities in the Azores. And honeymooners and beach lovers can soak up the sun on the Iberian Peninsula.

Itinerary #1: Explore the Beauty of Spain & Portugal: Culture, History & Architecture

Offering a mix of cultural, historical, culinary, and outdoor experiences, this highlights itinerary is an excellent option for first-time visitors to the Iberian Peninsula. You'll learn to cook paella in Barcelona, take guided tours to see the historical and cultural sites of Madrid and Toledo, hike in Sintra, go sea kayaking and swimming in the Algarve, and much more. 

Take in Barcelona's stunning architecture and sights like Gothic Barcelona Cathedral
Take in Barcelona's stunning architecture and sights like Gothic Barcelona Cathedral
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Barcelona (Spain), Tapas Bar Food Tour Barcelona
Day 2 Barcelona Walking Tour Barcelona
Day 3 Free Day in Barcelona Barcelona
Day 4 Visit La Boquería Market & Cooking Class Barcelona
Day 5 Transfer to San Sebastián & Pintxos Tour San Sebastián
Day 6 Explore San Sebastián San Sebastián
Day 7 Free Day in San Sebastián San Sebastián
Day 8 Transfer to Madrid & Explore the Capital Madrid
Day 9 Madrid History, Culture & Architecture Tour Madrid
Day 10 Free Day in Madrid Madrid
Day 11 Toledo Day Trip Madrid
Day 12 Transfer to Porto (Portugal), Foodie Experience Porto
Day 13 Porto E-bike Tour Porto
Day 14 Douro Valley Tour with Wine Tasting & River Cruise Porto
Day 15 Transfer to Lisbon via Coimbra Lisbon
Day 16 Guided Tour of Lisbon Lisbon
Day 17 Sintra Day Trip Lisbon
Day 18 Transfer to the Algarve Algarve
Day 19 Benagil Cave Kayaking Trip Algarve
Day 20 Free Day in the Algarve Algarve
Day 21 Return to Lisbon, Depart  

Get a taste of Barcelona on a tapas and city walking tour before heading to the Montserrat Mountains for a hike to Santa Maria de Montserrat. Pick up artisanal ingredients at La Boquería market, then prepare paella in a cooking class. Take the train north to San Sebastián on Day 5 for sunbathing, cider house tours, and pintxos (a type of tapas popular in the Basque region). Continue to Madrid and embark on a guided history, culture, and architecture tour that includes the Habsburg district, followed by a flamenco show. 

Take a day trip to Toledo, the "City of the Three Cultures," where you can stroll medieval streets and observe Christian, Muslim, and Jewish influences. On Day 12, fly to Portugal and sample port wine in Porto's historic downtown, then take an e-bike tour before heading to Douro Valley for wine tasting and a river cruise. Continue to Lisbon for a tour with views from the Elevador de Santa Justa. Hike to the Moorish Castle in Sintra, then cap off your trip with sunbathing and sea kayaking in the beautiful Algarve. Learn more

Itinerary #2: Road Trip Through Spain & Portugal

With free time to explore and several self-guided tours, this road trip itinerary is best suited to travelers who prefer flexibility and exploring at their own pace. The inclusion of several wine experiences—including a tapas and wine tour in Madrid, port wine sampling in Porto, and wine tasting in Douro Valley—is also a good option for travelers interested in trying a variety of Spanish and Portuguese wines. 

Drive to famous landmarks in Spain, like the Rock of Gibraltar in the country's south
Drive to famous landmarks and visit historic cities in Spain , like Cádiz
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Madrid (Spain), Tapas Tour Madrid
Day 2 Guided City Tour, Free Afternoon in Madrid Madrid
Day 3 Day Trip to Toledo Madrid
Day 4 Train to Granada, Optional Activities Granada
Day 5 Guided Alhambra Tour, Flamenco Show Granada
Day 6 Free Day in Granada Granada
Day 7 Pick Up Rental Car & Drive to Seville, Stop at White Villages Seville
Day 8 Visit Seville's Cathedral & Alcázar Seville
Day 9 Day Trip to Córdoba Seville
Day 10 Drive to Cádiz via Jerez de la Frontera Cádiz
Day 11 Free Day in Cádiz Cádiz
Day 12 Transfer to the Algarve (Portugal) & Pick Up Rental Car, Explore Lagos Algarve
Day 13 Boat Excursion to Benagil Caves & the Algarve Coast Algarve
Day 14 Free Day in the Algarve Algarve
Day 15 Drive to Lisbon, City Tour Lisbon
Day 16 Visit Lisbon's Markets, Evening of Fado Lisbon
Day 17 Day Trip to Sintra & Cascais Lisbon
Day 18 Transfer to Porto, E-Bike City Tour Porto
Day 19 Free Day in Porto Porto
Day 20 Day Trip to Douro Valley, Winery & Boat Tour Porto
Day 21 Depart Porto  

Sample small bites with local beer and wine on a guided tapeo (tapas crawl) in Madrid before seeing the sites, like Plaza Mayor. Catch a train to Toledo for a self-guided tour of its Christian, Muslim, and Jewish monuments, then continue to Granada to visit the Alhambra fortress, followed by a flamenco show. Enjoy dramatic views, including those from Zahara de la Sierra, on the road trip portion of your adventure to Seville. Visit Moorish palaces and Gothic cathedrals, then take a train to Córdoba for a self-guided tour. 

