Portugal is a city with a strong present and a very valuable past. It welcomes people from all walks of life to enjoy and soak in the serenity here. With a plethora of things to do in Portugal, where else would you want to go to spend your vacations? Explore beaches, take wine tours, go hiking, read at the oldest bookstore and more – the list is big enough to make you want to stay here for long. Don’t forget to carry this list before you leave for an enthralling getaway!
Best Time To Visit Portugal
The ideal time to visit Portugal depends upon the purpose of your visit. The busiest and expensive time of the year in Portugal is August. If you just wish to soak in the sun at the many beaches, then visit anytime between July to September, when the weather here is warm and pleasant with perfect swimming conditions. Other than this, November to January is the best time to visit for surfers.
14 Best Things To Do In Portugal
Curious about what to do in Portugal on your next vacation? Your search ends here! We have listed down some of the best Portugal activities for you. Scroll down and take your pick:
- Algarve: Explore Hidden Cave Beaches
- Nazare: Surf 100 Feet High Waves
- Oceanário De Lisboa: Meet Colourful Sea Creatures
- Livraria Bertrand: Treat The Reader In You
- Furnas Lake: Go Canoeing
- Peneda-Gerês National Park: Spot A Range Of Flora And Fauna
- Sado Estuary: Gaze At Dolphins
- Egg Tarts: Savour The Portuguese Special Dish
- Nightlife: Party The Night Away
- Serra Da Estrela: Taste Infinite Adventures
- Cabo De Sao Vicente: Travel To End Of The World
- Porto: Take A Wine Tasting Tour
- Jerónimos Monastery: Make A Visit
- Matosinhos Beach: Sunbathe
1. Algarve: Explore Hidden Cave Beaches
Blessed with some of the world’s most famous beaches, the Algarve is the southernmost region in Portugal. An unmatchable combination of refreshing weather, crystal clear waters, and glittering sand, the quintessential beaches in Algarve do not come alone to surprise you. Algarve is one such abode of hidden caves of which the top ones are The Benagil Cave, The Zorreira Cave, The Arches of Marinha, The Captain’s Cave, and The Elephant Cave. Exploring these hidden cave beaches is one of the best things to do in Algarve, Portugal.
Choose from around 150 beaches in Algarve and indulge in activities like surfing, lounging, and diving. You can reach these beaches by either swimming or via a boat. Visiting these beaches and trying these water sports is one of the top things to do in Portugal.
Cave tour starting price: INR 1,400 (17.50€)
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2. Nazare: Surf 100 Feet High Waves
Touch the heights as waves rise up to 100 feet and more at the beaches of Nazare, Portugal. Nazare successfully draws numerous domestic adventure enthusiasts and international adventure seekers as well all year round to surf. With all these serene beaches, no doubt, surfing is one of the adventurous things to do in Portugal. If not surfing, you can sit back and watch the gorgeous setting before you from the Sitio da Nazare situated next to the lighthouse. The waves here are unique and unpredictable, so you have to plan your vacation wisely.
Best time to surf in Nazare: October to March
3. Oceanário De Lisboa: Meet Colourful Sea Creatures
Oceanário de Lisboa in Lisbon is a place where nature, art, and beauty collide. If you are looking for things to do in Portugal with kids then, there is no better place than this aquarium to educate your young ones about marine life. Oceanário de Lisboa is home to around 8,000 marine creatures which include sharks, sea otters, coral reefs, and rays. Out of all the things to do in Lisbon, Portugal, it is a must to visit this aquarium. Focusing on marine conservation, Oceanário de Lisboa is divided into two sections for clearer understanding.
Location of Oceanário de Lisboa: Esplanada Dom Carlos I s/nº, 1990-005 Lisboa, Portugal
Timings: 10 AM to 8 PM, all days
Entry fee: Starting at INR 800 (10€)
4. Livraria Bertrand: Treat The Reader In You
A treat to all bibliophiles, Livraria Bertrand in Lisbon is the oldest operating bookstore in the world. For more than 280 years now, Livraria Bertrand has been a zone for readers, writers, and intellectuals to come together and hold discussions. It is one of the best places to visit in Portugal when you head out to explore the unseen in this country. Spend some time here amidst books.
