Quarteira

Why you should visit Quarteira in the Springtime!

Portugal boasts enchanting beaches, delectable cuisine, and warm hospitality. Among the myriad destinations in the country, Quarteira emerges as a must-visit gem, particularly in the spring. Offering breathtaking vistas of the Atlantic Ocean and a plethora of family-friendly activities, Quarteira deserves a prime spot on your travel itinerary. Moreover, there’s an added perk – opting for a travel club enhances affordability by providing savings on accommodations, making your journey to Quarteira even more enticing.

Quarteira

What To Do In Quarteira

Quarteira caters to diverse interests, ensuring an enjoyable experience for every member of your family. Nature enthusiasts will delight in the picturesque landscapes and seascapes enveloping this coastal town. Whether you prefer a leisurely stroll along its numerous beaches or a refreshing dip in the crystal-clear waters, Quarteira offers a serene escape. For the more adventurous souls, kayaking, surfing, and the ever-popular fishing excursions provide thrilling options. Meanwhile, history enthusiasts can explore the array of museums and galleries that grace the charming streets, adding a cultural dimension to your Quarteira experience.

Try the food

Immerse yourself in a journey of discovery, as Quarteira promises to broaden your horizons. Following a day of exploration, treat your taste buds to the delectable offerings at one of the numerous exceptional restaurants in the area. The culinary scene is sure to leave a lasting impression. And as the sun sets, embrace the vibrant nightlife that defines Quarteira, with its array of outstanding clubs and bars that guarantee entertainment well into the early hours of the morning. Prepare for an unforgettable experience that extends beyond the daylight hours.

Quarteira

Quarteira is also close to Vilamoura. Here you will find some more expensive restaurants and shops but it’s well worth the visit just to walk around the marina and a little further along the beach, perhaps stopping by at some of the beach bars and cafes along the way.

Visit Vilamoura

Vilamoura’s allure extends beyond its scenic beauty, as it beckons with an array of restaurants, bars, and vibrant nightlife hotspots. The town effortlessly combines relaxation and excitement, making it an ideal holiday destination. Whether seeking a brief weekend getaway or an extended sojourn, Vilamoura promises an enchanting experience for everyone amid its picturesque surroundings.

Go to the park

For an enjoyable time with friends or family, consider a visit to one of Quarteira’s numerous parks, where a wealth of recreational opportunities awaits. From well-equipped playgrounds to winding bike paths, these green spaces cater to individuals of all ages and abilities. The diverse range of activities ensures that there’s something for everyone, fostering a welcoming environment for both the young and the young at heart.

An added advantage is that these parks typically offer free access, making them not only a source of entertainment but also a cost-effective choice for a day out. By opting for these freely accessible spaces, you not only create lasting memories with loved ones but also contribute to a budget-friendly outing, saving you a considerable amount of money. Quarteira’s parks thus become delightful hubs of recreation, promoting inclusivity and affordability for a memorable and enjoyable experience for all.

Go shopping

If you’re an avid shopper ready to indulge in a retail therapy extravaganza, Quarteira has you covered with its charming streets adorned with an array of stores. From enticing souvenir shops to outlets showcasing local goods, the vibrant shopping scene invites you to explore a diverse range of offerings. There’s a multitude of treasures waiting to be discovered in this bustling area, ensuring a fulfilling shopping experience for enthusiasts of all kinds.

As you navigate through the streets, immersing yourself in the shopping delights and taking in the local sights, you’re bound to work up an appetite. Fortunately, the culinary delights of Portuguese cuisine are just a stone’s throw away. Quarteira boasts a multitude of restaurants, providing a perfect culinary haven to satiate your hunger after an exciting shopping spree and sightseeing adventure. Your shopping escapade in Quarteira promises not only a wealth of goods but also a delectable culinary journey, making for a well-rounded and satisfying exploration of this vibrant town.

Save Money With A Travel Club

If you want to make your trip even more affordable (who doesn’t?!), consider joining a travel club like ours. We offer access to resorts all around the world at discounted prices – perfect for families looking to get away without breaking the bank! Plus, members have access to discounts on airfare and ground transportation, so you can save even more money on travel costs. These savings add up quickly when traveling with a family!

Quarteira is an ideal destination for anyone looking for a sunny getaway with something for everyone in their family. From breathtaking views of nature and historical sites to endless activities like biking and kayaking, there’s no shortage of things to do here during the springtime season. And if you join a travel club like ours before embarking on your journey, you could save some serious cash while having an unforgettable experience with loved ones – what could be better than that? Start planning today; we guarantee it’ll be worth it! ​​​

Examples below are for 7 nights in March, for 2 adults:

To find out more about saving money on travel with a travel club, visit http://www.thetravelclub.info

The best places to visit in Portugal

From world-famous cities and isolated villages to vibrant beaches and spectacular National Parks, Portugal offers a vast array of visitor attractions and services. It occupies the wedge of ibéria with the Borders of Spain as well as the magnificent coastline with the Atlantic and Portugals location at this sunny corner of West-Europe lends it an exclusive appeal. The southern parts of the island are still popular vacation destinations with glorious sandy beaches and golf courses.

A round-up of the best places to visit in mainland Portugal – but we are sure there’s more to find!

