Discover Portugal, Ancient Rome’s most western province, a land steeped in history, cultural gems, enchanting landscapes and gastronomic delights.

At a Glance

  • Explore Lisbon’s rich history, art treasures and cultural legacy
  • Delight in the beauty of the historic towns of Sintra and Coimbra
  • Discover the UNESCO World Heritage city of Porto with its unique architectural elegance
  • Savour the Douro River’s scenic beauty, where surrounding wineries produce world-class wines

Explore Lisbon, whose churches and museums display the opulence of a vast empire which once extended from Brazil to Macau, and be immersed in some of the world’s finest collections of old and modern art. 

Journey through the charming town of Sintra, famous for its enchanting and colourful palaces, castles and gardens set against the backdrop of lush hills.

Walk the cobblestone streets of Coimbra, renowned as Portugal’s medieval capital and home to one of the world's oldest universities.

In Porto, admire the captivating beauty of the Douro River, which winds its way through terraced vineyards that produce exquisite wines.

 

This tour is part of the World Art Tours program organised by the Art Gallery Society of NSW in partnership with Renaissance Tours.

Dates

04 – 17 May 2025 (14 days)

Tour leader

Lorraine Kypiotis

Tour Status

Available

Book now

Itinerary

Arrive in Lisbon on suggested flights and make your own way to the hotel. Renaissance Tours or your travel agent can assist you with your flights and other travel arrangements including travel insurance (a condition of travel), private hotel transfer, accommodation before or after the tour and a room category upgrade.

In the evening, join Lorraine and fellow travellers for a welcome briefing followed by dinner.

(D)

Begin the day with a walking tour of Lisbon. Traverse the charming Praça dos Restauradores, take in the historic ambiance of Largo do Carmo and explore the cultural enclave of Chiado. Admire the grandeur of Sé de Lisboa, before wandering into the alleys of the Alfama, Lisbon’s old town. Marvel at the majestic Arco da Rua Augusta before descending into the bustling Baixa, Lisbon’s commercial centre.

In the afternoon, view the treasures of the Museu Calouste Gulbenkian, one of the world’s most important private art collections, with works from Ancient Egypt to the early 20th century.

This evening, enjoy dinner at a celebrated fado club and experience the melancholic ballads of Lisbon’s folk music tradition.

(BD)

This morning, enjoy a guided tour of the Palácio dos Marqueses de Fronteira and admire its opulent halls and lush gardens. Then, continue to the Palácio de Queluz, an architectural masterpiece steeped in regal allure with ornate chambers and sprawling grounds, demonstrating exquisite craftsmanship.

In the afternoon, continue to the picturesque coastal town of Cascais and visit the Casa das Histórias Paula Rego, a modern architectural building housing the works of one of Portugal’s most celebrated artists.

(BL)

After breakfast, visit the UNESCO World Heritage site of the Palácio Nacional de Sintra. Marvel at its distinctive blend of Moorish and Manueline architecture, adorned with intricate tilework and ornate furnishings. Wander through its opulent chambers, each echoing with tales of royalty and nobility.

Then, visit the enchanting grounds of Monserrate, a botanical parkland nestled in the Sintra Mountains. Amidst lush gardens is the beautiful Monserrate Palace, a fine example of Moorish revival architecture. Enjoy lunch in the garden restaurant.

Return to Lisbon on a scenic drive, tracing the rugged coastline and taking in the panoramic views of numerous beaches and dramatic cliffs.

(BL)

Start the day at the National Tile Museum, set in the Madre de Deus Convent. The collections showcase Portugal’s rich tile-making tradition from the 15th century till present day. Explore its diverse collection of azulejos, each a masterpiece of craftsmanship and storytelling.

Next, visit the Belém district, a historic hub with monuments to maritime heritage. Admire Belém Tower and the Monument to the Discoveries, honouring Portugal’s Age of Exploration. Visit the new MAC/CCB Museum of Contemporary art, which houses the Berardo Collection, a diverse array of modern and contemporary masterpieces, assembled over two decades and encompassing approximately 70 artistic movements.

