1. Portugal itineraries for urban explorers
Porto is famous for Port wine. Its historic centre is a World Heritage site. And it's ideal as the start of a north-south road trip.
- Tour Porto's medieval Ribeira district.
- Visit the Vila Nova de Gaia Port wine lodges.
- Hop to Braga, Portugal's vibrant religious capital.
- Drive to World Heritage Guimarães. The country's first ever capital.
- Then head south to Coimbra. Don't miss Biblioteca Joanina.
- Make for Lisbon, one of Europe's best city break destinations.
- Then take the road inland to Évora. Another handsome university town.
- Finally drop down south to lovely Lagos in Western Algarve.
- Spend some time on Algarve beaches and fly home from Faro.
Feel like spending a few days in Porto? Torel Avantgarde makes a good city centre base.
Braga is a good fit for northern Portugal itineraries © LucVi/Shutterstock
2. The easiest itinerary for maximum beach time
Portugal has over 1500km of coastline. Much of it stunning beaches. Make the most of them.
- Travel west from Porto to Foz do Douro for a first taste of Atlantic coast.
- Then head south to Figueira da Foz or Peniche for more serious surf.
- Nazaré is the place for world record breaking waves.
- Head to the Sintra coast for calmer beaches.
- Try Cascais for soft sand and handsome houses.
- Estoril is another lovely beach. And Estoril town inspired Casino Royale.
- Head to the Alentejo coast for tucked away coves.
- Then go south to Sagres. Henry the Navigator trained his sea captains here.
- Discover loveliest Algarve beaches round Lagos and Albufeira,
- Then drive slowly east along the coast to Faro for the flight home.
Try a midway breather on the Sintra Coast. Stay at Hotel Lido close to Estoril's famous casino.
Beachy road trips should include Figueira da Foz © John Copland/Shutterstock
3. The perfect road trip for wine enthusiasts
Portugal produces Madeira wine and Port. But its reds and whites are worth getting to know too.
- Start in northern Porto. The city that grew on the back of Port wine.
- Drive down the spectacular Douro Valley. Leaving time for wine estates.
- Drop in on Peso da Régua to visit various wine quintas.
- Then go north to tour Palácio de Mateus. The Baroque mansion on Mateus Rosé wine labels.
- Stop over and try lightly sparkling vinho verde. It's a warm summer evening staple.
- For lesser known wines explore Alentejo.
- The Alentejo Wine Route begins in historic Évora. Also home to an impressive Roman temple.
- From Évora, it's an easy drive back to Lisbon.
Prefer to leave planning and booking to experts? Have a look at some sample itineraries. Both Complete Portugal or Portugal Itineraries offer inspiration. All Tailor Made Trips can be modified together with your local expert, then booked for a stress-free holiday. Click 'Modify this itinerary' to contact a local Portugal expert.
Wine barrels in Madeira, Portugal © Kristina Stasiuliene/Shutterstock
4. Portugal itineraries for all-round exploring
Find quintessential Portugal off the beaten track.
Spend a few days exploring Lisbon. Stay at Browns Boutique Hotel between Chiado and Bairro Alto.
Add Pena Palace Sintra to Portugal itineraries © Tatiana Popova/Shutterstock
Top image: Ribeira Brava, Madeira © Tatiana Popova/Shutterstock