If you are planning to visit Portugal any time soon – here are our top suggestions.

Lisbon – the Capital city

Lisbon, the capital city of Portugal, is renowned for its architectural beauty, charming narrow cobbled streets, and cultural significance in Western Europe. As one of the oldest towns globally, it holds a unique place in history. Originally, Guimarães served as the capital of the country, but in the mid-13th century, Lisbon took on the role of the Portuguese capital.

lisbon, portugal, historic center

The main port in Portugal is the Port of Lisbon, located where the River Tagus and the Atlantic Ocean meet. It was a global maritime power during the 15th and 16th centuries. There are five major ports in Portugal, including Aveiro, the seaport of Douro, Leixões in the north, Lisbon, Setúbal, and Sines in the south. On a cruise, your ship will dock in Leixões Port, located in the Matosinhos District.

The Port of Setúbal has earned the prestigious designation of an ‘EcoPort’ from the European Sea Ports Organisation, a testament to its exceptional environmental standards. Portugal’s primary commodity exports encompass petroleum, tobacco, olive oil, copper ore, and pig meat. On the import side, the nation brings in machinery and transport commodities, chemicals, textiles, and agricultural products.

Lisbon city center is so full of history; it truly is one of Portugal’s best places to visit. Many independent restaurants and cafes line the streets, and you won’t be able to resist the sweet treats! Lisbon truly is one of the best places in Portugal. Read on for more places to visit in Portugal.

Natas (the most amazing custard tarts!)

Portugal’s delectable cakes have a rich history, with many of them originally crafted by monks and nuns. The renowned Pastel de Nata, for instance, traces its roots back to the Jerónimos Monastery in Belem, Lisbon, where the monks first devised its recipe. In 1834, with the closure of the monastery, the formula found new custodians in the owners of the Fábrica de Pastéis de Belém, established in 1837, ensuring the continuation of this delicious culinary tradition.

portuguese custard tart, pastel de nata, lisbon

Pastel de Nata presents itself as a delightful fusion between a custard tart and a cake, boasting a crispy and flaky exterior that encapsulates a creamy and sweet interior. In Lisbon, ordering this delectable treat is as simple as asking for “um pastel de nata.” However, it’s worth noting that in various regions, it goes by different names. To savor one of these tasty pastries authentically, your best bet is to visit a local bakery. As you explore one of the best places in Portugal, treat yourself to the unique pleasure of Pastel de Nata—a culinary experience not to be missed.

The Trams of Lisbon

Here are some interesting facts about the historic trams of Lisbon.

Trams first appeared in Lisbon in 1873. They were called Carros Americanos and were first built in the United States.

portugal, lisbon, europe

It was on the 31st of August 1901, the first electric tram (Eléctricos) departed from Cais Sodré towards Algés.

Green and red trams are specifically for tourists. The green ones were recently added to the system in May 2015. Inside, the Cobrador had two roles: to validate the ticket and to get rid of the penduras, people who climbed the tram for a free ride.

Around Christmas, you might spot the Christmas Tram with Santa on the driver’s seat.

Benagil Cave

The Benagil Cave, also known as Algar de Benagil, stands out as one of the most renowned sea caves in the Algarve region of Portugal. As you explore this picturesque area, you’ll encounter captivating villages and breathtaking sea caves. The cave’s dome is particularly striking, adorned with vibrant rings and featuring a captivating blue opening at the top.

Accessing the Benagil Cave requires adventurous modes of transportation. You can choose to kayak, opt for a small boat tour, or even brave a swim to reach its enchanting interior. However, it’s important to exercise caution, as the ocean in this area can be rough, and even proficient swimmers should approach with care. The allure of Benagil Cave is undeniable, but safety should always be a top priority when embarking on such explorations.

portugal, algarve, benagil

Azores – a beautiful and unique Portuguese archipelago

Made up of nine different islands and situated far from Portugal’s coastal coast in the mid-Atlantic, the Azores might be the perfect place for anyone looking for adventure, but they are also a perfect place for those searching for beauty and wonder.

Each travel destination is unique, and we strongly encourage the visitor to learn the most about it, and we want to give you all of that information. Expect vineyards, spectacular scenery, fishing villages, and lush pastures.

Azores

São Miguel Island

Experience the magical island of São Miguel with the waterfalls of the Azores being one of the most enchanting features. To reach the waterfall, you’ll follow the PRC29SMI trail, which takes you along an old power plant pipeline.

This trail necessitates the use of sturdy shoes as it involves climbing stairs. A valuable tip for anyone embarking on this journey is to ensure a visit to the top of the waterfall. Along the way, you’ll encounter a small lookout point on your right, providing a unique vantage to appreciate the waterfall from above. Press on along this path, and you’ll eventually arrive at the tranquil water just before it cascades down, offering a serene and captivating view of the landscape.

island, azores, atlantic

Batalha Monastery

The Batalha Monastery stands as one of Portugal’s most significant religious landmarks. Commissioned by King João as an expression of gratitude for the victorious outcome in the 1385 Battle of Aljubarrota, this Gothic masterpiece took over a century to complete. The grandeur of its design is truly remarkable. The primary portal, adorned with intricately carved arches and magnificent stone statues, embellishes the majority of the western wall, adding to the monastery’s overall architectural splendor.