Finish the day at the UNESCO World Heritage site of Jeronimos Monastery, a masterpiece of Manueline architecture. Admire its façade adorned with intricate carvings and sculptures, and wander through its numerous cloisters and chapels.

(B)

Depart Lisbon for the picturesque village of Óbidos, a charming medieval town surrounded by ancient walls. Wander its cobblestone streets and quaint alleyways, discovering hidden gems like Ginja de Óbidos, a traditional Portuguese cherry liquor served in a chocolate cup.

Later, visit the remnants of a Roman settlement called Conimbriga and see the remains of ancient dwellings, thermal baths and intricate mosaics.

In the late afternoon, arrive in Coimbra, Portugal’s former capital and home to the country’s oldest university. This evening, discover another side of fado in Coimbra before enjoying a meal at a local restaurant.

(BD)

This morning, explore Coimbra with a walking tour, starting with a visit to the Joanina Library, with its collection of rare centuries-old books and manuscripts housed within the historic University of Coimbra. Notice its Baroque architecture and intricate woodwork and wander through the aisles.

Afterwords, visit Sé Velha, the city’s ancient cathedral and a masterpiece of Romanesque architecture with a Flamboyant Gothic retable showing the history of Mary and Christ. In the northern chapel, admire the High Renaissance altar and retable depicting Jesus and the Apostles. Stop for lunch at the bustling Praça do Comercio, a vibrant square with cafés, shops and historic landmarks. 

In the afternoon, stroll through the Jardim Botanico, the city’s main botanic garden with its fragrant gardens and colourful flower beds.

(BL)

Depart Coimbra and travel to Porto. En route, stop at the Buçaco Forest. Planted by the Order of Discalced Carmelites at the beginning of the 17th century, this forest holds a winding path with small chapels built along it. The length of the path and distance between chapels were carefully measured to depict Christ’s journey from the Mount of Olives to Calvary. Among the forest lies the Convent of Santa Cruz do Buçaco, a sacred site that once faced partial demolition to accommodate the royal palace. Enjoy lunch at a local restaurant offering regional specialties.

On the outskirts of Porto, enjoy a guided tour of Quinta de Villar d’Allen, the last living example of bourgeoisie properties in Porto. This historic estate dates back to 1701 and is adorned with original interiors and meticulously landscaped gardens.

Arrive in Porto in the late afternoon. The evening is at leisure.

(BL)

Start the day with a walking tour of Porto, beginning at the majestic Porto Cathedral with its Gothic architecture and intricate carvings. Next, visit the Bolsa Palace, the city’s former stock exchange and a symbol of Porto’s wealth and prestige during the 19th century. Continue through the charming streets of the Ribeira quarter, a UNESCO World Heritage site brimming with colourful buildings and bustling cafés.

After some time at leisure, discover the rich maritime history of Porto at the Factory House and learn about the city’s role in the Age of Discovery and its connections to the world of commerce and trade.

In the afternoon, visit the Parque de Serralves, a museum of contemporary art and a tranquil oasis of manicured gardens on the outskirts of Porto. Admire the world class contemporary art exhibitions in both the galleries and throughout its lush gardens.

(BD)

Embark on a scenic drive to the Douro Valley, a UNESCO World Heritage site renowned for its dramatic landscapes and world-class vineyards, dotted against the cliffside above the Douro River.

Enjoy lunch amidst the vine-covered hills of a local estate, where traditional Portuguese cuisine complements the wines of the region.

At Peso de Régua, board the vintage carriages of the Mira Douro train to Tua, a charming village nestled on the banks of the Douro River. Along the journey, take in the terraced vineyards as the train follows the river.

(BL)

After breakfast, depart for the historic birthplace of both Portugal and its first king, Guimarães. Founded in the 4th century, the city then became the capital in the 12th century. Explore the Palace of the Dukes of Bragança. Built in the 15th century, this stately home has witnessed numerous important events that shaped the history of Portugal, solidifying its status as a symbol of power and political intrigue.

