Families of all ages will enjoy the range of big-city culture and peaceful natural attractions on this 10-day tour of Portugal. Experience Porto's delicious food and colorful townhouses, then stretch your legs on a day trip to the scenic Paiva Walkways. Explore hilly Lisbon in style with an electric tuk-tuk tour, step into a storybook world of knights and castles in Sintra, and end on the unspoiled beaches of Arrábida, where you'll spot dolphins at play and take a cruise along the protected coastline.


  • Ride a traditional barge down Porto's Douro River
  • Take an eco-friendly tuk-tuk tour of Lisbon
  • Explore palace passageways and forest trails in Sintra
  • Cruise along the beautiful coastline and beaches of the Arrábida Marine Reserve

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Porto, Family-Friendly Food Tour Porto
Day 2 Porto City Tour & River Cruise Porto
Day 3 Day Trip to the Paiva Walkway Porto
Day 4 Transfer to Lisbon via Óbidos Lisbon
Day 5 Lisbon Tuk-Tuk Tour, Family-Friendly Activities Lisbon
Day 6 Discover Fairy-Tale Sintra Lisbon
Day 7 Transfer to Serra da Arrábida Serra da Arrábida
Day 8 Full-Day Private Cruise with Skipper Serra da Arrábida
Day 9 Explore Arrábida Natural Park Serra da Arrábida
Day 10 Transfer to Lisbon, Depart   

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Porto, Family-Friendly Food Tour

Stop for snacks like the famous pastéis de nata in Porto

Welcome to Portugal! Upon arrival at the airport in Porto, your driver will meet you and transfer you to your hotel in the city center. Take some time to rest before you start exploring.

After you've had some time to settle in, get to know Porto in a way that will please every family member: on a guided culinary adventure. Be introduced to Porto's exciting food scene and get off the well-worn tourist path to explore a side of the city that most travelers rarely see. Local families will welcome you into their small, authentic restaurants, cafés, and bars. Taste a range of traditional dishes, local pastries, and Portuguese wines (for the adults, of course). Since this is a private tour, it can be adapted to your family's needs and interests to create the perfect welcome to the city.

Day 2: Porto City Tour & River Cruise

Cruise along Porto's attractive riverfront

This kid-friendly tour of Porto provides a fun introduction to the city's history and must-see attractions, customized to your family's pace. Settled by Romans, Porto is known for its delicious port wine, medieval townhouses stacked up beside the beautiful Douro River, and churches dressed up in blue-and-white azulejo tiles. Admire Romanesque, Baroque, and neoclassical monuments, including the São Bento Train Station, the Clérigos Tower, and the Lello Bookshop. End at an amazing viewpoint, where you can take breathtaking photos of the city and ride the funicular for an entertaining way to get around this hilly city. 

In the afternoon, everyone can relax and rest tired legs on a scenic cruise along Porto's historic riverfront district. Hop on a traditional wooden rabelo boat and set off down the Douro River as it empties into the sea. Kids will love stepping back in time with a ride on the historic, flat-bottomed vessels as you see the colorful neighborhoods of Porto from an entirely different vantage point.

Day 3: Day Trip to the Paiva Walkway

Stroll the scenic walkways of Paiva

Get active today on a day out at one of the most beautiful riverside hikes in Europe, a 90-minute drive inland from Porto. The Paiva Walkways follow the Paiva River, providing glorious views and an amazing connection with nature. With broad wooden boardwalks and railings, walking here is easy and even suitable for small kids. The trail is dotted with geologic, natural, and archeological places of interest, so turn the excursion into a treasure hunt as kids spot the many natural wonders on display.

After the three-hour hike, enjoy a traditional lunch. This region is famous for its posta arouquesa, or grilled beef, which will provide an energy boost after your morning of exercise. End the day with an optional visit to a local distillery where pinguça, a Portuguese liquor, is produced, or head back to Porto or a quiet evening before tomorrow's travel.

Day 4: Transfer to Lisbon via Óbidos

Kids will love the medieval fortifications of Óbidos

Today, your driver will pick you up at your hotel in Porto for your journey to Lisbon. Along the way, stop at the charming town of Óbidos for a self-guided visit. Stroll among the narrow cobblestone streets and traditional white-painted houses of this classic Portuguese walled city. Óbidos was recaptured from the Moors and presented to the queens of Portugal on their wedding day, spanning the 13th to the 19th centuries. This royal patronage left an enduring legacy of pride within the town, which you'll notice as you explore the medieval castle and wander through the streets adorned with bougainvillea and honeysuckle. 

Day 5: Lisbon Tuk-Tuk Tour, Family-Friendly Activities

The Torre de Belém in Lisbon

Explore the "City of Seven Hills" in style today on an electric tuk-tuk tour—a fun, eco-friendly mode of transport sure to delight all ages. Led by a knowledgeable guide, you'll zip through the charming capital's modern and historic districts, from the neoclassical avenues of Baixa to the cobblestone alleys of the bohemian Bairro Alto. Discover the city's fascinating history and hidden corners along the way, and stop at stunning panoramic viewpoints like São Pedro de Alcântara, Parque Eduardo VII, Senhora do Monte, and Santa Luzia.

