This Tour will give the best of the two major cities of Portugal, both steeped in history, yet vibrant and modern at the same time.
Lisbon is so many special things; it’s the sound of vintage trams rambling up and down cobblestone streets, a medley of heartfelt Fado songs, an open-air gallery of historic heritage, a haven for free spirits, a surprise for fashionable shoppers, and Portugal’s ‘coolest city.
Tram in Lisboa popular European destination for its exciting diversity
Steeped in history and culture, this enchanting ‘city of light’ boasts a natural luminosity and effortless charm unlike any other in the country and has become a popular European destination for its exciting diversity, beautiful sites, and enviable, sunny climate.
Marking every spot in the city with a touch of tradition, Lisbon is all about preserving the beauty of ‘old’, whether embodied by friendly flower sellers and chestnut vendors on the streets, its majestic azulejo adorned architecture and typical pastry shops, or charming, tavern-inspired restaurants.
Porto dramatically perched at the mouth of the Rio Douro has a wonderful atmosphere. It is packed with ancient and great monuments rubbing shoulders with everyday Portuguese life.
Porto, old town old houses of the historical centre, from across the Douro River
The old town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site full of historic buildings and outstanding monuments as well as quaint medieval streets.
Highlights of this wonderful city include the formidable Porto cathedral, the Torre dos Clérigos and the famed Port wine lodges that dominate the hillside of Vila
Vila Nova de Gaia.
Porto offers a compelling synthesis of ancient and contemporary attractions and it is a delight to stroll gently through its diverse landscape.
Day 1 – Arrival in Lisbon
On arrival at Lisbon Airport, we will have a private coach transfer to our centrally located hotel.
Castelo de S. Jorge in Lisboa, Overlooking the city from millennium-old walls and the old town skyline
Day 2 – Bairro Alto, Rossio & Praça do Comércio
This morning we discover the Bairro Alto enjoying the sights down to Rossio & the famous Praça do Comércio.
Bairro Alto is one of Lisbon’s most picturesque, bohemian, and alternative neighborhoods.
It was designed in the 15th century to host merchants and sailors from overseas expansion. Eternally associated as the city’s bohemian haunt of artists, its grid of streets is quiet during the day but transformed at night into one of the city’s most vibrant nightlife quarters.
Rossio is the center for culture and local meetings. It’s home to fabulous architecture from its famous train station, with its impressive 19th-century façade or Café Nicola, an art deco café founded in 1787.
Praça do Comércio is Lisbon’s largest square. Located near the Tagus River it’s also known as “Terreiro do Paço” due to the Royal Ribeira Palace former location, destroyed during the 1755 earthquake.
Historically the plaza and the port were the main entrance of wealth in the city, serving both the east and west sides of the city.
Centre to all kinds of historic moments like a king’s assassinations, this equestrian sculpture ostentation display is nowadays the center of the events and concerts that the mayor of Lisbon offers its inhabitants and visitors.
Lisboa a View from Miradouro da Graça, With an outstanding view of Lisbon’s most scenic pocket of the city landmarks.
Day 3 – Castelo S. Jorge, Mouraria & Alfama
We descend one of the 7 hills of Lisbon from S. Jorge’s Castle through the Mouraria and Alfama neighborhoods, the oldest in the city, past the Cathedral, and then on to downtown.
São Jorge Castle is one of Lisbon’s most emblematic landmarks. Dated from the medieval period, it stands out in a commanding position in one of the seven hills of Lisbon, the highest one in the city.
Between the castle and the old neighborhoods, we find the National Pantheon or church of Santa Engrácia –a grand Baroque building housing the tombs of the country’s most distinguished figures. Built in the 16th century as the church of Santa Engrácia by Princess Dona Maria, daughter of King Manuel I, the church never fulfilled its purpose.
Alfama is the oldest quarter in Lisbon. Hardly affected by the 1755 earthquake due to its solid rock foundations, it was home for the Visigoths, the Romans, and the Moors that left the cobbled streets, the small squares, and the whitewashed houses as their unmistakable heritage. Being part of history where most of the Fado songs were written and sung, it’s today an old cosmopolitan neighborhood.
View from Miradouro da Graça Lisboa
Day 4 – Nazaré
Today we say farewell to Lisbon as we travel north to Portugal’s second city of Porto, located on the banks of the Douro River. En route we make a stop in the lovely seaside village of Nazaré, where we have time for a stroll along the coast to see the lighthouse and free time for lunch.
Nazare cliffs along the coast, the view Point in Nazaré from where you can see all Nazaré Beach
Day 5 – Discover Porto
Today we’ll dedicate our day to Porto. Our stroll will bring us from the top of the Ponte Luis I – where we get some of the most beautiful views in town – to S Bento Station, to view the beautifully tiled panels.
