Portugal and the Silver Coast: Lisbon and Beyond
June 3- 13, 2021
Arrive: Lisbon June 3
Depart: Porto June 13
Women Only Small Group Tour
TOUR LIMITED TO 8 Travelers/LISBON TO PORTO
Experience the Portuguese lifestyle with a small group of no more than 8 women travelers! Portugal is one of the oldest countries in Europe and has kept the same borders for more than 800 years. Travel with us to discover Portugal’s idyllic climate, dramatic vistas, rolling hills, mountains, lively markets, hearty cuisine, glorious art and architecture,——all things that embodies Portuguese. Its history is mirrored in the countless prehistoric, Roman, Celtic and Middle Age remains and ruins. We will a experience Lisbon’s sights, tastes and sounds as we make our way to Porto along the Alentejo wine route. From the warm hospitality of its people to the pleasures of its backroads, Portugal is a country of rugged landscapes, sophisticated cities, rural backwaters and sharply contrasting traditions. A land of surprises to share with you on your dream vacation!
WELCOME TO PORTUGAL!
You will arrive in Lisbon and be met at the airport by a private driver. He will bring you to the center of Lisbon for your four night stay in a lovely boutique hotel. There will be a meet and greet for all travelers and a welcome dinner at a local favorite restaurant specializing in the typical regional cuisine and wines of Portugal.
The Highlights of Lisbon
After breakfast, we will be met by our licensed guide and discover the best of Lisbon! Portugal’s capital is an alluring combination of ancient and modern sights. We’ll begin our day with a drive to the BELEM district, with it’s grandiose monuments and churches. We will visit two of the finest examples of exuberant and exotic Manueline style of architecture, the XVI century JERONIMOS MONASTERY and the TORRE DE BELEM. The ambitious building reflects the confidence Portugal enjoyed when its explorers roamed the seas. One of the greatest navigators, Vasco de Gama is buried in the monastery’s church. Standing prominently on the Belem waterfront is the huge angular structure, the MONUMENT TO THE DISCOVERIES, built in 1960 to mark the 500th anniversary of the death of Henry the Navigator. After lunch on the riverside, we will visit the labyrinthine ALFAMA, one of the oldest quarters in Lisbon. You’ll find yourself wandering through colorful XVIII century squares and getting lost in the medieval maze of the Alfama district overlooked by an ancient castle. Compact houses line steep streets and stairways, their facades strung with washing and a daily life that still revolves around local grocery stores and small, cellar-like taverns. And you know those Portuguese tiles you love? Here we will visit the TILE MUSEUM where you’ll be introduced to five centuries of decorative ceramic tiles AZULEJOS.
Medieval town, A Palace and a Riviera
This morning we head to the picturesque Medieval walled town of OBIDOS, with its gorgeous historic center. You will find yourself walking the cobblestone streets of whitewashed houses with amazing floral displays. We will then continue to the quaint UNESCO town of SINTRA, known for the amazing and beautiful 19th century PENA PALACE. The palace includes a drawbridge, a conglomeration of turrets, ramparts, domes and a gargoyle above a Neo-Manueline arch, all washed in an array of pastel shades. The extravagant interior is decorated in late Victorian and Edwardian furnishings, rich ornaments, paintings and priceless porcelain preserved just as the royal family left them. We will then visit the Portuguese riviera where as far as the late 19th century wealthy Lisboetas have built holiday villas. In the seaside town of CASCAIS, you will have free time to wander for an early seaside dinner before we return to Lisbon
Wine Tasting in Portugal
Today we will travel into the countryside to the wine-growing region of the ALENTEJO. Through the sparsely inhabited plains and the gently rolling terrain, dotted with vineyards, cork trees, olive groves and several prehistoric monuments, we will be introduced to the local agriculture and wine grapes. We will first visit the charming little market town of ESTREMOZ, in the heart of the Alentejo wine district . We will have a farm to table lunch with a local family. After lunch, we will learn about the CORK production in Portugal before driving to EVORA, one of Portugal’s most beautifully preserved medieval towns. Here we will stay for 2 nights.
The Middle Ages and an olive oil farm
Today we discover the whitewashed UNESCO 2000 year old city of EVORA, an enchanting place to delve into the past. The town rose to prominence under the Romans and flourished throughout the Middle Ages as a center of learning and the arts.The elegant town is considered a museum city, shaped as it is by more than 20 centuries of history. It was once the residence of Portuguese kings in the 15th century, the beginning of the town’s golden age. With our guide we will explore the town with it’s ROMAN TEMPLE, before heading to the 12th century CATHEDRAL. Afterwards, we will stroll the cobbled alleys to the bustling Praca do Giraldo with whitewashed houses adorned with beautiful wrought-iron balconies. It is here, where we will view the ruins of the TEMPLE OF DIANA and the intriguing CHAPEL OF BONES. After lunch, we will visit a family run LOCAL FARM for an olive oil learning experience and tasting.
The Back Roads of Portugal
We will have an early morning departure to the unknown Jewish BELMONTE, considered the spiritual center of Crypto-Jewry, a place where an entire community of Conversos kept large parts of their faith intact and after 500 years, returned to it en mass. Here we will have a walking tour to discover this charming little hill town with time to visit the Jewish Museum and the Medieval Castle. After a lunch in a Portuguese POUSADA, we will continue to the DOURO VALLEY, the land of Port wine!