The lower figures represent the Apostles, above them are angels, and at the pinnacle is a statue of Christ. You can visit the main church for free and revel in its high vaulted ceilings and original stained glass windows. However, you must attend the paid sections to experience the real magic of the monastery.

monastery, batalha, architecture

Sintra

foam, castle, portugal

The Palacio da Pena is one of the most beautiful places in Sintra as well as one of the seven wonders of Portugal. It shares an array of Neo-Gothic, Neo-Manueline, Neo-Islamic, and Neo-Renaissance architectural styles and a prime example of 19th-century Romanticism. Initially, it was a monastery donated to the Order of Saint Jerome by Manuel I.

It was reduced to ruins after the Lisbon Earthquake. In the restoration of 1994, the original colors were restored outside the Palace. These colors included an old rose for the old monastery and an ocher for the New Palace. The work of the Pena Palace ended in the mid-1860s, although later interior decoration campaigns were carried out.

Porto and Douro – Northern Portugal

In northern Portugal, Porto and Douro emerge as two harmonious destinations, each offering the allure and enchantment of romantic settings. Porto, an ancient city that bestowed its name upon Portugal and is synonymous with Port wine, shares its charm with the Douro region. Nestled by the mouth of the River Douro, both Porto and Douro have earned the prestigious designation of World Heritage Sites since 1996. Visitors are captivated by the picturesque blend of traditional housing and imposing granite monuments that grace these locales. Don’t miss the opportunity to savor the local flavors in Porto, a city of considerable size situated in the northern part of the country.

This hilly city is one heck of a place to visit; think cobbled streets, fresh seafood, and copious amounts of port that’ll keep you sozzled all evening! On our last visit, I kept forgetting that port was much more alcoholic than ‘regular wines’. As you can imagine, an almighty hangover and bouts of feeling sorry for myself ensued.

portugal, lisbon, seafood

Taking the tram towards the beaches or riding along the river is quite romantic. Take a stroll around the Museu de Arte Contemporânea de Serralves with its luscious park, or the new Casa da Música and the praised Metro do Porto. Visit the Museu do Douro, where you will see objects about the region while enjoying a drink.

The Douro River

The Douro River is a historically significant river of the Iberian Peninsula, creating a magnificent waterway for cruise ships. The Douro River cruises run from Porto, Portugal to Vega de Terron, Spain – a gorgeous place to spend some time! Most cruises are round trip from Porto. The most eminent structure on the river, the Dom Luis I Bridge, stretches to 951 feet long.

porto, portugal, river

You get a variety of Portugal and Spain on Douro River Cruises, meaning excellent Paella from Spain and Port wines from Portugal, along with Flamenco dancers and Portuguese pingo (like espresso).

Let’s learn a little about the city of Porto!

Portugal got its name from the city of Porto (Portus Cale) before Lisbon was the capital of Portugal. The city is nicknamed Invicta because Porto was never conquered and even survived a siege.

The most typical dish in Porto is the Francesinha (Frency). It is composed of meat and sausages, cheese, and beer-tomato sauce. Porto’s most famous export is Port wine.

portugal, porto, port wine

Porto, the home to one of the three biggest football teams in Portugal, Futebol Clube do Porto (FCP). Porto also hosts one of Europe’s largest street festivals, St John’s Festival. Porto really is one of the best places to visit in Portugal.

Aveiro

Are you ready to learn some fun facts about Aveiro?

Aveiro is known for bold Art Nouveau buildings, human-made canals, and ornate vessels.

aveiro, coloured houses, portugal

Costa Nova Beach in Aveiro is a must for seafood lovers; crabs, goose barnacles, shrimp, and whelks from the lagoon can be prepared for you on the Cais dos Pescadores. The tourists often herald the town of Aveiro as being the Venice of Portugal.

The cityscape is crisscrossed by canals that you can navigate on painted gondola-style boats known as Moliceiros. The Romans were the first to recognize Aveiro as a harbor. The harbor is the best-sheltered harbor on the Iberian Peninsula western side. Aveiro’s prized monument is the Moistero de Jesus, built between the 15th and 17th centuries.

Portuguese architecture

Portugal’s architectural landscape stands as a testament to its artistic evolution, reflecting the rich tapestry of cultural influences woven throughout its history. Just as various settlers, such as Romans, Suebians, related Germanic peoples, Visigoths, and Arabs, have left an indelible mark on the Portuguese territory, so too has their imprint shaped the distinct architectural style that defines the country. The interplay of diverse cultural influences has contributed to the unique and captivating architectural statement that Portugal proudly showcases.

Influence from the main European artistic centers, such as Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque, and Neoclassicism, are also present. Among the primary local manifestations of Portuguese architecture are the Manueline, the exuberant Portuguese version of late Gothic, and the Pombaline style that developed after the Great Lisbon earthquake of 1755.

statue, sculpture, art

Padrão dos Descobrimentos

The Monument to the Discoveries or Padrão dos Descobrimentos in Portuguese is a monument constructed in 1939 in honor of the Portuguese Discoveries of the golden XV and XVI centuries. It is also known as Monument to Navigators and designed by the Portuguese architect José Angelo Cottinelli Telmo.

