Tailormade tour Lisbon and Porto fly-rail touring holiday Portugal

6 nights/7 days

Lisbon • Porto • River Douro

This 6-night luxury touring holiday introduces you to Portugal’s two most famous cities; Lisbon and Porto. Spend three nights in each historic centre exploring the narrow, cobbled streets and experiencing the local culture. Stay in two historic Pousadas.
Holiday price guide

Available year-round subject to the opening period of the hotels, from £1,580 per person.

Luxury touring holiday by air and train from Lisbon to Porto

Highlights

• Lisbon • Alfama • Belém • Cascais • Sintra • Porto • Port tasting • River Douro • Guimarães

Day by day

Fly from Heathrow to Lisbon, the vibrant capital city of Portugal. It’s a short taxi ride of about 25 minutes from the airport to the city centre and your base for the next three nights, conveniently located in Praça do Comércio, near to the River Tagus.

Lisbon is an attractive and vibrant city and you have two whole days to become acquainted. Firstly, visit the Alfama district, Lisbon’s Moorish quarter, home to narrow alleys and cobbled streets. Here you can find Castelo de São Jorge, reached by a steep climb. The castle dates back to the 5th century and is worth visiting to take in the views of the city and the river. Explore Belém and be sure to sample a famous Pastel de Nata (traditional Portuguese egg tart) from the café where they were first created; Pastéis de Bélem. Visit the Torre de Belém, a five-storey tower with Moorish features and good views of the area. You will also see the Mosteiro dos Jerónimos, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a Manueline masterpiece. Whilst in Lisbon, you may want to experience Fado music, a traditional form of music which originated in the Alfama district in 1825. Casa do Fado e da Guitarra Portuguese is a small museum showcasing the history of Fado. For those who are a fan of the coast, take a train to Cascais, a fishing village and beach resort. Finally, we recommend visiting Sintra, situated 28 kms northwest of Lisbon. Sintra has exquisite architecture and the neo-gothic Pena Palace is well worth a visit.

Today you travel by rail north to Porto with a journey time of under three hours. Porto is the second-largest city in Portugal and known for its production of port wine and picturesque location on the banks of the River Douro.

Porto is a unique and impressive city, at the mouth of River Duoro, offering golden beaches and an important port. The city is best explored on foot. Begin in the ancient Ribeira district, a labyrinth of cobbled streets and medieval buildings. Lavish churches and monuments are visible on every corner, alongside striking modern architecture, Baroque and Romanesque masterpieces, and quaint independent cafes and bars that have a loyal local following. Places to visit include the Church of São Francisco, situated in the city’s Old Town, which is in itself a registered UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Church of São Francisco combines a Gothic exterior with an elaborate Baroque interior. It is the most notable example of Gothic architecture in the city.  It is possible to take a guided visit of Palácio da Bolsa, where you will see the cloister, the palace’s main chambers and the Arabic ballroom that was inspired by the Alhambra Palace in Granada. Climb the 200 steps to the top of the Clérigos Tower to take in the panoramic views of over the city. To see a more modern side to the city, Santa Caterina is Porto’s busiest street, where you can find Art Nouveau cafés nestled amongst converted historic buildings. Finally, many Port cellars line the southern banks of the River Duoro in Vila Nova de Gaia and a tour and tasting is a must whilst in the city. To explore further afield, Guimarães can be reached by train in 1 hour 10 minutes. Witness the extensive history of the city is reflected in the gothic buildings, ancient castle which dates from the 10th century and compact, cobbled streets.

Today, depending on the time of your flight, you check-out after breakfast and make your way to Porto Airport for your flight back to London. The journey generally takes about 20 minutes by taxi.

Holiday price guide Prices from £1,580 per person based on two people sharing a double or twin room.

Holiday Code POFR01

Luxury touring holiday by air and train from Lisbon to Porto

Holiday price guide Prices from £1,580 per person based on two people sharing a double or twin room.

Holiday Code POFR01

Our prices include ● Scheduled return flights with British Airways from London to Lisbon and from Porto to London
● 3 nights’ bed and breakfast in a Classic room at Pousada de Lisboa
● 3 nights’ bed and breakfast in a Classic room at Pestana Vintage Porto
● First class rail travel between Lisbon and Porto
● Concierge service and Expressions Holidays regional helpful hints

Our prices do not include ● Early check-in or late check-out at any hotels (although we can arrange this on request at additional cost)
● Any other services not mentioned above, such as additional transfers, entrance fees and meals except daily breakfast
● Personal holiday insurance. This is essential and cover should be in place from when you book the holiday.
● Local tourist tax, usually between Euros 1 and 3 per person per night, and payable locally to the hotel

Additional information This holiday can be arranged throughout the year. Additional nights can be added at any point on this itinerary. Timings can vary depending on the month and day of the week

Holiday price guide Prices from £1,580 per person based on two people sharing a double or twin room.

