• Lisbon
  • Monument to the Discoveries, Belém district, Lisbon, Portugal
    Lisbon's Belém District
  • Roman Temple, Évora, Portugal
    Roman Temple in Évora
  • Cork farm, Alentejo region, Portugal
    Cork Farm Visit
  • Óbidos, Portugal
    Óbidos
  • Nazaré
  • Cistercian Monastery in Alcobaça
  • Fado Performance
  • Douro Valley, Portugal
    Douro Valley
  • Port Tasting
  • Port wine boats along Cais da Ribeira, Porto, Portugal
    Porto

Tour Questions? See our FAQ | Call 425-608-4217

Heart of Portugal in 12 Days Tour

from $3,195 per person + air

Optional Single Supplement $625

See Tour Dates

Starting in lively Lisbon and ending in proud Porto, our Heart of Portugal tour combines a dazzling mix of Roman, Moorish, and Baroque architecture with the small towns, seacoast, food, wine, and music of this tradition-rich country. Venturing far from the tourist crowd, this tour has a real "Europe in the old days" feel to it. Your Rick Steves guide will take you on an intimate adventure that connects you with the Portuguese people, from salty harbors to sun-baked farms to lovingly tended vineyards. Join us for the Heart of Portugal in 12 Days!

Dates & Prices

2018

2019

    • Apr 22–May 3 (Mo–Fr)
    • $3,195 + Air

    Join Waitlist
    • Apr 29–May 10 (Mo–Fr)
    • $3,395 + Air

    Join Waitlist
    • May 1–May 12 (We–Su)
    • $3,395 + Air

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What's Included

  • A small, friendly group of 24–28 people — half the size of most tour groups
  • Full-time services of a professional Rick Steves guide and local experts who will make the fascinating history, art, and culture of Portugal come alive for you
  • All tours and admissions — at no extra cost — covering at least 22 group sightseeing events • Lisbon walking tour • Fado performance • São Jorge Castle • Monastery of Jerónimos • Monument to the Discoveries • Gulbenkian Museum • Évora walking tour • Olive oil tasting • Cork farm • Alcobaça Monastery • Nazaré day trip • Batalha's Monastery of Santa María • Fátima • Conímbriga Roman ruins and museum • Coimbra University tour • Coimbra musical performance • Port wine tasting and lunch • Porto panoramic bus tour • Porto food tour • Douro River cruise (weather permitting) • Porto walking tour • Porto's Stock Exchange Palace…and more
  • All group transportation from Lisbon to Porto
  • 11 nights' accommodations in memorable, centrally located hotels
  • All breakfasts and half your dinners
  • All tips for guides and driver
  • A tour kit including a guidebook (or books) and a moneybelt
  • Guaranteed tour price, locked in the moment you make your deposit
  • Optional single supplements — this tour has a limited number of private rooms for solo travelers for an additional fee
  • Tour alum discount of $50 for each tour you've taken prior to 2019
  • 50% discount on a consulting appointment with our in-house experts to assist with your pre- or post-tour travel plans
  • Flexibility should you need to transfer or cancel your tour

Fine print: You are responsible for the cost of your drinks and free-time sightseeing. See our Tour Conditions for important details regarding everything listed above.

Itinerary

Daily Activity Key
  • Light = 2–4 miles of mostly level walking throughout the day.
  • Moderate = 2–6 miles walking throughout the day with some hills and stairs.
  • Strenuous = 2–8 miles of walking throughout the day with lots of hills, stairs, and uneven terrain.

Day 1: Welcome to Portugal

We'll gather at our Lisbon hotel at 5 p.m. for a short meeting, followed by an orientation walk through our neighborhood, and a "Welcome to Portugal" dinner together. Sleep in Lisbon (3 nights). No bus. Walking: moderate.

Day 2: Neighborhoods of Lisbon

This morning we'll take a walking tour through Lisbon's colorful downtown neighborhoods — the Bairro Alto, the Alfama, and the Baixa — including a panoramic view of this vibrant city from São Jorge Castle. Along the way we'll learn about "village" Lisbon's neighborhood life, the poetry of the revered Fernando Pessoa, and Portugal's "Carnation Revolution," which peacefully ended nearly five decades of fascist rule in 1974. You'll have the rest of your afternoon free to visit any of Lisbon's "niche" museums (tile, fado, port wine, and other Portuguese specialties). Tonight we'll regroup and enjoy a soulful fado performance with dinner. No bus. Walking: strenuous.

Day 3: Seafaring Belém and the Gulbenkian

We'll begin our day with a bus tour through Lisbon to its seafaring Belém District, home to many of the city's most historic buildings. Sticking close to the waterfront, we'll learn about Portugal's golden age of exploration at the heroic Monument to the Discoveries, and how faith, money, and a knack for sailing combined to build the dazzling Monastery of Jerónimos. Then we'll take in the view from Edward VII Park before ending at the world-class Gulbenkian Museum, where we'll see how an international oil tycoon assembled a priceless art collection spanning 5,000 years. You'll have the evening free to continue to explore the museum or return to Lisbon for dinner on your own. Bus: 1 hour. Walking: moderate.

Day 4: Historic Évora

Today we'll head east to the laid-back Alentejo countryside and the history-rich university town of Évora. We'll take a walking tour of Évora's preserved-in-whitewash old section, marveling at its Corinthian-columned Roman Temple and its macabre Chapel of Bones. As you'll discover in your free afternoon and evening, Évora has a world-apart feel to it that really connects you with traditional Portugal. Sleep in Évora (1 night). Bus: 2 hours. Walking: moderate.

Day 5: Olives, Oaks, and Óbidos

This morning begins with a memorable visit to a working farm and estate. We'll have a chance to meet farming locals, and taste-test their olive oil. Then we'll wander through their forest of cork oaks, learning how the bark is harvested and how it's being regulated today. We'll cap off our visit with lunch together, including some of the estate's wines. This afternoon we'll follow the sun as we make our way to the medieval walled town of Óbidos. Upon arrival we'll take an orientation walk through the perfectly preserved cobblestone streets, and learn why this is known as Portugal's "wedding city." Sleep in Óbidos (2 nights). Bus: 5 hours. Walking: light.

Day 6: Royal Intrigue, Alcobaça, and Nazaré

We'll begin today with a visit in Alcobaça to tour the ornate Baroque-Gothic Cistercian Monastery of Santa Maria, and hear the star-crossed story of King Pedro and his doomed mistress, Inês. Later we'll enjoy some fun in the sun in the old coastal fishing village of Nazaré. Splash in the waters of the Atlantic, sample the local specialty — barnacles — or take the funicular up to the historic Sítio neighborhood to enjoy its sweeping cliff-top views. This evening we'll return to Óbidos for dinner on your own. Bus: 2 hours. Walking: moderate.

Day 7: Batalha and Fátima

We'll continue our journey north, stopping in Batalha to visit its grand Monastery of Santa María, a symbol of Portuguese pride and its victory (with help from English archers) over Spanish domination 600 years ago. Then we'll visit the nearby pilgrimage site of Fátima — a favorite of Pope John Paul II — where three children shared controversial visions of the Virgin Mary in 1917. This afternoon, our destination is Portugal's historic capital of Coimbra, where we'll tour the city's maze of narrow lanes and its steeped-in-tradition 700-year-old university. The palatial university library — with 30,000 books from the 18th century — is like nothing you've seen before. We'll end our day with dinner together in the heart of the Old Town. Sleep in Coimbra (2 nights). Bus: 2 hours. Walking: moderate.

Day 8: Classic Coimbra

This morning we'll journey back to Portugal's ancient Roman past, wandering the evocative remains and perfectly preserved mosaics of once-prosperous Conímbriga. The rest of your day will be free back in Coimbra for making more discoveries on your own. Tonight we'll rendezvous for a performance of Coimbra's unique style of fado…more likely devoted to revolutionary student ideals than lost love. Bus: 1 hour. Walking: moderate.

Day 9: Douro Wine Country

We'll drive to Portugal's most famous wine-making region today: the lush, green Douro Valley, where we'll visit an old family estate and winery (quinta) with spectacular views of the surrounding valley. It's a perfect chance to learn all about the proud art of making fine Port — and taste it too! Later in the afternoon we'll make our way to our hotel with all evening free to relax and watch the sun set over the Douro River. Sleep in the Douro Valley (1 night). Bus: 4 hours. Walking: moderate.

Day 10: Vineyard Views and Porto

Today we'll travel through terraced wine country on our way to the port city of Porto. On arrival in this rustic Portuguese San Francisco, we'll take a panoramic bus tour of Porto's classy neighborhoods, dynamic downtown, and bustling port. After checking in to our hotel, a savvy guide will show us how to explore the city through our taste buds with a sampling of delicious local cuisine, teaching us about history, architecture, and culture along the way. We'll end our day with a relaxing cruise on the Douro River (weather permitting). Sleep in Porto (2 nights). Boat: ¾ hour. Bus: 3 hours. Walking: moderate.

Day 11: Savoring Proud Porto

This morning we'll take a walking tour of Porto's riverfront Ribeira district, including the lavish rooms of its Stock Exchange Palace, the exquisitely gilded Church of São Francisco, and São Bento train station. Then you'll have time to wander on your own through Porto's lively city center — or seek out some more sipping at an old port-wine lodge. This evening we'll enjoy a final dinner together, sharing travel memories and toasting new friends. Saúde! No bus. Walking: strenuous.

Day 12: Tour Over After Breakfast

Breakfast is provided, but there are no group activities today. Your guide will help steer you to Porto's airport, which is an easy metro or taxi ride away. Or you may want to stay for further Portuguese adventures on your own. Adeus!

Itinerary specifics subject to change.

Physical Demands

Our tours are physically active! It's an essential part of the Rick Steves tour experience. On our Heart of Portugal in 12 Days tour — among other things — you'll need to happily…

  1. Carry/roll your luggage over uneven pavement (possibly several blocks) and up stairways to reach your hotel, then up several flights of stairs to reach your room.
  2. Be on your feet, walking and standing, for up to four hours, indoors and outdoors, in all weather conditions.
  3. Sleep with street noise and no (or weak) air conditioning.
  4. After orientation and transportation lessons, be able to navigate towns and cities on your own.

Reviews

Mark

New Palestine, IN

Tour: 06/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had high hopes for this trip. We knew it was rated as one of the top RS tours. This was our 7th RS tour so was it possible for this tour to stand up to our expectations? Well - IT DID! Phenomenal experience! What a fantastic blend of large and small cities - cultural experiences and quaint environments. Cristina Duarte is absolutely fantastic. Her pure love and enthusiasm for Portugal was invigorating - Her smile, infectious!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"This tour was packed with special treats. From tuk tuk rides to private Fado performances - River boat rides to personal museum tours. We love these small tour experiences. The guides, city mixes and food experiences are amazing. The private cork farm safari and lunch was a wonderful afternoon - probably my WOW moment. Can't experience that on my own!"

