If you’re looking for a breathtaking European destination with plenty of history, culture, and natural beauty, Portugal should be at your list! This small country is packed with stunning scenery, from the beaches of the Algarve to the rolling hills of the north. And don’t forget the vibrant cities like Lisbon and Porto, which are full of character and charm.
Whether you’re looking to relax on the beach, explore some of Europe’s most stunning architecture, or sample the delicious food and wine, Portugal has something for everyone. So what are you waiting for? Start planning your trip to this amazing country today!
The Portuguese have a very long history spanning over 700 years. It is a country that has a rich and diverse culture. In addition, it continues to be heavily influenced by its history and the cultures it has been exposed to over the centuries.
Portugal is a great destination because of its stunning scenery, friendly people, and delicious food.
If you’re just about to head off to a new country, it’s always good to check out where you plan to visit. The freebies might tempt you to offer from your travel agents or the low-cost flights, but it pays to do your research first, which means reading up on what makes Portugal so attractive.
Portugal is one of the few places easily categorized as a great travel destination. It has many beautiful sights and is rich in history and culture. But there’s more to Portugal than just being a great travel destination. This article will highlight why Portugal is a fantastic travel destination, including its beauty, history, culture, architecture, and food.
We’ve made a list of our top 5 reasons why Portugal is a fantastic travel destination for you to check out:
- The architecture is worthy of a museum (and many museums are there). Beautiful cities like Vila Nova de Gaia, Algarve, and Setúbal are also fun places to visit.
- The countryside is green and lush. There are many interesting sites to see there – from stunning mountains to beautiful beaches (gorgeous).
- The climate in Portugal is perfect for those who enjoy warm weather and sunny days. The climate is mild compared to other European countries – especially neighboring Spain or Italy.
- The food in Portugal is simply incredible, with fresh seafood, delicious meats, and mouth-watering desserts.
- The people here are friendly and welcoming and have a great sense of humor.
As a first-time visitor to Portugal, I was struck by the number of tourists and how bustling the cities were. The countryside is gorgeous, and with the warm weather, I assumed the Portuguese people would be similarly enthusiastic about spending time outside.
I have spent some time in Portugal recently and enjoyed exploring its beautiful landscapes and finding quiet places to rest my legs.
Thanks to its proximity to Africa, Portugal has some of the world’s best weather year-round.
Portugal is a country located on the Iberian Peninsula in southwestern Europe. The climate of Portugal is temperate, with mild, rainy winters and hot, dry summers.
The average annual temperature in Portugal is about 16 degrees Celsius (60 degrees Fahrenheit). Portugal has a maritime climate, which means that the weather is affected by the Atlantic Ocean. The ocean moderates the temperature and provides rain.
The official language is Portuguese, and the predominant religion is Catholicism. The culture mixes Mediterranean, African, and South American influences. Portugal has a rich history and vibrant culture reflected in its art, music, food, and wine, with something to offer everyone.
Accommodation & Dining
High-end accommodation and dining (especially Michelin-starred restaurants) can be found nationwide, from smaller towns to the coast. There is something magical about spending a few days on a remote beach without an airport or a major city nearby.
And these are not just cozy little villages. There are some real gems in the country, too—small towns with cobblestone streets, quaint old churches, and so on.
These places are unique in their way, but it doesn’t matter if you like their charm or quaintness; what matters most is that they offer something unique and memorable (that you can share with others), making them worth traveling to.
Portugal has various accommodation options, from camping and hostels to luxurious hotels. Portugal is a great country to visit. I know many people who have been there since the 1970s and have made it their home for decades. Portugal has a beautiful coastline, with numerous beaches and port towns. It’s also accessible via ferry or train from the west coast of Spain and Germany.
It’s one of the most beautiful countries in Europe, because it’s so different from most other places in Europe, especially when you compare it to other countries like Italy or France.
“Any Portuguese town looks like bride’s finery – something old, something new, something borrowed, and something blue.” ~Mary Mccarthy
One of the best things about Portugal is its balance between culture and nature. The city of Lisbon is dominated by the magnificent Alfama neighborhood, which includes several museums and an outdoor museum on top of an ancient bridge (the Ponta do Sol).
