Itinerary #1: Best of Lisbon and Porto
If it’s your first time visiting Portugal, consider this trip plan, in which you’ll split your time between Lisbon and Porto. Get the lay of the land with the help of expert guides, food tours, day trips, and excursions to see the highlights of the country.
|Day 1||Arrive in Lisbon - Culinary Excursion||Lisbon|
|Day 2||Explore Lisbon with a Local||Lisbon|
|Day 3||Day-Trip to Sintra, Cascais & Estoril||Lisbon|
|Day 4||Transfer to Porto - City Tour||Porto|
|Day 5||Day-Trip to Douro Valley||Porto|
|Day 6||Transfer to Lisbon, via Coimbra||Lisbon|
|Day 7||Depart Lisbon|
Lisbon serves as your home base for the first half of your trip; taste your way through the city on a gourmet food tour, then dive deeper into local history and architecture with the help of another guide who will lead you through Lisbon’s unique neighborhoods. You’ll then head out for an epic day trip: visit the gorgeous town of Sintra and its iconic butter-yellow Pena Palace, look out onto the Atlantic in Cabo da Roca (the western-most point of continental Europe), watch surfers in lovely Cascais (maybe catch a wave yourself!), and check out the massive casino in Estoril. Perhaps Lady Luck will be on your side if you choose to play a hand or two!
On day four, you’ll transfer to Porto for a few days of further exploration and indulgent delights. An English speaking guide will take you around the city on a tour that culminates in a beloved wine cellar near the banks of the gorgeous Douro River. You’ll learn about Port wine production and, of course, will be treated to a tasting of the region’s famed export. This tasting is a great primer for your trip the following day to the breathtaking Douro Valley, which is considered by many to be the most spectacular wine region on the continent. Spend the sipping Port at different wineries, learn about local olive oil production, then glide along the scenic river on a relaxing boat ride.
You’ll work your way back to Lisbon on day six, stopping through Coimbra for a self-guided exploration en route. Coimbra is known as Portugal’s medieval capital and is home to the famed university here. Wander the city’s historic core and admire the vibrant architecture that dates back to the 13th century. You’ll end the day in Lisbon, where you can head out for a final dinner in town; the next morning, you’ll head to the airport for your departure. Learn more
Itinerary #2: Lisbon, Évora & Lagos
Escape to the south of Portugal on this trip plan, perfect for the traveler interested in exploring regional highlights around Lisbon, Lagos, and the Algarve. You’ll sample the flavors of the country’s capital, learn about local history and architecture courtesy to expert guides, and will have plenty of time to discover tiny villages and unwind in golden sands of Portugal’s iconic beaches.
|Day 1||Arrive in Lisbon - Culinary Excursion||Lisbon|
|Day 2||Half-Day Tour of Lisbon||Lisbon|
|Day 3||Day-Trip to Sintra, Cascais & Estoril||Lisbon|
|Day 4||Transfer from Lisbon to Évora - Private Tour||Évora|
|Day 5||Return to Lisbon - Transfer to Lagos by Train||Lagos|
|Day 6||Explore Lagos & the Algarve Region||Lagos|
|Day 7||Depart Lisbon|
Spend the first few days of your trip in Lisbon and visiting its charming nearby villages. Get a taste of local flavor on a guided culinary excursion through town, then see the capital’s highlights on another guided tour the next day. Relax after some serious sight-seeing with a fun evening at a traditional restaurant where you can enjoy classic cuisine while Fado musicians serenade you. Before you head onwards, you’ll take a day to explore charming villages, port towns, and palaces just beyond Lisbon: Sintra, Cascais, and Estoril welcome you with UNESCO-designated heritage sites, great surf breaks, and even Europe’s biggest casino!