We’ll have time to enjoy some superb buildings, like the Carmo Church, the Clérigos Tower – and its singular architectural style of Nicolau Nasoni, the frontage of Lello bookshop – a 200-year-old bookshop, famous to have served as an inspiration to J. K. Rowling’s “Harry Potter” books and, the cathedral of Porto.
The Ribeira do Porto area on the beautiful Douro river margins will welcome us for lunch.
In the afternoon, there will be free time to explore this truly amazing town.
Porto, old town, buildings and great views of the river, Douro. Porto’s most striking characteristic is that of ‘faded grandeur.
Day 6 – Douro River & Gaia: a River Trip and a Port Lodge Visit
The Douro River is one of the major rivers in the Iberian Peninsula, with its 897kms.
Born on the hills of Urbino in Spain, it stretches from eastern Spanish hills to Porto’s estuary in the west. Along its margins, its importance is still visible. In the past, the renowned Port wine was taken downriver in flat-bottom boats called rabelos, to be stored in barrels in cellars in Vila Nova de Gaia, just across the river from Porto. Nowadays, this area of the Douro Valley is a UNESCO as World Heritage Site.
On our boat trip, we’ll be gifted with a different perspective of the river and its two different but similar margins.
In the afternoon, we’ll learn more about the trade, the production, and the different kinds of this famous wine in a unique Port lodge guided visit and wine tasting experience!
Carmo Church Porto, an amazing example of baroque architecture.
Day 7 – Stock Exchange Palace & S. Francis Church
Today we explore some of Porto’s iconic sites: the Stock Exchange Palace (Palácio da Bolsa) and the S. Francis Church (Igreja de S. Francisco).
On our guided visit to Palácio da Bolsa (Stock Exchange Palace), we’ll learn how this part of the former St. Francis Convent was converted into a Neoclassical Palace to house the Commercial Association on Porto in the 19th century. Classified as a National Monument since 1982, this fabulous building provides a fabulous architecture discovery experience!
In the afternoon and to continue in greatness, we’ll visit the S. Francis Church (Igreja de S. Francisco). The origins of the Franciscan Order in Porto date from the 13th century. The building of this impressive worship site crossed centuries, kings, and architectural styles. In our guided visit, we’ll be able to understand and admire this impressive building dedicated to Saint Francis of Assisi.
Lello library Porto. – Lonely Planet considered Lello & Irmão Bookstore as the third most beautiful library in the world.
Day 8 – Departure
Transfer to the airport.
Czar Lisbon Hotel
Legendary Porto Hotel
Czar Lisbon Hotel (4****)or similar
Located in the centre of Lisbon, the 4-star Czar Lisbon offers features elegantly decorated rooms with wooden furniture and carpeted floors. Each of the stylish air-conditioned rooms has a flat-screen cable TV, a work desk, free WiFi, and a minibar.
Guests of the Czar Lisbon Hotel can start their day with a breakfast buffet, before exploring the city. The à la carte restaurant serves typical Portuguese cuisine, while the bar offers cocktails and light meals.
Legendary Porto Hotel (3***)or similar
The Legendary Porto Hotel offers its guests the possibility of staying at an ideal location as well as enjoying all the comforts and services of an exclusive and elegant hotel.
Located at the Praça de Batalha and closer to the main points of interest, you can enjoy all the treasures that this beautiful city houses.
In addition, the hotel has bright and spacious rooms full of comfort and style decorated following a minimalist line.
All rooms are fully equipped and with city view. Every morning is served a delicious and varied buffet breakfast with vegetarian and gluten-free options. You can also enjoy an exquisite drink or cocktail at the bar.
Shared ensuite room with a traveling companion of the same sex
Fit for solo travelers – single room with surcharge (limited availability)
Extra nights available on request
7 buffet breakfasts at the Hotel
Meet & Greet Airport Transfer to the hotel on the first day, at 12:00h – group transfer
Transfer from the hotel to the airport on last day, at 12:00h – group transfer
All transports to walks and activities (as outlined) with dedicated driver and vehicle
Additional transfers are available on request at an extra cost
Dedicated English speaking local tour leader
The tour leader will assist and guide the group throughout the holidays, handle all the arrangements and other needs that might arise, making sure that you don’t have to worry about planning your days and you can enjoy your holiday
Each evening, your tour leader will discuss the details and program for the following day
Walks and Activities
Walks according to program
Monuments entrances (as outlined)
Port Lodge visit
Cruise trip in Douro River
Any services not listed as included
Flights to and from Portugal
Meals, tips/gratuities, baggage, or personal insurance (except as outlined)
Admission fees to castles & attractions or events (except as outlined)
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