Best of Portugal: 7-day itinerary from Porto to Lisbon
|Day 1||Home - Porto||Porto|
|Day 2||Porto - Braga - Guimaraes||Porto|
|Day 3||Porto - Aveiro - Coimbra||Coimbra|
|Day 4||Coimbra - Batalha - Nazare - Alcobaca||Fatima|
|Day 5||Fatima - Obidos - Sintra - Estoril||Lisbon|
|Day 7||Lisbon - Home||Home|
Day 1: Arrive in Porto and discover the lovely city
The second largest city of Portugal, Porto, offers numerous tourist attractions: the most important religious edifice - Porto Cathedral; main square - Praça da Liberdade; old town; Church of São Francisco - admire outstanding golden decorations carved in wood.
Day 2: Visit Braga and Guimaraes
Once arrived in Braga, the religious capital of Portugal, you can visit the vibrant city centre, with modern shopping streets and baroque buildings. From here, you can take the funicular up to Santuário Bom Jesus do Monte, located on the top of Mount Espinho. This is the most photographed church in Portugal, known for its famous zig-zag Baroque steps.
You will continue your journey to Guimaraes and visit the historic city center, which is listed as UNESCO World Heritage Site from 2001. The city is known for the foundation and identity of the Portuguese nationality and together with other cities have helped to consolidate the country and, thanks to its role in this initiative, it is known as "birthplace of the Portuguese nationality".
Day 3: Explore Aveiro and Coimbra
Go on a 2 hour tour inside Aveiro Museum. This is hosted inside the former Convent of Jesus, the home of Dominican Nuns. A few characteristics are visible today also: the walls of the refectory, covered with tiles in Manueline style and the whole building is extravagant, with baroque, gilded decorations. At the first floor, the main collection of the museum includes paintings, sculptures, wood carvings, furniture and silverware.
Continuing your journey to Coimbra, here you will find one of the most picturesque city, known as the intellectual capital of Portugal. One of the oldest educational institutions in the world, Coimbra University is built in baroque style and has a unique atmosphere offered by the students black pilgrim and fado music. We recommend that you don't miss out to taste a piglet in one of the scenic restaurants from this town.
Day 4: Get to know Batalha, Alcobaça and Nazaré
Batalha is known for its monastery - Mosteiro da Batalha, an impressive building, being the most important gothic sacred site from Portugal. It was build between 14th and 16th centuries in memory of the King João victory from the Battle of Aljubarrota against the Spanish King of Castilia. The construction is it included in the UNESCO world heritage.
Arriving in Alcobaça, you will have the opportunity to visit the first and biggest gothic church in Portugal. Build by the first Portuguese king, Alcobaça Monastery was in close contact with the royalty throughout the history. Inside this masterpiece of Cistercian Gothic art, you can find the royal tombs of Dom Pedro and his mistress, Ines de Catro.
The second part of the day you can devote to the most popular seaside resort from the west coast of Portugal: Nazaré. According to Legend of Nazaré, the town derives its name from a wooden statue that embodies the Virgin Mary, brought by a monk from Nazareth. Nazaré has the atmosphere of a typical fishing village and we recommend to taste the fish dishes from the local restaurants.
Day 5: Visit Obidos, Sintra and Estoril
Obidos is a fortified city that will surely amaze you, impressing with the fortified defensive wall that surrounds it. The old medieval town has imposing streets, squares, houses and fortifications typical of the Middle Ages making Obidos a frequently visited tourist attraction. The star of the city is the impressive castle of the city, which now has a hotel, and Praia del Rey is a top destination for golf enthusiasts. The city's fame is completed by the famous cherry liqueur - Ginjinha.
Continuing your journey, you must visit Sintra, a small town near the capital, included in the UNESCO World Heritage, thanks to its 19th century Romantic style architecture, historic villas and numerous palaces and castles. Sintra is an important tourist destination famous for its picturesque landscapes sprinkled with numerous gardens and natural parks, including the Sintra-Cascais Natural Park and the Sintra Mountains. Also, it's a major point of interest for luxury tourism in the Portuguese Riviera and is one of the richest municipalities in Portugal, known for the many notable events hosted. Sintra's highlights include the medieval Moorish Castle, the Pena National Palace from the Romantic period and the Sintra National Palace.
Estoril is the city where the presidents and kings of Europe took refuge during World War II and where you will see the largest casino in Europe, but also the beautiful gardens in its vicinity.
Day 6&7: Explore Lisbon
Begin your day with a city tour of the Portuguese capital, during which you will discover most important tourist attractions. Start the tour in Santa Maria de Belem, a district full of history and culture, in the 15th-16th centuries being the point of departure and arrival of Portuguese explorers in search of new territories. You can admire Padrão dos Descobrimentos monument, built to commemorate 500 years since the death of Prince Henry the Navigator.
Your next visit should will be to Jerónimos Monastery, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The monastery known for its unique architecture - Manueline, an amalgam of styles such as Gothic, Renaissance, but also styles outside Europe, brought here by explorers.
Enjoy the walk through the narrow streets of Alfama, the oldest district of Lisbon, and when you reach the Baixa district, you will encounter the most important markets - Praça do Comércio; Rossio Square and Restauradores Square. Walk on the Boulevard of Liberty to the Marques de Pombal Square, admiring the statue of the one who laid the foundations for the reconstruction of Lisbon after the devastating earthquake of 1755.