This monument pays homage to the heroes of the Portuguese Discoveries, with each side adorned by sculptures depicting 33 notable figures. Notably, on the edge of the caravel stands a sculpture of Infante D. Henrique (Henry the Navigator), a central and influential figure in the Age of Discoveries. Accessible up to the 6th floor via either stairs or an elevator, visitors are encouraged to ascend to the highest point of the monument. From this vantage, one can relish in one of the most cherished panoramas overlooking Belém and the Tagus River, offering a breathtaking perspective of the surroundings.

Classic Portuguese Azulejos tiles

Tiles (called Azulejos) are everywhere in Portugal. They decorate walls of churches and monasteries, palaces, ordinary houses, park seats, fountains, shops, and train stations. Azulejos date back to the 13th century, and the word Azulejo stems from Arabic roots, meaning ‘small polished stone.’ King Manuel I was astonished by the Alhambra in Granada (Spain) and decided to have his Palace in Sintra decorated with the same vibrant ceramic tiles.

portugal, azulejo, ceramic

When visiting a church or cathedral in Portugal, many are decorated in Azulejos, depicting a style that started during the 16th century. Birds and leaves were frequently symbols used as decoration, possibly inspired by Asian fabrics. Famous sites known for their Azulejo art include the Sao Bento Railway Station in Porto, and the Buçaco Palace.

Glorious beaches

Portugal is a gorgeous country and home to some of the most beautiful and secluded beaches in the world. The country’s coastline stretches for over 1,000 kilometers, and is littered with sandy coves and rocky cliffs. From the picturesque Algarve region in the south to the wilds of the Atlantic Coast in the north, there are plenty of beaches to choose from.

faro, portugal, algarve

Some of the most popular beaches in Portugal include Praia da Marinha in Lagoa, Costa da Caparica near Lisbon, and Dona Ana Beach in Lagos. Praia da Marinha is known for its dramatic cliffs and crystal-clear waters, while Costa da Caparica is a long sandy beach that is popular with locals and visitors alike. Dona Ana Beach is one of the most secluded beaches in Portugal, and features dramatic cliffs and crystal-clear waters.

Braga

Braga, located to the north, holds the distinction of being Portugal’s largest city. Renowned for its extensive history as both a religious and commercial hub, Braga’s historical center invites exploration into an 18th-century cityscape adorned with magnificent mansions, impressive cathedrals, and grand palaces. Amidst the imposing granite facades that characterize many of its buildings, the city surprises with several well-maintained gardens and parks.

Established in the 10th century, Braga boasts the notable Sé Cathedral, a popular tourist attraction that symbolizes its historical significance as a bishopric and ecclesiastical center. The city retains its prominence as a major ecclesiastical hub in Portugal, drawing visitors with its rich heritage and a blend of architectural marvels from different eras.

Tavira

The most beautiful destination on this map, Tavira, certainly possesses all of these picturesque features. This charming, laid back vibe small town neighborhood has a Roman bridge that connects both sides. The waterfront provides an exciting walk before or after exploring Tavira’s remaining historical treasures. Castle walls give spectacular views over Old City and its neighbor’s shoreline.

tavira, algarve, water

You can also explore Igreja Santa Do Castelo, the grand cathedral where warriors’ Knights are buried. The city also has an amazing museum, Ncleo Islamic. Highlighting this is an ancient and rare figure vase.

Vilamoura

Vilamoura, often regarded as the heart of the Algarve, captivates visitors with its absorbing and natural beauty, making it a truly picturesque town. In recent times, tourism has flourished, turning Vilamoura into a sought-after destination celebrated for its opulent spas, world-class golf courses, and a haven for culinary enthusiasts. Vilamoura is a place where one can truly unwind and relax.

Situated in the Algarve, this region offers an abundance of pristine beaches, all within a short distance. Nearby shores host some of Portugal’s premier wind-surfing experiences. Vilamoura is especially enticing for food and wine enthusiasts, offering a delightful array of culinary experiences that make a visit to this vibrant town a truly rewarding endeavor.

Lagos

One of the most popular tourist destinations in Portugal, Lagos soaks up the sunshine from the Algarve and is an ideal holiday destination for thousands of tourists. Lagos – formerly known for its stunning beach fronting both sides of its International Marina – is also a home of incredibly magical rocks and sandstone walls which rise above several rocky islands.

There is also a series of sea caves and strange-shaped cliffs. Alternatively, they are possible when visiting them during a relaxing sightseeing tour, among many watersport activities. It’s easy to spend a lot of time here with some of the Algarve’s best beautiful beaches. Enjoy many day trips to visit the caves, dolphin watching, or water sports. This really is an amazing place to visit in Portugal.

lagos, algarve, portugal

Albufeira

portugal, albufeira, portuguese

This former fishing village has transformed into a diverse destination attracting visitors from both domestic and international origins. The allure of white sandy beaches is complemented by a variety of recreational activities such as parasailing, jet skiing, dolphin watching, and diving. Notably, Praia da Oura and Praia dos Pescadors stand out as two excellent beaches to explore, each offering its unique charm. Secluded smaller beaches, radiating charm, provide an ideal setting for families seeking a more intimate experience.