It’s also home to several old bridges, like the one that overshadows the Alfama neighborhood and forms an impressive bridge arching over a river with city views from both sides.
Lisbon is the capital of Portugal. It is a beautiful city with a history of over a thousand years. Lisbon is one of Western Europe’s oldest cities. Lisbon is a must-see in Portugal due to its centuries-old architecture and lively nightlife. The city has plenty of things to do, including a UNESCO World Heritage Site (the Alfama district) and beaches like Guincho and Palmazos.
The Phoenicians established the region after the Celts settled it. They established Ulissipo, later conquered by the Greeks and Carthaginians, and has been an important trading center ever since.
It has a vibrant history that includes many battles and wars. This makes it an excellent place for history buffs to visit.
Lisbon’s architecture has been described as “modern without being modernist; medieval without being old-fashioned.” The result is a blend of ancient and modern design, which can be appreciated even by those who have never visited Lisbon.
Here are five places not to be missed:
City Center is the heart of Lisbon. The area is full of beautiful eighteenth-century architecture and lively squares.
Plenty of shops, restaurants, and bars keep visitors busy. One of the most famous squares in the City Center is Rossio. It’s home to a large statue of King Pedro IV and is always lively with people coming and going.
The Alfama District is the oldest in Lisbon, Portugal. It is known for its narrow streets, colorful houses, and Fado music.
The Alfama District is a popular tourist destination and is home to many restaurants, bars, and shops.
The Belem District is one of Lisbon, Portugal’s most popular tourist attractions. The district is home to the Jeronimos Monastery, the Tower of Belem, and the Discoveries Monument.
These three landmarks are some of the most famous in Lisbon and draw millions of tourists each year. The Jeronimos Monastery was built in the 1500s and is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Tower of Belem was built in the 16th century as a defensive fortification and now serves as a symbol of Lisbon. The Discoveries Monument commemorates Portugal’s Age of Discovery and celebrates its maritime heritage.
Bairro Alto District
Bairro Alto district is located in the heart of Lisbon, Portugal. The district is known for its lively nightlife, with plenty of bars and restaurants lining the narrow streets.
Visitors can find everything from traditional Portuguese cuisine to international fare. The architecture in Bairro Alto is also worth exploring, with brightly colored buildings dating back to the 18th century. During the day, the area is a great spot to people-watch and enjoy the views of Lisbon’s skyline.
The Chiado District of Lisbon, Portugal, is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the city. The district is home to various shops, restaurants, and bars, as well as several museums and theaters.
The neighborhood is located in the center of Lisbon and is easily accessible from all parts of the city.
Are you looking for something fun to do when you go to Portugal? Consider visiting the city of Porto. This city is located just north of Lisbon and is one of the largest cities in Portugal. It also has a fascinating history.
Porto, set in the south of Portugal, is a city on the Tagus River and, as it turns out, one of the fascinating places to be on vacation. The city is a major tourist destination; many visitors come from Europe to see what this part of Portugal offers.
Here are the five best things to do in this vibrant city:
Explore the Ribeira District
The Ribeira District is the historic center of Porto and one of the most picturesque neighborhoods in the city. Located on the banks of the Douro River, the district is home to colorful houses, cobbled streets, and charming cafes and restaurants.
Be sure to explore the district’s narrow alleyways and take in the views from the riverside promenade.
Visit the São Bento Railway Station
The São Bento Railway Station is one of the most iconic buildings in Porto. The station’s exterior is decorated with beautiful azulejo tiles, and the interior is just as impressive, with a grandiose staircase and ornate chandeliers.
If you want to learn more about the station’s history, take a guided tour.
See the Porto Cathedral
The Porto Cathedral is one of the city’s most important historical landmarks. The Gothic cathedral dates back to the 12th century and is home to several important artworks, including a 16th-century carved wooden altarpiece.
Be sure to climb the cathedral’s bell tower for stunning city views.