Location of Livraria Bertrand: R. Garrett 73, 1200-309 Lisboa, Portugal
- Monday to Saturday – 9 AM to 10 PM
- Sunday – 11 AM to 10 PM
5. Furnas Lake: Go Canoeing
Going to Portugal and not canoeing at Furnas Lake is a big miss on one of the most thrilling things to do in Portugal. A walk or a bike ride on the 5 miles long track circumferencing this lake will certainly pamper you with stunning views of bamboo forests, redwood forests, meadows, and far-reaching jungle vines. Take your camera and go canoeing at the lake to capture some of the best views and cherish them forever. Have a great time here.
6. Peneda-Gerês National Park: Spot A Range Of Flora And Fauna
An exciting and thrilling package of rich flora and fauna, along with vibrant options of adventure activities, Peneda-Gerês National Park (Parque Nacional da Peneda-Gerês) is one of the most prominent Portugal places to visit. It is an ideal place for nature lovers, animal lovers, and birders. If you are lucky, you may spot a roe deer and few wild ponies in the forests and birds like golden eagles, goshawks, buzzards, and red kites. Among all the things to do in Portugal for families, hiking at the gorgeous trails in this park will definitely add up some spice to your vacation.
Highest Point: Pico da Nervosa
Lowest Point: Lima River
Suggested Read: A Guide To Help You Plan Your Portugal Honeymoon
7. Sado Estuary: Gaze At Dolphins
Sado Estuary has lately been declared as a special protection zone and nature reserve, attracting numerous visitors to catch a glimpse of the playful dolphins here. Take a boat trip to watch these beautiful creatures in their natural habitat along the Portuguese coast. Watching dolphins in the Sado estuary is undoubtedly one of the top fun things to do in Portugal as there is no other place left on the Portuguese coastline that is an abode to bottlenose dolphins.
Location: R. Cláudio Lagrange, Setúbal, Portugal
8. Egg Tarts: Savour The Portuguese Special Dish
Wondering what to do in Lisbon? Fret not. There are many places serving luscious pastries which are enjoyed everywhere in Portugal. If you are in Lisbon, then you must try the famous Portuguese Egg Tarts (Pastéis de Nata), filled with real scrumptious cheesy fillings and egg yolks. Do visit Pasteis De Cerveja De Belém to try the best egg tarts in Lisbon, Portugal.
9. Nightlife: Party The Night Away
As the sun goes down in Lisbon, the city comes to life. Amidst all the things to do in Lisbon, Portugal, ranging over numerous bars and restaurants is indisputably the best thing. With a wide array of dining, clubbing, exploring, and entertainment options, Lisbon will never disappoint the party animal in you. So have a great time here as this is one of the best things to do in Lisbon.
Best places to visit in Lisbon at night: K Urban Beach, Lux Fragil, Incognito, Music Box, Mahjong, Kremlin, Duplex, Casa Independente
10. Serra Da Estrela: Taste Infinite Adventures
Serra da Estrela is a year-round destination. Be it summers or winters, it never fails to attract nature lovers and adventure seekers. Marvel at a very rich diversity of birds and animals here and also get an opportunity to climb up Torre, the highest point in Estrella mountain. Another super fun activity among all the things to do in Portugal is to indulge in various adventure activities up here.
Adventure activities: Skiing, trekking, hiking, horse-riding, mountain biking, paragliding, and more
11. Cabo De Sao Vicente: Travel To End Of The World
The far-reaching views of the dark ocean from these high cliffs complement each other just enough to blow your mind! Visiting Caso de Sao Vicente is another in the league of the things to do in Portugal in September. This place is also home to Europe’s brightest lighthouse which can be seen from around 60 miles away. Surprisingly, this point is famed for being the southwestern extreme of Europe and locally called the ‘End Of The World’.
