With cities that have become swanky tourism hotspots and a gorgeous coastline where you can still avoid the crowds, Portugal is entering a new era of travel with an upbeat vibe. In this selection, you will find ten of the most beautiful places to visit in this country. These are the historical, cultural, architectural and natural sights of Portugal that deserve attention. By including these places in your travel list, you will be able to appreciate all the beauty of the country, covering all the most interesting as much as possible.
1. Lisbon. Capital of Portugal
As the capital of Portugal, Lisbon is the obvious place to start your trip. The city is much quieter than other European capitals, but can easily equal them in beauty and charm. Its biggest attraction lies in its history, which is deeply rooted. This is a beautiful combination of old and new, history, culture, architecture and technology, shops, restaurants. Visit Gothic cathedrals, historic cafes, vintage trams and narrow alleys of beautiful Lisbon. Don’t forget the vibrant coffee shops and incredible restaurants. The city is based on a chain of hills, so wherever you are, you will be guaranteed a magnificent view of the sights.
Lord Byron’s favorite place in Portugal, this village is ready to surprise anyone with rich colored buildings and breathtaking architecture. Palaces, turrets, a romantic Moorish castle and a foggy dense forest — this is what this small, but very beautiful settlement is famous for. The vegetation here is lush and exotic due to the special microclimate. There are a lot of historical monuments, including dozens of mansions with impeccable lawns and decorative decorations. The sights of Portugal surprise and delight.
With its 14th century walls, medieval winding streets, colorfully picturesque buildings, bell tower and decorative tiles, Porto has a special place on the list of Portugal’s attractions. Just sit under the arches at Placa da Ribeira (Promenade Square) and watch the boats float by. You will be given the tranquility and grandeur of this city. Most of the apartments in the area have terraces that overlook the calm waters. Declared by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, Porto is a combination of old worldly charm and bustling metropolitan culture, making it a very intriguing travel destination.
4. Douro Valley
The Douro River carries its waters through Spain and Northern Portugal. Once it was a wild turbulent river, but the clever construction of eight vast dams tamed it, and now the flow here is calm and peaceful. The beauty of the area is not limited to the waters of the river. Numerous hills and almond groves, gorgeous nature — this is truly the most beautiful part of Portugal. The area remains largely untouched, with zigzag roads through the mountains and river cruises in boats gently gliding through the water. The Douro Valley is famous for its vineyards and some of the best wines in the country.
5. City of Obidos
It is an ancient fortified city located in the province of Extremadura. In the 13th century, the Portuguese Queen Isabelle was so enamored with the village of Obidos that her husband, King Denis I, gave her the land. This led to the tradition of the Portuguese kings buying this picturesque village for their queens, which lasted for centuries. When you visit this beautiful place, you will understand exactly why Isabelle fell in love with Obidos.
6. Seaport of Cascais
Once a quiet little fishing village, Cascais is now a chic coastal resort famous for its great beaches, nightlife, water sports and other adventures. Favored by artisans, writers and artists because of its graceful landscape, Cascais has a wonderful art collection proudly displayed at the Museo Conda de Castro Guimar. Another highlight of the city is the new marina filled with yachts that shimmer and glisten in the bright sunlight.
7. Marinha Beach, or Praia da Marinha
Because of its proximity to the overly touristy Algarve region, many don’t venture to the beautiful beach at Praia da Marinha. However, it is worth a visit, if only because it is considered by many to be the best beach in Portugal. Marinha Beach is classified as one of the 100 best beaches in the world. An ideal beach for snorkeling and exploring the rocky cliffs, it’s no wonder this destination is so popular among Portugal’s many attractions. You can take an exciting journey through Southern Portugal to explore even more amazing places like Marinha.
Marvau is a beautiful medieval mountainside town in Alentejo where the original 13th century walls still remain. The ancient architecture makes Marvau a very beautiful place to visit. There is something to see in every part of the city, and the beautiful Pusada Hotel is the perfect place to stay.
Located three hours south of the capital of Portugal, near Cape Sagres, Salema is a beautiful, peaceful place with an excellent beach. This pretty village remains relatively untouched by the ravages of tourism, offering traditional cuisine, an old market, a small main street and a cluster of white stucco houses. This peaceful fishing village is nestled between two sharp cliffs with a gorgeous sandy beach in between.
We finish sightseeing in Portugal with the city of Evora in the east of the country. Évora is a Portuguese city in the municipality of Évora. The beautifully preserved historic city has been classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and when you visit it you will immediately discover why. Évora is home to the 2000 year old Templo Romano, a 16th century aqueduct and the incredible Chapel da Ossos, an ominous crypt containing the skeletons of over 5000 Évora residents. Read more about this in a selection dedicated to the cities of the dead and famous crypts of the world.
Finally, visit also a selection of charming villages in Portugal, where you will find a large number of interesting photos and landscapes of the country.