Sample the Local Port Wine
Porto is famous for its port wine, and no visit to the city would be complete without sampling this delicious tipple. There are several port wine cellars in the Ribeira District, and many offer guided tours and tastings.
If you’re not a fan of port wine, don’t worry – the city also produces some excellent red and white wines.
Take a Day trip to the Douro Valley
The Douro Valley is one of Portugal’s most beautiful regions, just a short drive from Porto. The valley is home to vineyards, olive groves, and picturesque villages, and it’s the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of the city.
Several tour operators in Porto that offer day trips to the Douro Valley. Alternatively, you can rent a car and explore the region at your own pace.
A Brief History of Porto
The Romans founded Porto in 123 BC, and it was an important trading center for the Romans. It became an important city during Dinis’ reign as King of Portugal from 1279 to 1325. It was also home to King John I, who reigned from 1357 to 1367.
The city of Porto has a rich and colorful history that many different cultures have shaped. It is a wonderful place to visit if you are interested in history and culture, but especially if you want to enjoy yourself!
Faro, the capital of Portugal’s Algarve region, is a popular tourist destination for its sunny weather, beautiful beaches, and fascinating history.
The city is located on the southern coast of Portugal and is known for its well-preserved old town, a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visitors to Faro can explore the city’s many museums and churches or take a boat ride to the nearby island of Ilha de Faro. Here are the best things to do and see in Faro, Portugal.
Explore the Old Town
Faro’s old town is a must-see for any visitor to the city. The old town is a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site, home to many well-preserved historic buildings and monuments. Visitors can explore the old town’s narrow streets and alleyways and its many churches and museums.
Take a Boat Ride to Ilha de Faro
Ilha de Faro is a small island located just off the coast of Faro. The island is accessible by boat and is a popular spot for swimming, sunbathing, and fishing. Visitors can also explore the island’s many hiking trails or visit its lighthouse.
Visit the Faro Archaeological Museum
The Faro Archaeological Museum is one of the city’s most popular tourist attractions. The museum is in the old town and houses a collection of artifacts from the region’s history, including Roman and Moorish artifacts. The museum is open daily, and admission is free.
See the Cathedral of Faro
The Cathedral of Faro is one of the city’s most important historical landmarks. The cathedral was built in the 13th century and is a beautiful example of Gothic architecture. Visitors can tour the cathedral’s interior, decorated with stained glass windows and intricate sculptures.
Go to the Beach
Faro is located on the southern coast of Portugal and is known for its beautiful beaches. Visitors to the city can enjoy swimming, sunbathing, and windsurfing at one of the many beaches in the area. Faro’s beaches are also popular fishing spots, and many city restaurants serve fresh seafood.
Situated on the banks of the Mondego River in Portugal, Coimbra is a city that’s rich in history and culture. The city is home to some of Portugal’s most famous landmarks, including the University of Coimbra – one of the oldest universities in the world.
Here are the five best things to do and see in Coimbra:
Visit the University of Coimbra
The University of Coimbra is the oldest in Portugal. The university is in the city center and has several historical landmarks. The university also offers a variety of tours, including a guided tour of the campus and a walking tour of the city.
Explore the Old Town
Coimbra’s Old Town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Old Town is home to a number of historical landmarks, including the Cathedral of Coimbra and the Palace of the Bishops of Coimbra. The Old Town also has several museums, including the Museu Nacional de Machado de Castro and the Museu da Ciência.
Visit the Botanical Garden
The Botanical Garden of the University of Coimbra is one of the largest botanical gardens in Europe. The garden is home to various plants, trees, and several sculptures. The garden is also home to several events, including a weekly farmers’ market.
Take a River Cruise
Coimbra is located on the Mondego River, and the river is a popular spot for swimming, fishing, and boat tours. The city also offers several river cruises, including sunset and dinner cruises.
Visit the Coimbra Zoo
The Coimbra Zoo is located on the outskirts of the city. The zoo has various animals, including lions, tigers, and elephants. The zoo also offers exhibits, including a reptile house and an aviary.