Kenn

Lake Forest, IL

Tour: 06/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This trip far exceeded our trip expectations. This our 6th Rick Steves' tour and ranks up there as one of the best tours we have taken.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Before you can write about WOW moments, a great deal of credit must go to our tour guide, Cristina. She brought Portugal to us by bringing out its history, culture, people, food, and traditions. Plus Portugal was playing in the World Cup and that was a special treat to watch and experience. It is very hard to decide on one event/thing as the WOW moment. The visit to the Cork farm, the Fado singing, the beautiful landscapes, the wine country and the city of Porto are all wow moments."

Sarah

North York, ON

Tour: 06/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a wonderful tour, from start to finish.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Walking around the medieval town of Obidos at night, buying a huge bag of fresh cherries at the market in Evora, seeing a baby peacock for the first time at Sao Jorge Castle in Lisbon, learning about cork and port wine in the farm and vineyard, so many things!"

Kelly

Sebastopol, CA

Tour: 06/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This is my second RS tour and it did not disappoint. the tour was well run, balanced between group time and free time to explore and, interjected interesting side trips. It was great to explore the history, culture and people of Portugal. Thank you!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Probably touring the cork farm, gaining a wealth of information about the process and business but most importantly, meeting and breaking bread with the family and their crew. It was a great afternoon of education and comraderie. Loved it."

Joshua

Marina Del Rey, CA

Tour: 06/25/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

One signs up for a Rick Steves tour because you trust Rick's guidance as to what to see and how best to experience where you're visiting. This tour did a fine job at illustrating all the places we visited. In many ways it's after you leave Lisbon that the tour is the strongest. Many of the great Lisbon area sites are left off your tour, I'm assuming on the assumption you'll arrive early and visit independently. You must do that or you'll have a deficit in your Portuguese knowledge base.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"This is difficult as overly, Portugal lacks "wow" sights like you might find elsewhere in Europe. For me Porto was the most attractive place we visited with the most "wow" locations."

Arthur

Irvine, CA

Tour: 06/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It is my third tour with RS and it was the largest at 28 . Christina was outstanding and even though I am conservative she presented her views in a very acceptable way. The food was great and the hotels exceeded the other tours. The design of each tour has been excellent with some free time and directed activities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had several, but the way Christina presented the history of the explorers was so well done with her dancing on the world map made the history so very clear."

Lynn

Bangor, DOW

Tour: 06/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful tour with a passionate and engaging guide like Cristina. She is a true ambassador for Portugal and for the Rick Steves organisation. I am a RS guide too and I can say that Cristina is caring, extremely knowledgeable, always pleasant and attentive guide who worked hard every day to help us get the most out of every experience and visit.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The time we spent in Fatima. Personally I would have preferred an hour or two extra there as it is a unique and moving place but I do understand the time constraints of any tour."

Dan

Sebastopol, CA

Tour: 06/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great guide and a very nice group of fellow travelers. By the tours end, I felt I had a good sense of Portugal's history, it's food, it's people (friendly with many speaking English) and it's geography and different regions. I would definitely recommend this RS tour to others without reservation!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It may seem odd for a "Wow" moment, but mine occurred at the cork farm we toured and the family owners/workers we ate lunch with on Day 5. Learning about their history, their property, and what they grow (cork and grapes) was fascinating. This was followed by a very tasty lunch with wine and conversation with a member of the family or lead worker (who is considered family). Just a great experience I will not soon forget."

Joseph

Ridgewood, NY

Tour: 06/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a great experience. Wonderful part of the world shared with like minded people. It was a fantastic vacation.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My wow moments tend to be organic. Something that happens outside of the tour. My wife and I were spending an evening at a fair in Evora. We were hoping to find live music somewhere in town. We ended up having dinner at the fair and stumbled upon a stage. The music was so much fun that it was difficult to leave. (should we head back to the hotel? No, we need to see what the next tune is). It is a moment like that that lasts a lifetime and your tour are fertile ground allowing them to happen."

Sarah

Denver, CO

Tour: 06/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a great introduction to Portugal, their culture and history. I liked moving around to the different cities and parts of the country. Our tour guide, Cristina, was fabulous, full of energy and knowledge.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I didn't realize there was so much Roman history in Portugal, I need to read my history!"

Claudia

Ridgewood, NY

Tour: 06/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was wonderful. We were able to see a good portion of the country, and I never felt as if we were being rushed or did not have enough time to experience a place (that being said, there are a few places I would love to go back to someday!). Mostly the people we interacted with were warm and friendly, with a ready smile and a helping hand. I now understand why so many Americans move to Portugal after they retire.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Rather than any one moment that stood well above the rest, there were many moments and places that were truly engaging and interesting. The Monument to the Discoveries, the Monastery of Jerónimos and the tile museum in Lisbon; the visit to the cork farm and lunch there; the old university library in Coimbra; the fado performances in Lisbon and Coimbra; the spectacular Douro wine valley; the food and wine tour in Porto. Every place provided new and interesting sights and experiences."

Lyn

Lake Forest, IL

Tour: 06/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Thanks to the skill and enthusiasm of our guide, Cristina, our "Heart of Portugal in 12 Days" tour was one of the best. We've taken five Rick Steves tours prior to Portugal. We had an extremely congenial group of well-traveled individuals - we bonded very well - one tour member called our group her "travel family". The hotels were very nice, food excellent. A bonus was having Portugal in the World Cup while we were there. Fun to see the excitement in the country.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"A "wow" moment for me was learning about cork production in Portugal...who knew? Certainly not me. Touring the Ravisco Garcia farm and estate was fabulous. Lunch at the estate hosted by Goncalo and and his sister Sophia was wonderful, sampling several local wines during the meal. The two fado performances were very nice. Another breathtaking moment - taking the hairpin turns up to the quinta, enjoying the scenic beauty of the vineyards terraced on the hills. Gulbenkian Museum"

Don

Kannapolis, NC

Tour: 06/20/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour met all my expectations and exceeded them on several fronts, including extra meals that were not on the itinerary and hotel accommodations which were all very good. Portugal is one of those countries that I had never given much thought to because it rarely is in the news and the historic events which make it remarkable all occurred 15th - 17th centuries. It is a history filled with top-notch exploration by extremely able seaman and navigators who opened up new worlds to Europeans

Favorite "WOW" moment

"While the churches and monasteries were interesting, you get a little jaded after a time visiting these places. The most fascinating parts of the tour were the visits to the cork farm and the winery in the Douro region. It is amazing how many products [INVALID] besides wine corks [INVALID] can be made from this natural product. At the cork farm we saw how wise practices and diversification can make it possible for a family to retain its heritage."

Craig

Boulder, CO

Tour: 06/20/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

my first land based tour. Excellent tour guide who was a wealth of information about each area and town visited; the pace of activities was just right. Not to full and gave us plenty of free time to explore each stop on our own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Really enjoyed the personal visit to the cork family farms and winery. Great time and very informative."

Kenneth

Nashville, TN

Tour: 06/20/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Maria was great.......organized, interesting, very nice, knowledgable! I loved most of the site visits. Other people were friendly, courteous, and on-time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Probably enjoyed the "cork farm" and lunch as much as anything. University Library was also awesome!"

Karen

Denver, CO

Tour: 06/20/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Portugal is a more laid back country than the places we visited on previous RSE tours, so we had to downshift our expectations a bit to fit the pace. But we really appreciate that RSE tours are high value for the money, educational, engaging and usually filled with other great travelers, and this was no exception. We enjoyed the experiences that are unique to Portugal, and especially those that were unique to RSE - the things that not just everyone gets to see and do!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The cork forest/farm! When we were previewing other tour reviews before our trip, we didn't quite believe how many people named this as their Wow moment. Now we understand! We learned SO much, not just about cork, but about sustainable farming and forestry, about Portugal's recent history, about animals, pine nuts, wine and hunting. The family was so engaging. The lunch was one of the best meals of the whole trip. We even bought wine and olive oil to bring home!"

Neal

Denver, CO

Tour: 06/20/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Portugal had always been on on list, but our schedules and the fact that Greece was full convinced us that it was time to go to Portugal. We are very glad that we did. The tour was great. Some of the hotels are the best we have stayed in on a Rick Steves' tour. The guide was just great! Patient, warm, knowledgeable and friendly. I could have stayed in the Douro valley or Porto for an extra day or two - they were real highlights for me.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My wife and I had two wow experiences on this trip – she is writing about one, and I am writing about the other. The Douro Wine Country is the most breathtakingly beautiful wine country that I have visited. The estate and winery that we visited made us feel like family. What a great experience!"

Eileen

Los Gatos, CA

Tour: 06/20/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"During Valley lunch and tour."

Minna

Tucson, AZ

Tour: 06/20/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

overall as a single person with vegetarian diet request, this trip was good to very good. the fellow travelers were pleasant and responsible. the guide, Maria was efficient caring and knowledgeable above all the itenary was was the key reason for choosing this tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"vineyards and the museums"

Linda

Boulder, CO

Tour: 06/20/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first experience with a Rick Steves' tour and I was most impressed. It was an overall outstanding experience!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I really couldn't single out a "wow" moment as I enjoyed the sites of the cities but equally enjoyed the countryside excursions at the port winery and the olive oil, wine, cork etc. ranch. I would say that those two excursions with lunch and tours with the two families certainly were memorable and would have been very hard for me to have set up on my own."

Alice

Kannapolis, NC

Tour: 06/20/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our Portugal trip was great. We did 2 things with our guide that we could not have done on our own. The cork farm was eye opening. Non of us knew that it can be harvested every 9 years, so the farm must diversity their products. The port wine farm was very interesting and a fun day strolling through the vineyard. Both of these places had excellent lunches after our tours. Maria is so professional and smart and kind. She's a top quality guide.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The most moving and special moment for me was the changing of the guard at the tomb of the unknown soldier at the Santa Maria Monastery in Batalha."

Howard

North Bethesda, MD

Tour: 06/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Found the tour guide Rafael very knowledgable and able to corral our group of 28 easily so that we were on the bus and ready to go before the scheduled time on several occasions. The fellow travelers were friendly and easy to get along with so there appeared to be no tension between any members. This was my second Rick Steves tour and sent a message to my late wife's brother and sister-in-law that I could not understand why she and I never took a Rick Steves tour before.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Wow moment - watching the second half of a Portugal World Cup game in a square of hundreds of Portuguese in Coimbra. The second was the scenery of the Duoro river valley (and of course the tasting of the wines)."

Dale

Scottsdale, AZ

Tour: 06/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Exceptional experience - the tour leader was amazing, passionate about his country, and extremely knowledgeable about its places, history, culture, and culinaria. The pacing was really well planned, the hotels nicely chosen,the group meals were excellent, and the off-the-beaten-path visits to the cork farm and vineyards were real gems of the trip - unique and informative. We are taught so little about Portugal in our Western Civ classes that the trip was a real eye opener.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The visit to the cork farm - who knew cork came largely from Portugal and how it was raised and harvested!"

