Portugal: From North to South

2-Week Portugal Highlights Holiday Itinerary

Prices from £1,048 pp

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View day-by-day

Duration15 days / 14 nights (flexible)

DepartureDaily

ItineraryPorto - Douro Valley - Coimbra - Nazare - Lisbon - Sesimbra - Algarve West - Faro

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Overview

In two weeks you will drive from Porto in the north of Portugal to Faro the south, discovering all the highlights of this fascinating country. The route contains culture, nature and beaches, making it a great choice for everyone. The cities of Porto, Lisbon and Coimbra are full of culture, where you can feast on local delicacies and discover small streets. In Nazaré and along the Algarve you can explore the most beautiful Portuguese beaches and can end your trip nice and relaxed.

What's included

  • Accommodation – price based on 2 people sharing
  • Breakfast
  • Transport as described
  • Car hire
  • Excursions as described

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Location map

Your day-by-day itinerary

Port, Porto… Portugal!

When you arrive at the airport, you will take a taxi or the metro to your city hotel, located in the heart of the centre of Porto. You’ll sleep in a small-scale boutique hotel that’s only about a 10-minute walk from the old town. The rooms are tastefully decorated, and the owners have preserved many of the original details. They’ll make you feel very welcome and are happy to provide tips on what is best to see in the city.

a port city from above

Today you’ll head out on a tour to a world-renowned winery, learning about the local delicacy and of course getting to have taste. The winery has been run by the same family for centuries and the wonderful smell of wood and yeast welcomes you when you enter. Once you have learnt all about the production and aging process and viewed the rows of barrels, you’ll get to enjoy a good glass of port in the adjacent garden. Afterwards, walk up the hill to the lookout point to find a nice view over Porto as the river winds through the city centre.

a man drinks port in front of a barrel

Down in Douro Valley

Today you’ll drive from Porto to the Douro valley in around two hours, where some of the country’s best wine (and views) come from. Green wine terraces are found along the Douro River and the rolling hilly landscape is dotted with villages that are centuries old. You’ll sleep in a small winery with a swimming pool, where you can relax at the end of the day. Take a walk through the vines and learn more about the wine-making process with an audio tour.

a white house in the green valley

Legends of Coimbra

As you arrive in Coimbra, you’ll be welcomed by music and a pleasant atmosphere. This was once the capital of Portugal, nowadays one of the oldest university cities in Europe. You will stay in a boutique bed & breakfast within walking distance of the centre, allowing you to spend the afternoon strolling through alleys past local shops and restaurants.

the facade of an old building

Today it’s time to hit the road through Coimbra to visit the Santa Cruz Church, where the first two kings of Portugal are buried. Stroll through the park and have lunch on a riverside terrace, before visiting the Royal Cemetery and discovering its beautiful gardens. You’ll spend the evening having dinner in Baixa, the lower town, tasting local dishes and enjoying a musical evening full of live fado. The songs are about lost loves so let yourself be carried away by the sounds of the twelve-string Coimbra guitar and the intense emotions of the singers.

musicians in a room

Fresh Fish & Wild Waves

Arrive in Nazaré today, the perfect stopover on the beach to break up a road trip along the coast. The next two nights are all about relaxation and enjoyment, sleeping in a simple hotel on the coast, where the shops and restaurants packed with locally caught fish are just around the corner. Wake up in the morning and within five minutes you’ll be on the beach, underneath your umbrella or sunbathing on a beach towel like local. Had enough of the sun? Ride the funicular carriage to the lookout point at Sitio for panoramic views of the beach or you can also explore Bairro dos Pescadores, a picturesque neighbourhood, grabbing a lunch of fresh seafood straight from the bay.

a boat on a beach

Authentic Lisbon

Today you’ll arrive in Lisbon and stay in a central hotel the historic centre that is within walking distance from an array of sights. Winding streets, large squares and old trams adorn the streetscape of this district, but because the centre is quite compact, it is best to discover the sights on foot. You can view the traditional architecture and have a nice drink in one of the squares framed with local bars.

a tram heads towards you

Start the following day with a nice breakfast to make sure you’re ready for a busy day exploring the sights, sounds and tastes of Lisbon. You will meet your guide and be taken to hidden places where only locals go, walking together through narrow streets discovering lesser visited areas. In the afternoon you can decide what you are going to do. Dive into the seafarers’ past in Belém, on the banks of the Tagus, or head to the Alfama district, with its centuries-old buildings.

a cobbled street with pink buildings

Climbing along Coastal Cliffs

You’ll arrive today to a country house on the edge of the Arrabida National Park that has been converted into a hotel. Nothing is planned for your day of arrival, so dive into the pool or drive to one of the nearby protected beaches in the national park. There’s nothing like a refreshing dip in the clear blue sea to unwind after a car journey.

a man jumps into the sea

Today you’ll aim to get your adrenaline pumping on a canyoning and ziplining tour along the rugged coast. Coasteering is less known than other adventure activities but is safe to do with your expert guide and is a lot of fun. In a motorised dinghy, you’ll sail to the base of the cliff beginning to climb and clamber along the rocks until you’re ready to jump to the open water. The guides are experienced and tailor the tour to you, so that the tour is as exciting as you want it to be and a wetsuit, life jacket, helmet and harness are all included. After an action-packed morning, you’ll have the rest of the day free to relax and reminisce.

sunset over the sea

Secluded Spots on the Algarve

Arrive in the Algarve today, one of Portugal’s most famous regions because it is a place that really has something for everyone. You’ll quickly drive away from the busier tourist areas and head to your quiet residence in a more secluded location. Small sandy beaches are only about ten minutes away by car, so take a dip before trying the delicious “cataplana”, a local fish stew, with a glass of Vida Nova wine at the Portuguese tavern nearby. 

a colourful cove with cliffs

You now have a few days to do as you please. It may be to go no further than the hotel grounds, swapping between laying on your sunbed and floating in the pool. If you prefer to explore the local area, there is a fantastic local market a few minutes’ drive away full of vegetable, bread, olives, fish and fruit. Once you’re stocked up, cycle along the cliffs or drive the coastal route to Cabo São Vincente, also known as the end of the world. The view over the Atlantic with the lighthouse and the fortress in the foreground make it well worth the drive. 

steps down to a beach
Staff-Emma-Cuba

Speak to our Portugal specialist, Emma

"I loved the welcoming hospitality that you get everywhere in Portugal. Everyone is just so friendly, the food is absolutely delicious and the beaches around Tavira are some of the best I've ever seen!"


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