Magical Lamego, A Rabelo Cruise and a Portugese Quinta
Today is a delightful epicurean experience through the unspoiled and enchanting Porto wine region. The region of Douro is magical with its acres and acres of wine vines. After breakfast, we will head towards the charming village of LAMEGO for a small walking tour followed by a RABELO boat river cruise discovering Douro’s lush vineyards and enchanting natural beauty. You will marvel at the beautiful terraced slopes of the Douro valley offering up the most stunning views. We will then carry on to a Portuguese QUINTA for lunch accompanied by a local wine tasting. We enjoy the remainder of our afternoon and evening at leisure so you may get acquainted with the charming river town of Pinhao.
Enchanting Mateus Palace, Amarante and Guimaraes
Let’s start our day with a visit to the splendid manor house, MATEUS PALACE, built in the early 18th century by the architect Nicolau Nazoni. This palace is one of the few noble palaces that has maintained its original ownership. The Palace is surrounded by gardens, tree covered walks and allegorical statues. We will continue on our guided tour but not before stopping for a street food experience of Pasteis de Belem (custard tarts). Arriving to AMARANTE, a town that proudly displays its 17th-century mansions, with vibrant balconies of painted wood. The narrow streets are brightly decorated and hosts restaurants with terraces overlooking the river and beautiful bridge of São Gonçalo—the same name of the beautiful hilltop monastery. We will stop for lunch at the fascinating Celtic site of GUIMARAES, the first capital of Portugal and birthplace of the nation’s first king. It is one of the country’s most historic cities and its World Heritage medieval streets make it one of the most attractive places to visit in Portugal.
Colorful Porto, Tapas and Fado
The morning starts with half day guided tour of fascinating UNESCO OPORTO, Portugal’s second largest city, named for port wine. This morning, we’ll take a walking tour of Porto’s riverfront Ribeira district, including the lavish rooms of its Stock Exchange Palace, the exquisitely gilded Church of São Francisco, and the Mural Artwork inside São Bento train station. Throughout three generations, many masters and craftsmen participated in the building of this 19th century architectural jewel. The morning visit will conclude with a wonderful Portuguese Tapas lunch. Then you’ll have time to wander on your own through Porto’s lively city center — or seek out some more sipping at an old port-wine lodge. We will meet again early evening to enjoy an evening performance of FADO. The melancholic fado music is unique to Portugal, an expression of longing and sorrow. It is sung by women as men and is always accompanied by a Portuguese guitar and an acoustic Spanish guitar.
Today you can choose to enjoy a day at leisure. In the lovely Porto. Would you like to get in last minute shopping, explore on your own or have a spa service? If being on your own doesn’t suit you, let’s discover historic COIMBRA. It is one of the oldest university cities in the world. The University campus is an architectural delight. We’ll discover the University library, which houses over 35,000 books, many dating back a century or more. Tonight we will say our goodbyes to our new friends and celebrate our Portuguese adventure with a fantastic meal at one of the old wineries in VILA NOVA DE GAIA. Adeus!
Adeus Beautiful Portgal
Morning transfers on your own to Porto airport or train station.
BOOKING AND PAYMENT DETAILS
NO SINGLE SUPPLEMENTS. We believe all women deserve their own space and privacy. Her Dream Vacation tour price includes private single room in boutique hotels or similar private accommodations, meals and tours where indicated, private transportation and more.
This particular dream vacation is limited to 10 women. Minimum booking is 6. In the event, we do not meet the minimum capacity for travel, you will have the option to pay a supplemental fee for a private customized tour. This decision will be made with your approval and receipt of supplemental payment.
Early reservations are advised and a non refundable deposit of $800.00 is required at the time of your reservation. You will receive a confirmation with travel details and an invoice for balance due. Full payment is due 120 days prior to commencement of trip.
If you are making your reservation, less than 90 days of departure, the entire amount of the trip must be paid in full at the time of reservation. Please contact us and you will be invoiced.
Tour Cost: $5895.00
Does Not Include: International flight or mandatory all inclusive travel insurance. Tips for guides, drivers, meals not indicated, alcoholic beverages, & personal spending or taxes.
*Itinerary is subject to change based upon weather and unknown events. Final itinerary with listed hotel accommodations, contact information, and transfer schedule will be sent prior to departure.*
THIS IS NOT A BUS TOUR. We will be traveling using private transportation, trains and ferries. After final payment, you will be sent additional information with travel and packing tips, final day to day itinerary, logistics and needed details from you to help you with ease of travel.
Our small group women’s tours include many extras that you may not be expecting. Because we are a small women’s group tour, we have the luxury of flexibility including necessary changes. We stop when we want to, we add in an extra site and we start our day when it makes sense. Some days are easier than others but you do have some free time built in. It is important to us that you take care of YOU. Do you want to get a massage? Go shopping? Or just chill in your room with a good book? Please do so with being mindful and respectful to your tour companions and traveling concierge.
We have expert guides and drivers who answer questions one on one, with transportation that is typically a luxurious touring van. We immerse with the locals and there is a lot of serendipity! We visit the “planned by us” but unknown to you and surprises along the way are built in. Please join us in Sicily!
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