80+ Bucketlist Ideas For Your Portugal Vacation

Oh Portugal, where big landscapes meet with intimate cultures, where mystery leads to surprise and there's so much more than the guidelines. What to do in Portugal is to not follow the hype, not follow the hoards who have heard it's the next big European destination. As Lisbon throbs and the coast packs with crowds, there's an authentic heart that goes mostly undiscovered. And there's so much space and exclusivity!

The monastery is one of the most prominent examples of the Portuguese Late Gothic Manueline style of architecture in Lisbon. It was classified a UNESCO World Heritage Site

Manueline After-Hours Tour of Belem

Portugal
Sailing boat in the Tagus River passing by the 25 of April Bridge (Ponte 25 de Abril), in the city of Lisbon, Portugal; Concept for travel in Portugal

Tagus River Cruise

Portugal
Oporto Rabelo Boats On The Douro (Portugal)

Douro River Rabelo Cruise

Portugal
Detail of the traditional decorative tiles with majolica patterns. Spain traditional tiles. Floral ornament.

Traditional Azulejo Tile Decoration Workshop

Portugal
Beach at Atlantic Ocean in resort town of Estoril in Portugal

Estoril Coast Tour by Sidecar

Portugal
Dolphin jumps at the front of a sailing ship. Taken in Algarve, Portugal.

Algarve Wildlife Boat Excursion

Portugal
Hieronymites Monastery in Lisbon

Monastery of St. Jerome After Hours Tour

Portugal
Fairy-tale castle in Portugal

Private Dinner at Palácio da Pena

Portugal
Palacio da Bolsa, Porto

After Hours Stock Exchange Palace Tour With Dinner & Fado

Portugal

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Best Places to Stay in Portugal

Palaces and vineyards, golf lodges and casas in the hills - what do you not do in Portugal? Accommodation is an experience on this land of contrasts and it's all so fanciful. The best places to stay reflect the Portuguese ambiance, part laid-back haven and tradition, then part vibrant style and energy. Here is a small selection of places that Portugal's leading travel designers recommend.

Breakfast with a View, Six Senses Doura Valley

Six Senses Douro Valley

Portugal
Artist Suite Terrace, The Yeatman, Porto

The Yeatman, Porto

Portugal
The Hotel, Belmond Reid_s Palace

Stay at Belmond Reid's Palace

Portugal

Stay at Bairro Alto Hotel in Lisbon

Portugal
Club House, Vidago Palace Hotel

Golf & Stay at Vidago Palace Hotel

Portugal
Barrocal

Sao Lourenco do Barrocal, Alentejo

Portugal
Tangerine Room, Teima Alentejo

Stay at Teima Alentejo

Portugal
Cheers, Hotel Casa Palmela, Arrabida Hills

Hotel Casa Palmela, Arrabida Hills

Portugal
Swimming Pool, Penha Longa

Golf & Stay Penha Longa

Portugal
Oasis Parc Pool, Vila Vita Parc, Algarve

Vila Vita Parc, Algarve

Portugal
Portugal Experiences

Porto Weekender

Portugal
Porto, Portugal old town skyline from across the Douro River.

Portugal is Open – Go Explore!

Portugal

Explore Porto and the Douro Valley

Into the north of Portugal, where splashes of blue dominate the towns and the sense of history stretches a millennia through time. Cobblestone streets and rolling rivers set the stage here. Cruise down the Douro, indulge at vineyards, step through the history with expert guides, and wonder why everyone is flocking to Lisbon when Porto is so exquisite. Take your time in these places of yesteryear and sail through all the mystery.

Douro river and valley at sunset during the harvest season. Casal de Loivos viewpoint.

Quinta do Crasto Wine Tasting Tour

Portugal
The Douro, Portugal - August 15, 2011: Image captured from the road some kilometers to the west of Oporto, the image shows the Douro river and his vinyards.

