A Holidaymakers’ Guide to Portugal
Portugal is an amazingly diverse country; a mecca of wonderful sights and sounds. From the bustling capital of Lisbon, the stunning beaches of Algarve to the verdant hills and natural beauty of Madeira, it is considered one of Europe’s most popular tourist destinations. It has something for everyone and so a great choice if holidaying with your family.
Some of its top holiday spots include:
Lisbon: The capital city of Portugal is an eclectic blend of the traditional and the contemporary. You can find Lisbon’s oldest traditional shops in the downtown area of Baixa. You can also stroll along the cobbled streets to the jewellery stores that dot the Martim Moniz town square. Cafes and restaurants in Lisbon serve the best of Portuguese and western cuisine. Its nightlife and live music shows attract party lovers.
Algarve: Sun, sand and sea are the hallmarks of this picturesque location. Tourists flock to Algarve to enjoy the sun-splashed beaches and world-class golf courses. The charming villages in Faro are rich in historical heritage. The paths are lined with palm trees and date back to the 18th century. The temperate climate also makes it an all-time favourite for holidaymakers.
Porto: This is the location from which the name Portugal was derived and is also home to the wine known worldwide as ‘Port’. So significant is Porto’s historical place in the country that it was declared a UNESCO World Heritage in 1996. The picturesque Cais da Ribiera waterfront is lined with row upon row of granite homes and the harbour is dotted with ships and river boats. It is popular with tourists for its street cafes that serve fresh coffee and grilled seafood and bars that play great music.
Coimbra: This is another one of Portugal’s richly historical cities. Home to one of the oldest universities in Europe-the University of Coimbra, it is considered one of the most romantic spots in the country. The medieval buildings, old towns and narrow streets will transport you to another time.
Madeira: This beautiful island in the middle of the Atlantic will enchant nature lovers with its lush green landscapes and wildlife. The beautiful weather cries out for outdoor activities like hiking, nature walks, boat rides in the archipelago, and scuba diving. You can indulge in the local cuisine and enjoy the party scene; particularly the many carnival parades such as the Flower Festival.
Portugal holidays offer an incredible holiday experience with great value for your money. In fact, according to Tripadvisor.com, Portugal is billed as one of the cheaper destinations in Europe, with particular regard to Algarve.
You can find great deals on flight charges by using reputable comparison websites such as Momondo.co.uk. You can compare flight prices here and get great discounts. Flights to Lisbon from the UK start from about 50 pounds. There is a wide variety of holiday packages to choose from, whether you are on a shoestring budget or have enough money to spend. Lowcostholidays.com have many Portugal holiday packages at between £100-£200 per person.