Sunny Portugal, 9 Days
Valid for selected departures 1 January 2019 - 30 April 2020
9 day tour departing Cascais.
8 nights accommodation in Hotels.
14 meals including breakfast daily.
Services of a professional Tour Manager.
Transport by private motor coach.
Day 1 Cascais. Your tour opens in a scenic coastal resort on the "Portuguese Riviera," your home for three nights. The mansions scattered about Cascais and Monte Estoril hint at its history as a haven for exiled European royals and nobility. Tonight, join your fellow travellers for a welcome dinner. Today dinner will be included.
Day 2 Lisbon Panoramic City Tour or Alfama District Walking Tour. This morning it's your choice Join a panoramic Lisbon city tour by coach and uncover sights that include Jeronimo's Monastery (a UNESCO World Heritage site), Belem Tower (UNESCO), and the Monument to the Discoveries, with the tour capping off with a visit to the National Museum of Coaches -OR- embark on a walking tour of the historic Alfama District, Lisbon's most symbolic quarter. Step back in time on an exploration of this residential neighbourhood, which is considered a village within a city. Stroll the neighbourhood's medieval alleys, narrow streets and small squares, and pass by beautiful churches, whitewashed houses decorated with tile panels and wrought-iron balconies adorned with pots of flowers. Next, climb the hill to explore the castle, which boasts the most breathtaking panorama of the city. Later, enjoy leisure time in the Portuguese Riviera. Stroll the narrow cobblestone streets, sit in a seaside cafe, walk wide oceanside promenades, or shop for ceramics, lace, filigree, hand woven works and tapestries. This evening, savour excellent Portuguese cuisine and wine while local artists perform the traditional Fado (UNESCO). Today breakfast and dinner will be included.
Day 3 Cascais to Sintra to Obidos to Fatima to Cascais. Begin your day exploring the picturesque town of Sintra (UNESCO), the favourite summer residence of Portuguese kings for six centuries. Journey to Portugal's beautiful "Silver Coast," a spectacular region filled with sleepy villages, rich vineyards and age-old castles. Travel on to picture-perfect Obidos, where white washed houses are held snug by medieval city walls. Later, visit Fatima, the world-famous Marian pilgrimage site. Today breakfast will be included.
Day 4 Cascais to Evora to Alentejo. Travel the beautiful Portuguese countryside and stop in historic Evora (UNESCO), known as the "Museum City of Portugal." Inside this medieval-walled city stands a 2nd-century Roman temple to Diana and the 16th century Chapel of Bones. Indulge in the full-bodied character of the region's wines during a winery tour and tasting. Tonight, enjoy your stay in the heart of Alentejo's countryside at a country resort set among 3,000 acres of farm land, vineyards, and cork trees. Today breakfast and dinner will be included.
Day 5 Alentejo to Sagres to Lagos to Algarve. Journey to the famous Algarve and discover the secrets of the 16th-century fortress at Sagres, home of Prince Henry's School of Navigation and the "compass rose." Garner magnificent views of beautiful Cape of St. Vincente, where 200 foot cliffs plunge into the Atlantic at the most southwesterly point of Europe. Next, explore the historic resort town of Lagos, where Moorish and Renaissance influences abound. Here, the famous voyager, Prince Henry the Navigator, began his explorations and from the harbour where Vasco da Gama sailed in 1499 on his epic voyage of discovery. Stroll through the fortress and historic buildings while taking in the surrounding ocean views during some leisure time. Today breakfast and dinner will be included.
Day 6 Algarve. The entire day is yours to experience the beautiful Algarve on your own. Geraniums, camellias and oleanders grow alongside fig, orange and almond trees, while brightly coloured fishing boats bob on the seas. Protected by hills to the north and warmed by the sea, the Algarve's mild climate and beautiful beaches attract vacationers from all over the world. Today breakfast will be included.
Day 7 Algarve to Faro to Sao Bras de Alportel to Algarve. Journey to Faro, gateway to the Ria Formosa protected lagoon landscape. Explore the city's historic centre with 9th-century Roman walls, dramatic golden coastline, and its archaeological and architectural gems. In historic Sao Bras de Alportel, a presentation by a local liqueur maker is followed by a tasting of some of the many varieties produced in the region. Portugal is the world's number one producer of cork. Visit a local cork factory to learn about its importance to the local economy and its many uses. Complete your day with dinner featuring local delicacies and wine. Today breakfast and dinner will be included.
Day 8 Algarve to Azeitao. En route to Lisbon, make a stop in Azeitao, a charming agricultural village known for red wine, olive trees and beautiful country estates. Spend time at the centuries-old Jose Maria da Fonseca Winery. Embark on a tour followed by a tasting of local wines, including moscatel. Next, meet local artisans at a family-run shop that demonstrates how azulejos, the famous hand-painted Portuguese tiles, are made. Later, bid Portugal goodbye during a dinner to celebrate the end of a wonderful tour. Today breakfast and dinner will be included.
Day 9 Lisbon. Your tour ends today. Today breakfast will be included.