Douro Valley Hiking

Portugal
Herritage Workshop, Casa de Juste

Casa de Juste Heritage Workshop

Portugal
Aerial view of Porto capturing the cathedral and colourful facades

Porto Sightseeing Tour

Portugal
Check these other images

Visit Taylor's Port Cellars in Porto

Portugal
Red wine in glass

Porto Culinary Tour

Portugal
Casa da Música, Porto

Porto Architecture Tour

Portugal
Port wine barrels on a boat on River Douro with Vila Nova de Gaia in the background, Porto, Portugal

Port Wine Tasting and Petiscos Lunch

Portugal
Sunset Dinner Cruise, Porto

Romantic Dinner on a Private Boat in Porto

Portugal
fireworks on the Douro river over the Oporto city during the celebrations of the St. Johns night.

Porto's Saint John Night by Boat

Portugal
Vineyards at sunset in autumn harvest. Ripe grapes in fall. Alvarinho wine vineyards in Portugal.

Wine Harvesting at a Douro Valley Quinta

Portugal
Waterfall Ribeiro da Figueira in National Park of Peneda Geres, Portugal

Geres Mountain Hiking and Canyoning

Portugal

Enchantment and Elegance in Old-World Portugal

Lisbon, the beach and then maybe Porto. That's the typical Portugal itinerary. But who does typical when what to do in Portugal can be so many things? Cork forests blur into vineyards and fortified towns embrace 500 years of tales. You can find streets of pure marble, wild countryside for horseback adventure, and some of the finest architecture anywhere in Europe. You just need to go a little off the beaten path.

A woman in a black summer dress stands on the Largo da Portagem while she visits the old capital city of Portugal in style, Coimbra.

Coimbra Walking Tour

Portugal
Nossa Senhora da Consolacao e dos Santos Passos Church (aka Sao Gualter Church) in Guimaraes, Portugal. Unesco World Heritage Site.

Guimaraes City Sightseeing Tour

Portugal
Historic Centre, Belmonte

Belmonte’s Jewish History Tour

Portugal
The Sanctuary of Fatima, which is also referred to as the Basilica of Our Lady of Fatima, Portugal

Day Trip to Fatima and Tomar from Lisbon

Portugal
The church (Igreja do Espírito Santo) was built in the Sixteenth century from stone and granite and was home to an influential Catholic Jesuit Order. Today it's classified as a UNESCO heritage site. Shot from the patio across the street - Pateo de Sao Miguel.

Evora Trip with a Portuguese Cooking Class

Portugal
Nossa Senhora Da Consolacao E Dos Santos Passos Church (Sao Gualter Church) in Guimaraes, Portugal

Day Trip to Braga and Guimaraes from Porto

Portugal
Cabeza de caballo asomado a la puerta del establo.

Alentejo Horseback Riding & Picnic

Portugal
Wine tasting in Alentejo region, Portugal.

Alentejo Quinta Wine Tasting & Lunch

Portugal
Cork trees are leafy trees that can be found in Alentejo, functioning almost as “shadow oasis” in a hot region where few degrees less will make the difference. Its size is large enough to allow access to a good region of the sky when we look from their trunk, visible in this image are the colored stars from the winter constellation of Orion (right), while above the horizon we can enjoy the birth of planet Jupiter. 16/12/2014 – Alandroal

Alentejo Astronomy Tour

Portugal
Cityscape of Estremoz, the White City in Alentejo region, Portugal. Vines in the foregrund.

Vintage Wine Tasting in an Alentejo Cellar

Portugal
Bread Making Workshop, Alentejo

Traditional Alentejo Bread Making Workshop

Portugal
View down hill through Estremoz with tiled roofs of church and city buildings and homes

Day Trip to Estremoz, Elvas and Vila Vicosa

Portugal

Private and Exclusive Highlights of Lisbon

Lisbon is the grand dame of Portugal, the chic destination that's suddenly been discovered by half of Europe. And while the centre is now unbearably crowded the Lisbon experience is very much like the rest of Portugal - you just need to look a little further to find its real heart and soul. So snap up the famous sights then make your own way, on private trams, in ancient palaces, and with the people who know Lisbon the best.

