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This itinerary is for an 8 day adventure to Lisbon and up the north coast to Sintra, Porto and the Douro Valley. Katy, our savvy traveler, went on this adventure with a friend. They hit all the sights sought out the local hotspots for food and drinks. They spent 3 nights in Lisbon, 1 night in Sintra, 2 nights in Douro Valley, and 2 nights in Porto. Although They ate at top restaurants and above average lodging, the trip was affordable because Portugal is cheap! This itinerary is very much on-the-go, but if you want a slower-paced trip, just pick the activities that most appeal to you.
Why Visit Lisbon and Porto?
Katy chose Lisbon, because it’s a must if visiting Portugal for the first time. Then she chose to head north to Porto instead of south to the Algarve, because of her love of wine made the Douro Valley a must.
Here’s a preview of what this 8 Days in Portugal Itinerary from Katy:
8 Days in Portugal Itinerary – Day 1
We arrived mid-morning and spent the afternoon in Belem. So long as you arrive by lunchtime and it’s not a Monday, I suggest starting with the TimeOut Market for lunch then spend the afternoon in Belem visiting Jerónimos Monastery, Belém Tower/Torre Belem and Padrão dos Descobrimentos. You’ll have time for a siesta before dinner (or take a nap before if you arrive on a redeye).
8 Days in Portugal Itinerary – Day 2
Spend the day walking around the heart of Lisbon. The earlier you get started, the more you’ll see. Be prepared for hills and tired legs!
8 Days in Portugal Itinerary – Day 3
Explore the Alfama neighborhood. The Alfama neighborhood is a lot quieter than Barria Alto but it’s full of historical sites and a great place to unwind. This day wasn’t as packed, so enjoy the gorgeous views at the Alfama and the deck/pool if it’s nice weather.
8 Days in Portugal Itinerary – Day 4
Head to Cascais then north to spectacular Sintra. We picked up our rental car in the morning and after stop in Cascais headed to Sintra, a unique village full of palaces and castles. We left the rental car place at about 10:15am, and we wished we’d left a little earlier to give us more time in Sintra. I’d recommend trying to leave by 9am.
8 Days in Portugal Itinerary – Day 5
Drive north to the Douro Valley stopping in Obidos and Nazare.
8 Days in Portugal Itinerary – Day 6
Have a lazy morning or try a walk, bike ride or boat ride. Next is lunch, wine tastings and an early dinner at DOC. During the busy season, or if you want to go at specific times or book a tour, you will need to call ahead to book the wineries. Try to get to Quinta do Tedo right before it closes at 7pm to see the sunset. That will get you to DOC at 7:30pm when it opens. After an afternoon of wine tasting, we were ready for an early dinner.
8 Days in Portugal Itinerary – Day 7
Breakfast in the Douro Valley then drive about hour to Porto to explore.
8 Days in Portugal Itinerary – Day 8
Wander Porto and do a port tasting on your last day. In the morning, wander the streets. We’ve listed some of our favorite highlights to stop at on your way. In the afternoon, head over to Ribeira de Gaia (across the river from Porto) for a tour of one the Port houses. You can either try to do the last tour and stay over for dinner or you could do an earlier tour and come back for a little siesta then head back out for a later dinner. The second option is best if you want to try and see Porto’s nightlife, which starts late.