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Discover the best of Portugal, from beautiful Alentejo to historic Lisbon and charming Porto

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At a glance

From the historic beauty of Alentejo and the highlights of Lisbon, to the pretty towns of Estoril and Cascais, and Porto’s lush wine estates – Portugal is ripe for exploration. This nine-day trip combines history and natural beauty with good food and wine to create lasting memories.

You’ll begin by visiting the palace-like 18th-century estate of Quinta Dona Maria in Alentejo where you’ll get to sample some of its well-known wines and a Portuguese lunch with the owner. Next up is a visit to the ‘museum city’ of Evora which has a history that spans about 2000 years, from Roman to neoclassic and beyond. You’ll get to see some of its most popular sights and monuments, like the main square Praça do Giraldo and the Henriquina Fountain. Your tour will be followed by a horse trail ride and picnic at Herdade da Mata. Enjoy beautiful views and see endangered Portuguese Garvonesa cows.

Your next stop will be Lisbon, where you will have the opportunity to explore the city with an expert local guide. You will also get to spend a day discovering the charming traditional towns of Estoril, Cascais and Sintra. Wander through the old city centre in Sintra and pop into quaint handicraft and pastry shops, before heading for the seaside town of Cascais which was once a small fishing village popular with artists and writers. And round off the day with a dinner at O Faia accompanied by fado, traditional Portuguese music.

As you leave Lisbon and make your way to Porto, you will stop off at Fatima and Tomar. Welcoming pilgrims from across the world, Fatima is one of Catholicism’s most important shrines, and is recognised as the place where Our Lady of the Rosary appeared to three shepherd children. In turn, the historic city of Tomar is home to Templar Castle and Christ Convent, and the headquarters of the Templar Knights in the Middle Ages. Once you’ve settled into your luxury accommodation in Porto, you’ll be joined by a guide for a walking tour of the city, followed by a boat tour. You’ll get to enjoy the views of the old town and bridges as you slip by in the fading evening light.

Finally, raise a glass or two to an amazing Portuguese trip as you visit Churchill’s and Graham’s Port Wineries and sample some of their finest vintages. What better way to bring your adventure to a close than with a delicious glass of Port.

Example Trip Itinerary

Days 1-3

Alentejo

Flights & Transfers

Transfer

Meet and greet at Lisbon airport

Transfer

Private transfer to your hotel in Alentejo

Accommodation in Alentejo

Two nights in Alentejo Two nights in Alentejo

Covering almost a third of the country, Alentejo is a vast region of cork plantation, wheat fields, vineyards and clusters of historic hilltop towns. Its name means beyond the Tajo, and it stretches south from the River Tajo to the northern mountain ranges of the Algarve. Explore the rolling hillsides, rugged peaks, endless plains and its sweeping Atlantic beaches. Vast swathes of sand lay sheltered between rocky cliffs and over 100km of the coastline is part of the South West Alentejo and Costa Vicentina National Park, an area rich in animal and plant life. Heading inland, Alentejo is littered with Roman ruins, crumbling Moorish castles, marble towns and whitewashed villages. The UNESCO towns of Evora and Elvas are home to baroque bell towers, temples and mighty fortresses and there are plenty of smaller atmospheric towns with winding cobbled streets to explore.

Quinta Dona Maria visit Quinta Dona Maria visit

This palace-like 18th-century estate is world-renowned not only for its beauty, but also for its history and the quality of its wines. At one point, it was acquired by King João V as a gift for Dona Maria, a lady of the court with whom he was madly in love. The love story is now commemorated in the estate’s, and its wine’s name. You will explore the grounds and the gorgeous walled garden, a spectacular oasis filled with palm trees and stories of the aristocrats that once spent hot summer afternoons within its cool walls. You will then make your way inside the iconic home, where you will be treated to some of the most wonderful examples of Portuguese tile and regional marble works. Finally, the owner will invite you to enjoy a wine tasting and traditional lunch to make for a full sensory experience.

Private guided tour to Evora Private guided tour to Evora

A UNESCO World Heritage Site known as the 'museum city', Évora traces some 2000 years of history, from the Roman to the Neoclassical via Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque.