Holiday Code POFR01

Luxury touring holiday by air and train from Lisbon to Porto

Highlights of Lisbon

The area close to the city of Lisbon is known for its variety of attractions. Moorish architecture left over from Arabic rule can be seen in the Castelo de Sao Jorge in the Alfama. Collections of Portuguese art are on display in the Museu Gulbenkian, the Museu de Arte Antiga, and the Berardo Collection. For a taste of Portugal's maritime history, visit the Monasteiro dos Jeronimos. Sintra, the favourite haunt of Lord Byron, is home to twin-peak-top castles and royal palaces. Beautiful, golden sandy beaches can be found in Cascais to the west of Lisbon, or on the Costa da Caparica to the south; particularly idyllic are the coves between Setubal and Sesimbra. Peniche is a picturesque seaside town renowned for being one of Europe's best surfing spots. You can explore all that the area around the city of Lisbon has to offer with our Tour of the City and Countryside of the Lisboa Region.

Highlights of the Algarve

Known for having some of Portugal's most scenic beaches, the Algarve is a popular destination for those looking for a beach or water sports holiday enjoying the Portuguese sunshine. Sagres and Tavira are recognised as the best places for this. In Albufeira, Armacao de Pera, and Lagos you will find an abundance of the light-catching rocky outcrops and peaceful coves that the Algarve is so well known for. Salema, Burgau, and Sagres were once busy little fishing villages, and now still stand as testament to this important aspect of Portuguese culture. The Reserva Natural da Ria Formosa lies just off the southern coastline, the islands of which can be accessed from many towns, including Faro, Olhao, Fuseta, Cabanas, and Tavira; most of which are also ideal starting points from which to try a little surfing. White-washed and serene Alcoutim is an example of the less-developed Portuguese towns, with a hint of Andalucia in its appearance, and Loule is the perfect place to wander around a bustling market. You may also wish to visit the Roman ruins at Milreu, the Moorish town of Silves, or the Spa town of Caldas de Monchique. For outdoor pursuits, head into the Serra de Monchique Mountain Range.

Highlights of Porto and the Douro Valley

At the mouth of the Rio Douro lies Porto, an atmospheric town with a dramatic aspect and almost Parisian lifestyle. Its streets are lined with historic buildings and wine lodges serving the best of Portuguese wines. The nearby wine towns of Penafiel, Peso da Regua, Pinhao, and Amarante are also recommended for wine-tasting, but have a much more rural location. Amarante, in particular, is believed to be the most attractive wine town in the area, with a central triple-arched bridge, tall stone red-roofed houses interspersed with verdant trees, and a gently flowing river. To witness a sample of Portuguese Baroque architecture, visit the pilgrimage town of Lamego. The main attraction of this town, the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Remedios, lies at the top of an elaborate and intricately decorated set of zig-zagged stairways that pass through archways and across viewing balconies. In Porto, some of the greatest artistic triumphs of 17th century Portugal reside, the Se Cathedral in particular, in which every inch of the columns, archways, and altar have been adorned in golden floral and religious motifs, in true Baroque style. For something even more historic, visit the Palaeolithic rock formations of Vila Nova de Foz Coa, the largest outdoor gallery of stone age remains in the world, which have since been neighboured by flourishing vineyards. Along the rocky gorges of the river, you will find a number of castle-towns, including the Medieval walled town of Trancoso and the fortress town of Almeida.

Highlights of Madeira

A green and fertile island in the Atlantic Ocean, Madeira is situated off the coast of Morocco. Its coastline combines beautiful sandy beaches with rocky cliffs, the latter of which can be best appreciated at Cabo Girao. The island's capital, Funchal, is packed full with historic buildings, including 15th century churches and convents and a Se Cathedral as ornate as the one in Porto. Enjoy the relentless joviality of the street markets, or visit more peaceful attractions, such as the basalt cave of Capela de Sao Vicente or the island's protected nature reserves. Rare Laurissilva forests can be walked, trekked, or hiked through, affording guests sensational views; and the crystal clear waters off the coast can be swam through, perhaps below the water's surface so the ecosystems that live in the reefs can be appreciated. One of the greatest pleasures of Madeira, however, is wandering over the beaches, surveying the rock pools, and taking in the sights from the clifftops. Aside from the key regions that our Portuguese programme focuses on, there is much to find and see in Portugal. Those willing to drive a little further during the day will enjoy a much more diverse touring holiday.

Facts in brief

Capital Lisbon
Airport There are international airports at Lisbon, Porto and Faro, served by a variety of airlines from the UK, including British Airways, EasyJet, bmibaby, TAP, Jet2.
Size 35,000 sq. miles
Population 10 million
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