Portugal, despite its small size, has a world of adventures to offer for travelers. Medieval castles, cobblestone villages, captivating cities and golden beaches – this European country surely has no shortage of mesmerizing sights. As a matter of fact, it is home to some of the most beautiful places to visit in Europe. Truthfully, its long history, succulent food, innovative art and cinematic idyllic scenery are just the appetizer. Whether you’re traveling solo or with a gang, the options for adventures and activities in Portugal are just endless.
Need some tips for your Portugal vacation? Headed to this country, but don’t have a clue on what to do in Portugal? Guess what? We’ve got a plethora of tips, to help you plan the perfect trip to Portugal.
A great way to kick start a trip to Portugal is to visit its beautiful capital, Lisbon. Often overlooked for its popular cousins in Europe, Lisbon will sweep you away with its laid-back ambiance. Perfectly perched atop a bunch of hills, the city has photogenic alleyways that wind between colorful, historic centuries-old buildings. Here, you’ll get to discover a ton of Instagram-worthy attractions, such as Castelo do Sao Jorge, Alfama, Tram 28, Santa Justa Elevator and Oceanarium. Not to mention, the city overflows with lovely cafes serving luscious custard tarts.
They don’t call Sintra as one of the most beautiful places in Portugal for nothing. With historic castles, quirky mansions and a collection of lush gardens, Sintra feels like page from a fairytale book. From the romantic Pena Palace to the exquisite Monserrate Palace, this Portuguese city will appease your wanderlust, and remind you of fictional places like Camelot and Westeros. And, did we mention that it’s a paradise for outdoor connoisseurs?
Are you a bona fide history buff? Then, make sure to spend a few days exploring Evora on your Portugal vacation. Stepped in history and culture, this UNESCO World Heritage site boasts a smorgasbord of historic sites, like the 2,000-year-old Templo Romano and the Cathedral of Evora. Furthermore, it can be a rather mystical destination during Halloween, especially if you visit the Capela dos Ossos (Chapel of Bones). Praised for its eerie setting, this 16th century church is home to more than 4,000 human skeletons tucked inside and on its walls.
No list of the best destinations in Portugal is complete without the inclusion of Porto. Opulent yet humble, the 2nd largest metropolis in Portugal offers a fine mixture of old world charm and bustling metropolitan culture. Listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site, this stylish city will give you the urge to snap tons of photographs, with its colorful photogenic houses, bell tower, ornate tiles, 14th century walls and winding medieval streets.
With its whitewashed houses, surrounding countryside and narrow lanes, Marvao is a lavish and fabulous retreat with views that will make your jaw drop. As an added bonus, the village flaunts a majestic castle and offers a cluster of low-key guesthouses and restaurants. Trust us, it’s truly one of the most visually appealing places to visit in Portugal.
With a network of picturesque humpbacked bridges and photogenic canals, it’s easy to see why Aveiro is nicknamed as the “Venice of Portugal”. Lovely canals and bridges aside, the city also has a handful of other fascinating sights, such as Sao Goncalinho Chapel, Fisherman’s Wharf, Aveiro Cathedral, Convento de Jesus, Aveiro Museo and Santo Antonio Park.
With calm waters and beautiful weather, Portimao definitely lives up to its moniker – a sailor’s paradise. And, there are surely a number of international and elite sailing competitions that take place in Portimao every year. But, of course, there’s more to Portimao than sailing competitions. As with the rest of the country, Portimao offers plenty of delectable dishes and wondrous attractions.
Parque Natural da Arrabida
Parque Natural da Arrabida is, no doubt, one of the most sought-after destinations in Portugal, and with good reason. Not only does the park offer clean, golden beaches, but it has thickly green hills and chiseled cliffs as well. What’s more, it’s a protected land area brimming with Mediterranean plants, such as olive, pistachio, strawberry, lavender, thyme and chamomile.
Did we miss something? Got a destination in Portugal in mind that you think we missed? Feel free to share your ideas and thoughts using the comment section!