Venturing beyond the coastline, taking a boat trip into the countryside reveals appealing villages, narrow streets, and a culinary scene featuring some of the finest restaurants in the region. And, as the day unfolds, don’t forget to immerse yourself in the vibrant nightlife, adding an extra layer to the multifaceted appeal of this once quaint fishing village.

Cascais – a pretty cosmopolitan coastal resort and a great place to visit in Portugal

Cascais, Portugal, Calcassis

Formerly a quiet fishing village, Cascais has evolved into a chic beach resort near Lisbon, renowned for its splendid beaches, sophisticated nightlife, and a range of water sports and adventurous activities that exude a cosmopolitan charm. Apart from being highly praised by artists and artisans for its breathtaking landscapes, the town boasts the Museum Conde de Castro Guimarães, housing remarkable artworks that continue to captivate visitors.

Adding to its allure is the stylish new marina, adorned with yachts that gleam in the sunlight, creating a picturesque scene. Cascais, with its blend of natural beauty, cultural richness, and upscale amenities, stands as a destination that seamlessly marries tradition with contemporary elegance.

What month is the best to go to Portugal?

The best time to visit Portugal is during the spring months (March-May) when Portugal is blooming and waking from winter. If it is autumn (between September and Oct. ), you will find things a little quieter but also still quite warm.

That’s our starter for the best places to visit in Portugal. If you would like to travel to Portugal for less and even travel for free, check out our travel club membership: http://www.thetravelclub.info

 More about Portugal – Top Tips for your first amazing visit to Portugal: https://greatescapetravel.blog/top-tips-for-your-first-amazing-visit-to-portugal/


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porto, portugal, river

Portugal Highlights that you need to read.

Are you visiting Portugal soon? We have got your back for the best places to visit in Portugal.

A round up of the best places to visit in Portugal.

From world famous cities and isolated villages to vibrant beaches and spectacular National Parks, this minuscule country offers a vast array of visitor attractions and services. It occupies the wedge of ibéria with the Borders of Spain as well as the magnificent coastline with the Atlantic and Portugals location at this sunny corner of West-Europe lends it an exclusive appeal. The southern parts of the island are still popular vacation destinations with glorious sandy beaches and golf courses.

Lisbon – the Capital city

Did you know that Lisbon (Portugal’s capital city) is known as the architectural, cobbled streets and cultural pearl of Western Europe, and one of the oldest towns in the world? The original capital of the Country was Guimarães. In the mid 13th century, Lisbon became the capital of Portugal.

lisbon, portugal, historic center

Lisbon has a very mild climate for Europe. It is sunny throughout the year, with an annual average of 2900-3300 hours of sunshine. The Tagus Iberia is the largest river in Lisbon and is believed to be large enough to hold all the warships on the planet.

Lisbon has a symbol of a Raven. For quite some time, the city had a cult for Raven. The clan even had a large cage with ravens in the São Jorge Castle.

The main port in Portugal is the Port of Lisbon located where the River Tagus and the Atlantic Ocean meet. It was a global maritime power during the 15th and 16th centuries. There are five major ports in Portugal, including Aveiro, the seaport of Douro, Leixões in the north, Lisbon, Setúbal, and Sines in the south. On a cruise, your ship will dock in Leixões Port, which is located in the Matosinhos District.

The Port of Setúbal has been recognized as an ‘EcoPort’ by the European Sea Ports Organisation, recognizing the excellent environmental quality of the port. Portugal’s top 5 commodity exports are petroleum, tobacco, olive oil, copper ore, and pig meat. Importable items of the nation are machinery and transport commodities, chemicals, textiles, and agricultural products.

Lisbon is so full of history; it truly is one of the best places to visit in Portugal. There are lots of independent restaurants and cafes that line the streets and you won’t be able to resist the sweet treats! Lisbon truly is one of the best places in Portugal. Read on for more places to visit in Portugal.

Natas (the most amazing custard tarts!)

Monks and nuns originally baked many of Portugal’s best cakes. In fact, the original recipe for Pastel de Nata came from the monks at the Jerónimos Monastery in Belem, Lisbon. In 1834, when the monastery closed, the formula was sold to the eventual owners of the Fábrica de Pastéis de Belém, which opened in 1837.

portuguese custard tart, pastel de nata, lisbon

Pastel de Nata looks like a cross between a custard tart and a cake. The outside is crispy and flaky, while the inside is creamy and sweet. To order this in Lisbon, request “u pastel de nata.” However, other regions call it by different names. Want to try one of these tasty pastries? They are best tried from a local bakery. Head of down to one of the best place to see in Portugal and try them.

The Trams of Lisbon

Here are some interesting facts about the historic trams of Lisbon?

Trams first appeared in Lisbon in 1873. They were called Carros Americanos and were first built in the United States.

portugal, lisbon, europe

It was on the 31st of August 1901 that the first electric tram (Eléctricos) departed from Cais Sodré towards Algés.

Green and red trams are specifically for tourists. The green ones were recently added to the system in May 2015. Inside, the Cobrador had two roles: to validate the ticket and to get rid of the penduras, people who climbed the tram for a free ride.

Around Christmas, you might spot the Christmas Tram with Santa on the driver’s seat.

