- Take a guided culinary excursion of Lisbon's downtown
- Visit the beautiful towns of Sintra, Cascais & Estoril
- Market tour and cooking class with a chef
- Enjoy an in-depth food tour in Porto
- Go Port wine tasting in the famous Douro Valley
|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||Portuguese cooking class & market visit||Lisbon|
|Day 5||Transfer from Lisbon to Évora & Private Tour||Évora|
|Day 6||Explore Évora and the Alentejo region||Évora|
|Day 7||Transfer from Évora to Porto via Coimbra||Porto|
|Day 8||Get to Know Porto & Food Tour||Porto|
|Day 9||Wine Tasting in the Douro Valley||Douro Valley|
|Day 10||Depart Porto|
Day 1: Arrive in Lisbon & Culinary Excursion
Welcome to Portugal! Upon your arrival in Lisbon, you will be met by a driver who will transfer you from the airport to your hotel. Take some time to rest before you start exploring this incredible city.
When evening hits, you'll take part in a gourmet food tour in Lisbon — a great way to experience the city for the first time! Wear a good pair of walking shoes because you, along with your English-speaking guide, will meander through a series of authentic winding alleys tasting the incredible flavors of Portuguese gastronomy, especially in the neighborhood of Campo de Ourique — practically a city within the city — that sets the food culture and culinary trends of Lisbon.
Over the course of four hours, you will visit seven delicious spots that brilliantly link tradition with modernity. Experience ways that locals have reinvented restaurant concepts, including a market and hotel school while getting a taste of culinary recipes that have become world-famous.
Day 2: Half-Day Tour of Lisbon
Today you'll get to discover Lisbon on a half-day tour visiting key sites and some well-kept secrets, exposing the city's unique atmosphere and authenticity. This will be a fun adventure as you travel around the city utilizing the yellow tram system broken up with relaxed strolls. Make sure to wear a good pair of walking shoes.
The tour includes the following:
- Praça do Comércio: the largest of Lisbon’s plazas
- Baixa: the 'new city', built after the devastating 1755 earthquake
- Praça da Figueira: Lisbon’s traditional market square
- Rossio: the heart of downtown Lisbon
- Iron Lift Viewpoint: a stellar 360º view over the downtown district
- Largo do Carmo: the setting for the democratic revolution of 1974
- Carmo ruins: the only Gothic monument of the city
- St. Roque Church: a Baroque extravaganza
- Bairro Alto: the lively bohemian district
- Chiado: the city's most elegant shopping area
- Portas do Sol: a breathtaking view over Alfama (the Old Town)
In the evening, you'll dine at one of the best Fado restaurants in Lisbon for traditional Portuguese cuisine interspersed with authentic singing and music.
Day 3: Day trip to Sintra, Cascais & Estoril
Today you'll head out of Lisbon for an incredible day trip to a trio of picturesque locales. The area surrounding Lisbon offers an incredible variety of architecture and scenery, from fairytale palaces to romantic towns and breathtaking viewpoints. Today's guided excursion is the ideal way to experience some of these attractions.
After breakfast at your hotel, you'll meet your guide, who will deliver you to your first stop: Sintra. This village — about 30 minutes by car from the capital — is a harmonic combination of history and fantasy, described as a “glorious Eden” by the 18th-century British poet Lord Byron. Your guide will give you plenty of information about the city's wonderful palaces, imposing monuments, and great eateries in the area; armed with these tips, explore Sintra on your own and have lunch amid the local splendor.
Your next stop is the Cabo da Roca, the westernmost point of not only Portugal but all of mainland Europe. Enjoy the gorgeous views across the Atlantic Ocean as waves crash onto the shore. As you head back to Lisbon, you'll visit the fishing harbor and tourist center of Cascais, the former summer residence of the Portuguese royal family, and nowadays an excellent spot for surfing. You'll also be able to visit the luxury entertainment town of Estoril, known for its casino (the largest in Europe) and beautiful gardens.
Once you return to Lisbon, you'll have the remainder of the day to enjoy the city any way you like!
Day 4: Taste of Portugal cooking class & market visit
Now that you've sampled a bit of Portuguese cuisine, it's time to learn how to master the classics yourself! Bring your appetite and your curiosity today as you head out to meet a local chef who'll serve not only as your cooking teacher but as your cultural guide to the city.
Your teacher will navigate you through a local market, explaining seasonal ingredients and pointing out vendors hawking fantastic produce and specialty products. After your market visit, you'll return to the chef's kitchen to learn how to weave your ingredients together to craft a delicious meal.
Whether you're an experienced or novice cook, you're sure to be delighted with the relaxed vibe and vibrant palette of fresh, seasonal ingredients as your teacher guides you through preparations and techniques. You'll learn how to cook a traditional Portuguese meal consisting of a fish dish, a meat dish and a dessert. It'll be a hands-on experience! At the end of your class, you'll enjoy the meal you've created with your new foodie friends; taste the fruits of your labor paired with excellent Portuguese wines.
After class, you'll receive recipes to bring home with you so you can recreate your culinary achievement in your own kitchen and impress your family and friends!
Day 5: Transfer from Lisbon to Évora & Private Tour
This morning after breakfast at your hotel, you'll be picked up for your private transfer to the small town of Évora, a tiny gem in the rural countryside of the Alentejo region.
Enjoy lunch in town: dig into migas, a savory bread crumb pudding infused with garlic, olive oil, herbs and spices, all served alongside savory roasted meat. The local cheeses and breads are also world-class!
