Lisbon, Porto, Algarve, Sintra, Madeira, Azores, Évora, Coimbra, Douro Valley, Alentejo

About Destination

Travel to Portugal

Nestled along the scenic coastline of the Iberian Peninsula, Portugal boasts a rich tapestry of history, culture, and natural beauty awaiting exploration.

From the charming streets of Lisbon to the picturesque vineyards of the Douro Valley, there's something for every traveler to uncover.

Explore the majestic castles of Sintra, wander through the ancient alleys of Porto, or bask in the sun-kissed beaches of the Algarve. Indulge in the country's culinary delights, from freshly caught seafood to delectable pastries like pastéis de nata. Venture inland to discover quaint villages tucked amidst rolling hillsides in the Alentejo region or embark on an adventure to the lush landscapes of the Azores and Madeira islands.

With a temperate climate year-round and a welcoming atmosphere, Portugal invites visitors to immerse themselves in its vibrant festivals, lively music scene, and warm hospitality. Whether you're a history buff, a nature enthusiast, or a food lover, Portugal promises an unforgettable journey filled with unforgettable experiences and lasting memories.

Landscape with Praia do Camilo, famous beach in Algarve, Portugal
Praia do Camilo, a famous beach in the Algarve, Portugal

Getting to Portugal

Getting to Portugal is convenient and accessible from various parts of the world. If you're traveling from Europe, many major cities offer direct flights to Lisbon or Porto, Portugal's main international airports.

Alternatively, you can reach Portugal by train or bus from neighboring countries like Spain. For travelers from further afield, international flights are available to Lisbon, Porto, and Faro airports from major cities worldwide.

If you prefer a more scenic route, consider taking a cruise ship to one of Portugal's coastal cities, such as Lisbon or Funchal in Madeira. Once in Portugal, efficient public transportation networks including trains, buses, and metro systems make it easy to navigate within the country.

Lisbon city roofs in Portugal
Lisbon city roofs in Portugal

Alternative and off the beaten track stays and experiences in Portugal

In Portugal, beyond the well-known tourist destinations, lie numerous off-the-beaten-path treasures waiting to be discovered by adventurous travelers. Head to the charming town of Monsaraz, perched atop a hill in the Alentejo region, where time seems to stand still amidst its medieval streets and stunning views of the surrounding countryside. Explore the mystical standing stones of the Almendres Cromlech nearby, an ancient megalithic site older than Stonehenge.

For a taste of Portugal's wilder side, venture to the rugged coastline of the Costa Vicentina in the Algarve region. Here, hidden coves and pristine beaches await, offering solitude and breathtaking vistas. Consider hiking a section of the Rota Vicentina, a network of coastal trails that wind through dramatic cliffs, windswept dunes, and peaceful fishing villages, providing an authentic glimpse into rural Portuguese life.

In the central region of Portugal, escape the crowds by visiting the remote village of Piódão nestled in the Serra do Açor mountains. With its cluster of stone houses clinging to the hillside, Piódão feels like a step back in time. Wander its narrow cobblestone streets, visit the local museum, and savor traditional dishes like chanfana (slow-cooked goat stew) in a rustic tavern.

For a truly alternative experience, consider a stay in one of Portugal's eco-friendly or agro-tourism accommodations. From converted windmills and treehouses to organic farms and vineyard estates, these hidden gems offer a chance to connect with nature and support sustainable tourism practices while immersing yourself in the authentic Portuguese way of life. Whether you're seeking serenity, adventure, or cultural immersion, Portugal's lesser-known destinations promise unforgettable experiences off the tourist trail.

Charming, mountainous village called Piodao in Serra da Estrela, Portugal
Charming, mountainous village called Piodao in Serra da Estrela, Portugal

Top 10 things to do in Portugal

  1. Explore the historic neighborhoods of Lisbon, such as Alfama and Bairro Alto, and ride the iconic Tram 28 for a glimpse into the city's rich culture and stunning architecture.
  2. Visit the picturesque town of Sintra and marvel at its fairytale-like castles and palaces, including Pena Palace and Quinta da Regaleira.
  3. Enjoy a leisurely stroll along the waterfront promenade of Porto's Ribeira district, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and savor the city's famous port wine in one of its historic wine cellars.
  4. Relax on the golden beaches of the Algarve region, known for their crystal-clear waters, dramatic cliffs, and excellent surfing and water sports opportunities.
  5. Discover the historic city of Évora, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and explore its well-preserved Roman ruins, medieval streets, and impressive landmarks like the Temple of Diana.
  6. Embark on a boat tour of the Douro Valley, one of the world's oldest wine regions, and admire the breathtaking scenery of terraced vineyards along the Douro River.
  7. Experience the vibrant cultural scene of Coimbra, home to one of Europe's oldest universities, and attend a traditional fado music performance in one of its intimate venues.
  8. Explore the lush landscapes of Madeira and the Azores islands, known for their stunning natural beauty, diverse flora and fauna, and outdoor activities such as hiking, whale watching, and volcanic exploration.
  9. Sample Portugal's delicious cuisine, from fresh seafood dishes like grilled sardines and bacalhau (salted cod) to pastéis de nata (custard tarts) and hearty stews like cozido à portuguesa.
  10. Immerse yourself in Portugal's rich history and maritime heritage by visiting iconic landmarks such as Belém Tower and Jerónimos Monastery in Lisbon, and the Maritime Museum in Porto.
Aerial view of the beautiful historical village of Monsaraz, in Alentejo, Portugal
Aerial view of the beautiful historical village of Monsaraz, in Alentejo, Portugal

The climate of Portugal

Portugal enjoys a diverse climate influenced by its geographical position along the Atlantic Ocean and its varied topography. Generally, Portugal experiences a Mediterranean climate, characterized by hot, dry summers and mild, wet winters. However, there are regional variations throughout the country.

In the southern region, including the Algarve, summers are typically hot and dry with temperatures often exceeding 30°C (86°F), while winters are mild with occasional rainfall. The central interior regions, such as the Alentejo, have hotter summers and colder winters compared to the coast, with temperatures occasionally reaching above 40°C (104°F) in summer and dropping below freezing in winter.

The northern coastal areas, including Porto and the Minho region, experience more moderate temperatures due to the influence of the Atlantic Ocean, with cooler summers and milder winters. The mountainous regions, such as the Serra da Estrela, have colder temperatures and higher precipitation levels, with snowfall occurring during the winter months, making them popular destinations for winter sports enthusiasts.

Land meets ocean in Seixal, Madeira, Portugal
Land meets ocean in Seixal, Madeira, Portugal