Susan

Columbia, SC

Tour: 06/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was on my bucket list. I would go back except in cooler weather. I learned so much on this trip. Things I had forgotten since school - everything came together. I really enjoyed the special things that a Rick Steves tour includes like side trips to the Cork tree farm, family Vineyard in Douro Valley and trip to the ceramic factory.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I really enjoyed the Cork tree farm and the family hospitality, and what a learning experience. Great Food! And of course the Douro Valley."

Stephanie

New York, NY

Tour: 06/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

An immersive tour of Portugal that is fun and educational. Our guide and local guides were the key to the experience. They bring authentic experience and humor to the trip. We not only experienced the beautiful country with varied landscape in cities and villages, but learned so much of the history current affairs, culture and wonderful food. I have been recommend it to everyone who asked about my trip. Rick Steves tour is unique!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Breathtaking terraced vineyard in Douro valley, especially from the spa hotel. It was breath taking. And the tour of the winery and farm lunch with the family was unforgettable. The cork farm safari tour and farm lunch was also incredible."

Kathy

Federal Way, WA

Tour: 06/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Another great Rick Steves tour! Our guide, Rafael, was very passionate about Portugal and his attitude was contagious! The tour had a great itinerary and a nice balance between group activities and free time. I especially enjoyed visiting the smaller villages and the visits to the family-run businesses (the cork farm, the vineyard, and the ceramic painting factory).

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Duoro Valley was gorgeous! We had a great day driving through the beautiful countryside, touring a vineyard and being treated to a delicious meal, and ending the day at a fabulous hotel on the river."

Barry

Spokane, WA

Tour: 06/18/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The weather was perfect, the food was fantastic and the hotels were all four stars. Portugal's reputation for being a "great deal" was truly brought home with the amenities we all experienced. The sense of history and the number of historical buildings that we visited were almost overwhelming.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The portuguese people's love of country was heartening to see. From the tour of the sustainable cork farm to the guided walk through Porto it was clear that portuguese love their country and are very proud to show it off. I have to say the cork farm was my favorite - fantastic guide (owner) explaining how his family was able to make a living harvesting oak, offering large game hunting and olive oil for sale was impressive. The meal provided was to die for and the dogfish soup was awesome."

Deborah

Chicago, IL

Tour: 06/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I was extremely surprised everyday with our tour. Our guide, Fatima, told us it would get better each day of our tour and I was a little doubtful at first. But as each day progressed, she would blow us away with another wonderful experience. I didn't know that much about Portugal, but Fatima gave us all a wealth of information every single day. I know I will visit this beautiful country again some day because of Fatima.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had many "Wow" moments, but the first one was when we were walking in Obidos and a street performer sang "Ave Maria" for our group. It actually brought me to tears hearing this gentleman's operatic voice."

Rita

Downingtown, PA

Tour: 06/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fatima was marvelous--a treasure trove of facts, observations and wisdom plus she has a wonderful personality. Hold on to this woman and give her a big raise!! The itinerary was excellent and I really appreciated the free time i.e. the itinerary was not so "packed" that you were afraid that you would miss something if you opted out. The one night stay at the mansion in the Douro Valley would have been a wonderful opportunity for a two-night stay for R&R.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The beautiful Douro Valley and the town of Obidos. Also, as a "cradle Catholic" I was delighted to see, for the first time in my life, a statue of Mother Mary in Obidos picturing her as clearly pregnant! The two luncheons, at the cork farm and the vineyard, were a wonderful event."

Bruce

Princeton, ID

Tour: 06/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was a great tour and as usual met our expectations. It was more of a challenge than expected. Fatima is an impressive guide. Especially in the fact that if she saw us on our free time would join us with no hesitation. Was as interested in us as we were in Portugal.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Joining in with Fatima for street night festivals and seeing how the people of Portugal celebrate their country."

Claudia

Portsmouth, VA

Tour: 06/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our guide Fatima symbolized the essence of Portugal-beautiful, fun, energetic, hardworking, polite, generous, and caring. The hotels was exceptional, the meals exceeded all my expectations, the wine glorious, and the vistas varying and mind-blowing. This is the Rolls Royce of Rick Steves trips.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Lisbon-watching the World Cup in the Placa with the local and visiting fans and the fado show Evora- the vibrant street cafe and market scene, the cork farm and luncheon Obidos-the medieval dancers and the keys to the castle Coimbra-fabulous university, twisting streets, and student fado singers Douro-there is heaven and great wine on earth Porto-walking wine tour, farewell dinner, elegant hotel"

Donna

Crozet, VA

Tour: 06/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a fabulous introduction to Rick Steves' tours! I appreciated how easy it was to have a fun-filled, action-packed experience, thanks to the skill and know-how of our guide. The ratio of guided-time to free-time was just about right, although there were certainly times when I was happy to take a short rest before our next adventure. Hotels, restaurants, local guides, and "extra" events were of high quality and I came home with a new appreciation for the country and people of Portugal.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My "wow" moment was interacting with the people of Portugal - they are friendly, intelligent, helpful, courteous, and very pleasant. And they speak excellent English."

Christine

Medina, WA

Tour: 06/13/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This tour (our 11th) was very good and we loved most everything we did. The basic concern is the number of people on the tour. Rick Steve's has always positioned himself stating that his groups are small. We have had consistently 24 - 25 tour members on past tours, however, this one was 28. Too many to shepard around.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Loved the Douro Valley, very beautiful. Also enjoyed the extravagant meal at the family estate."

Maria

Concord, CA

Tour: 06/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful, I had no idea there was so much history and interesting sites to visit in Portugal. In the future I would like to also visit: Sintra, Tomar and Braga amoung other sites that I did not see on this tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Duoro Valley and visiting the agritourism winery (what a meal!). I live near Napa Valley California but it can't compare to Duora Valley, I was not prepare to see the most beautiful valley were it seems everything grows like the Garden of Eden. I'll remember it forever!"

Patricia

Princeton, ID

Tour: 06/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Outstanding guide, once in a lifetime experiences on the cork farm, family winery tour, Porto food tour, St. John festival in Porto, watching football in Lisbon Square with Fatima and daughter, great food, nice and some outstanding hotels. More strenuous than expected with all the hills, cobblestone and stone steps. Saw lots of solar and wind energy facilities. Great highways and bridges. Proud, football-crazy, industrious, and friendly people.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Cork Farm for sure. Learned so much about family history, cork and olive farming, conservation and sustainable farming. Lovely meal. Great wine."

Robert

Bellevue, WA

Tour: 06/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Excellent tour, well paced, good variety of learning opportunities. I honestly think it should be a couple of days longer ( still within the typical 14 day Rick Steves pattern). I would strongly recommend Sintra and Tomar. The experiences at the cork farm, Douro valley winery and the ceramic factory were outstanding

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Frankly, it was realizing about an hour into the tour that we had a wonderful guide"

Sara

Roswell, GA

Tour: 06/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had been to Lisbon and Sintra in 2003 and much has changed in the interim. I agree with others that Sintra needs to be added to this tour. We went again anyway, and loved it just as much as in 2003. After the tour, the Algarve was a nice (added) R&r. Fatima now has peaked my interest in the Azores and Madiera too. What I liked best was the feeling I had experienced most aspects of Portugal and I found it wonderful. The Portugese we met were so nice and welcoming!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved the Douro Valley and the hotel where we stayed there. It was far prettier than I had expected and the area was charming. I would have liked a day dedicated to seeing more Duoro Valley scenery and visiting the small towns there."

Jill

Sturgis, MI

Tour: 06/13/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was my first organized tour. In the past we have always used your books and downloaded your guides to various sights and neighborhoods.It was better than I was expecting. The food and lodging for this tour were excellent.The variety of things we were able to experience were also stellar. Our guide, Fatima, could not have been a better introduction to organized touring.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"When I realized we were not going to be eating institutional food in restaurants that could handle groups of people at one time. We had lunch with a family at their cork plantation!"

Michael

Sturgis, MI

Tour: 06/13/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fatima showed how pride for ones country is a valuable asset for a guide. Her passion for history and culture made the tour a complete picture of Portugal

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The cork farm/winery tour. I will remember the tour every time I open a bottle of wine from Portugal."

Cheryl

Garden City, NY

Tour: 06/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour was wonderful and very educational. Cristina was so very knowledgeable about every aspect of the trip. She treated us like family and we will miss her. So much variety was shown to us which gave an in depth look at Portugal. We could not have achieved this on our own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Fado was a new experience for me. The private club atmosphere in Lisbon made it so personal. The cork farm and vineyard were terrific. Cristina had her own way of having us participate in the World Cup."

Frank

Brookline, MA

Tour: 06/11/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Portugal is an excellent tour destination. The country offers much for a tourist to see and experience. The tour is well designed and well administered. The sites visited are consistently worth a tourist's attention. The hotels, travel arrangements, and group meals were consistently very good. The tour leader was very enthusiastic and excellent on logistics.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The highlight was the visit to the forest where cork trees are nurtured and harvested. The family representative who guided our visit was exceptionally informative and well spoken. The hospitality (including lunch) was also memorable."

George

Prospect, KY

Tour: 06/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Christine was a delightful travel guide for 12 days. She's a credit to your organization. Portugal and the people of Portugal were all so kind and friendly. Sandy and I had a great visit...thanks to ALL who made it possible. George

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Torn between cork farm, vineyard and Douro valley. The Sunday Mass ( we are Presbyterians ) at Fatima was also a highlight for us."

Caryl Ann

West Simsbury, CT

Tour: 06/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Cristina made me feel as though I were visiting a relative who wanted me to know everything she could tell me and show me about Portugal to give me a good time as well as a wonderful educational experience!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Each place had something unique and distinct that it is hard to pick one but visiting the Cork Farm family really stands out. The place is gorgeous, the grandson's passion for the farm and grandmother's gracious hospitality and demeanor left quite an impression."

James

Seattle, WA

Tour: 06/11/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

the tour was very good. Portugal is an interesting and beautiful country with gracious and friendly people. The tour gives you a good overview of the country and our tour leader was excellent. It is a very active tour, like most Rick Steves. By the time it is over, you need a vacation!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many lovely moments, but if I had to pick one, it is when we entered the Douro Valley. This was stunning beauty."

Gloria

Hurley, WI

Tour: 06/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Another fantastic Rick Steves' tour and GREAT guide! This tour provided great depth of history, architecture, agriculture, culture and understanding of a country that has so many connections to other countries in its history and with the EU. The topics varied day by day as we saw different landscapes unfold around the country. The activities varied as well - drinking great wine, visits with family owned farms, walking hills in cities, making a ceramic tile, boat ride - so much to learn.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so MANY but one leap of understanding for me was when Christina was teaching about the age of discovery at the Maritime Museum. I had not understood how Portugal and Spain actually reached an agreement on colonization of the "new world" and how the exploration to India was achieved by understanding the currents of the oceans."