There are plenty of restaurants and bars to enjoy in Coimbra and beautiful parks and gardens to explore. So if you’re looking for an idyllic European city break, add Coimbra!
Sintra is a town in the Greater Lisbon region of Portugal. Sintra is a popular day-trip destination for tourists just a short drive from the city. The town is known for its many 19th-century Romantic architecture castles and lush, green landscapes.
Here are the five best things to do and see in Sintra:
Visit the Palácio Nacional da Pena
The Palácio Nacional da Pena is one of the most iconic buildings in Sintra. The palace was built in the 19th century in the Romantic architecture style, and it sits atop a hill in the Sintra Mountains. The palace is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of Portugal’s most popular tourist attractions.
Hike to the Castelo dos Mouros
The Castelo dos Mouros is a medieval castle located in the Sintra Mountains. The castle was built in the 9th century and offered stunning views of the surrounding countryside. Visitors can hike to the castle or take a shuttle bus from the town center.
Explore the Quinta da Regaleira
The Quinta da Regaleira is a large estate built in the 19th century. The estate includes a palace, a chapel, and extensive gardens. The gardens are particularly notable, including several grottoes, fountains, and sculptures.
Visit the Palácio da Vila
The Palácio da Vila is a palace built in the 16th century. The palace was the summer residence of the Portuguese royal family, and it is now a museum. The museum features paintings, furniture, and tapestries from the 16th and 17th centuries.
Take a Stroll Through the Old Town
The Old Town of Sintra is a charming area full of narrow streets and traditional Portuguese architecture. The Old Town has several shops and restaurants, which is a great place to wander and explore.
Lagos is a beautiful town located in the Algarve region of Portugal. The town is situated on a cliff overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. Lagos is a popular tourist destination due to its stunning beaches, dramatic cliffs, and turquoise waters. There are many things to see and do in Lagos, Portugal.
Here are the five best things to do in Lagos, Portugal:
Visit Lagos Zoo
Lagos Zoo is a must-visit for animal lovers. The zoo is home to various animals, including lions, tigers, giraffes, and chimpanzees. Visitors can also learn about the local flora and fauna at the zoo’s educational center.
Explore the Old Town
The Old Town of Lagos is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Old Town has narrow streets, charming shops, and historic buildings. Visitors can also find several restaurants and cafes in the Old Town.
Go to the Beach
Lagos is home to some of the best beaches in Portugal. Meia Praia is the largest beach in Lagos and is perfect for swimming, sunbathing, and windsurfing. Praia Dona Ana is a beautiful cove with crystal-clear waters.
Visit the Fort of Santa Cruz
The Fort of Santa Cruz is a 16th-century fort in the Old Town of Lagos. The fort was built to protect the town from pirates and invaders. Visitors can explore the fort’s rooms, courtyards, and walls.
Take a Boat Tour
A boat tour is the best way to see the stunning coastline of Lagos. Visitors can take a tour of the caverns, caves, and cliffs. Boat tours also offer the opportunity to see dolphins and whales.
The city of Beja is a beautiful place to visit. There are many things to see and do in the city, such as visiting the castle, museums, and parks.
The people of Beja are amiable and welcoming, and they will be happy to show you around their city. There are also many restaurants and cafes in Beja where you can enjoy a delicious meal or coffee.
Here are the six places to visit in Beja:
The Beja Palace is located in the province of Beja, in Portugal. The palace was originally built in the 15th century by the Order of Santiago. The palace has undergone many renovations and additions over the years. The most recent renovation was completed in 2004. The palace is now used as a cultural center.
Roman Temple of Diana
The Roman Temple of Diana in Beja, Portugal, is an ancient temple built in the late first century or early second century AD. The temple is constructed out of granite and marble and features a portico with six Corinthian columns. The temple’s interior is decorated with marble reliefs, and there are also two altars inside. The temple was likely used for religious ceremonies and may have been dedicated to Diana, the Roman goddess of hunting and nature.
Museu Regional de Beja
The Museu Regional de Beja is a museum located in the city of Beja, Portugal. The museum was founded in 1965 and is housed in a palace originally built in the 18th century. The museum’s collection consists of art, furniture, and other objects from the region of Alentejo.