Beautiful traditional yellow tram in the streets of Lisbon, Portugal, in summer

Lisbon Private Tram Ride

Portugal
Lisbona's colors

Lisbon Shopping with a Local Host

Portugal
National Palace of Pena (Sintra) is one of the seven wonders of Portugal. (National Palace of Pena

Sintra Palaces Tour

Portugal
Shot in Lisbon, Barrio Alto district.

Dine Like a Lisbon Local - with locals

Portugal
Knights of the Templar, Tomar

Day Trip to Tomar From Lisbon

Portugal
Dinner and Fado Night, Lisbon

Dinner and a Fado Show in Lisboa

Portugal
Gulbenkian Park, Lisbon

Visit to the Gulbenkian Museum with an art restorer

Portugal
Alfama is the oldest neighborhood in Lisbon, and is made up of narrow steep cobbled streets, and ancient houses. This is a the exterior of a residential neighborhood, shot in the street.

Lisbon Jewish Heritage Tour

Portugal
Leather Engraving Workshop, Lisbon

Lisbon Leather Engraving Workshop

Portugal
Tourists enjoying the fisrt day of the summer on "Praia da Ribeira do Cavalo", amazing beach located near Lisboa.

Hiking in Arrabida Natural Park

Portugal
Lisbon Oceanarium, Lisbon

Lisbon Oceanarium Backstage Tour

Portugal

What Do To In Portugal's Islands

It's easy to forget Portugal has all these islands, these wild Atlantic outposts where nature reigns and a slow pace of life continues in all the villages. You can find beach bliss in Madeira and the Azores, but you can experience so much more. Like whales, wine, dolphins, craters, epic cliffs only accessible by four-wheel drive and a sense of the unknown. It seems crazy that everyone goes wild for Pacific islands and Indian Ocean islands, yet is unaware that Portugal can reveal magnificent Atlantic islands.

Sunrise Jeep Tour, Madeira

Madeira Sunrise Jeep Tour

Portugal
Man sitting on a rock enjoying nature

Levada do Moinho Walking Tour, Madeira

Portugal
Calçada de Santa Clara a street of old painted houses in funchal madeira running downhill towards the sea with the historic church of São Pedro

Funchal Walking Tour

Portugal
Winery Visit, Madeira

Madeira Winery Visit

Portugal
Faja dos Padres, Madeira

Faja dos Padres Tour, Madeira

Portugal
Rabaçal Waterfalls Hike, Madeira

Rabaçal Waterfalls Walking Tour, Madeira

Portugal
View from Ponta de Sao Lourenco on Canical, Madeira, Portugal

Tour of Eastern Madeira

Portugal
Fin of a sperm whale in front of volcano Pico, Azores islands

Whale Watching Tour, Azores

Portugal
Dolphins jumping in the Wilderness

Swim with Dolphins in the Azores

Portugal
East coast of Madeira island - Ponta de Sao Lourenco

East Madeira Jeep Tour

Portugal

Lay Back and Find Secrets in Southern Portugal

Southern Portugal is a tourism hot spot, a region that becomes overly crowded during the European school holiday seasons. It's ridiculously beautiful down here, with rugged cliffs, turquoise waters and traditional villages. Just avoid peak season and seek out travel moments that are more than sunbathing.

Portugal.Algarve.Lago lagoon landscape in Olhao.

Algarve Oyster Tasting with a Fisherman

Portugal
Traditional Portuguese ameijoas with clams served in a cataplana pot on the table

Traditional Algarve Cooking Class

Portugal
Close-up of woman holding glass of white wine

Algarve Wine Tasting

Portugal
Local Produce Tour, Algarve

Algarve Local Produce Tour

Portugal