Sheila

Trenton, ON

Tour: 06/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Portugal is a beautiful country which we had not visited before. All the aspects of the tour experience were extremely positive. Our guide (Cristina) was excellent, the excursions were interesting and fun, the group was very congenial, the scenery spectacular and even the weather was great.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Although there were many, I would have to say the drive through the Douro Valley to Pinhao was my favourite. The stunning scenery, the terraced vineyards and the groves of olive and fruit trees were breathtaking. Coupled with our walk through the quinta and delicious lunch, it was a very memorable day. Close second and third.....Cork farm and Fatima."

Helene

Natalia, TX

Tour: 06/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a great group of folks who were there to learn and have fun. The Portuguese people were genuinely grateful that we were visiting. The food was delicious and the wine was plentiful.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's hard to narrow it down to just one. Fatima - from a spiritual standpoint. The fado performances in Lisbon and Coimbra. Stopping in a square during our Porto foodie tour to cheer on Portugal in the World Cup. Wandering around streets in Obidos. Learning about the complex operations of the cork farm and meeting the 93-year-old matriarch. Each day had its own wow moment."

Roger

Garden City, NY

Tour: 06/11/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My overall experience was outstanding. My expectations were surpassed. We were looking for an education, yet a leisurely tour of Portugal. We were looking for some freedom to see sights and to find dining experiences on our own. We experienced these moments with great satisfaction due to the direction and recommendations of our tour guide. This was our first Rick Steve's Tour, but it will not be our last.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were 8: 1. the Fado performance at Casa Alentejano, Lisbon. 2. The Leitao at Solar do Bacalhao, Coimbra. 3. The Cork Farm and Rovisco Garcia Winery tour, Alentejo. 4. The Taste of Porto: Bolhao, Tasco, Padaria Ribeiro, Prova in Porto. 5. Meeting Theresa at Quinta Sta. Eufemia, great 30 year Tawny! 6. The ceramic and tile factory outside of Coimbra. 7. The visit to the Galbenkian Museum in Lisbon. 8. The view of the Douro wine valley from the Vintage Hotel, Pinhao."

David

Shushan, NY

Tour: 06/04/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

An enjoyable group of people to travel with. Portugal is a friendly and inviting place to visit.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Fado, I anitcipated that it would be hokey, but it turned out to be quite entertaining."

Christine

Arlington, VA

Tour: 06/04/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Well constructed , excellent and friendly guide, nice fellow travellors

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The visit to the cork farm, hearing the multigenerational story and chatting with family members."

Sadie

Bend, OR

Tour: 06/04/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour guide, Maria, was excellent, very patient, kind and gave us good information about all of the sites that we visited. The balance between group activities and free time was great. The hotels and restaurants were in very good locations and the food was great. We will definitely use Rick Steves Tours in the future.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The university library used in the movie Beauty and the Beast. We couldn't take photos there so will have to see the movie!"

Robert

Manchester, KY

Tour: 06/04/18

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

Overall a disappointing trip. Great people and guide services but except for the cork farm and winery excursions forgettable. Lisbon was dirty and just another big city. The airport was filthy. The food was a major disappointment. The hotels wherewith two exceptions uncomfortable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The cork farm meal and the hotel used during the winery stop were great as was the winery."

Nancy

Rye, NH

Tour: 06/04/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The trip was great! The letters Steves sends before the trip were very helpful and set the tone for the trip. Everyone in our group was fun and cooperative (and followed your suggestions) so we really didn't have any problems - which made the trip so smooth. We loved learning about all the history, Roman sites, medieval towns and most of all Porto. Maria was wonderful!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Best visits were the special ones - cork farm, family winery, ceramic factory where Steves has cultivated good relationships - the people made them wonderful experiences! We especially loved the passion of the family's son - Gonzalez about creating a sustainable cork farm. Since one of our daughters also has a sustainable farm in VT, we felt great kinship -and we know how much work goes into making that happen. We also liked going to churches and found the Manueline architecture fascinating."

Linda

Manchester, KY

Tour: 06/04/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was my second Rick Steves Tour and the overall experience was very positive. Maria was an excellent guide and very enthusiastic/informed about her country and sharing it with us. The other tour members were wonderful and I very much enjoyed time spent with them.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I particularly enjoyed the day at the cork farm and the day at the winery. It was very informative and interesting. I also enjoyed the meals there very much. I became a big fan of Port Wine due to this experience! Also, I thought the days spent in the Duoro Valley were wonderful; beautiful countryside, wonderful people."

Rod

Alamo, CA

Tour: 06/04/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

We chose this tour because of the great diversity of sites within a small geography and Portugal did not disappoint! From large cities in Lisboa and Porto to a quaint medieval city to a beach town to farms, Portugal has it all! RS' Tours did a great job of exposing us to the sites and culture. Our guide was wonderful - informative, confident, and able to joke around. The only reason I didn't give the tour a perfect score was due to the hotels. Great locations but not always comfy.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Favorite "wow" moment was the Duoro Valley! The terraced vineyards with a river flowing between the hills was absolutely stunning. It is amazing to think of all the work done by hand to create the wineries and the wine we love so much!"

Diane

Whitefish, MT

Tour: 06/04/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my 9th tour with your company. Really enjoyed Portugal.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Douro Valley and time there was amazing! Beautiful scenery, gorgeous river, delightful vineyard and winery tour with the most incredible family and lunch.The hotel was my favorite.Truly my WOW nomination."

Gary

San Jose, CA

Tour: 06/04/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This is our third Rick Steves' tour and we remain big fans. Our group had good people. Maria, our guide, was great. I am amazed that you can recruit and retain such good guides! We did not like Fatima. I will comment further. Hotels were generally good, but a few were disappointing.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The morning visit and lunch at the Rovisco Garcia Family Estate. These type of visits cannot be done if we are going on our own. This was the best. But the visit to the ceramic pottery factory and seeing them do the hand painting was also a unique treat. As was a similar visit in the Duro Valley area, but I cannot remember the name of the winery."

Jason

Seaside, CA

Tour: 05/28/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our sixth RS tour met or exceeded our expectations in every respect. Comfortable, strategically located hotels, a packed itinerary that nonetheless left some free time for exploring on our own, very informative talks by both Fatima and our local guides, unique experiences at the cork farm and vineyard, wonderful interactions with locals, a nice group of fellow travelers, and the memorable opportunity to travel with Rick himself.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's tempting to say "chatting about writing & travel with Rick Steves" -- but the big "wow" moment for me was the "extra" our guide Fatima added, bringing us to her hometown of Tomar and the Knights Templar fortress there. The town square of Tomar is one of the most picturesque of any small town I've visited in Europe, and the Knights Templar fortress was spectacular. The cork farm and vineyard visits were also wonderful, mostly for the interactions with the hardworking families who run them."

Wee Bin

Singapore, 04

Tour: 05/28/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

An excellent tour guided by the effervescent, passionate, caring Fatima - I came home with wonderful memories, satisfied taste beds, & special experiences which only a Rick Steves' tour can deliver.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Listening to the passionate deliveries during our private fado performances did 'wow' me, as did our visit to the cork farm where we learnt so much about cork making & were privileged to spend time at lunch with the whole family running the business. Their dedication & passion for the business shown through."

Conrad

Newport, OR

Tour: 05/28/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall an excellent experience with the people & culture of Portugal. The greatest asset of any country is the people & the Portuguese are exceptionally gifted in caring about their lives & the lives of visitors. A very warm and vibrant cultural experience. The pace & variety was very well organized & the quality of Fatima's guiding & all the local guides was exceptional.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Douro Valley visit & the cork farm really stand out for me. The wow factor was the extremely caring people."

Chris

Davenport, FL

Tour: 05/28/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour provided an excellent view of two thirds of central and the northern portions of Portugal. Personally my wife and I could not have taken in all sites that we encountered. There were times that I felt I was being bombarded by history and other times being left out as in the period of the Inquisition. Having the oppertunity to tour the market in Alcobaça was an outstanding chance to take in the day to day life. The side trip to Tomar was an unexpected wonderful experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Entering the Douro Valley and walking among the vineyards where the port is produced. When you look out on the terraced steps and take in the amount of labor required to produce the port from there you truly begin to appreciate the love the Portuguese have for their country. Second was the food and wine tour of Porto. It was obvious the pride of their city on display."

David

Bend, OR

Tour: 05/28/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was all that I expected, and more. We had an excellent and very knowledgeable guide, it was very well planned and organized and we had a wonderful group. The special times that we had with local experts, especially local guides and the visits to the Rovisco Garcia cork farm and Santa Eufamia winery were superb and one of the reasons why we choose to join Rick Steves tours. I learned anew so much of the history of Portugal and their contributions to human exploration.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The visit to the Knights Templar castle in Tomar."

Phyllis

Princeton Junction, NJ

Tour: 05/28/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Tour provided all the experiences I hoped for: visiting the top attractions in each city/town and the off the beaten track places that are the highlights of the RS tours; learning in - depth from Fatima and local guides about the history, culture, national identity, economy, health care and educational systems etc of Portugal; highly qualified and knowledgeable guides, the cuisine, food, and wine, balance of group touring and free time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The lasting impression for me was the drive through and time spent in Douro valley...the deep and sloping terrain with the terraced vineyards is an unforgettable sight and the visit to and meal at the vineyard was the icing on the cake. Also memorable was the visit to the cork farm, boat ride in Porto and the Fado performances."

Rick

Edmonds, WA

Tour: 05/28/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very well organized and smart use of my vacation time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Meeting Rick Steves!"

Michael

Surprise, AZ

Tour: 05/28/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The experience was wonderful. We did not know a lot about Portugal and its history but we certainly feel like we do now. What was really impressive is what the country has done in the last thirty years. The Portuguese receive a substantial loan from the EU and have used it to build infrastructure and best of all they have repaid most of the loan. Everything on the tour went very smooth. Our guide, Fatima made things feel like the tour was running like a clock.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were several wow moments, the cork farm, The vineyard in the Douro Valley, hand painting our own tiles and all the local tours. On a personal note one big wow moment was watching the expression on my wife's face the morning we left Lisbon when Fatima returned the camera my wife though she had lost. Fatima took the extra step to find the camera which was left in a restaurant."

Indira

Davenport, FL

Tour: 05/28/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first tour. Never thought we'd take one, but thoroughly enjoyed it and are very glad we chose a Rick Steve's tour. Flawless arrangements and a very personable and knowledgeable tour guide and free time to go off on our own as well.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The lovely people we met at Quinta Santa Eufemia and Rovisco Garcia and learning about their stewardship of the land. Ricardo of TastePorto.com, David of Touriga Wine Shop in Porto, the nice people at Lisbon Winery. All our best memories are of the people we met and the knowledge and experiences that they shared."

Gail

Sunriver, OR

Tour: 05/28/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fatima was just amazing. She planned and included so many " extras" and special experiences for us. She truly is a wonderful ambassador for her country and made my trip an encounter with not only Portugal but also the culture and people. Quintessential Rick Steves style!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The visit to the Cork farm was amazing and a real insight to the farming challenges of these people."