Benagil Cave

Benagil Cave, also referred to as Algar de Benagil, is probably the most famous of all the sea caves in Algarve, Portugal. You’ll see many beautiful villages and stunning sea caves. The dome is impressive with its colorful rings and a blue opening at the top. To get to Benagil Cave, you’ll need to either kayak, take a small boat tour or swim, but beware, the ocean is rough, and even the best swimmers should take caution.

Azores – a beautiful and unique Portuguese archipelago

Made up of nine different islands and situated far from Portugals coastal coast in the mid-atlantic, the Azores might be the perfect place for anyone looking for adventure, but they are also a perfect place for those searching for beauty and wonder. Each travel destination is unique and we strongly encourage the visitor to learn the most about it and we want to give you all of that information. Expect vineyards, spectacular scenery, fishing villages and lush pastures.

azores, landscape, nature

São Miguel Island

Experience the magical island of São Miguel with the waterfalls of the Azores being one of the most enchanting features. To reach the waterfall, you’ll follow the PRC29SMI trail, which takes you along an old power plant pipeline. It requires climbing stairs, so shoes are a must. A little trip for anyone who decides to visit this trail, make sure you go up to the top of the waterfall. You’ll pass a small lookout point on your right so that you can see the waterfall from above. Continue on that path, and you’ll reach the serene water before the drop.

island, azores, atlantic

Batalha Monastery

The Batalha Monastery is one of the most significant religious buildings in Portugal. King João accredited this gothic monastery in gratitude for the 1385 victory in the battle of Aljubarrota, and the grand designs took over a hundred years to construct. The leading portal has a myriad of carved arches and magnificent stone statues, which covers most of the western wall. The lower figures represent the Apostles, above them are angels, and at the pinnacle is a statue of Christ. You can visit the main church for free, and revel in its high vaulted ceilings and original stained glass windows. However, you must attend the paid sections to experience the real magic of the monastery.

monastery, batalha, architecture

Sintra

foam, castle, portugal

The Palacio da Pena is one of the most beautiful places in Sintra as well as one of the seven wonders of Portugal. It shares an array of Neo-Gothic, Neo-Manueline, Neo-Islamic, and Neo-Renaissance architectural styles and a prime example of 19th-century Romanticism. Initially, it was a monastery donated to the Order of Saint Jerome by Manuel I. It was reduced to ruins after the Lisbon Earthquake. In the restoration of 1994, the original colors were restored outside the Palace. These colors included old rose for the old monastery and ocher for the New Palace. The work of the Pena Palace ended in the mid-1860s, although later interior decoration campaigns were carried out.

Porto and Douro – Northern Portugal

In northern Portugal, Porto and Douro are two complementary destinations, both with the charm and delight of romantic locations. Porto is an ancient city that passed its name to Portugal as well as Port wine. Porto and Douro are located by the mouth of the River Douro and are classified as World Heritage Sites since 1996. Tourists admire the typical housing and granite monuments. Grab a tipple in Porto! Porto is one of the country’s largest cities that sits in the north of the country. This hilly city is one heck of a place to visit, think cobbled streets, fresh seafood and copious amounts of port that’ll keep you sozzled all evening! On our last visit, I kept forgetting that port was much more alcoholic than ‘regular wines’. As you can imagine an almighty hangover and bouts of feeling sorry for myself ensued.

Portuguese Vineyards

Taking the tram towards the beaches or riding along the river is quite romantic. Take a stroll around the Museu de Arte Contemporânea de Serralves with its luscious park, or the new Casa da Música and the praised Metro do Porto. Visit the Museu do Douro, where you will see objects about the region while enjoying a drink.

The Douro River

The Douro River is a historically significant river of the Iberian Peninsula, creating a magnificent waterway for cruise ships. The Douro River cruises run from Porto, Portugal to Vega de Terron, Spain. Most cruises are round trip from Porto. The most eminent structure on the river, the Dom Luis I Bridge, stretches to 951 feet long.

porto, portugal, river

You get a variety of Portugal and Spain on Douro River Cruises, meaning excellent Paella from Spain and Port wines from Portugal, along with Flamenco dancers and Portuguese pingo (like espresso).

Let’s learn a little about the city of Porto!

Portugal got its name for the city of Porto (Portus Cale) before Lisbon was the capital of Portugal. The city is nicknamed Invicta because Porto was never conquered, and even survived a siege.

The most typical dish in Porto is the Francesinha (Frency). It is composed of meat and sausages, cheese, and beer-tomato sauce. Porto’s most famous export is Port wine.

portugal, porto, port wine

Porto, the home to one of the three biggest football teams in Portugal, Futebol Clube do Porto (FCP). Porto also hosts one of Europe’s largest street festivals, St John’s Festival. Porto really is one of the best places to visit in portugal.

Aveiro

Are you ready to learn some fun facts about Aveiro?

Aveiro is known for bold Art Nouveau buildings, human-made canals, and ornate vessels.

aveiro, coloured houses, portugal

Costa Nova Beach in Aveiro is a must for seafood lovers; crabs, goose barnacles, shrimp, and whelks from the lagoon can be prepared for you on the Cais dos Pescadores. The tourists often herald the town of Aveiro as being the Venice of Portugal.

The cityscape is crisscrossed by canals that you can navigate on painted gondola-style boats known as Moliceiros. The Romans were the first to recognize Aveiro as a harbor. The harbor is the best-sheltered harbor on the Iberian Peninsula western side. Aveiro’s prized monument is the Moistero de Jesus, built between the 15th and 17th centuries.