The main square, Praça do Giraldo, is the heart of the city where you can see the 16th Century St. Anton’s Church and the popular Henriquina Fountain. The Gothic and Manueline architecturally influenced Church of St. Francis is a pearl of its own with its golden altars and painted blue, as well as the Capela dos Ossos - the Chapel of Bones – the entire room covered with about 5000 human bones and skulls built by Franciscan monks. Then, of course, there’s Évora’s Cathedral, by far the most dominating site in the whole town and the largest cathedral in Portugal. Inside, you may enter the Chapel of Nossa Senhora da Piedade (also known as Chapel of Esporão), and observe the fine decoration representative of the Renaissance movement.

Herdade da Mata Farm Herdade da Mata Farm

Take a trip to the Herdade Da Mata farm in Evora, where you will enjoy a tour and a picnic lunch. The Swiss owners live on the grounds and will be delighted to share what life is like on a typical Alentejo farm, from breeding cattle horses and goats to running the equestrian school.

You will have the opportunity to see 200 mother cows, 100 of them are of the particularly endangered Portuguese 'Garvonesa' breed. The farm offers spectacular views of the gorgeous landscape and lake dotted with endangered cows, Lusitano mares and their fillies, and many different species of birds. Basic horse riding experience is needed.

Flights & Transfers

Transfer

Private transfer to your hotel in Lisbon

Days 3-6

Lisbon

Accommodation in Lisbon

lisbon-skyline
Three nights in Lisbon Three nights in Lisbon

Europe’s second oldest capital, Lisbon is an effortlessly elegant city, full of old-world charm. Winding your way through the city, you’ll pass rows of houses in warm shades of orange, yellow and rust red. Washing is strung from wrought iron balconies and window boxes overflow with flowers. Weaving their way through this pretty patchwork are the city’s trams, the favoured mode of transport of Lisbonites and a great way to hop between the different districts.

Lisbon has plenty to offer, with a plethora of museums and galleries as well as beautiful buildings covered in iconic azelujo tiles. The city is built on seven hills, each one offering spectacular views over the city and the River Tajo. It is also known for its lively restaurant scene and there are plenty of places to stop, sip a coffee and savour a Portuguese custard tart while watching the world go by

Lisbon highlights tour Lisbon highlights tour

This tour allows you to discover Portugal's capital, colonised by many civilizations through the centuries including the Phoenicians, Greeks, Carthaginians, Romans, Moors and finally the Portuguese after 1147. You will visit the Castle of Saint Jorge and the surrounding area of Alfama, Lisbon's oldest quarter.

This city is linked with the heroic deeds of the Portuguese maritime exploration in the 15th and 16th centuries. This was the Age of Discoveries and the Golden Era of Portugal, transforming Lisbon into the opulent center of a vast empire. Part of the wealth from these expeditions was used to build magnificent monuments in the extravagant Manueline style. Some of these monuments can still be seen, especially in the area of Belem. You will visit also the traditional commerce zones of the city, with their 18th-century buildings as well as the Baixa and Chiado neighborhoods.

Sintra, Cascais and Estoril tour Sintra, Cascais and Estoril tour

This tour will take you on a journey to explore Portugal's traditional towns. Discover Sintra where hundreds of years of history and culture await. Walking through the city center you will find yourself surrounded by old houses now converted into quaint handicraft shops and traditional pastry shops. Driving around the mountain you will pass amazing chalets and aristocratic residences, until you reach the 19th-century Pena Palace, an incredible combination of architectural styles, colors and shapes.

The Palacio da Pena, located in the Sintra hills, is the greatest expression of 19th-century romanticism in Portugal. The palace was built in such a way as to be visible from any point in the park, which consists of a forest and luxuriant gardens with over 500 different species of trees originating from the four corners of the earth.

Cascais is a coastal town, once a small fishing village, that became popular with artists and writers thanks to its idyllic scenery. You will also have time to explore the town of Estoril.

Fado performance and dinner at O Faia Fado performance and dinner at O Faia

Many Portuguese would argue that you can’t truly know their country without hearing and understanding the traditional music. Fado is the melancholic song of Portugal, usually performed in a dark tavern by a singer and a small band of guitars, violas and basses. Tonight, you will be welcomed into the soul of Portugal in one of Lisbon’s most emblematic fado locales, where you will enjoy a traditional Portuguese meal and a show. The performance is a moving and captivating experience, as the music has been used to transmit the longing and loss of the Portuguese people since the early 19th century. By learning about fado you will come to know an important part the country’s complex history.