Mark

Sunriver, OR

Tour: 05/28/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The toor was great! For a large group they did a good job of keeping things going along. Fatima was the best!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The visits to farms and vineyards are keepers. I was impressed with the visit to Tomar and the Knights of Templar Oratorio..."

Karen

Seaside, CA

Tour: 05/28/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

What a great trip-our 6th with Rick Steves. We are already talking about another tour for next year. Good balance between city, small town and countryside. Fatima was an excellent guide with so much pride for her country. The country was beautiful, and the people were so kind.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Knights Templar castle in Tomar was a real WOW moment; maybe even more so since it was a total surprise added to the tour. It's an amazing building and it was so much fun the see Fatima take such pride and joy in showing us around her hometown treasure. The cork farm tour and lunch with the family. The emphasis on sustainability and working so hard for the benefit of future generations-planting and nurturing trees that you personally will not ever see a profit from-was so refreshing to me."

Elsa

Glen Allen, VA

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

It was a good tour, but I don't think I will do it again, It was very tiring.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"When we visited the cork farm. The family was delightful."

Hugh

Alexandria, VA

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We certainly did much more and saw more than we would have on our own. Moreover, the group was most congenial--and we were impressed how many Rick Steves tours they had been on. We agree that the amount and nature of the walking was relatively demanding though that was due particularly to the country; Portugal is a hilly country (particularly the cities of Central and Northern Portugal). The tour might consider an extended visit with a family, as OAT arranges--although one or two of the session

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The views from the Douro Valley area."

Caroline

North Vancouver, BC

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Enjoyed the history of Portugal; loved the trip to the Cork Farm and meeting the amazing family and fantastic lunch ; loved the Douro Valley, tour and trip to vineyards of Quinta Santa Eurfemia and again the lovely family and superb lunch and porto wine; University of Coimbra fantastic and city interesting; loved Porto more than Lisbon. Only negative was tour guide was excellent on history but spoke to long during the whole tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Cork Farm and meeting the amazing family and fantastic lunch ; loved the Douro Valley, tour and trip to vineyards of Quinta Santa Eurfemia and again the lovely family and superb lunch and porto wine and staying in the estate in the Douro Valley"

Laurie

Normal, IL

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

Somewhat disappointing. I found myself bored. Day 7 was second day in a row of a major monastery, then 2 full hours in Fatima - very boring, not lovely place - and then boring tour of Coimbra. It would have been a much better tour if you left that day out altogether and spent more time in Douro, or a day in Sintra, Bussaco, Guimaraes -many wonderful options.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I adored the hotel in the Douro Valley. A fabulous, charming place, rooms nice and house wonderful, food good. I walked around the area enjoying the vineyards in the free time we had in the afternoon. Just fantastic. My other wow moment was walking on the Obido wall - fantastic."

Raymond

Normal, IL

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

MIXED, BUT MOSTLY GOOD. ALL BUT ONE OF THE HOTELS WERE VERY GOOD; THE OTHER WAS POOR. TOUR GUIDE WAS ERRATIC. AT TIMES, DELIVERED VERY GOOD INTERESTING MATERIAL IN INTERESTING WAYS. OTHER TIMES, LESS INTERESTING AND GIVEN TO GO ON AND ON ABOUT THINGS LIKE HOW TO GET YOUR BOARDING PASS (HOW DID SHE THINK WE GOT THERE?). OVERALL GOOD, BUT TO ME A SENSE OF OUTWARD CHARM BUT NOT A GENUINE CONNECTEDNESS OR INTEREST IN US.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"THE HOTEL THAT WAS ALSO A WORKING VINEYARD ON ONE OF LAST DAYS."

William

Hertford, NC

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Tour was well organized and comprehensive. Tour guide was very knowledgeable about her country and was always a source of entertainment and got along well with the travelers.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Going to the cork farm and having an excellent lunch and wine tasting. Food tour in Porto was also very well done and I think travelers are looking for this experience."

Robert

New Smyrna Beach, FL

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Good group to be with. Efficiently coordinated. Optimal pace.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Particularly enjoyed the winery visit and luncheon in Douro Valley, and the evening spent at the family estate that evening."

Larry

Wilsonville, OR

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Christina was a wonderful guide, with encyclopedic knowledge of places, history, and current Portugal. Her humor and her passion for Portugal and all of humanity were truly treasures that she shared at all times.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Cristina's talk about the history of navigation that featured the Portuguese navigators in the late 1400s and early 1500s--things that in the United States were never shared in any of my history classes."

Maria Rosa

Alexandria, VA

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

We had a very good time ... we saw a lot because of the tour, we could not have achieved what we achieved on our own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting the Quinta of the Rovisco Garcia family, cork trees, olive trees, vinyards and lunch!! Same with the Quinta Santa Eufemia. Excellent!"

Ray

Mentor, OH

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Cristina and our driver did excellent work in taking care of everyone on the tour. She was passionate about her job and was excellent in co-ordinating a very diverse group of travelers. She also worked hard to insure that everyone enjoyed themselves during each phase of the tour. I would rank her among the elite of the guides that we have had on our previous RS tours. We were quite disappointed in the breakfast room and the road noise levels in our room in Coimbra. The staff was tremendous.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I found the Duoro Valley visit, including the Wine and Fruit farm and the overnight lodging and meals excellent. Truly a memorable experience and escape from the noise and crowds experienced earlier in the tour. A breath of fresh air for sure."

Nicanor

Glen Allen, VA

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

It was a good tour that provided us the opportunity to see a variety of places. Some unique like the cork farm, other times wonderful views, like Nazare and the Douro valley. Very interesting places like Evora but other times the choices were not of my liking like Obidos, very difficult to negotiate and little to see except for the wall. Coimbra was not a well planned visit. The bus tour of the city didn't provide much to see and the university became a long never ending visit. Porto excellent

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Doury valley amazing views one after another. The church in Evora with all those skulls in the walls."

James

North Vancouver, BC

Tour: 05/23/18

Overall rating: rating 1 of 5

The Portugal tour should be maximum eight-nine days,if this had been our first tour instead of our seventh there would not be six to follow, the guide makes the tour, very scripted nothing spontaneous no connection with the group. We had much more fun with My Way last year.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We did enjoy the Vineyard and the visit to the Cork farm."

Katherine

Round Rock, TX

Tour: 05/21/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Portugal had been explained to me as that "hilly, chilly Mediterranean country on the Atlantic"... that was an understatement. It was its own person, from language to food to tiles to the warmth of the people, esp the people. This tour had the least fit people of any of our RS tours I have been on, but then, in the end, that did not stop anyone from seeing anything. It might have in fact forced us to slow down and enjoy the walking even more. Robert was a happy, wonderful pro.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Everyone in the country wore sensible shoes. The bikes in the cities were mountain bikes and the riders wore helmets (In the rest of Europe, they only wear helmets on weekends when they are dressed in their spandex). When in heels, the women wore heels about the diameter of a half dollar. All these are examples of the pervasive cobblestones. And of the practical, hearty people. The people were my favorite part of the country. So genuine."

Patricia

East Lansing, MI

Tour: 05/21/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

see info at the end

Favorite "WOW" moment

"the Roman ruins and the Sunday visit to Fatima."

Debra

Suisun City, CA

Tour: 05/21/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Loved the beauty of the land and citizens of Portugal.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting Obidos and seeing the beautiful procession celebrating The Lady of Fatima and visiting Fatima the next day. As we entered the area of the Basilica you could hear the choir singing and then we off loaded the bus witnessing and participating in Sunday mass."

Natalie

Canfield, OH

Tour: 05/21/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My husband and I are very busy and work a great deal. We love international travel, but we don't have the time to plan the details that coincide with a multi-city country experience. We have been curious about Portugal for some time, and we enjoyed our first Rick Steve's tour in 2017, so we thought another tour with RS - especially one to Portugal would be perfect. This trip was beyond our expectations - we loved the mixture of culture, history, great food and a wonderful guide and group.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's really hard to pinpoint a favorite "wow" moment - there are so many! My husband loved the Fado performances and enjoyed hearing the difference between the Fado in Coimbra, which is sung by male performers versus our Lisbon performance/dinner in which females were the entertainers. I loved the visit to the cork farm and also the relaxing day in the Duoro Valley - it was a dream come true! The trip to the ceramics factory was also fun and provided a glimpse into the detail of the craft."

Marilyn

Portland, OR

Tour: 05/16/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I'm a "my way" tour fan. But I was glad to have as much free time as we did, and the guide did not seem to mind when I opted out of one museum visit which was of no interest to me, and the second fado experience. Other people opted out of things as well. As long as the guide is informed and no one inconvenienced, it seems to me you can adjust the tour schedule to fit your needs.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorites were visitng the cork farm and the beautiful Douro valley"

John

San Rafael, CA

Tour: 05/16/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Everything I hoped for and more

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting the cork plantation"

Peter

Pacific Grove, CA

Tour: 05/16/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

In one word... Wonderful! We saw so many great things and experienced what Portugal is truly about. We could never do so many things without taking a RS tour that are packed into 12 days. The history of Portugal and its ties to Spain in the Age of Discovery were well covered and a highlight for me. Our group was fairly large (28) but it was great to be with each and every one of them.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting the Cork farm and Quinta de Santa Eufemia winery were fantastic. We saw so many highlights it's impossible to pick just one. Our guide, Maria, was incredible - she is a gem with passion for Portugal and a great manager."

Joan

Cold Spring, MN

Tour: 05/16/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Tour surpassed my expectations. Thoroughly enjoyed our tour guide and the participants on the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Gin Ja in chocolate cups"

Thomas

Cold Spring, MN

Tour: 05/16/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour was well organized and our tour guide was excellent. The accommodations were better than expected. Included dinners were high quality.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Gin Ja in chocolate cups!"

Beverly

West Linn, OR

Tour: 05/16/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Portugal is a beautiful country and our tour guide Maria made it even better.

Carolyn

Kansas City, MO

Tour: 05/16/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had many wow moments! Here are just a few: visiting a family-owned working cork farm and getting to know family members as we ate a homemade lunch together; viewing the art collection in Lisbon's Gulbenkian Museum; seeing the university library in Coimbra (and the prison below!); touring an old family estate and winery and sampling their port; exploring the magnificent Douro Valley estate where we spent the night; and gaping at the tiles in the Stock Exchange Palace in Porto."

Eileen

Tigard, OR

Tour: 05/16/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

A very enjoyable tour, hitting many of the highlights of this lovely, interesting country. Lisbon has many wonderful sites to see and choose from. Loved Obidos and Evora and the farm/winery tours to the cork, especially, and port farms with their delicious home-cooked meals. The Douro Valley was beautiful and the Hotel Rural Casa dos Viscondes Da Varzea where we stayed was spectacular! All the hotels were in good locations with easy, walking access to the best areas of the cities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The estate hotel in the Douro Valley was so beautiful and photogenic! It was wonderful to just wander at leisure and enjoy the beauty. The cork farm tour was really interesting and informative and the lunch was delicious!"