Castle of Beja
The Castle of Beja is a medieval castle located in the civil parish of Beja, in the municipality of Beja, in the Portuguese district of Alentejo. The castle was constructed during the 12th century by order of D. Sancho I, and enlarged and rebuilt by D. Afonso II. The structure has undergone several modifications, with the most recent renovation occurring in the early 1990s. The Castle of Beja is classified as a National Monument.
Sao Francisco Church
It was built in the 12th century and is one of the oldest buildings in Beja. The church has a beautiful facade and is decorated with carvings and paintings. The church’s interior is impressive and features Gothic arches and high ceilings.
Misericordia Church is located in Beja, Portugal, and was built in the 16th century. The church is known for its beautiful architecture and paintings.
If you want to get a little off the beaten path on your vacation, consider adding a stop in Evora to your itinerary. This small town in the heart of Portugal is home to narrow streets, picturesque plazas, and great history. The best way to experience all Evora offers is on foot; wander at will and take it all in.
One of Evora’s most popular tourist attractions is the Santa Clara Monastery. This 14th-century structure is worth visiting, especially if you’re interested in architecture or art. The monastery is also home to one of the largest libraries in Portugal.
Another must-see site in Evora is the Roman temple ruins. These are some of the best-preserved ruins in Portugal and offer a unique glimpse into the country’s ancient past.
Five must-visit places in Evora:
The Cathedral of Evora, located in Evora, Portugal, is a Roman Catholic cathedral. The cathedral was originally built in the 12th century in the Romanesque style but underwent many changes over the centuries. The current façade and bell towers date from the 18th century. The cathedral’s interior is very ornate, with many sculptures and paintings.
Roman Temple of Evora
The Roman Temple of Evora, Portugal, is well-preserved from the Roman period. The temple was built in the 2nd century AD and is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The temple is dedicated to the god Mercury and features a beautiful portico with Corinthian columns.
Evora Municipal Square
The Municipal Square of Evora is located in the city’s heart and is one of its main tourist attractions. The square was built in the 16th century and has a beautiful Manueline portal. The square is also home to the Evora City Hall, a beautiful Renaissance building.
Chapel of Bones
The Chapel of Bones is one of the most well-known tourist destinations in the city, largely due to its macabre decoration: the walls and ceilings are covered with the bones of over 5,000 monks. The chapel was originally built in the 16th century as a way to remind visitors of their own mortality, and it continues to be a popular destination for those looking for a spooky experience.
Saint Francis Church
The Saint Francis Church is a stunning example of Gothic architecture. Construction began in the early 1200s, and the church was consecrated in 1286. The church features intricate stone carvings, stained glass windows, and a soaring ceiling. The highlight of the church is the 15th-century altarpiece, which is considered one of the most beautiful in Portugal.
Evora Castle is a well-preserved medieval castle that offers visitors a glimpse into the past. The castle was originally built in the 12th century by the Knights Templar and has been modified and added to over the years. Today, visitors can explore the castle’s towers, dungeons, and walls, as well as its exhibits of armor and weapons.
Portugal was first settled by the Iberian tribe known as the Vascones, who used to live in what we today call Galicia (Spain). They lived there until they were expelled around 750 AD after many wars with neighboring kingdoms (Spain).
A large part of their people migrated south to what we today call Portugal, where they were called “Vascones” or “Vasco-Portuguese” until they were deported back north again in 1415 AD for further loss at war with Spain (this time for invading Castile).
Their descendants have lived in Portugal since then, gradually assimilating into European culture — slowly but steadily becoming part of Europe.
One thing which has distinguished Portuguese from other European countries since very early times was their language. Portuguese has been recognized as a separate language from Latin since 1808 AD, when it was declared the official language in Brazil, thanks to its association with independence movements (when Brazil became independent from Portugal).
