This walking and sightseeing guided tour will show you the best of Portugal’s two main cities, both steeped in history, yet vibrant and modern at the same time!
This is a valuable opportunity to appreciate the coolness of Lisbon, and the intensity of Porto, in walks to landmarks and must-see monuments. On the way, we’ll visit Cabo da Roca, Nazaré, and Guimarães, the birth town of Portugal.
Lisbon is so many special things! It’s the sound of vintage trams rambling up and down on 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.
Rich in history and culture, this enchanting ‘city of light’ boasts a natural luminosity and effortless charm, and has become a popular European destination for its exciting diversity, beautiful sites, and enviable, sunny climate.
You’ll find that every spot in the city is marked with a touch of tradition. Lisbon is all about preserving the beauty of ‘old’, be it personified by the friendly street vendors of flower and chestnuts, to be found in the azulejo adorned buildings, in the typical pastry shops, or in charming, tavern-inspired restaurants.
Porto, dramatically perched at the mouth of the Rio Douro, has a wonderful and romantic atmosphere. It is packed with ancient monuments rubbing shoulders with everyday Portuguese life.
The colourful 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 grand Porto cathedral, the Torre dos Clérigos, and the famed Port wine lodges that dominate the hillside of 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.
While travelling between these two destinations, you’ll get the chance to visit Cabo da Roca, located on a beautiful rocky coastline, with dramatic cliffs cascading into the Atlantic Ocean and fantastic views over the Serra de Sintra.
Another stop will be in the lovely seaside village of Nazaré, known for having massive Atlantic waves.
Near Porto, Guimarães is a charming and historic city, regarded as the birthplace of Portugal.
In this small group tour, you will be led by an experienced local guide.
Day 1 – Arrival in Lisbon
On arrival into Lisbon Airport we will have a private coach transfer to our centrally located hotel.
Day 2 – Bairro Alto and Praça do Comércio
This morning we discover the Bairro Alto district on foot, with our guide, walking through this ancient quarter & enjoying the sights down to the Praça do Comércio. After some free time for lunch, we may visit Lisbon’s botanical gardens, a tranquil spot in the city.
Day 3 – Castelo S. Jorge To Downtown
This walk descends one of the 7 hills of Lisbon from S. Jorge’s Castle through the Mouraria and Alfama neighbourhoods, the oldest in the city, past the Cathedral and then on to downtown. The castle dominates the city, perched on the highest hill of the historic center, giving visitors one of the most beautiful views of the city and the estuary of the river Tagus. Our walk will also take us to S Vincente de Fora, a Monastery famous for its beautiful tile panels depicting La Fontaine fables among other things. We then enjoy the feel of this ancient quarter as we descend towards the Cathedral & downtown.
Day 4 – Cabo da Roca Walk
Today we walk to the western most point of mainland Europe along a beautiful rocky coastline. The views from the cape are quite spectacular.
It is a gorgeous cape with dramatic cliffs cascading into the Atlantic Ocean and fantastic views over the Serra de Sintra.
Historical records indicate that there was a fort on Cabo da Roca in the 17th century that played an important part in guarding the entrance to Lisbon’s harbour, forming a defensive line along the coast, especially during the Peninsular Wars.
Today there are only traces, as well as the lighthouse which is still an important point for navigation.
Day 5 – Jerónimos – Belém
Today is dedicated to Portugal’s sea faring past – and to the discoveries of the New World. Taking our minibus, we reach the Monument the Belém Tower, the gateway to the new world. Continuing with the Discovery theme, we walk up to the Discovery monument and the Jeronimos monastery which you can visit if you wish.
In the afternoon we visit the Maritime Museum. If you prefer, you can visit Jeronimos Monastery, the Planetarium or the Aquarium this afternoon instead of the Maritime Museum. Your group leader will be able to give you information on the visits and the entrance costs.
Day 6 – 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.
Day 7 – Orientation Walk, River Trip – Port Lodge Visit
Today we’ll discover Porto, starting with an orientation walk including a visit to S Bento Station to view the beautiful tiled panels, the Carmo church, Clérigos tower, the frontage of Lello bookshop, the cathedral then down to Ribeira for lunch. In the afternoon we will visit a Port Lodge and enjoy a cruise along the Douro River.
Day 8 – Castelo do Queijo Walk
The Fort of S. Francisco Xavier was built in the 17th century to protect the coast from the pirates of North Africa, it is located on a cheese-shaped rocky hill, thus the name Castelo do Queijo (Cheese Castle). Our walk starts here and shadows the restless Atlantic all the way to the river Douro estuary. After lunch we will get back into town and then walk through the old town to visit the Stock Exchange (Palacio da Bolsa) followed by an optional visit to the S Francisco Church and the catacombs.
Day 9 – Guimarães Walk
Guimarães is a charming and historic city and is regarded as the birth place of Portugal. Its extensive history is reflected in the variety of national monuments and historic buildings found within the city.
It is a World Heritage Site, and its charming medieval center is a warren of labyrinthine lanes and picturesque plazas framed by 14th-century edifices, while on an adjacent hill stands a 1000-year-old castle.
Day 10 – Departure
Transfers from the Hotel to Porto airport on last day.
Casa de São Mamede, Lisbon
Legendary Porto Hotel
Lisbon: Casa de São Mamede (3***) or similar
The centrally located Casa de São Mamede is a small hotel sited in a renovated 17th century building. The hotel’s charming and comfortable rooms include a satellite TV, private bathroom with free toiletries, air conditioning, free Wi-Fi, desk and a wardrobe. A breakfast buffet is offered each morning in the hotel.
The Chiado historical area is 10mn away while Rossio is a 20 minute’s distance. Bairro Alto, Lisbon’s foremost nighttime hotspot, is just around the corner.
Porto: 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.
You must be adequately insured to join our Guided and Self-Guided holidays. We do not insist that you insure with us but we require that you are adequately insured for the nature of your holiday.
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