Phil

Indianapolis, IN

Tour: 05/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I always start RS tours with an open mind. I want to be surprised, and I was not disappointed. Portugal was a pleasant surprise because of its unique culture, varied history, and beautiful landscape. Or tour guide (Fatima) could not have been better. She was passionate about Portugal and well informed. She also went above and beyond to make the tour enjoyable. I had a great time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many, but I have to give it to the visit to the cork farm. It's a kind of farming unlike anything in my experience. The owners/hosts were wonderful people who are dedicated to their work and the sewardship of the land and it's resources. Also, the lunch they served us, as well as the conversation during lunch, was fantastic."

Wendy

Tucson, AZ

Tour: 05/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I was curious to revisit Portugal to see some familiar places as well as places I hadn't visited since 1974-75. The trip far exceeded my expectations. We were able to have experiences that wouldn't have been possible on our own. Our guide, Fatima, was beyond marvelous. Her knowledge and love of her country helped us experience the history, beautiful scenery, wonderful food and wines, and congenial people in a special way. I highly recommend this tour!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Among my favorite "wow" moments were visiting the market and learning about Pedro and Ines in Alcobaca, touring the cork forest and estate of the Rovisco Garcia family and having lunch with family members, exploring the Douro Valley and visiting the Quinta de Sta. Eufemia and dining with family members, enjoying fado in Lisbon and Coimbra. However, staying at the Hotel Real d'Obidos and participating in the Renaissace fete arranged by Fatima and Miguel probably wowed me most."

James

Lake Oswego, OR

Tour: 05/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a wonderful survey of Portugal. I cannot imagine how this tour could have been better. I felt there was a perfect balance of tour and personal time. We got a nice feel for most of the important regions of Portugal in just 12 days.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved everywhere we went, and everything we saw. My "wow" moment was visiting the Basilica in Fatima during mass on Pentecost Sunday which was deeply moving. I also found the Douro Valley to be very beautiful, and a place I would love to return to. Obidos was very charming with wonderful "hidden" cafes and shops. I loved our tours to the Cork Farm, Pottery Factory, and vineyard."

Judie

Lake Oswego, OR

Tour: 05/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first Rick Steve's tour, and our first tour of any type. We had always previously used the RS guidebooks and traveled independently. I wasn't sure exactly what to expect, but we had the most wonderful time. Portugal is an amazing country. Our tour was well paced, and allowed us some independent time to enjoy people watching, which we love. Our group was very compatible- no grumps! But what made the tour so incredible was our fabulous guide, Fatima. She is a jewel.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We arrived at Fatima during Sunday mass. The courtyard was filled with worshipers and the choir was broadcast to all. It was a very moving moment, especially at the conclusion of the service when the faithful waved their white handkerchiefs as the image of Fatima was returned to her chapel. We are not Catholic, but are people of faith. This was an unforgettable experience. We credit our guide, Fatima, for her incredible timing managing our arrival."

Lynne

Monroe Township, NJ

Tour: 05/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We have been on several prior Rick Steve's tours but this tour was outstanding. Portugal far exceeded the expectations we had. The country is beautiful and the people are so friendly. However, it was our tour guide Fatima that made this such a memorable trip. She is so knowledgeable about her country, the history and customs. She is energetic, enthusiastic, funny, full of surprises and made you feel like you were her family. She is a true gem and a shining star.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many wow moments but the two that stand out for me are the Duoro valley and our trip to Fatima. When we arrived there was a mass taking place outside. The choir was singing. It was truly a very uplifting spiritual experience."

Bruce

Holmdel, NJ

Tour: 05/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

One word describes this particular tour experience FABULOUS

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Douro Valley was just beautiful. The day at the cork farm interacting with the family was both educational and inspiring!"

Elizabeth

Indianapolis, IN

Tour: 05/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our group was terrific. Loved Portugal and the people.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Loved the two farm experiences the most. The cork farm was a wonderful lesson in long-term land management for sustainability. The vineyard experience showed a family of hard working women facing the challenges of a complex crop, employees, sales and marketing."

Jeffrey

Monroe Township, NJ

Tour: 05/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our fourth trip with Rick Steves, and while we enjoyed the others immensely, we absolutely loved the Heart of Portugal Tour. We cannot say enough positives about the the itinerary,sites and hotels and country. However what truly made our tour superlative was our outstanding guide, Fatima. She showed unbridled enthusiasm and passion for her country, and her knowledge was limitless. She was kind, considerate and always full of wonderful surprises for all of us traveling with her.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Shrine at Fatima. We arrived on a beautiful sunny day during mass, and while not of the Christian faith, we were profoundly moved by the mass, the return of Our Lady to her chapel with the people waving goodbye to her with white handkerchiefs, and the devotion of the people present."

Jackie

Pass Christian, MS

Tour: 05/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The Portugal tour was fantastic. A wonderful group of people to travel with helped make it memorable. I want to thank Fatima, our tour guide, for sharing the love for her country with us. Her passion was contagious. I enjoyed Lisbon and Porto's amazing Fado music and all the history we learned about a country that survived under a dictatorship and is now flourishing. But my most favorite parts were all the small towns and villages we visited and were able to experience the true Portugal.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Walking into the town of Fatima on Pentecost Sunday and being able to attend the Sunday Mass service out in the open with hundreds of other travelers was an overwhelming experience. What a true feeling of Christianity at work. Also our bus ride through the Douro Valley seeing all the terraced rows and rows of grape vines on the majestic hillsides was truly a picture I won't forget."

Mary

Fort Worth, TX

Tour: 05/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The Heart of Portugal was my favorite trip of all of the 15 I have taken so far. It was a surprise every day. From the frenetic energy and sweeping views of Lisbon to the peaceful valley and pretty town of Evora to the great little coastal town of Nazare and the barnacles to gorgeous Coimbra and tile painting to the stunning Douro Valley and ending in the fun town of Porto....it was a delight every minute. Loved learning about the rich history of Portugal

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Douro Valley took my breath away with its sweeping terraced vineyards. But I was stunned by our experience at Fatima where the mass was going on just as we arrived. Watching all of the faithful waving a white flag to Our Lady as she was brought back to her home base was very moving. Lisbon was so full of fun. People, views, lovely neighborhoods. Hearing the story of Francisco's family having to leave their cork farm after the dictatorship ended was also very moving."

Jeffrey

Santa Fe, NM

Tour: 05/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fatima was so well liked that we surprised her with a song composed just for her. (She has video.) This group bonded best I have ever seen-credit to Fatima again. Stayed healthy and completed all tour activities. Drivers excellent; local guides very good. Good mix of accommodations. I was only tour participant to swim in the pools at 2 locations-beautiful salt water pools, my favorite. Included meals generous & excellent. Easily found good unincluded dining. Great weather.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Tie: Obidos + medieval dinner dance. Coimbra Fado. The second singer had operatic level skill. Roman temple in Evora. Barnacle "snack" in Nazare."

Cecily

Bellingham, WA

Tour: 05/14/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

From Lisbon on this tour opened new avenues of knowledge for me. An extremely knowledgeable guide & bus driver gave an unsolicited comfort factor to the trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Mt favorite day was that spent at the cork farm. Opened up a whole new world & the hosts knew their business and imparted it with wit."

Kellene

Pleasanton, CA

Tour: 05/09/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was much more than I ever expected for this kind of travel experience. I was very impressed with our tour guide, the experiences, hotels and food. It was a very well coordinated tour which included interesting group activities as well as time on our own to explore the area. The majority of hotels in Portugal were extraordinary. I had heard the hotels on many of RS Tours were marginal but interesting. What a treat to stay in 4 and 5 star hotels!

Favorite "WOW" moment

""Wows" came from our lovely hotels, the view of the Douro Valley, the all special locations and activities included in the cost of our tour."

Carol

Raleigh, NC

Tour: 05/09/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was our 7th RS tour. It lived up to our expectations in every way.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"After 6 tours we had an idea what a RS hotel is. The Portugal hotels were so far above the norm it was stunning. It was fun to stay in such luxury. The breakfast buffets were amazing. No, we won't expect this on future tours. We assume it was a confluence of early season and cheaper country and rapid increase in hotel supply."

Janet

Carlsbad, CA

Tour: 05/09/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Really enjoyed the variety of tours. Enjoyed Robert's ability to convey the historical stories that took place.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Listening to the process of making port wine. Visiting Fatima,"

Colleen

Laytonsville, MD

Tour: 05/09/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I enjoyed the tour very much.. Robert is a wonderful guide. He loves his job and it shows. We had a great group of people.

Johanna

Pacific Palisades, CA

Tour: 05/09/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My husband John and I had not been to Portugal previously. As a result of this outstanding tour, we now have a good understanding of the history of Portugal , as well as current affairs in the country. Our guide Robert, supported by local guides, was the key to making this trip "come alive" and become one of our all time great Rick Steves tours.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were so many great moments that it's impossible to pick just one. We loved the two Fado performances, the Porto food tour, the cork farm tour, and the vineyard tour plus lunch with the extended family to name just a few."

Ronald

Bend, OR

Tour: 05/09/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great trip even though it was the largest group we have had with a Rick Steves' tour. Our tour guide was responsive and informative. Our hotels were much better that expected and centrally located. It was nice to have wine included with our group meals, since wine is so much a part of the culture of Portugal.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visiting the winery in the Duoro Valley. Beautiful views with the river below."

Robert

Asheville, NC

Tour: 05/07/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

An excellent tour in almost every respect.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The food, especially the special lunches was terrific. I was also struck by the beauty of Portugal and the warmth of the Portugese. I also say wow about Christina, our guide."

Susan

Asheville, NC

Tour: 05/07/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was a wonderful tour. We saw so much more of Portugal than we ever could have on our own. We had many interesting experiences and learned a lot about the culture from our amazing guide, Christina.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I especially enjoyed our tour of the cork farm. It was fascinating and gave me a real insight into the culture that would not have been possible had we been traveling on our own. It was interesting talking to the family members at the very delicious lunch."

Helen

Jersey Village, TX

Tour: 05/07/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We have taken several Rick Steves tours and always enjoy the sensible mix of guided tour time and free time. This tour seemed busier than usual, but we enjoyed Portugal's unique cultural sights and experiences. Through our excellent guide, we learned more about Portugal's art, architecture, and history of discovery than we ever could have on our own. We especially enjoyed visiting & exploring the small towns. As always, it was fun getting to know our terrific group of compatible tour members.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's always difficult to pick one moment from the many amazing parts of the tour, but the Douro River valley wins as the best. The beauty of the terraced vineyards on the hillsides rolling down to the river was incredible! I would love to have had a few more relaxing days there. Also amazing were the beautiful azulejos blue and white tiles depicting Portugal's historical events and scenes, especially at the train station in Porto. Our visit to the cork farm & estate was truly memorable & unique."