Location: Faro District
12. Porto: Take A Wine Tasting Tour
No more drinking Port Wine only around Christmas now, because, in Portugal, it is drunk all year round. Moreover, it is a famous dessert wine usually ordered as you finish a meal. Find out your favorite wine style by taking up a Port tour, as the more you taste, the more you discover. A vacation in Portugal is incomplete without doing a wine tour. So take this tour on your visit to Portugal.
13. Jerónimos Monastery: Make A Visit
If you are looking for things to do in Lisbon, Portugal then head to the Jerónimos Monastery. This is a beautiful monastery located in Lisbon. Tourists flock to this monastery due to its spectacular architecture. The monastery boasts of a Portuguese late Gothic style and is a lovely place to visit. In 1983 it was announced to be a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Exploring this monastery is one of the best activities to do in Lisbon.
Location: Praça do Império 1400-206 Lisboa, Portugal
14. Matosinhos Beach: Sunbathe
This is one of the most popular beaches in Portugal where locals as well as tourists come to bathe in the sun. Lifeguards are available all the time for your safety. While you can enjoy a game of volleyball or two, the beach also offers water sports.
Location: Av. Norton de Matos, 4450-208 Matosinhos, Portugal
We hope we have helped you plan your vacation well with this list of things to do in Portugal. All you now have to do is book a tailor-made Portugal tour from TravelTriangle for a fabulous trip! Savor in the distinguished flavors of Portugal ranging from adventure, history, to nightlife.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Portugal
What is the number one tourist attraction in Portugal?
There are numerous famous tourist attractions in Portugal including Mosteiro dos Jerónimos, Oceanário de Lisboa, Palácio Nacional de Sintra, Torre de Belém, Convento do Cristo, Bom Jesus do Monte, Gerês Mountain Range, Universidade de Coimbra, Museu Calouste Gulbenkian, Castelo de Guimarães, Torre de Clérigos, etc.
How many days are enough in Portugal?
You must plan your Portugal trip for at least 7 days if you wish to capture the true vibe of the place and sneak peek at the exclusive culture, custom, tradition, and beliefs. There are numerous tourist attractions, natural escapes, lively intractions, extravagant markets, etc. that are worth exploring on a holiday.
Is it safe to visit Portugal during Covid times?
You need to follow all the mandatory safety guidelines mentioned by the authorities to ensure a safe travel experience. Remain masked while stepping out and maintain social distance. Avoid visiting crowded places and keep sanitizing your hands after touching surfaces.
What are the best things to do in Belem, Portugal?
There are numerous things to indulge in while holidaying in Belem. Some of the best activities to do in Belem, Portugal are visiting famous places like Antiga Confeitaria de Belem, Mosteirodos Jeronimos, Museu Colecao Berardo and more.
What are the best things to do in Evora, Portugal?
You can plan visiting the top tourist attractions in Evora including Sé (Cathedral), Museu de Évora, Roman Temple, Termas Romanas, Palácio dos Duques de Cadaval, Igreja São João Evangelista, Igreja de São Francisco, Praça do Giraldo, Convento dos Lóios, Universidade de Évora, etc.
What is the best time to visit Portugal?
The best time to visit Portugal is between March to May. The country experiences spring during this time. September and October are also ideal to plan a holiday to Portugal. The days remain shiny during this time with less tourists than the peak season.
Where can I go shopping in Portugal?
The following are the famous places for shopping in Portugal:
1. Under the Cover
2. Galaria Tereza Seabra
3. Maison Nuno Gama
4. Casa Amora
6. Colombo Mall
7. Freeport Lisboa Fashion Outlet
What can I eat in Portugal?
The following are the popular Portuguese dishes that you must try while vacationing here:
1. Caldo Verde - Soup
2. Bacalhau - Cod Fish
3. Sardines – Seafood Dishes
4. Bifanas – Sandwich
5. Chicken Piri-Piri – Chicken Dish
6. Polvo à la Lagareiro – Octopus Dish
7. Porco Preto – Cured Ham
8. Pastel de Nata – Dessert
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