Sip sherry wine in Jerez, the city where it originated, before setting sail on the Bay of Cádiz. Say adiós to Spain as you transfer to Lagos, a seaside village in Portugal. Cruise to the Bengali Caves, then go bird-watching at Costa Vicentina Natural Park. Continue to Lisbon for souvenir shopping in the markets, followed by a fado (traditional music) dinner show. Visit Sintra's iconic Pena Palace and the beaches of Cascais and spend your final days in Porto, sampling port and exploring the sites on an e-bike. Learn more

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Itinerary #3: Iberian Adventure: Spain, Portugal & the Azores

Active adventurers and nature enthusiasts will appreciate this Iberian trip's abundance of outdoor activities. There's bird-watching in the Alpujarras Mountains, a hike in Sintra-Cascais Natural Park, snorkeling in the Arrábida Marine Reserve, and whale watching and geothermal excursions in the stunning Azores island of São Miguel. 

Explore Granada's impressive Alhambra on a guided tour
Explore Granada's impressive Alhambra on a guided tour
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Madrid (Spain), Tapas Experience Madrid
Day 2 Madrid History, Culture & Architecture Tour Madrid
Day 3 Free Day in Madrid Madrid
Day 4 Train to Granada, Explore  Granada
Day 5 Alhambra & Generalife Gardens Tour, Flamenco Show Granada
Day 6 Las Alpujarras Andalusian Tour Granada
Day 7 Transfer to Seville via Caminito del Rey Seville
Day 8 Seville by E-Bike Seville
Day 9 Transfer to Lisbon (Portugal), Roots, Food & Culture Walk Lisbon
Day 10 Lisbon Tuk-Tuk Tour Lisbon
Day 11 Sintra Coastal Hike Lisbon
Day 12 Sailing the Arrábida Marine Reserve Lisbon
Day 13 Train to Porto & E-bike Tour Porto
Day 14 Visit Matosinhos Porto
Day 15 Free Day in Porto Porto
Day 16 Fly to São Miguel Island (Azores), Ponta Delgada Food & Wine Experience São Miguel Island
Day 17 Whale Watching & Sete Cidades Hike São Miguel Island
Day 18 Free Day on São Miguel São Miguel Island
Day 19 Discover Furnas's Geothermal Wonders São Miguel Island
Day 20 Lagoa do Fogo Hike São Miguel Island
Day 21 Depart Ponta Delgada  

Start in Spain with tapas at a traditional bodega, then learn about Madrid's history, culture, and architecture on a guided tour. Kayak under the Monasterio de la Hoz ruins and stroll Segovia's old town. Check out the grand structures, gardens, and views at the Alhambra fortress. Then it's off to the Alpujarras Mountains on Day 6 for bird-watching. Hike over the gorge on the Caminito del Rey elevated walkways before arriving in Seville for an e-bike tour. Transfer to Lisbon for a food and culture walk followed by an electric tuk-tuk tour. 

Days 11 and 12 see you trekking the Sintra coastline at Cascais Natural Park and setting out on a sailing and snorkeling excursion in the Arrábida Marine Reserve. Tour Porto's cobbled streets by e-bike before heading to beautiful Matosinhos for seafood and sunbathing. Fly to São Miguel in the Azores for five days, and explore the flavors of Ponta Delgada on a culinary walk. Spend your final days immersed in the natural wonders of the island: go whale watching, visit the Sete Cidades, hike the Cumeeiras Trail, and take a dip in the thermal springs. Learn more

Itinerary #4: Culinary Journey Through Spain & Portugal

With a focus on food and wine, this culinary journey is ideal for travelers that prefer to experience a destination through the local cuisine and drink. Each day is a culinary adventure, from olive oil tasting in Catalonia to pastry-making in Ávila, sampling port wines in Porto, and dining in a local home in Lisbon.

Start your Iberian adventure in Spain, where tapas and pintxos are on the menu
Start your Iberian adventure in Spain, where tapas and pintxos are on the menu
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Barcelona, Sunset Cruise Barcelona
Day 2 Private Tour of Barcelona & La Sagrada Família Barcelona
Day 3 Catalonia Wine & Olive Oil Tour Barcelona
Day 4 Train to San Sebastián, Pintxo Tour San Sebastián
Day 5 Explore San Sebastián, Cider House Experience San Sebastián
Day 6 Basque Country Cheese & Wine Tour San Sebastián
Day 7 Transfer to Bilbao via Coastal Route Bilbao
Day 8 Private Cooking Class, Explore Bilbao Bilbao
Day 9 Train to Madrid, Optional Activities Madrid
Day 10 Guided City Tour & Flamenco Night Madrid
Day 11 Free Day in Madrid Madrid
Day 12 Train to Ávila, Private Sweets Workshop Ávila
Day 13 Transfer to the Douro Valley (Portugal), River Boat Tour Douro Valley
Day 14 Day Trip to Wine Cellar & Lunch Douro Valley
Day 15 Transfer to Porto, Foodie Tour Porto
Day 16 Guided Tour of Porto, Visit a Canning Factory Porto
Day 17 Private Cooking Class & Market Visit Porto
Day 18 Train to Lisbon, Evening of Fado Lisbon
Day 19 Visit Lisbon's Markets, Local Dinner Party Lisbon
Day 20 Free Day in Lisbon Lisbon
Day 21 Depart Lisbon  