Founded in 1947, O Faia remains up to the present day as a reference in Lisbon nightlife: daily Fado evenings, in which big names have always been present - starting with the founder, Lucilia do Carmo, herself an important figure in the history of Fado, and her son, Carlos do Carmo, together with other preeminent artists. Today, Lenita Gentil, Anita Guerreiro, Ricardo Ribeiro and António Rocha, accompanied by the Portuguese Guitar player Fernando Silva and the Classical Guitar player Paulo Ramos, continue the tradition.

Explore Tomar and Fatima Explore Tomar and Fatima

Venture out of Lisbon to visit magical Tomar, one of Portugal’s most historic cities. Its Templar Castle and Christ Convent became the national headquarters of the Templar Knights in the middle ages, and later was at the forefront of the Order of Christ. The city was also home to Henry the Navigator and provided the resources of the “New World” Explorations of the 15th Century. Tomar is the jewel in the crown of Central Portugal. On top of being a city of great importance in Portuguese history, Tomar was also home to a Jewish settlement as far back as the beginning of the 14th century and hosts a Jewish quarter and refurbished 15th century synagogue. Explore the intricate details of this powerhouse of history by strolling its ancient streets and touring its landmarks with your local guide.

Fatima is one of the most important catholic shrines in the world dedicated to the Virgin Mary. Fatima's Sanctuary welcomes millions of pilgrims and tourists from all over the world. Fatima's fame is due to the Apparitions of Our Lady of the Rosary that appeared to three shepherd children. The last apparition was confirmed by a miracle known as "the day the sun danced.” witnessed by 60,000 people. Experience the wonder of the site and the fervor of the thousands of pilgrims that arrive each day to pray and pay respect to the shrine.

Flights & Transfers

Transfer

Private transfer to your hotel in Porto

Days 6-9

Porto

Accommodation in Porto

Three nights in Porto Three nights in Porto

Portugal's second city is one of Europe's most charming. Built on a steep riverbank, a jumble of colourful medieval houses hug the calm waters of the Douro River where wooden boats bob on the surface and people spill out of its cafes and bars, more often than not with a glass of the wine that gave the city its name.

Porto city tour Porto city tour

This tour is a great introduction to Porto, its history and its cultural treasures. Discover a colorful city with medieval relics, soaring bell towers, extravagant baroque churches and stately beaux-arts buildings piled on top of one another.

Visit landmarks such as the Stock Exchange Palace, the Church of Saint Francis, the Cathedral and Lello Bookstore in the historic Ribera district - one of the most ornate bookstores in the world with carved wooden ceilings and stained glassed roof.

porto-night-bridges-and-boat
Evening boat cruise along the Douro River Evening boat cruise along the Douro River

The best way to discover the romantic and mythical city of Porto is by boat, and this evening you will experience it in the most spectacular way. Cruise along the Douro River on your private boat and enjoy a glass of local wine as the views of soaring bell towers, baroque churches, and stately beaux-arts buildings are illuminated by the last rays of the sun.

Once the sun has set, the lit-up homes seem to dance along Porto’s hills, and the city takes on a whole new character. Whilst on board you will enjoy a traditional Portuguese meal, before heading back to the dock.

port-barrels
Tour of Churchill’s and Graham’s port wineries Tour of Churchill’s and Graham’s port wineries

Churchill’s winery was founded by John Graham in 1981, and was the first British port wine company to be established in 50 years. His desire was to set up a company to produce his own, individual style of wine. It was his wife, Caroline Churchill, who provided the company with its name. All of their ports are produced in their own vineyards on the south bank of the River Douro, in the prestigious Cima Corgo sub-region.

You'll also visit the historic Graham’s winery, built in 1890 on a hilltop in Vila Nova de Gaia. The winery’s strategic location between river, ocean and lush green hills ensures that temperatures never reach extreme highs or lows. This system guarantees a continuous, balanced maturation of the wines and, in effect, some of the best port in the world. Enjoy a tasting of Graham’s wines led by an expert guide.

Flights & Transfers

Transfer

Private transfer to Porto airport

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