Get to know three of Portugal's most iconic locales on this far-reaching but relaxed eight-day itinerary. Start in historic Porto, where you'll explore atmospheric riverside neighborhoods and go wine tasting in the nearby Douro Valley. Head to Lisbon to see the hilly capital by tram and stroll along the seafront in Cascais, then continue south to reach the Algarve—where the Mediterranean meets the Atlantic along a coastline of golden beaches and towering cliffs.

Highlights

  • Get lost in Porto's riverside Ribeira neighborhood
  • Treat your tastebuds to a day of wine tasting in the Douro Valley
  • Head into Lisbon's atmospheric Bairro Alto for a night of fado music
  • Escape to sandstone cliffs & turquoise seas in the Algarve

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Porto, Afternoon City Tour Porto
Day 2 Wine Tasting Experience in the Douro Valley Porto
Day 3 Transfer to Lisbon, Local's Lisbon Tour Lisbon
Day 4 Day Trip to Sintra, Cascais & Estoril, Evening of Fado Lisbon
Day 5 Transfer to Lagos & the Algarve  Lagos
Day 6 Explore Lagos & the Algarve's Beaches Lagos
Day 7 Free Morning in Lagos, Transfer to Lisbon Lisbon
Day 8 Depart Lisbon  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Porto, Afternoon City Tour

Porto's riverfront Ribeira district

Welcome to Porto! Upon arrival at the airport, your driver will meet you and transfer you to your hotel in the city center. After settling in, get your bearings with a private tour—learning about the city's history, heroes, and battles as you make your way through the trendiest and most cultural areas of town.

Start in the UNESCO-listed center to admire its renowned Gothic, Baroque, and Romanesque 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. After visiting the grand Porto Cathedral, you'll finish the tour along the banks of the Douro River for sweeping views over the city from the Miradouro da Vitória.

 Day 2: Wine Tasting Experience in the Douro Valley

Douro Valley
Terraced vineyards along the Douro River

Today, your private driver will be waiting to whisk you into the mountains and valleys of the famous Douro Valley wine region, where you'll visit traditional wineries accompanied by your expert guide. Learn about the history and process of wine-growing in the area, and discover the varietals that thrive in the valley's unique terroir.

After a leisurely wine tasting, you can enjoy a traditional lunch at one of the valley's famous quintas (estates). Your return to Porto will be just as memorable as you follow one of the most beautiful roads in the world—winding along the Douro River and past terraced vines and steep mountain hillsides. 

Day 3: Transfer to Lisbon, Local's Lisbon Tour

Lisbon's colorful skyline

Today, you'll say your goodbyes to Porto and meet your driver for the transfer south to Lisbon. Get checked in to your hotel, then meet your guide to explore some of the city's most happening neighborhoods as you hop on board an iconic tram and head into the Bairro Alto.

Continue to Chiado and discover a cultural enclave where the great writers and philosophers of the 20th century used to gather to hone their ideas. Next up is the picture-perfect neighborhood of Alfama. Here, you'll get a feel for traditional Lisbon with its narrow cobblestoned streets and the stunning 12th-century Sé de Lisboa Cathedral.

Day 4: Day Trip to Sintra, Cascais & Estoril, Evening of Fado

Sintra's hilltop setting near Lisbon
Sintra's hilltop setting near Lisbon

After breakfast, your private driver will pick you up to start today's adventure in Sintra. Located just half an hour east of the city, this resort town in the Sintra Mountains is known for its forested hills, upscale villas, and Moorish palaces. Start with a visit to the Palacio Nacional da Pena (Pena Palace). This 19th-century romanticist castle mixes Moorish and Portuguese late-Gothic architectural styles with distinct features like gargoyles, ornate battlements, and colorful terraces.

After touring the palace, you'll have a break for lunch before continuing to Sintra Cascais Natural Park. Some can't-miss locales in this area include the dramatic coastal cliffs of the Cabo de Roca, the wide and inviting Guincho Beach, and the glamorous towns of Cascais and Estoril. After the tour, a private transfer will take you back to Lisbon for a night at one of the city's best fado restaurants, where good food, the perfect setting, and the melancholy tones of fado music come together for a truly authentic night out.

Day 5: Transfer to Lagos & the Algarve

Explore Lagos' historic center on foot

Pick up your car rental this morning and drive south to Lagos, a maritime town on the western side of the Algarve region, situated along Portugal's southern coast.

Upon arrival, check in to your hotel and spend the rest of the day exploring on your own. Lagos is known for its charming inner-walled Old Town, pretty harbor, dramatic sandstone cliffs, and beautiful beaches, as well as authentic restaurants and buzzing nightlife. Locals are proud to say that Lagos has not succumbed to mass tourism like other cities in the Algarve, and the city retains its distinctive character and laid-back charm.

Day 6: Explore Lagos & the Algarve's Beaches

Spend today exploring the spectacular beaches around Lagos

Spend some more time discovering the 16th-century city of Lagos and its cobblestone streets, inviting squares, and great restaurants. Near the city center are several dreamlike beaches, with plenty of watersports and boat excursions on offer. Pinhao is a peaceful cove known for its secluded setting, while Ponta da Piedade offers more dramatic sandstone cliffs and bright turquoise water. Praia do Camilo is a gorgeous spot accessed by walking down 200 wooden steps to a sheltered sandy cove. 

You could also head further east for more beautiful sights and attractions, ranging from bustling resort towns to white-washed villages offering mouth-watering cuisine and exhilarating coastal scenery. Lovers of quiet should explore more of the massive Costa Vicentina Natural Park, which extends north to Odeceixe. The park covers a whopping 182,857 acres (74,000 ha) of protected land, including beaches, cliffs, rolling hills, and marshland, with more than 750 species of flora and 200 species of birds. 

Day 7: Free Morning in Lagos, Transfer to Lisbon

Kayakers along Lago's rocky shoreline

Spend your final morning in the Algarve relaxing at the beach, or fit in one more memorable Algarve adventure with a guided excursion: a boat trip to the famous Benagil Caves, kayaking to hidden coves, or snorkeling in the turquoise seas.

Later on, it's time to meet your driver for the transfer back to Lisbon. After settling into your hotel, the rest of the afternoon is free to catch any Lisbon highlights you might have missed earlier in the trip or browse some local shops for souvenirs. As evening falls, toast your final night and savor some Portuguese specialties in one of the city's charming neighborhood restaurants.

Day 8: Depart Lisbon

Sunset over Lisbon's Abril Bridge

It's time to say goodbye to Portugal! At the designated time, you will be picked up at your hotel and transferred to the airport for your departing flight. Safe travels and boa viagem!

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Map

Map of Ultimate Portugal: Porto, Lisbon & Lagos - 8 Days
Map of Ultimate Portugal: Porto, Lisbon & Lagos - 8 Days