Set off on a sunset cruise—complete with Spanish cava—in Barcelona. Sip organic wine at a family-run vineyard in Pla de Bages and enjoy an olive oil tasting in Vall d'Hortons. Board a train to San Sebastián on Day 4 for a food tour of the Old Quarter and a cider house experience in Astigarraga. Try local cheese and txakoli wine in the Basque countryside, then enjoy coastal views en route to Bilbao. Prepare Basque dishes in a cooking workshop before exploring Bilbao's highlights, including the impressive Guggenheim Museum.  

Once in Madrid on Day 9, go museum-hopping and dine at the legendary Botín restaurant. Catch a train to Ávila, where you'll learn how to make yemas de Santa Teresa pastries. On Day 13, transfer to Portugal and enjoy a river cruise and wine tasting in the beautiful Douro Valley. Then it's on to Porto to sip port and try local eats on a culinary walk. Get a history lesson during a Port city tour, and learn culinary traditions at a canning factory. Next, you're off to Lisbon for your last three days, immersing yourself in the culture and cuisine of the capital with a visit to the markets followed by dinner in a local's home. Learn more

Itinerary #5: Epic Portugal & Spain Discovery Tour: Iberian Culture, Coastline & Beaches

If you're looking to schedule a beach holiday, this epic discovery tour of Spain and Portugal is crafted for travelers keen on coastal activities. Sunbathe on the beaches of Ericeira, sail and snorkel in the Algarve, visit Portugal's "Deserted Island," and go beach-hopping in Mallorca and Costa Brava. It's also great for couples and honeymooners looking for a beach holiday that includes cultural activities and historical tours, such as visiting the Pueblos Blancos and the ancient city of Girona.

Drive south to the cliffs and beaches of the Algarve before crossing into Spain
Drive south to the cliffs and beaches of the Algarve before crossing into Spain
Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Porto (Portugal), Foodie Tour Porto
Day 2 Private Guided City Tour Porto
Day 3 Free Day in Porto Porto
Day 4 Transfer to Lisbon via Nazaré & Óbidos Lisbon
Day 5 Lisbon Tuk-Tuk Tour, Visit Ericeira Lisbon
Day 6 Day Trip to Sintra-Cascais Natural Park & Coastal Hike Lisbon
Day 7 Drive to the Algarve, Explore Lagos Algarve
Day 8 Island Catamaran Cruise & Snorkeling Algarve
Day 9 Visit Ilha da Barreta & Beaches Algarve
Day 10 Transfer to Seville (Spain), City Bike Tour Seville
Day 11 Free Day in Seville Seville
Day 12 Transfer to Granada, White Villages & Flamenco Show Granada
Day 13 Granada Walking Tour, Visit the Alhambra & Gardens Granada
Day 14 Fly to Mallorca, Optional Activities Mallorca
Day 15 Mallorca Catamaran Trip & Snorkeling Mallorca
Day 16 Discover the Villages of Mallorca Mallorca
Day 17 Explore the Beaches of Mallorca Mallorca
Day 18 Fly to Barcelona, Private City Tour Barcelona
Day 19 Barcelona Market & Cooking Class Barcelona
Day 20 Day Trip to Girona & Costa Brava Barcelona
Day 21 Depart Barcelona  

Dive into Portugal's food and wine scene with a Porto tasting tour, then learn some history and culture on an experience that includes the historic center and Ribeira, the colorful waterfront. Check out the castle and handicraft shops in Óbidos en route to Lisbon on Day 4. Take an auto rickshaw tour of the capital before visiting Ericeira's beaches for sunbathing or surfing. Head to Sintra for a hike to the lighthouse at Cape Roca, then it's off to the Algarve for three days for a catamaran cruise, snorkeling, and a visit to the idyllic Ilha Deserta (Deserted Island).

Transfer to Spain on Day 10 and hit the ground running—or rather, cycling—on a Seville bike tour. Take a guided road trip to Granada, with scenic stops in the famed Pueblos Blancos (White Villages). Explore Granada's Moorish and Christian architecture before flying to the island of Mallorca for sailing and beach-hopping over four days. Catch a flight to Barcelona and tour sites like La Sagrada Família, and learn to make paella. End on a high note with a visit to the ancient city of Girona and the medieval villages and beaches of the stunning Costa Brava. Learn more

More Great 3-Week Spain Itineraries

Looking for more inspiration for your trip to Spain? Check out these other three-week Spain itineraries, with outdoor adventures, cultural trips, and best-of tours to hit the highlights. 


Map of 3 Weeks in Spain & Portugal - 5 Unique Itinerary Ideas
Map of 3 Weeks in Spain & Portugal - 5 Unique Itinerary Ideas