Diana

Poway, CA

Tour: 05/07/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a busy and interesting tour with an excellent guide! And, many thanks go to all the wonderful tour buddies with which we had the pleasure of traveling...just the kind of group that we have come to appreciate on RS tours. Some of the tour highlights for me were: the cork farm visit; Obidos; Roman Coimbriga, the Fado performances, the Douro Valley winery, and the Gulbenkian Museum.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The cork farm visit and lunch was an excellent activity. It was just the type of experience that we appreciate in RS tours. Meeting the family, sharing a meal with them in their home on the farm, and learning about their business was a priceless experience."

Katherine

Arden, NC

Tour: 05/07/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first tour ever so somewhat nervous to be led around, etc. Could not have been more pleases. And can't wait to try again. We picked Portugal because Great Grandfather Santos came from here. My husband could see his family roots. Wonderful tour guide, Cristina, could not have been more energetic or informative.

Robert

Mount Vernon, WA

Tour: 05/07/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Comfortable, informative, fun, well planned. Excellent tour guide. Good interesting meals. Beautiful hotels. Comfortable bus with very skilled driver.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Cork farm and vineyard."

Avrum

Milwaukee, WI

Tour: 05/07/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Chapel of the Bones in Evora. The concept is creepy, but the execution is inspired. Being surrounded by artfully arranged bones encourages a person to think about mortality."

James

Scottsdale, AZ

Tour: 05/07/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Cristina was amazingly outstanding. Her depth of knowledge and passion for Portugal made the trip spectacular. The tour of the cork oak farm and the Rovisco Garcia Vineyard were truly highlights.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My wow was the people on the tour. Friendly and fun."

Dennis

Mulino, OR

Tour: 05/07/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Where to begin? An amazing streak of fabulous weather. A firecracker native guide with a gifted knowledge of Portugal's history and place in the world. A compatible group of travelers from all across the country who got along well with each other. The overlooked and underrated beauty of the country and the friendliness and helpfulness of its people.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Duoro Valley must have been divinely sculpted by God, on the day we all thought he was resting."

Dannette

Milwaukee, WI

Tour: 05/07/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour was a good mix of city & countryside, with a great group of interesting, engaged fellow travelers. Excellent food & wine & hotels.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"One thing that was part of the tour & one thing that wasn't: The Fado concert in Coimbra really transported me into the Portuguese psyche. After our tour in Evora, we went to a tremendous museum exhibit of nativity scenes that captured an unimaginable array of artistic views on parenthood, as well as the religious aspects of the Nativity. It was a brilliant and very moving collection."

Donald

Arden, NC

Tour: 05/07/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My Grandfather was born in Portugal around 1880 and this was my first trip there. It was fascinating to learn and see things that my Dad and Grandfather would talk about while growing up. As a Gloucester Mass fisherman my grandfather would always talk about fishing off the Grand Banks in Canada and Codfish. Experiencing Portugal and my heritage with Cristina was exceptional.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The wow factor for me was the trip and stay in Douro Valley. It was truly amazing, worth the whole trip."

Nina

Mount Vernon, WA

Tour: 05/07/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I loved everything about our tour. Cristina was an incredibly thoughtful, prepared guide. There was incredible variety of activities. Everything thing was so well organized from transportation to scheduling to accommodations. Loved the city tours, cork farm, winery, tile factory, Food tour of Porto. So many opportunities we would not have found on our own. Our tour mates were especially congenial, friendly & thoughtful. Loved talking to people from all over the states.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were SO many! Fatima, cork farm, winery tour, churches, museums., Roman ruins. Each activity seemed to surpass the last."

Monica

Lafayette, CA

Tour: 05/02/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful tour guide leading us thru Portugal. I so enjoyed the food tour of Porto and cork luncheon and wine tour and luncheon in Douro valley.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Coimbra university tour"

Elaine

Lake Oswego, OR

Tour: 05/02/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Beautiful country. The up and down streets on cobblestones were difficult for me. It was difficult for me to walk up and down streets on cobblestones. The hill towns were very picturesque. The Portuguese were very nice and helpful. It seemed quite repetitive visiting all the churches and once monasteries.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Douro valley."

Tomie

Eugene, OR

Tour: 05/02/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour was very good, and a suggestion would be to have better diversity. Understanding that a tour is about the culture of the country, we realize that the religious system was a big part of Portugal's history. But I think that we had a couple too many churches, basilicas, and monasteries. The time would be better spent perhaps by having local interactions with the people, both young and old, of Portugal.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Staying on the estate in Lamego. It was fantastic, peaceful and beautiful. We all needed a rest and being there, even for only one night, was great."

Grace

Kingwood, TX

Tour: 05/02/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I loved the combination of history, scenery, and experiences such as the cork grove tour. Interacting with local land owners who owned their own business gave the tour a personal feel.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I didn't have a particular "wow" moment-enjoyed it all."

Arnie

Edmond, OK

Tour: 05/02/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

As usual, the RS tours are run very well.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Cork farm"

Douglas

Kingwood, TX

Tour: 05/02/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Had a great tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Taking note of the hills in Lisbon. "Steep" is putting it mildly."

Sue

Beaverton, OR

Tour: 05/02/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I really enjoyed this tour, I was pleasantly surprised how beautiful it was. I did feel like we saw too many churches and didn't have as much free time as on other tours.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite day was visiting the cork farm. It was very interesting, and informative as well as fun and a delicious lunch."

Mark

Flagler Beach, FL

Tour: 04/30/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Loved the History, culture and diverse landscapes of 'little' Portugal.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Really loved the Cork farm tour and lunch and the Spectacular setting at the lovely hotel in the Douro Valley."

Zephron

Gig Harbor, WA

Tour: 04/30/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

well organized tour and Fatima was a very good tour guide. Interesting to see the pilgrims walking to Fatima. Very interesting geography and history.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Duro Valley. Tour of Gulbenkian Museum"

Sally

Irvine, CA

Tour: 04/30/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The history of the country is very interesting. Perhaps it was the weather, but I was a little underwhelmed with the city of Lisbon. Fortunately, we came a couple of days early and saw Sintra and other surrounding historic sites. I think you should consider adding Sintra and omitting the trip to the castle in the city of Lisbon. I most enjoyed the cork farm, Evora, port making tour and the Duoro Valley - Vintage House Hotel in Pinhao.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I could have stayed at the Vintage House Hotel in Pinhao for the rest of my life."

Charlotte

Wauwatosa, WI

Tour: 04/30/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first Rick Steves Tour and it was everything I was led to believe it would be! The introductory materials were great. One of the most exciting aspects for me were all the extras our tour guide, Fatima, brought to the tour. In Belem she made the effort to bring us hot-out-of-the oven Pastéis de Belém. Likewise, in Evora, more traditional pastry snacks, and so it continued throughout the tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I have two "wow" moments... the first is the tour of the multi-generational cork oat forest and the respect I have for the owners and their love and care for these remarkable trees, plus their home-cooked dinner and wine and olive oil tasting.The second is the visit to the tile factory to see the incredible skill of the hand painters at work. Also the opportunity to try our hand at it ourselves and bring home our own Portuguese hand-painted tile. These really felt like total immersion."

Glen

Sacramento, CA

Tour: 04/30/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I was hoping to learn about Portugal's history, culture, and food, and my goals were met. Beautiful country and people. Such a long history.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Perhaps visiting the cork tree farm and having lunch."

Sarah

Gig Harbor, WA

Tour: 04/30/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Great tour filled w/exceedingly well-traveled, interesting people. Since we had few real "expectations," the tour easily exceeded them. We hit 2 holidays + graduation in Coimbra (WILD); museums were closed in Lisboa on May Day, sadly.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was not expecting the sidewalks to be covered in calcada, and so the entire country was a wow moment for me The tiled buildings were stunning and also made walking around everywhere a "wow" moment. My MOST "wow" moment was the Chapel of Bones in Evora. I had absolutely no context into which to put seeing this or understanding of the impulse behind its creation. Fascinating. Loved the Porto Food Tour! Loved the library in Coimbra!"

Daniel

Ormond Beach, FL

Tour: 04/30/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Good information from our guide, Fatima, regarding history, current social, economic, & political status of Portugal, & of the culture in general.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Cork farm tour was excellent!"

Larry

Fort Collins, CO

Tour: 04/25/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

It was good.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Porto"

Richard

Richmond, VA

Tour: 04/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was absolutely wonderful!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Driving through the Douro Valley. Wow!"

Susan

Needham Heights, MA

Tour: 04/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our first was our first RS tour and exceeded our expectations. The itinerary was well thought out; however, there was too much free time in Nazarre - not much to do or see. If we hadn't been traveling on to Batalha later in the afternoon, it would have been a boring day. Also, not much to see in Regua, but the afternoon of rest was welcomed.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Rovisco Garcia estate visit. We learned so much about the agriculture, what it takes to operate an estate, and what eco-friendly innovations have been used to sustain the business. We had lunch with the son of the owner who told us about the economy of the country and what need to be done to improve it. He was a very savvy guy. The food and the wine served at the lunch were outstanding. The whole experience was wonderful, definitely not the usual tourist spot."

John

Dix Hills, NY

Tour: 04/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great guide, well-organized itinerary, good food, good activities.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Just an overall good tour. No real "wow moments" that stand out."

Wayne

Edmonds, WA

Tour: 04/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Nice mix of sightseeing supplemented with free time. Many hotels on this tour were refreshingly quite upscale, and the quality of the included meals was decidedly better than experienced on any of our previous 12 RS tours (and those previous meals were fine). Distances between stops/sights were relatively short, so bus rides were, too.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Our first group dinner at Restaurante Leão d'Ouro. Beautiful restaurant, large enough so everyone could visit without shouting, and the food was wonderful. We liked happening upon the black-clad students as well, although the comment "Any friend of Zorro is a friend of mine!" was lost in translation."

Thomas

Sebastopol, CA

Tour: 04/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was a great introduction to the history, people and culture of Portugal.There was good mixture of tour activities and free time. Our tour guide Robert's enthusiasm for Portugal made the tour fun and educational.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the surf at Nazare, where the world's largest wave (80 feet) ever surfed was ridden by a Brazilian surfer in November 2017. Another highlight was touring the Rovisco Garcia cork plantation."

Herbert

Needham, MA

Tour: 04/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Knowledgeable, friendly, professional,generous, entertaining: all are adjectives that describe Robert, the guide and group leader of our Portugal tour, who made this trip one of the best I've ever been on. Like our Sicily tour, the Portugal itinerary helped solidify political, societal, economic and artistic and cultural features along the way into a log-lasting dynamic that I've been able to relate to friends- or anyone who is willing to listen.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"In no special order: view from the top of Porto's Clerigos Tower, Coimbra University Library, "serenade" by students in their bat-like black robes before final exams, best octopus roasted in olive oil and garlic, wonderful dinners with 4th generation of cork farmers and port wine producers, stock exchange bldg. interiors (Porto), tile museum and Gulbenkian Museum in Lisbon"

William

Bloomington, IN

Tour: 04/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Nice balance of cities and countryside, of sightseeing and free time, of meals with the group and those on our own, of bus travel and staying put. Our group of 28 was larger than our other two RS tours but it was extremely compatible. We all got along wonderfully. Several had mobility limits and could not participate in longer walks and many steps. I became quite comfortable with Portugal and it's culture.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Walking out into the vineyard of the Sta Eufemia Winery with the view of the breathtakingly beautiful Doro Valley was my WOW moment. Could hear birds singing from near and far away. The sunshine felt so good - for growing grapes and for nurturing my contentment. The meal with our wonderful hostess could not have been better. And oh that delicious Port! The sustainable cork/olive oil/wine/wildlife estate was a close second. I was inspired & intrigued by their practices. Cozy lunch."

