Portugal is the perfect destination for any active traveler with so much geographical beauty, storied history and vibrant culture to experience—from its Roman ruins and medieval fortresses to its lush landscapes and delicious food and wine; and bustling cities like Lisbon and Porto. The westernmost country on the European mainland, Portugal was controlled over millennia by diverse peoples such as the Ibernians, Celts, Romans, Visigoths and Moors before gaining its independence in 1139. Since then, the Portuguese have had a profound impact on the world as 16th-century Portugal had colonies as far-flung as Brazil, India, China, and Africa. Today over 250 million people speak Portuguese. The best way to explore both Portugal’s past—it has 15 UNESCO World Heritage Sites—and present is up close on an active vacation. Join us and meet friendly locals, learn about the country’s architecture and wine regions, and take in the scenic landscapes of the Douro River Valley, Peneda-Gerês National Park, and Caminho de Santiago walkin
You’ll want to embrace Portugal’s age-old temperament of paciência—patience—from the moment you lace up your walking shoes on a VBT Portugal walking tour. Saunter to your heart’s content along the hallowed tracks of pilgrims and shepherds through sun-splashed pastures, terraced vineyards and near-forgotten villages in northern Portugal and along the pathways of the vineyard-laden Douro River Valley, sampling vinho verde along the way. Ancient olive groves, almond-tree lanes, and fragrant orange orchards mark your way. But take your time … there’s no rush.
Province of counts and kings, home to the world’s first mapped wine-growing region, birthplace of the Age of Discovery, this small country has played an out-sized role in global history. We’ve crafted the most enriching Portugal walking tour that ensures you’ll make plenty of your own discoveries. Follow peaceful, bucolic riverside trails, stroll the terraced vineyards that climb from Douro River banks, explore the beautiful city of Porto and marvel at some of the most stunning landscapes you’re ever likely to step foot in. You’ll uncover Portugal’s secrets, too, as you trace a segment of the famed Way of St. James, follow ancient Roman paths that link tiny mountain villages and walk among Paleolithic stone carvings.
Portugal’s sweeping beauty is matched only by its hospitality, and the Portuguese are eager to share their culture – and their cuisine – with you. Nothing compares to sampling sweet port wine as your host shares the secrets of the perfect glass ... savoring generations-old family recipes around an intimate dinner table … joining a local count for a cooking class using ingredients straight from his garden.
VBT’s Trip Leaders share their local insight. There’s no one better suited than a local to share the rich history of wine-making and the drama of Portugal’s royal courts, lead you through Portugal’s only national park amidst ancient farming villages, and point out a picturesque field of chestnut trees. Their expertise is invaluable in helping you get acquainted with the authentic side of Portugal.
As you slip off your walking shoes at the end of each day, your cultural immersion is just beginning. Relax at a small 17th-century country palace, once a rest stop for kings and now a lodging run by a count. And indulge in the elegance and the vistas of an 18th-century quinta, a wine-making manor house surrounded by hiking trails. It’s Portugal at its most lavish.
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Shhhhh. The Eastern Algarve and Alentejo’s high plains are Portugal’s best kept secrets—for now. This is the Europe of yesteryear: charming, simple, authentic.
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Rambling in Portugal is pure bliss. Ancient shepherd paths and Roman roads weave through the wine-soaked Douro River Valley, past citrus and cypress trees to high mountain pastures with wild horses and rare Iberian flowers.
May 23 from only $4,995 Save $200. Now $4,795
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