On day four, you’ll head to the medieval romance of Évora, which you’ll discover with the help of a local guide. The next morning, board the train for a scenic ride to the spectacular city of Lagos and the Western Algarve, where relaxation, golden sands and azure waters await. Sure, you could wander the pretty inner-walled old town in Lagos and spend the next couple of days from a cozy perch at a picturesque café, but you’re probably here for the breathtaking beaches and thrilling clifftop views of the Atlantic. When your week concludes, you’ll return to Lisbon for your flight home. Learn more
Itinerary #3: The North & Douro Region
Spend a week in the north exploring Porto and the picturesque Douro region on this trip plan that intertwines history, culture, nature, and delicious cuisine. You learn about Porto’s heritage and culinary scene, visit the valley where Port wine is produced, and will head off-the-beaten-path as you discover beloved pilgrimage sites, imposing waterfalls, and tiny towns.
|Day 1||Arrive in Porto - Culinary Excursion||Porto|
|Day 2||Get to Know Porto||Porto|
|Day 3||Into the Douro Valley||Douro Valley|
|Day 4||Travel to Guimarães via Braga||Guimarães|
|Day 5||Viana do Castelo||Viana do Castelo|
|Day 6||Excursion to Peneda-Gerês National Park||Viana do Castelo|
|Day 7||Depart Porto|
To really understand the north, start by using your palate and leaning into your senses. This region is all about flavor, and during your first two days in Porto, you’ll understand why. You’ll learn about this northern city first through its food on a culinary walking tour that culminates with a fascinating lesson on Port wine — you’ll even sip a special vintage pour on a tasting flight. Another guided tour will take you through the city’s historic core; visit the beautiful Porto Cathedral and the city’s highlights, then head to a small scale canning factory to learn about the tradition and importance of local tinned fish.
Your education in Porto will serve you well when you venture into the Douro Valley for a day of sipping vintages at wineries and learning about olive oil production amid spectacular landscapes. The next day you’ll gain insight into the role of religion here in Braga, where you’ll visit the three beautiful churches that comprise the “Triangle of Faith,” a trio of sanctuaries revered by pilgrims. You’ll venture on to Guimarães, home to a medieval cathedral and a charming historic city center.
On day five, you’ll reach the incredible town of Viano do Castelo; ascend the local mountain to visit the imposing Santa Luzia church, which offers panoramic views of the town and the sea, then head to one of the area’s spectacular beaches. Spend your last full day immersed in nature on a semi-private tour of the incredible Peneda-Gerês National Park, where you can hike, frolick by a waterfall, and enjoy a tranquil picnic overlooking the land. The next morning you’ll head back to Porto for your flight home. Learn more
Customize your trip with help from a local travel specialist.
Itinerary #4: The Algarve Region
On this trip plan, you'll spend a week exploring the spectacular Algarve region, home to tiny fishing villages, incredible nature preserves, historical relics and the best beaches in all of Portugal. Explore old walled cities, tranquil towns, iconic cliffs and shores, and local treasures like a chapel made entirely of bones!
|Day 1||Arrive in Faro||Faro|
|Day 2||Day Excursion to Tavira & Santa Luzia||Faro|
|Day 3||Drive from Faro to Lagos via Silves||Lagos|
|Day 4||Explore Lagos & the greater Algarve Region||Lagos|
|Day 5||Drive from Lagos to the Wild Coast||Sagres|
|Day 6||Parque Natural del Suroeste Alentejano||Pedralva|
|Day 7||Drive to Faro Airport & Depart|
You’ll bookend your trip in Faro, the main hub of the Algarve; the city is full of old-world charm — wander the waterfront, explore the walled city, and be sure to visit Capela dos Ossos, a chapel made of 1,245 human skulls! From Faro you’ll jump off to the gems of the Eastern Algarve with excursions to the charming towns of Tavira and Santa Luzia, where you can watch colorful fishing boats bring in the day’s catch, then savor the goods at a local restaurant.
On day three, you’ll travel through Silves, the region’s historic Moorish capital and the most picturesque town in the Northern Algarve. Take some time to discover the beautiful cathedral and waterfront here and enjoy some lunch before heading for Lagos, your home base for the next few days. In Lagos you can lose yourself in the 16th century city’s beautiful squares and streets or head straight for the beach. Take your pick of any number of stretches of golden sand, where you can luxuriate in the sun, splash in the waves, or enjoy any number of water sports.
