Trip to Portugal
· Thu, Nov 21, 2019
Travel Expert Travis Stewart
Explore the cultural, historical, and gastronomic hot spot of Portugal, which was recently named the "World's Best Destination" by the World Travel Awards, in part because of the welcome and friendly nature of the Portuguese. Cross the English Channel to wrap up your trip with a couple of days exploring the global city of London, England.
Travel from Charlottetown (or other gateways) to Lisbon, Portugal
Arrive in Lisbon and transfer to your four-star accommodations at the Hotel Marques de Pombal located on the main avenue, "Avenida da Liberdade," just 15 minutes by foot to the centre of downtown. Hotel check-in will begin at 3 pm.
After breakfast at our hotel, we will take a tour to visit the Portuguese capital, Lisboa - the "Seven Hills City" - with its World Heritage sites. The panoramic tour in Lisboa will take in Edward VII park, Liberty Avenue, and Rossio Square. We'll take a short walk through the medieval quarter of Alfama, with its narrow streets that are from the Moorish occupancy. Feel the atmosphere of this "old" historical town, crowned by the magnificent St. George's Castle. We'll pass the Cathedral that dates back to the 12th century, and Blackhorse Square, an immense square that borders the Tagus River.
We will then go to the most historical quarter in Lisbon - the Discoveries Quarter of Belem - from where the Portuguese Caravels sailed off to make their epic maritime discoveries. Once at Belem, we will see two of Lisbon's jewels - the Jerónimos Monastery and the Tower of Belem - whose origins date back to the 16th century. The Portuguese symbols are both considered as World Heritage, and represent the most luxurious and prestigious times of the Portuguese monarchy.
We will then leave the Lisbon area and head towards the romantic town of Sintra, with its charming palaces. In the centre of the village we will find, the Sintra National Palace, a Moorish-style building with conic chimneys, Manueline style windows, and tile panels, which make you just want to get inside. You will feel like you've walked back in time as we wander the narrow streets of Sintra, which are full of small shops selling Portuguese tiles and ceramics. We will have lunch in Sintra.
After lunch, we will head towards Cascais and Estoril, stopping in Cape Roca - the westernmost point in continental Europe - to admire the view. We will stop in Cascais - a lively, cosmopolitan town that retains a certain aristocratic atmosphere - for some free time. Cascais, traditionally a seaside fishing village, underwent significant development in the 14th century when it was a busy port of call for ships on their way to Lisbon. It was late in the 19th century, when sea-bathing became popular, that Cascais was transformed into a very fashionable seaside resort.
A natural curiosity on the way out of Cascais is the Boca do Inferno (Hell’s Mouth), a recess of the coast surrounded by craggy rocks and caves, and providing a fantastic spectacle when the sea crashes against them on stormy days.
We will stop for some panoramic views of the seaside town of Estoril before returning to our hotel in Lisbon.
We will depart our hotel at 8:00 am, after breakfast, to enjoy a full day tour to Évora, the capital of the Alentejo region. The city is a World Heritage Site, full of tradition and history, handicrafts and gastronomy. We will travel through this cork region to find the well-known Herdade do Esporão Winery (about 2 hours’ drive east of Lisbon in the Reguengos de Mosaraz region). Here we will discover the secrets of wine production, visit the wine cellars and wineries, and taste two of their delightful wines.
After our winery visit, we will continue to Évora, a perfect place to taste delicious Alentejo cuisine. We’ll enjoy lunch here.
In the afternoon, we’ll take a walking tour, passing St. Francis Church with its unique Bones Chapel, and then continue up the narrow streets of the old town to reach Giraldo square, where the Inquisition once had its headquarters. We’ll admire the old Roman temple and the Romanesque Gothic Cathedral, making a brief stop in the university courtyard.
In Évora you will have free time to explore and shop on your own. You’ll find a great variety of items, including painted pottery, cork work, copper items, and colourful furniture.
Spend your day at leisure in Lisbon.
After breakfast at the hotel, we will depart Lisbon for Porto, stopping in the seaside village of Nazare for lunch.
Upon arrival in Porto we will check into our four-star hotel, which is located about 15 minutes by foot from the town’s historic centre and a few metres from the metro station.
