Where to spend 4 days in Portugal.

Portugal has three main regions; north, centre...and south! Each has their own distinct landscapes, culture, history and gastronomy. Depending on where you want to go, Portugal has something for everyone looking to spend 4 days in Portugal.

So, as a perfect introduction to Portugal, here are 3 itinerary ideas for your trip...

Douro Valley Portugal
Porto Sunset
itinerary idea 1 - porto region (north)

Day 1 – Porto
On the slopes above the Douro Estuary, Porto is a historic merchant city. The charming centre is a World Heritage site, and you’ll be struck by how rich and varied this heritage can be: medieval walls, gleaming Baroque churches, the narrow streets of the Ribeira district and Romanesque Cathedral. You can wander the charming neighbourhood of Cais da Ribeira, admire the Luís I Bridge, visit Clérigos Church and Church of Santa Clara, enjoy a Port wine tasting and experience the stunning and unique Livraria Lello bookshop.

Day 2 – Douro Valley
Portugal´s most famous wine region is simply magnificent. The valley extends across the country to the Spanish border. The sloping hills with terraced vineyards form a patchwork-like pattern across the landscape, with the meandering river flowing throughout. This region has hundreds of species of wildlife and birds many of which are endangered, such as golden eagles and Egyptian vultures! There are many amazing viewpoints such as São Leonardo de Galafura and Casal de Loivos. You can easily access the Douro Valley from Porto and the car ride is around one hour. Another great way to see the area is on a relaxing river cruise! These are extremely popular and a favourite way to visit the many `quinta´s´ (wineries) and historic villages. 

Day 3 – Guimarães
During the foundation of Portugal it was Guimarães that was briefly the capital of the country. This fascinating northern Portuguese city has many narrow streets and medieval plazas to wander amongst and get lost in. You can explore the 10th century castle and the must-see Monte da Pena. Grab the cable car from the city up to the top of the forest-covered hill and admire the modern church on the hilltop, as well as the views! 


Day 4 – Aveiro

On the shore of a lagoon, Aveiro is a maritime city. The Mosteiro de Jesus is the most famous monument in Aveiro. Similar to Venice in Italy, you can ride the brightly painted gondola style boats, the Moliceiros, up the canal. Then a short drive away is the coastal resort of Costa Nova where you can admire the charming little coloured houses.

Lisbon
Secluded Arrabida
itinerary idea 2 - lisbon region (centre)

Day 1 – Lisbon
Discover the Portuguese capital and its distinct neighbourhoods. Admire the monuments, the views and more in historic areas of Alfama, Baixa Chiado, and Belem. Highlights include the famous hilltop castle, Castelo de Sao Jorge, the Santa Justa Elevador where you will admire panoramic viewpoints over Lisbon and in Belem the Jeronimos Monastery (a masterpiece of 16th-century Manueline and late gothic architecture), Discoveries Monument and Torre de Belem.

Day 2 – Sintra
Enjoy the fairytale world of Sintra. The most unique and magical destination in Portugal! A place Lord Byron described as his ´glorious Eden.´ Visit the amazing Pena Palace, the Moorish Castle, Monserrate Palace and the mysterious house with many secrets, Quinta da Regaleira. 

Day 3 – Arrabida
This beautiful region expands over the southern Setubal peninsular and has towering cliffs, picturesque beaches and ancient ruins dotted amongst the dense mountain vegetation. Sesimbra is a typical picturesque, Portuguese fishing village. Walk along the Marginal next to the beach and taste the local speciality ‘Sour Toast.’ Stop along the beautiful ´secret´ beaches and admire the views from Cabo do Espichel, the most westerly point of Portugal in this region.


Day 4 – Obidos, Alcobaça, Nazare
This day requires some travel by road. First stop is the charming, medieval village of Obidos. Enter through the walls and wander around the most romantic village in Portugal. Then onto the magnificent Alcobaça Monastery; gothic, impressive and spellbinding and once home to 1,000 monks. Final stop is Nazare, the small fishing town which is famous for its big wave surfing! Nazare is a small coastal town with a traditional fishing community. You may catch a glimpse of the fisherman’s wives in traditional dress. Nazare has the most amazing views from the small village of Sitio, at the top of the fill. Travel up the funicular and prepare to be amazed.

Algarve Rocks
Faro street and church, Algarve
itinerary idea 3 - algarve region (South)

Day 1 – Silves, Monchique
Silves is a delightful village to explore on foot. It was originally the ancient capital of Algarve. You can see history is everywhere. The solid, red brick castle, Castelo de Silves, is from where the Moors rules all of Algarve. Monchique is a short drive away and is a pretty inland village surrounded by lush mountain forest. Famous for its strong spirit, Medronho, made from the strawberries, it’s a taste not to be missed. Nearby you can visit the summit of Fóia, the highest point in Algarve, and enjoy the stunning views.

Day 2 – Lagos, Sagres
Situated to the west of Algarve is the delightful city of Lagos. With a strong maritime history there is a marina complex with many restaurants and bars. Enjoy the stunning beaches and dramatic cliffs nearby, with that distinct Algarve orange limestone. There is lots of history to see here including the splendid Santo António church and the 17th century fort. A short drive away is Sagres; the most western tip of Algarve. With dramatic cliffs, windy highs and powerful waves, this spot is popular with experienced surfers. Hike along the cliffside trails or bike the deserted roads. Discover wild beaches, a unique fort and soak up the low-key, laidback atmosphere.

Day 3 – Benagil Caves & Coastal Boat Trip
Probably the most famous sea cave in Portugal, Benagil Cave in the Algarve is a top Portugal landmark. So is it worth all the hype? We think so. Located just to the east of Benagil Beach it is accessed by boat or kayak or paddleboard if you fancy it! Inside the grotto formation, which has taken place over millions of years, you will get the most amazing view of the `eye´ in the ceiling of the cave and marvel at the golden reflections of the sea and sand inside the cave itself. We suggest taking one of the organised boat trips along the coast, so you can visit Benagil and see more of the Algarve coast. 


Day 4 – Faro
Sometimes overlooked because of its proximity to the airport, Faro is a delightful, picturesque Portuguese city. The historic centre has ancient city walls, the Arco da Vila gateway and a gothic cathedral. Outside the walls in the modern area of the city you can enjoy pristine squares, pedestrianised walkways and a wide variety of bars and restaurants. 

Why Portugal and why us?

If you are thinking of coming to Portugal for vacation, then we hope Classic Portugal Tours will be your choice of tour company. We offer private tours in Portugal, multi-day tours and bespoke tours. If you are still wondering whether to plan a trip we wish to share just a few of the things we love about Portugal…

 

Beaches in Portugal are some of the best in Europe. Explore stunning Lisbon secret beaches, the serenity of Comporta or go see the big waves of Nazare. Sightseeing in Portugal could not be better. Enjoy cultural guided tours including the Sintra moorish castle, grand monuments of Lisbon and the charming village of Obidos. We offer bespoke tours all over the country including Aveiro, Monsaraz and Coimbra in Portugal. Just tell us where you want to go and we create perfect bespoke tours in Portugal.

 

As a leading Portugal private tour guide with high quality tours, our number one priority is customer service. Our Portugal private tours include certified tour guides who will enter all monuments with you. There are many places to visit from Lisbon. Learn the history and culture of Portugal and impress your friends back home!

 

Enjoyed this Portugal blog post? Check out our full day Portugal private tours or you may like our blog posts Portugal Tours for Seniors and Most Beautiful Portuguese Villages.

"This tour is a great value for a private tour and we highly recommend Classic Portugal and this tour package!"
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Philip
Atlanta, Georgia
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