It was the Romans who first developed the spas of northern Portugal, not only in Chaves (their name for the town was Aquae Flaviae) but also at several other nearby thermal stations. Even now, for example, Carvalhelhos spring water is a big deal in Portugal – it comes from a small town around 25km west of Chaves in the Barroso hills. But it’s the historic spa of Vidago, 17km south of Chaves down the Rio Tâmega, that has the highest profile, centred on the opulent Art Nouveau Vidago Palace Hotel, transformed into a five-star resort by top architect Álvaro Siza Vieira. A similar renovation has taken place at the old spa of Pedras Salgadas (another famous Portuguese mineral water), 20km south of Vidago, where there’s new accommodation and revitalized spa facilities as well as more resort and leisure outlets.

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Portugal features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

The spirit of fado in Lisbon

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An intrinsic element of musical tradition in Portugal – fado is a form of melancholic song that characterises the heart of Portuguese culture. Sarah Gilbert v…

25 Jul 2018 • Sarah Gilbert insert_drive_file Article
6 reasons why you should visit Portugal in 2018

6 reasons why you should visit Portugal in 2018

Portugal is less than three hours’ flight time from the UK, while flights from the US are generally available for under $500. Moreover, once you get there, it…

04 May 2018 • Matthew Hancock insert_drive_file Article
Your Portugal itinerary: 4 road trip ideas to explore the country

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03 May 2018 • Matthew Hancock insert_drive_file Article
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