In addition to their unique dialect, Portuguese people have also had contact with other parts of Europe through trade routes that linked different parts of Europe as well as through colonial influence on parts of Africa where Portuguese people started settling in 1501 AD along various trade routes; these include trading routes linking present-day Angola with present-day Sierra Leone via Guinea-Bissau.
Arrange the Paperwork on Time
If you plan to travel to Lisbon, you must arrange several things.
First, it is important to plan your trip well. Among other things, research whether you need a visa. This depends on where and how long you plan to stay.
The Portuguese government has a website that provides information on how to get a visa if you need one. You should also make sure that you have all the paperwork in order.
You have to show a passport, ticket, and hotel reservation. And also, bring other important documents, such as a health form due to Covid-19.
The Portuguese are extremely friendly and will always remember you if you are there. They will always make sure you feel comfortable and take care of everyone visiting them.
This trip allowed me to connect with the Portuguese people in a very authentic and direct way. And that’s why I will go back to Portugal.
It was an incredible learning experience I hope you will enjoy it as much as I did.
Book your flight today to taste Portugal’s incredible beauty and culture.
FAQs | Best Places to Visit in Portugal for Young Adults
Is Portugal open to US tourists?
Yes, Portugal is open to US tourists. The country has a lot to offer visitors, from its stunning beaches and historic cities to its great food and wine. There are also many things to do in Portugal, from trekking in the mountains touring historic castles.
What are the best cities in Portugal to visit?
Lisbon, Porto, and Coimbra are Portugal’s most frequently visited cities. Lisbon is the capital of Portugal and has plenty to offer tourists, including a beautiful blend of old and contemporary architecture, numerous restaurants and pubs, and neighboring beaches. Porto is renowned for its wine production and is an excellent site to learn about Portugal’s history and culture.
Can US citizens travel to Portugal?
Yes, US citizens can travel to Portugal without a visa. However, they must show a valid passport and proof of onward or return travel.
Top places to visit in Portugal?
There are many great places to visit in Portugal, but some of the most popular include Lisbon, Porto, and the Algarve region. Lisbon is a vibrant city with a rich history and culture, while Porto is known for its beautiful architecture and wine production. The Algarve is a popular tourist destination for its stunning coastal scenery and beaches.
Top destination in Portugal?
There are many great destinations in Portugal, but some of the most popular ones include Lisbon, Porto, and the Algarve region. Lisbon is a vibrant city with a rich history and culture, while Porto is known for its charming medieval streets and stunning coastal views. The Algarve is home to some of the most beautiful beaches in Europe, as well as plenty of golf courses and other activities for visitors to enjoy.
Is Portugal open to tourists?
Yes, Portugal is open to tourists. The country has many visitors, including beautiful scenery, interesting history, and delicious food. There are also a variety of activities and attractions that tourists can enjoy.
Is Portugal safe for American tourists?
Yes, Portugal is a safe country for American tourists. The people are friendly and welcoming, and there is a low crime rate. However, as with any foreign country, it is important to take precautions and be aware of your surroundings.
Is Portugal worth visiting?
Yes, Portugal is worth visiting! The country is home to stunning coastal towns, lovely villages, and impressive historical landmarks. Plus, the locals are amiable and welcoming, making it a great place to explore and get to know better.
How safe is Portugal for tourists?
Portugal is a safe country for tourists, with a low crime rate. However, as with any destination, there are certain areas to avoid, and it’s always important to take precautions when traveling.
How many tourist visit Portugal each year?
According to the World Tourism Organization, Portugal welcomed over 27 million international tourists in 2019. Like other countries, this number got disrupted during the COVID crisis; tourism is gradually picking up pre-COVID times.
What is Portugal like to visit?
Portugal is a great nation with magnificent coastal cities and villages. The folks are warm and inviting, and the cuisine is great. There is something for everyone in Portugal, whether you’re searching for a quiet beach break or an adventure-filled excursion.
Editor’s Note: When traveling, always be aware of your surroundings and take precautions to protect yourself. While we make every effort to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information in our articles, things can change quickly and we cannot guarantee that all information is accurate at all times. Use your best judgment when planning your trip and always consult with a travel professional before making any final decisions.