We will have breakfast at the hotel and then depart for a half-day city tour of Porto – a World Heritage Site – complete with a Porto wine tasting. It is the city of Porto that originated and named Port Wine and Portugal, and is famed for its riverside hills, medieval alleys, historic monuments and churches, and an enchanting atmosphere. The wide boulevard of Avenue dos Aliados is one of the centre streets of Porto and is surrounded by impressive neo-classical buildings.
We will visit the Estaçao de Sao Bento – the main train station in Porto – to view the 20,000 decorated azulejo tiles, which date from 1905-1916. Close to Avenida dos Aliados is Torre dos Clérigos, a Baroque tower and a symbol of Porto that dates back to the 18th century. Not far is Lello bookshop, with its neo-gothic façade, and Carmo church, with its splendid architecture.
Near Ribeira square is the Dom Luis I Bridge, which dates back to the 19th century. We will take the lower level of this two-level bridge to visit a Porto wine cellars in the historical heart of Vila Nova de Gaia.
After returning to the hotel, you will have free time for the afternoon.
We’ll start with a hotel breakfast and then we’ll heading out at about 9 am on a full-day tour, wine tasting, and lunch in the Douro Valley, the first wine region to be recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Famous for its production of Port wine, the valley is a scenic region with spectacular views of terraced-sloped vineyards leading down to the Douro River. Our first destination will be Amarante, surrounded by the great Serra do Marão, which rises above the city. The city’s landscape is breathtaking: the winding Tâmega River, the picturesque houses on its banks, the imposing bridge, and São Gonçalo Church. Amarante’s sweets are famous: “papos de anjo,” “brisas do Tâmega,” “toucinho do céu,” “bolos de São Gonçalo,” and “galhofas.”
We will then continue our tour with a wine and gastronomic experience where we will learn about wine-making, sample different wines, and have a traditional lunch of regional specialties accompanied with local wine at a restaurant run by one of the Douro’s best-known wine producers, Quinta da Pacheca.
From there, we will drive one of the most enchanting routes in Portugal, making a stop in Pinhão. Here we’ll admire stunning tile panels in the Pinhão railway station.
After breakfast, we will depart the airport for our flight from Lisbon to London Gatwick. We will transfer to our hotel in Paddington, and have the rest of the day at leisure.
Breakfast is offered at the hotel and then we will have a day at leisure to explore this British capital.
What will you have for breakfast at the hotel today to fuel your day at leisure in London?
After our last European breakfast, we’ll head to London Heathrow for our flight back to Canada.
This tour will be escorted by the co-owners of Stewart Travel Group, Paula & Travis Stewart. Having escorted many groups to destinations in Europe and the Caribbean, and having travelled around the world, Paula & Travis know how to take care of all of the details.
“Our clients are the most important part of our business. We want to make sure that everyone feels welcome and just like part of our family when we travel. We’ll make sure to take care of all of the details so that you can relax and enjoy every moment. We really hope you can join us.”
~ Paula & Travis
Travel protection that includes trip cancellation, trip interruption, baggage loss / damage / delay, flight / travel accident, and emergency medical coverage is available and is highly recommended.
Details about our Premium Protection Plan and other Travel Protection options are available from your Trusted Travel Advisor.
If you would like to purchase your Travel Protection online, or are located outside of PEI, please visit the “Look & Book” page on our website and click “Travel Insurance” to purchase your travel protection.
By declining insurance, you will waive any liability against your Trusted Travel Advisor or Stewart Travel Group for any costs you incur as a result of your choice not to purchase Travel Insurance Coverage or your selection of the principal sums and / or sums insured of the insurance you purchase.
VALID CANADIAN PASSPORTS MANDATORY FOR ALL DESTINATIONS
Any exceptions will be noted upon request with Stewart Travel Group and its appointed Agents.
HIGHLY RECOMMENDED THAT VALID CANADIAN PASSPORTS BE VALID FOR 6 MONTHS PAST DEPARTURE DATES OF TRAVEL.
For other nationalities please contact your Travel Agent or appropriate Consulate for details.
CANCELLATION AND MEDICAL INSURANCE RECOMMENDED FOR ALL TRAVEL, MANDATORY FOR CUBA AND MEXICO AND PROOF OF SAME IS REQUIRED.
Please, contact the agent to send the information