In the afternoon, continue exploring Lisbon at your own pace, picking a range of attractions and activities to suit your family's needs and interests. You could visit the Castelo São Jorge, a commanding Moorish castle high above the city's twisting medieval streets. Keep an eye out for exhibitions by the knights and archers, which occur periodically. If your kids like riding cable cars, soar over the Tagus River in the Telecabine Lisboa ("Lisbon Cable Car"), which runs along the river at Parque das Nacoes for around a mile (2.2 km).

For something a little different, jump on board Lisbon's Hippotrip amphibious vehicle. After a tour through the city center on land, you'll head out to the Belém district and drive straight into the Tagus River. If you're looking for peaceful natural attractions, check out Estufa Fria, Lisbon's greenhouse, or make for the Jardim da Estrela, one of Lisbon's largest parks, which is home to a playground, duck ponds, and a café with child-friendly activities in summer.

Plan your trip to Portugal
Chat with a local specialist who can help organize your trip.

Day 6: Discover Fairy-Tale Sintra

Let imaginations run wild with a visit to Sintra's palaces

Follow in the footsteps of kings and queens today with a guided exploration of magnificent Sintra. Experience the quiet of the dense and dewy forest and the charm of the many 19th-century palaces that dot the mountainside. Sintra is an essential day trip from Lisbon and the perfect adventure for families of every age—plus, there are challenges and fun activities for them along the way.

The kids will love running through secret passageways and climbing turrets in the gardens at Quinta da Regaleira. Hear about the legends and myths of Sintra, and the real-life authors and artists who have left their marks here, including Lord Byron and Hans Christian Andersen. Wander through the Sintra historical village, stopping for a travesseiro—the traditional sweet of Sintra. Continue the adventure at the National Palace of Sintra, a hunting retreat and summer resort for the Portuguese monarchy and its court during the Middle Ages. See if the kids can guess what two giant triangular chimneys were used for!

Day 7: Transfer to Serra da Arrábida 

View of the beautiful Arrábida Natural Park

Today, you'll be transferred to the beautiful beach area of Serra do Arrábida, less than an hour from Lisbon. This impressive natural park covers the rolling hills, beaches, and cliffs between Sesimbra and Setúbal. Wild nature, dreamy beaches, and a turquoise sea make this a worthwhile destination.

After settling into your hotel, spend the day exploring the beaches and coast. Portinho da Arrábida is a tiny former fishing village with shallow, crystal-clear waters that are warm in high summer, making this an excellent spot for families. The beach lies adjacent to a picturesque village beneath a cliff. A tiny 17th-century fort guards the harbor, now home to the Museo Oceanografico, which houses marine creatures from the region. Umbrellas, small watercraft, and games are available for hire on the beach, which lifeguards patrol in summer. You can enjoy fresh seafood here for dinner, too.

Day 8: Full-Day Private Cruise with Skipper

Cruise the coast of Arrábida

Take to the water today on a full-day cruise along the breathtaking coastline of the Arrábida Marine Reserve. Admire the remarkable limestone cliffs and explore the secluded beaches with your family, guided by your private skipper. You'll be able to anchor in different locations, enjoy the sun, take a dip in the sea, and swim to the shore for a bite to eat or some downtime on a sandy beach. Go at your own pace and be as active or relaxed as you like while enjoying quality time together. This is a private experience that will give you access to spots in and around Arrábida that are hard to reach any other way.

Day 9: Explore Arrábida Natural Park

Venture into the unspoiled nature of Arrábida's protected park today

Explore the Arrábida Natural Park today on a guided excursion that can be customized to your family's interests. The 108-acre (43 ha) park is one of 30 nationally protected regions and is home to the famous 16th-century Convento de Nossa Senhora da Arrábida. As you journey through the park, catch glimpses of the golden-sand beaches surrounding the Albufeira Lagoon. See the Santuário de Nossa Senhora do Cabo Espichel, a chapel that has been a pilgrim site since the early 18th century. Stroll to the nearby cliffs for breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean.

Continue to the Setubal Peninsula and check out the quiet fishing town of Sesimbra. Kids might enjoy heading to the Moorish Castle high above the town before a break for lunch, either in Sesimbra or the nearby bay of Portinho da Arrábida. Budding marine biologists won't want to miss an optional three-hour dolphin cruise aboard a luxury catamaran. Cruise the serene waters while listening to live onboard narration, and keep your eyes peeled for playful dolphins. Alternatively, you can enjoy one of Arrábida's hidden beaches or taste traditional food and wine at a local restaurant. 

Day 10: Transfer to Lisbon, Depart 

Farewell Arrábida!

It's time to say goodbye to Portugal. You'll be transferred from your accommodation in Serra da Arrábida to the airport in Lisbon in plenty of time for your departing flight. Adeus!

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Map of Portugal Family Explorer: Porto, Lisbon & Serra da Arrábida - 10 Days
Map of Portugal Family Explorer: Porto, Lisbon & Serra da Arrábida - 10 Days