Portuguese architecture

Portugal’s architecture made its artistic statement. It developed its style, like all aspects of Portuguese culture noted in the history of the country, and many people that have settled and influenced the current Portuguese territory. These settlers include Romans and Suebians, among other related Germanic peoples, Visigoths, and Arabs. Influence from the main European artistic centers, such as Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque, and Neoclassicism, are also present. Among the primary local manifestations of Portuguese architecture are the Manueline, the exuberant Portuguese version of late Gothic, and the Pombaline style that developed after the Great Lisbon earthquake of 1755.

statue, sculpture, art

Padrão dos Descobrimentos

The Monument to the Discoveries or Padrão dos Descobrimentos in Portuguese is a monument constructed in 1939 in honor of the Portuguese Discoveries of the golden XV and XVI centuries. It is also known as Monument to Navigators and designed by the Portuguese architect José Angelo Cottinelli Telmo.

Each side of this monument features 33 heroes of the Portuguese Discoveries, and the sculpture of Infante D. Henriques (Henry the Navigator) is found on the edge of the caravel. He was the most significant person in the Discoveries. You can climb up to the 6th floor, by stairs or elevator. Try to reach the highest point of this monument to enjoy one of the favorite views over Belém and Tagus River.

Classic Portuguese Azulejos tiles

Tiles (called Azulejos) are everywhere in Portugal. They decorate walls of churches and monasteries, palaces, ordinary houses, park seats, fountains, shops, and train stations. Azulejos date back to the 13th century, and the word Azulejo stems from Arabic roots, meaning ‘small polished stone.’ King Manuel I was astonished by the Alhambra in Granada (Spain) and decided to have his Palace in Sintra decorated with the same vibrant ceramic tiles.

portugal, azulejo, ceramic

When visiting a church or cathedral in Portugal, many are decorated in Azulejos, depicting a style that started during the 16th century. Birds and leaves were frequently symbols used as decoration, possibly inspired by Asian fabrics. Famous sites known for their Azulejo art include the Sao Bento Railway Station in Porto, and the Buçaco Palace.

Glorious beaches

Portugal is a gorgeous country and home to some of the most beautiful and secluded beaches in the world. The country’s coastline stretches for over 1,000 kilometers, and is littered with sandy coves and rocky cliffs. From the picturesque Algarve region in the south to the wilds of the Atlantic Coast in the north, there are plenty of beaches to choose from.

faro, portugal, algarve

Some of the most popular beaches in Portugal include Praia da Marinha in Lagoa, Costa da Caparica near Lisbon, and Dona Ana Beach in Lagos. Praia da Marinha is known for its dramatic cliffs and crystal-clear waters, while Costa da Caparica is a long sandy beach that is popular with locals and visitors alike. Dona Ana Beach is one of the most secluded beaches in Portugal, and features dramatic cliffs and crystal-clear waters.

Braga

Bragare is Portugals largest city. A city to the north, the town is renowned for a long tradition as a religious and commercial centre. Walking around the historical center of Braga you’ll be entered into an 18th-century city of magnificent mansions and impressive cathedrals, as well as impressive palaces. Several spruce gardens and parks break up the imposing granite veneer characteristic for most of the buildings. Braga was established in 10th century with its Cathedral Sé proving a popular tourist attraction that symbolises its position as a bishopric and church and it remains a major clesiastical centre for Portugal in Portugal.

Tavira

The most beautiful destination on this map, Tavira certainly possesses all of these picturesque features. This charming laid back vibe neighborhood has a Roman bridge that connects both sides. The waterfront provides an exciting walk before or after exploring Tavira’s remaining historical treasure. Castle walls give spectacular views over Old City and its neighbour’s shoreline.

tavira, algarve, water

You can also explore Igreja Santa Do Castelo, the grand cathedral where warriors’ Knights are buried. The city also has an amazing museum, Ncleo islmic. Highlighting this is an ancient and rare figure vase.

Vilamoura

Sopotnic Vilamoura, considered to be the heart of the Algarve, is known for its absorbent beauty, its natural beauty as well – a truly beautiful town. But today tourism is growing and becomes renowned for the luxuriant spa and golf courses and as a paradise for discerning food lovers. Vilamoura is where one can put his feet up. The Algarve offers countless beaches to explore in just minutes. Some of Portugals finest wind-surfs occur on beaches nearby. It’s definitely worth visiting for food lovers and wine-lovers.

Lagos

One of the most popular tourist destinations in Portugal, Lagos soaks up the sunshine from the Algarve and is an ideal holiday destination for thousands of tourists. Lagos – formerly known by its stunning beach fronting both sides of its International Marina – is also a home of incredibly magical rocks and sand stone walls which rise above several rocky islands. There is also a series of sea caves and strange shaped cliffs, Alternatively, they are possible when visiting them during a relaxing sightseeing tour among many watersport activities.

Albufeira

portugal, albufeira, portuguese

This old fishing village today offers dozens of destinations for visitors domestically and internationally. The beaches of white tans, parasailing, jetskiing, dolphin watching and diving are not surprising. Two good beaches worth looking at are Praia da Oura and Praia dos Pescadors. The smaller secluded beaches with plenty of charm are ideal for families. Take the boat into the countryside to explore appealing villages and the finest restaurants on offer. Also remember to keep in mind the amazing nightlife.