Go west on day five with a scenic drive along the spectacular wild coast, whose protected lands give way to imposing cliffs and phenomenal views. In Sagres, where you’ll spend the night, you can head back to the beach or ride the waves on a surfboard. Nature calls the following day when you explore Parque Natural do Sudoeste Alentejano e Costa Vicentina, which hugs the country’s coastline. Spend your final evening in Pedralva, a tiny village off-the-beaten-path where you can drink in the sounds of nature or simply stroll the charming streets. The following morning, you’ll return to Faro for your flight home. Learn more
Itinerary #5: Food Tour of Lisbon & Alentejo
Foodies will get a great taste of Portugal on this weeklong trip plan focused on food, culture, history and flavor. You’ll explore Lisbon’s thriving culinary scene and heritage with guided tours, tasting excursions, and a fun cooking class. Visit gorgeous nearby towns before discovering the medieval beauty of Évora and the sweeping landscapes of the Alentejo region.
|Day 1||Arrive in Lisbon & Culinary Excursion||Lisbon|
|Day 2||Guided tour of Lisbon & Evening of Fado||Lisbon|
|Day 3||Taste of Portugal cooking class & market visit||Lisbon|
|Day 4||Day trip to Sintra, Cascais & Estoril||Lisbon|
|Day 5||Transfer from Lisbon to Évora & Private Tour||Évora|
|Day 6||Explore Évora and the Alentejo region||Évora|
With four nights based in Lisbon, you’ll have plenty of time to learn about Portugal’s thriving capital and its impressive culinary heritage. Kick things off with a guided food excursion around town, in which you’ll taste local specialties, meet key purveyors, and gain insight into food’s role in the culture here. You’ll also tour the city’s highlights with a guide to get a broader context of local history, architecture, and traditions. Then put your knowledge and skills to the test with a fun day in the kitchen; after touring a fantastic market to buy ingredients, you’ll learn how to prepare a delicious Portuguese meal in a hands-on workshop!
On your last day in the region, you’ll discover picturesque palaces, gardens, and squares on a gorgeous day trip to the towns of Sintra, Cascais, and Estoril. The next day you’ll head to Évora for a guided tour of this UNESCO World Heritage city and its highlights, which include beautifully preserved Roman ruins. Spend your final full day exploring the quiet and idyllic Alentejo region, where you’ll savor traditional cuisine and the quiet of rural life. The following morning, you’ll return to Lisbon for your departure. Learn more
Itinerary #6: Sintra Heritage and Coastal Trails Hike
If you’re interested in heading away from the crowds and instead discovering the beauty of local life and landscapes, consider this hiking itinerary, which takes you through the wonderful region around Sintra Mountain and along coastal trails. Stay at a lovely inn that was once a convent, enjoy time in hidden coves on the beach, and trek through misty forests sure to excite the romantic in you.
|Day 1||Arrive in Lisbon & explore Cascais||Cascais|
|Day 2||Cascais to Azóia||Azóia|
|Day 3||Azóia Loop||Azóia|
|Day 4||Azóia to Colares||Colares|
|Day 5||Colares to Sintra||Sintra|
|Day 6||Sintra Loop||Sintra|
|Day 7||Departure from Lisbon|
Once you land in Lisbon, you’ll immediately head out to scenic Cascais, a 650-year-old town with a fascinating history, charming city center, and lovely restaurants. In the morning you’ll travel to Guincho, where your coastal hike begins! As you walk through Portugal’s landscapes and towns, you can relax knowing that your luggage will be transferred for you between destinations and you’ll rarely cover more than 8 miles (13 km) a day. So take your time on the trail to drink in spectacular vistas and enjoy nature’s palate.
Spend your first night on the trail in a former convent in the secluded valley in Azóia; you can get a massage, swim in the pool, or laze in the gorgeously refurbished main hall. With the hotel as your base, you’ll enjoy some great day hikes, including a forested loop around Sintra Mountain and a coastal route that will take you to the western-most point of continental Europe.
You’ll then spend two nights in the gorgeous town of Colares, where you can explore the exquisitely detailed Monserrate Palace, the charm of Sintra, and a day hike that takes you to two incredible palaces: the butter-yellow Pena Palace and the hauntingly romantic Castle of the Moors, which features panoramic views from its hilltop perch. After a final delicious breakfast in the village of Sintra, you’ll return to Lisbon for your flight home or onto your next destination. Learn more
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