Your eight day journey will be an action-packed one, offering the chance to appreciate Portugal’s culture and gastronomy. You’ll have guided walks throughout Lisbon and Porto, giving you a close look at both metropolitan cities. Moreover, you can explore some of the country’s lesser known UNESCO sites in towns like Alcobaca, Batalha and Coimbra. Beyond the cultural exploration, there are also opportunities for wine tastings in the Douro Valley and visits to port lodges in Porto – guaranteed to give you an unforgettable experience of Portuguese heritage!
Lisbon – Try the local sour cherry liqueur and get the chance to jump on a ferry for a seafood lunch on the docks
Porto – Stroll down the cobbled streets to Cais da Ribeira and along the characterful quayside
Douro Valley – Enjoy a wine tasting in Peso da Regua and explore the Baroque city of Lamego
- Sip on the local produced Ginjinha brew
- Train into the mountains to the colourful Pena Palace
- Discover the medieval capital of Portugal
- Enjoy a wine tasting in the heart of the Duoro Valley
Residencial Alcobia, Hotel reception, Rua Poço do Borratém 15, 1100-408 Lisboa, Portugal
Moov Hotel Porto Centro, Hotel reception, Praça da Batalha 32, 4000-101 Porto, Portugal
Day 1 Join trip in Lisbon; evening orientation walk
We’ll be starting off this journey in Lisbon – a city set upon seven hills, nestled beside the Tagus River. After its liberation from Moorish rule back in 1147, it became Portugal’s capital and was responsible for propelling the country into becoming a global empire during the 15th century. The architecture from that Golden Age of discovery is still visible today, despite the devastating earthquake and tsunami which almost completely ruined Lisbon in 1755. Consequently, what we see now is a 18th century reconstruction effort. Your Leader will be waiting at 6.30pm in hotel reception for a brief introduction before leading us on an evening stroll around Lisbon to get acquainted with the city – so please make sure to arrive by then! For those wishing to take advantage of complimentary airport transfer, please note that you must come into Portela Airport (LIS). If you are booking your own flights, we recommend giving yourself at least one hour to clear the airport. From the airport to the hotel is a 15 minute drive, so therefore the latest your flight can arrive is 5.45pm. Should you miss the welcome meeting, your Leader will inform you of any essential information as soon as you catch up.
Day 2 Explore Lisbon’s Bairro Alto neighbourhood on foot. Optional afternoon Sintra visit
This walking tour of Lisbon is the perfect introduction to one of Europe’s most beautiful cities (lasting approx. four hours). We’ll stroll up seven hills, taking in the cobbled streets and varied buildings that make up this incredible city – all while admiring the classic trams maneuvering around its winding roads. One must-see destination is Alfama Hill, where we can take in panoramic views across the River Tagus from Miradouro da Santa Luzia viewpoint. Then it’s on to Bairro Alto, where we’ll stop for a taste of Ginjinha – Lisbon’s renowned sour cherry liqueur. To finish off the morning, we’ll visit Time Out Market for some traditional Portuguese food, sweet treats and drinks. During your afternoon in Lisbon you can experience so much! To start, you may consider visiting MAAT (Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology). For a unique adventure, you could take a ferry across Tagus to Cacilhas for some tasty seafood lunch paired with stunning views of Lisbon. For a further journey out of town, hop on a metro and head to Rossio Station for a 40 minute train ride to Sintra. Here was once an escape from summer heat used by royalty where romantic palaces and gardens were built. You should definitely explore King Ferdinand II’s Pena Palace or Quinta Regaleira with its Gothic facade – both are breathtaking! If you wish to explore Sintra at a more replaced pace you might consider taking the whole day tomorrow (day 3) to spend longer to walk into hills of Montserrate and visit Castelo dos Mouro.
Day 3 Explore the west of Lisbon on walk to Belem Tower. Afternoon free in Lisbon.
Early in the morning we embarked on a drive to Belem, where we spent two hours exploring the bairros west of the city centre. Among our stops was the 500-year-old Belem Tower, and although we also visited Jeronimo Monastery, you had the option to go inside or take a ferry ride across the river for a glimpse of Jesus Christ’s statue. The rest of the day was left open for further exploration around Lisbon. We recommend checking out Se de Lisboa Cathedral, its churches, galleries and museums – all giving unique insights into Portugal’s art, history and culture. Notable sights include Baixa District as well as Bairro Alto which are linked by Elevador de Santa Justa (a 32 metre wrought iron lift). Finally, tonight offers an opportunity to experience Fado music – an emotive expression stemming from ‘fate’. Said to have been born from the songs of African slaves, the sentiments behind this soulful music are deeply linked to the heritage and hearts of the people, and as such is quintessentially Portuguese. Enjoying this performance after dinner we come a little closer to feeling a sense of ‘saudade’, a sentiment of nostalgia which, it is said, that only the Portuguese truly understand.