After some free time for lunch, depart for Braga, considered by many to be the religious capital of Portugal. Start with a visit to the Sé de Braga, the first Portuguese cathedral and one that predates the founding of the country itself. Over nine centuries of history can be seen through the mix of Romanesque, Gothic and Baroque styles throughout the cathedral.

Then, ascend the iconic Baroque stairway, or take a ride on the funicular, to reach the Neo-classical sanctuary of Bom Jesus Do Monte. An integral part of a pilgrim’s journey, the climb to the top is symbolic of the Passion of Christ, with fountains purifying pilgrims along the way. At the top, be rewarded with sweeping views of the surrounding countryside.

(B)

This morning, travel to Barcelos, the birthplace of traditional Portuguese handicrafts and Minho art. Upon arrival visit the historic Barcelos Market, the largest in Portugal and held every Thursday. Here, amidst the lively stalls of artisanal crafts and fresh produce find the brightly coloured Barcelos Cockerel, an example of Minho art and a symbol of Portugal.

Then, continue to the picturesque seaside town of Viana do Castelo. Admire the old town, with the charming Praça da República square, before heading up to the Santa Luzia Sanctuary. Perched on top of a mountain, this grand Neo-Byzantine basilica commands sweeping views of the River Lima and Atlantic Ocean. Inside the sanctuary, find the largest rose windows on the Iberian Peninsula and a fresco on the dome representing the Stations of the Cross and the Ascension of Christ.

(BL)

Enjoy the morning at leisure in Porto to explore the city at your own pace.

In the late afternoon, partake in a quintessential Portuguese experience with a Port tasting at the city’s renowned Port lodges lined along the waterfront of Villa Nova da Gaia. Delve into the rich history and craftsmanship behind Portugal’s most famous export while sampling a variety of Port wines.

Afterwards, celebrate the conclusion of the tour with a special farewell dinner with Lorraine and fellow travellers.

(BD)

Tour arrangements conclude after breakfast.

For those returning home today, make your way to Porto Airport for suggested flights to Australia or New Zealand. Renaissance Tours or your travel agent can assist you with your flights and other travel arrangements, including a private airport transfer, additional nights’ accommodation either before or after the tour and travel insurance (a condition of travel).

(B)

Prices

Per person, twin-share

AUD 12,750

Single supplement

AUD 2,075

Deposit per person (at time of booking)

AUD 3,000

Final payment due

05 March 2025

Room category upgrade available on request; please enquire with us.

Tour price includes

  • Accommodation in 4-star and 4-star superior hotels with breakfast daily (B)
  • Meals as per itinerary (L = Lunch, D = Dinner), including wines with dinners
  • Comprehensive sightseeing, including local guides and entrance fees as per itinerary
  • Transportation throughout on comfortable, air-conditioned coaches
  • Lectures and talks with your tour leader, Lorraine Kypiotis
  • Gratuities for local guides, drivers and wait staff
  • Hotel porterage (one piece per person) in certain hotels

Tour price does not include

  • International airfares (please contact Renaissance Tours or your travel agent for assistance)
  • Airport/hotel transfers on arrival and departure
  • Airport porterage
  • Items of a personal nature (e.g. telephone, laundry, room service, minibar, taxis etc.)
  • Travel insurance (a condition of travel; please contact Renaissance Tours or your travel agent for assistance)

Hotel

Your hotels
Lisbon – Porto Bay Marquês****
Coimbra – NH Coimbra Dona Inês****
Porto – Porto Bay Teatro Hotel****

N.B. Hotels of a similar standard may be substituted.

More Details

Tour code: AG2510

Fitness level: Moderate
Please see Terms & Conditions for fitness level definitions here.

Suggested airline: Emirates
Please contact Renaissance Tours or your travel agent for current airfares and flight reservations.

Visa
Australian and New Zealand passport holders do not require a visa for Portugal.

Download booking form here.

Map

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