After, venture out on a private guided tour to discover the most impressive treasures of this UNESCO-recognized city. Your guide will cover Évora's main monuments including the well-preserved ruins of the Templo Romano, as well as landmarks of the golden age of Portuguese maritime discoveries. This tour is especially perfect if you're interested in gaining an overview of the city's major events, which have always been linked to the most significant moments in Portuguese history.
In the evening, you'll have the free time to explore Évora's streets and dining scene on your own.
Day 6: Explore Évora and the Alentejo region
Today you'll have a full-day excursion of Évora and the Alentejo region, where the pace of life slows amid the area's iconic golden plains. This sparsely populated yet vast swath of land between the Algarve region and Lisbon offers scenic rolling hills, olive groves, vineyards, and charming fortified towns with a number of walking trails, Neolithic monuments, rustic wineries, and cork production facilities.
Enjoy the slower rhythm here; residents in the Alentejo region are more traditional than in other parts of Portugal, something you'll see reflected in their home-cooked cuisine and beautiful handicrafts. Get to know the locals and their cultures today as you visit medieval villages, a cork forest, a winery, and Neolithic monuments. You'll also tuck into a delectable lunch at a traditional Alentejo cuisine restaurant before you return to Évora for the rest of the day.
Day 7: Transfer from Évora to Porto via Coimbra
Today, after breakfast and check-out, you will be transferred to Porto. About three-fourths of the way through the trip, you will make a stop in Coimbra where there will be free time to walk around and have lunch.
Coimbra is the medieval capital of Portugal and the site of the country’s greatest university: the University of Coimbra, established in 1290. Coimbra wears its weighty importance in Portuguese history with dignity and pride, witnessed by its multicolored collage of buildings that span nearly a millennium. In fact, the city's historic core cascades down a hillside creating a lovely setting along the east bank of the Rio Mondego. Explore the streets your own with a self-guided tour before you finish the road trip to Porto.
Upon your arrival in Portugal's second-largest city, check in to your hotel, then take the remainder of the day to either rest or explore your new neighborhood surroundings. There are myriad options in town for dinner, so ask your specialist for a recommendation or two, and be sure to save room to savor a bit of iconic Port wine as a nightcap!
Day 8: Get to Know Porto & Food Tour
Today is a great introduction to Porto! After breakfast at the hotel, you'll join a half-day tour of the city with a local guide. This excursion will lead you through the most important landmarks of Portugal’s second most populous city as you travel from place to place in a comfortable private vehicle.
Your guide will explain the rich history of this city, also called Invicta (the Unbeaten City), with stories of heroes and battles, as you make your way to the trendiest and most cultural area of town. Here you'll explore Boavista Avenue, one of the city's most important streets, and Foz, home to some of the most revered museums and modern local treasures.
Next, you'll head to the city center — a UNESCO World Heritage Site — to admire the most renowned Romanesque, Gothic, Baroque and Neo-Classical monuments and sites, including the São Bento Railway Station, Clerigos Tower, Church of St. Francis, Lello Bookshop, Sta. Catarina Street, Majestic Café, and Bolhão Market, to name a few.
After visiting the imposing Porto Cathedral with its superb silver altarpiece, you'll finish the tour along the banks of the immense Douro River with views of Ribeira Plaza and the D. Luís Bridge.
But that's not all: you'll also visit a small scale canning factory, which produces gourmet-quality tinned fishes. What makes this purveyor unique is its hand-made processing techniques, which have been used here for the last century. Tinned fish isn’t only a delicacy in Portugal; it's a traditional way of life that continues to adapt to the times.
In the evening, after you've had some time to rest, it's time for another tour — this time centered on the city's exciting food scene. This is your chance to get off the well-worn tourist path for a side of Porto that most travelers rarely see. You'll be welcomed by local families in their small, authentic restaurants, cafés, and bars as you taste a range of traditional dishes, local pastries, and, of course, Portuguese wines.
Day 9: Wine Tasting in the Douro Valley
After breakfast, you'll be picked for a full-day wine experience in the Douro Valley.
The excursion begins at a family-owned winery in the picturesque town of S. João da Pesqueira, located in a small subregion called Douro Superior. Upon arrival, one of the family members will lead you on a walking tour of their undulating vineyards over the Douro River, followed by an intimate wine tasting. This winery is part of a new generation of small family wineries based in the Douro with over a century of Port wine experience.
For lunch, you can take your pick between several options, including a charming restaurant in the mountainous town of Ervedosa serving traditional recipes that have been made in households across the region for centuries.
Your driver will then take you through the picturesque vineyards of a winery in the heart of Douro's Pinhão Valley. This innovative, yet rustic winery was founded by Jorge Serôdio Borges and his wife Sandra Tavares da Silva — two of the most celebrated winemakers in Portugal. Initially, the winery included a lone vineyard called Pintas but it has gradually expanded to include additional properties, such as the magnificent Quinta da Manoella.
At the end of the afternoon, your driver will take you back to your hotel. Tonight, allow the tranquil sounds of nature to lull you to sleep here in the relaxing countryside.
Day 10: Depart Porto
It's time to say goodbye to Portugal!
Depending on the time of your flight, you may be able to squeeze in one more walk through the streets of Porto or perhaps pick up some last-minute souvenirs. At the designated time, you'll be picked up at your hotel and transferred to the airport for your departure onwards.