Day 4 Visit Alcobaca and Batalha Monastery; arrive in Coimbra
This morning, we journey one-and-a-half hours from Lisbon to Alcobaca and the marvelous small medieval town it offers. Within its grasps, there lies an austere monastery with unadorned 12th century arches behind a Baroque facade. To get a feel for what life was like here during the Cistercian era, explore the atmospheric refectory and vast dormitory too – though sources say that life wasn’t as rigid as it should have been. Before setting off for Batalha, enjoy some free time wandering around Alcobaca. Our journey continues to Batalha where we marvel over Mosteiro de Santa Maria da Vitoria, built to commemorate the Battle of Aljubarrota held near this region. Although it has a beautiful historic centre it also has one foot firmly planted in the present. It has an attractive modern riverside park and is home to a large university. Our tour Leader will take us on a walk through the backstreets of this little known town up to the University.
Day 5 Wine tasting and spend the night in the Douro Valley
Beginning our day, we embark on a two hour train ride to the Portuguese city of Porto. We will have a short walk from the station to our accommodation, so it is important that you let your tour leader know in advance should you need assistance. After settling in, the guide will take us for an exploration through the winding cobblestone roads towards Cais da Ribeira – arguably one of the most picturesque parts of Porto. With its unique skyline featuring Dom Luis I Bridge marvelously towering above, traditional buildings adorned with hanging laundry adorn both sides of the waterfront and many old boats littering its surface. Though much has changed in this harbour from its bustling past, visitors can still feel the character and liveliness. Our tour ends at a port lodge where we can learn about the history and creation of white, ruby and tawny ports, then conclude with an enjoyable tasting. The remainder of the day is free to explore the city full of surprises – check out churches covered in azulejo tiles, bustling food markets with items such as salted cod, chickens’ feet and tripe; or take a break in a tranquil square-side cafe for some leisurely people watching. This evening you might like to visit the nearby city of Matosinhos where you can sample a barbequed fish dinner on the seafront.
Day 7 Free day in Porto
Exploring Porto is a great way to spend your day! Discover the stunning interior of Palacio da Bolsa, meander through the charming medieval quarter and stroll down Avenida do Aliados. For those seeking more adventure, take the train for an hour to explore the lovely towns of Guimaraes or Braga.
Day 8 Trip ends in Porto
At our hotel in Porto, you may enjoy breakfast before your journey concludes. After this, you are under no obligation to stay in Porto and can leave whenever you like. However, should you need a place to store luggage until your flight departs later on, we provide storage facilities here. Additionally, free airport transfers are available for those flying out of Porto Airport (OPO), located roughly half an hour away from our hotel.
7 nights standard hotel
Tour Leaders are quite simply the glue that holds our tours together. They are chosen for their travel experience and people skills and are thoroughly trained by Explore, widely acknowledged as some of the best training in the industry. A Tour Leader’s ultimate aim is to ensure everyone is well looked after and have a fantastic trip. They are there to ensure that the tour logistics run smoothly, that health and safety is adhered to and provide comprehensive briefings at the beginning and throughout the tour.
COVID-19 Health & Safety Measures
At Explore, we do everything we can to ensure responsible and hassle-free travel.
You do not need to be vaccinated or provide a negative test unless it is a condition of entry of the destination country you are visiting.
For many countries, at least one of these requirements remains a condition of entry, so please ensure you check the specific entry requirements well in advance of travel.
A key facet of our responsible approach to tourism is that we encourage our groups to eat in local restaurants that prepare locally grown food. We give customers choice as to their meals and do not use rather bland and impersonal hotel restaurants or all- inclusive options
All accommodation, activities and meals that are shown in the itinerary are included in the total cost of your trip You will also receive a complimentary transfer to and from the airport if you arrive on day 1 of the trip and depart on the last day and have provided your international flight information.
Bus, Ferry, Public Bus, Taxi, Train
What’s not included
Any visa costs, spending money and tips are not included in the trip price. You can also book extra nights’ accommodation at the beginning and end of the trip and the cost of this accommodation along with any transfers would be quoted separately.