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7 Things to do on your next trip to Portugal

From getting active at an adventure park to sampling port directly from the barrel, here are our top seven things to do on your next trip to Portugal.
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Enjoy Portuguese ‘tapas’

With an abundance of snack bars and delicatessens, there’s no shortage of ‘tapas’ style dishes - also known as pesticos - to enjoy in Portugal. Pastéis de Bacalhau is a particularly popular bite-size dish that can be eaten hot or cold. Combining deep-fried potato with salted cod, plus onion, parsley and garlic, these fritters are even recognised as a national speciality. Pica pau - meaning ‘woodpecker’ - comprises tiny pieces of pork or beef, marinated in oil, chilli and garlic, then eaten off a toothpick. 

Embrace café culture

From the iconic city of Lisbon to quaint coastal villages in the Algarve, Portugal certainly embraces the art of sitting in a café and watching the world go by. On one of your free days we recommend grabbing a coffee or regional port, and a freshly-baked pasteis de nata, and mingling with locals. Order a bica if you’re looking for a sharp burst of energy in the form of an espresso-style coffee, while a galao features creamy frothed milk and espresso just like a latte.

Hop around the Azores Islands

The Azores Islands comprise nine picturesque islands in the mid-Atlantic, just 1,500km off the coast of Portugal. On a walking tour of the Azores you’ll hop around five of these unspoilt isles, taking in a variety of natural landscapes. Walk around the Sete Cidades volcano on Sao Miguel, and marvel at the abundance of flowers on Flores Island. Jump on a ferry to Faial to stroll the harbour, and visit the green-carpeted crater with stunning views across the island.

Visit an ancient monument

Wherever you are in Portugal you’re never far from beautiful architecture and a scenic monument. In the west of Lisbon you’ll find the Belem Tower and Discoveries Monument, both a symbol of the Portuguese Age of Discovery. Meanwhile, in the medieval town of Alcobaça, visit the splendid Alcobaça Monastery, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a truly stunning example of Cistercian architecture. 

Try your hand at Via Ferrata

On a Portugal Family Adventure you’ll embrace the great outdoors at Pena Adventure Park, home to a range of thrilling activities. Get an introduction to rock climbing during Via Ferrata, where you’ll ascend a rock face using fixed cables and steps. At the adventure park you’ll also find an adrenaline-pumping alpine coaster, a zip line with views from 150 meters above ground, and serene walks in pristine nature for those who would like to explore at a steadier pace.

Taste wine from a local vineyard

The Douro Valley Winemaking Region is a must-visit for anyone looking to sample homegrown vintages. On a Portugal Food Adventure, along with hands-on cooking experiences with local families, you’ll enjoy a guided visit to a winery with plenty of opportunity to sample port directly from the barrel. In the Port Wine Lodges district of Porto, take a tour of the cellars to learn about the famous wine produced here, followed by a pasteis de nata cooking lesson.

Take a clifftop walk

Home to seaside villages and dramatic clifftops, Portugal’s stunning coastline is ideal for both leisurely and moderate hikes. On a remote Portugal walking tour you’ll follow a network of paths to impressive cliffs overlooking the turquoise sea. The Seven Hanging Valleys trail is more challenging but certainly rewarding, with views over quiet beaches and natural stone arches. Along this route you’ll also pass the Alfanzina lighthouse before enjoying some relaxation at Carvoeiro beach.

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