Cascais – a pretty cosmopolitan coastal resort and a great place to visit in Portugal

Cascais, Portugal, Calcassis

Once a sleepy fishing community, Calcassis is a fashionable beach resort near Lisbon. It’s famed for a glorious beach, elegant nightlife, watersports and adventure pursuits has an elegant cosmopolitan quality. Besides being extremely acclaimed among artists and artisans for its exquisite landscape, the museum has some outstanding artworks that remain prominent in the Museum Cond de Castro Guimares. One more attraction is the elegant new marina filled with yachts dazzling in the sunshine.

What month is the best to go to Portugal?

Best time to visit Portugal is during spring months (March-May) when Portugal is blooming or waking from winter. If it is autumn (between September and Oct. ) it may be able to be crowded a few days after sunset when it’s hot.

That’s our starter for the best places to visit in Portugal. If you would like to travel to Portugal for less and even travel for free, check out our travel club membership: http://www.thetravelclub.info

 More about Portugal – Top Tips for your first amazing visit to Portugal: https://greatescapetravel.blog/top-tips-for-your-first-amazing-visit-to-portugal/

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lisbon, portugal, historic center

Top tips for a great first visit to Portugal.

This southern European country certainly doesn’t lack natural or architectural beauty. It’s no wonder you have the desire to visit Portugal. We snapshot some of our top tips for your first amazing visit to Portugal…

There’s a never-ending number of things to do and see.

So, where should you even begin? Here are some top recommendations for visiting this magnificent nation for the first time. Don’t forget, as a Travel Club member, you can secure up to 80% off hotel accommodation rates in Portugal and worldwide!

1. What places should I check out?

  • Lisbon

As the capital of Portugal, Lisbon is full of vibrant culture, historical sights, and friendly natives.

Also, Lisbon is an ideal place in the nation to take delight in authentic Portuguese cuisine and to enjoy live entertainment.

Lisbon is known for its traditional Fado performances.

Don’t miss out on an opportunity to listen to some of the best Portuguese folk music!

  • Porto

There are many things to do in Porto, and this list is just a sampling of the top attractions and activities. From exploring the city’s charming architecture and vibrant culture, to enjoying its delicious food and wine, there is something for everyone in Porto. So whether you’re visiting for a day or staying for a week, be sure to add this city (Portugal’s second city) to your itinerary.

Porto is one of the oldest European cities, with a history spanning over 2,000 years. Founded by the Celts in the late 4th century BC, Porto rapidly grew into an important trade center and capital of the region. Over the centuries, it has been ruled by Phoenicians, Romans, Suevi, Visigoths, Moors, and finally, Portuguese kings. Today, Porto is a vibrant city with a rich culture and history that visitors can explore while enjoying its beautiful architecture and delicious food.

  • Batalha

One of the most phenomenal Gothic churches in all of Europe.

The church preserve is protected as a World Heritage Monument due to its significance.

As you enter the grand doors of the church, you’ll immediately take notice to all of its architectural details and picturesque 16th Century stained glass windows.

potugal
  • The Abbey of Santa Maria

As Europe’s most significant building of the Cistercian order, wander through this historical site for hours if you wish.

There certainly is a lot to see, including a monastery, seven dormitories, the library, the kitchen, and of course, the church.

  • The Beaches

The coastline of Portugal provides some of the most stunning beaches you’ll ever see.

Don’t shy away, take a break from your explorations to relax on the shorelines of the Atlantic Ocean and Gulf Stream.

Some of the most popular beaches are in the Algarve region, Sagres, Aveiro, and the Praia da Adraga.

2. What are some of the most popular dishes and foods?

  • Arroz de Cabidela

It might seem daunting once you know what this dish derives from, but this chicken blood rice is a native favorite in Portugal.

You can also get this dish made with rabbit and rabbit blood.

  • Alheira

This delightful lunch includes sausage, typically prepared with french fries and fried eggs.

  • Bacalhau A Bras

Cod is shredded, sauteed to perfection, and served with onion, straw fried potatoes, eggs, parsley, and garlic.

  • Arroz Doce

As an authentic Portuguese dessert, this dish is a must-try for anyone with a sweet tooth.

This creamy rice pudding is topped with cinnamon and caramel custard to add a burst of flavor.

  • Caldo Verde

On a chilly night, treat yourself to this fantastic soup.

It’s merely potato, onions, and shredded kale, cooked in garlic and olive oil, yet it certainly doesn’t lack flavor!

  • Pastel de nata

Originating in Lisbon, this custard tart is an indigenous staple, and you can’t leave the country without trying it.

Now that you have some of our top tips for your first trip to Portugal let’s start planning your stay!

You’ll be amazed by the nation’s delicious food options and breathtaking sights!

Learn more about Portugal with our post HERE about its Highlights

If you’re looking for the best rates for accommodation in Portugal (or anywhere else in the world), the Travel Club can help you with up to 80% discounts off of typical retail rates. Our members also travel for free and get paid to travel. To find out more, visit http://www.thetravelclub.info