William

Apollo Beach, FL

Tour: 04/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

THIS WAS OUR FOURTH RICK STEVES TOUR. As expected, our tour mates and guide were super nice and fun to be with. very interesting sights. Hope to take another Rick Steves tour one day. Its the best

Favorite "WOW" moment

"the port wine country"

Sally

Sebastopol, CA

Tour: 04/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our first Rick Steves tour and we had a great time! Organization of each day seemed to be very good and we had just the right amount of free time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The tour of the cork farm and lunch with family members was spectacular. I also loved the food tour in Porto."

Bonnie

Needham, MA

Tour: 04/25/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Robert brought Portugal and its culture to life for us. His intimate knowledge helped at every turn. We learned Fado music, ate great local foods for the first time like barnacles. Stayed in interesting locals and witnessed college partying the week before graduation, April 25th carnation revolution celebration, May 1st Labor Day celebration and the pilgrims at Fatima. What a rich experience! Our accommodations were superb and the visits to the cork farm and port vineyard were highlights.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Singing together at the Fado performance in Coimbra."

Peg

Prescott, AZ

Tour: 04/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful tour of a beautiful country. Upscale lodging, esp. Vintage House, M'AR DeAR Aqueduto. Excellent breakfasts (except Coimbra Riversuites, adequate, but like budget hotel fare). Tour-included lunches and food tour were superb. Consider shorter tour to Conimbriga mosaic remains, and the time at the tile factory was so-so. Christina very knowledgeable; local tour guides were pleasantly interactive, open to questions, provided focused information and explanations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to pinpoint a WOW...Coimbra Univ. Library, Stock Exchange Palace, Cork Farm, moving Fatima experience, Changing of the Guard at Batalha, awesome Douro Valley. Here I must add Wow, kudos and atta-boys on Manuel's expert handling of our coach! Always a charming smile and gracious manner, too."

Donna

Van Nuys, CA

Tour: 04/23/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Very well planned and executed; bus rides had appropriately timed breaks, guide provided snacks of local specialties just when we needed a quick pick up after a morning of sightseeing, hotels were in great location, itinerary was perfect. It was obvious that this tour had been very well thought out and executed many times, running like a well oiled machine. However, the best part was the access we had to special experiences and tours that would never have been accessible to us on our own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Entering the Douro River Valley and seeing all the terraced hillsides...breathtakingly beautiful! And I loved the tour of the Quinta followed by the delicious lunch and wine they provided."

Nancy

Portland, OR

Tour: 04/23/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The variety of sights and activities on this tour was outstanding, from the large cities of Lisbon and Porto to the quiet of Evora and Obidos. Our guide,Cristina, could not have been more friendly, well informed and sensitive to our group and its interests. Our various city guides were great as well. I feel like I've seen many sides of Portugal and have a basic appreciation of a country I knew little about before.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Like others, I appreciated getting to meet and hear from families running the cork farm and the port winery. These "insider" looks at what it takes to operate a successful agricultural-based business today was fascinating. A favorite moment was the fado performance in Lisbon."

Faye

Portland, OR

Tour: 04/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Impressive itinerary and guide. I am so glad that we signed up for the first tour of the season while the weather was temperate and the crowds were not overwhelming.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Usually, I have one WOW moment, but on this tour the variety of experiences WOWed me."

Larry

Fox Island, WA

Tour: 04/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Cristina's in-depth knowledge of Portugal and life experiences made Portugal much more meaningful. She grew up in both the dictatorship and republic forms of government and could add a new dimension to the things we were seeing. The tour included special areas such as the private fado performance, and the visit to the cork ranch and lunch with the owner's family. The port wine vineyard tour in which one family has owned and operated the vineyard for numerous generations was outstanding.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hearing the families talk about the history and challenges of operating their cork farm and port wine vineyards for more than 100 years and their challenges as the politics changed. Their struggles were hard, but successful."

Carolyn

Fox Island, WA

Tour: 04/23/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This was an excellent tour, covering many areas in Portugal. I appreciated the mix of cities, towns and countryside, all of them beautiful. Our guide, Christina, was passionate about sharing her country and personal experiences. we had the gift of timing in that we were in Lisbon on the Revolution Day and she explained all about that to us. She had lived under the dictatorship and her perspective was invaluable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was blown away by the Roman ruins and all the mosaics. I couldn't believe how accessible such a treasure is to the general public. The advanced society of the Romans is always impressive and this treasure is among the best. I also loved the cork farm tour and the part wine farm tour and meeting the families and having a delicious lunch in each of those places."

Christopher

Portland, OR

Tour: 04/23/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Very interesting and a lot of fun. Wonderful tourmates. Outstanding tour guide (Christina). Early on, I got fatigued on some of the longer walking days, because my wheels aren't as good as they used to be.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Fado concert in Lisbon, followed closely by fado concert in Porto."

Jim

Oakland, CA

Tour: 04/23/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Not really knowing anything about Portugal this trip provided us a good "feel" of the country - the people, some history, cultural nuances, and topography - the land itself which always shapes the way people live.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"One of my favorite moments was viewing the "Golden Gate" bridge from the castle in Lisbon. The drive thru the Douro Valley was especially scenic, the terraced hills and the river at Pinhao. At the same time, I was very disappointed that the funicular at Nazare was not working, but I know this is not your fault."

Susan

Washington, NH

Tour: 04/23/18

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Loved Portugal and the Rick Steves itinerary. I especially liked the specialty visits to the port wine vineyard with lunch and the cork farm with lunch, and the food tour in Porto. Our bus driver did an amazing job of navigating the narrow roads. Cristina obviously loves her country and did a very good job showing us why. The hotels were all very good with the exception of the one in Porto. Cristina gave us excellent recommendations for restaurants on our free meal times.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Evora was amazing. I loved the hotel, the evening when we got to know our fellow travelers, and the sights in the town. I also really loved the food tour in Porto. That was a "wow"."

Ken

Portland, OR

Tour: 04/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Really enjoyed the tour of Portugal. Cristina did a wonderful job as our guide, and our bus driver, Manuel, was tremendous at getting the bus around all the tight curves in the mountainous driving. Our city tour guides were excellent too. The farm and winery visits were some of the highlights of this trip.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My "wow" moment was the visit to the winery in the Douro valley. The vistas were spectacular. The vines were just beginning to leaf out, and I was able to see how they were pruned. The wines at the winery were excellent. I was surprised by the quality of all the Portuguese wines that I tasted on the trip. The food and wine at the winery were excellent and a nice contrast to many of the restaurants that we tried. I really enjoyed the visit to the cork estate."

Diana

Bonny Doon, CA

Tour: 04/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

All was so good, Christina was warm, funny so into her country history. Just the great cork farm tour and lunch was so much fun, learned a lot.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The cork farm tour and lunch!!!!"

Jane

Oakland, CA

Tour: 04/23/18

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my 4th Rick Steves tour, first as a single. Enjoyed all of it, got tired of churches but know that is where art is located. Liked ceramics factor tour and art museum in Lisbon. Could use a little more walking, but managed that on my own. Liked river cruise in Porto.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Visit to cork farm. Vehicle, walk, lunch all really fun."

Rebecca

Aptos, CA

Tour: 10/16/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Christina was excellent with information for anything w a heart for her country. This country is not yet ready for tourism, tour is too long and some places and activities felt like "filler" such as the ceramic factory, Coimbriga, tractor ride (just walk!). Portugal is new to tourism and needs facelift. Some cities are depressing, run down. This ocean nation tour, needs a stay on the beach (we loved Legos), skip Evora!, another castle town (Sintra, Pena Palace, Castle of the Moors)

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Batalha Monestary of Santa Maria, Library at U of Coimbra, Monestary of Jeronimos Lisbon. Wine, excellent meals, inexpensive shopping"

Sue

Minneapolis, MN

Tour: 10/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had an amazing guide in Christina. She made the entire tour so fun and interesting. She was just outstanding! The tour had a wonderful variety of sights both in cities and countryside.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"This is difficult to answer because we loved so may things. We loved the beauty of Porto and Loved visiting the vineyard and meetig the family and having lunch in the Douro Valley."

Kristine

San Antonio, TX

Tour: 10/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Portugal is a country of contrasts: coastal cities full of action and small villages with narrow streets. A history of wealth and a current situation of struggle. Tradition, customs and history are everywhere. All of this makes for a really interesting experience that is unique, interesting and educational. The tour was enough to give me a taste of what Portugal has to offer and what I want to explore next time I go back.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I absolutely loved the Douro Valley. The tour of the winery, learning about how port is made and the differences in varieties and a really fantastic lunch made it a really amazing day. The scenery is breathtaking. If I could pick a second, it would be the monastery at Alcobaca. It was stunning. All the monasteries we visited were beautiful this that one was something to see."

Jeanne

Redmond, WA

Tour: 10/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was a great value for the cost considering all of the things we saw and did, the quality of hotels and meals. There was a nice balance of activities ranging from touring historically significant sites to touring a winery and a cork farm and taking a walking food tour. The variety of activities should have provided something of interest for everyone. It was a truly fun, informative, interesting, and culturally enriching tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's just so unfair to ask for one WOW moment when there are so many!!! Having to select just one, I would choose spending Sunday in Fatima just a week after the 100th anniversary of the Virgin Mary's alleged appearance to the three children. We arrived in time to observe mass being held in the huge assembly area on the plaza. Although we missed the huge pilgrimage on October 13, there were literally thousands of people there, including penitents crawling on knees seeking forgiveness."

David

Tannersville, PA

Tour: 10/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

An excellent tour with a nice mixture of large cities and small towns, churches, museums and wonderful food and wine, all augmented by an exceptional guide. Cristina's passion for her country and her descriptions of its history and culture helped to make the tour memorable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Each day had its own Wow moment: Douro valley, visits to quintas (cork and port) with the opportunity to lunch with the families who managed them, Fado concerts, Obidos, beautiful cathedrals"

Julie

Matthews, NC

Tour: 10/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I really enjoyed this tour. Cristina, our guide, was a bundle of energy with an incredible knowledge of all aspects of her country. This tour was different than the other 3 Rick Steves tours we have been on, in that we moved from place to place quite often, and less walking than on the other tours we've done. I loved every place we visited. Would have loved a little more time at some of them. Loved the winery and cork farm tours, the wine tastings, the food, everything!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I can't really name one. There were such varied and different sights and experiences. I loved the cork farm tour, and the winery tours. Loved Porto and Lisbon. Just loved the whole experience. Feel so lucky to have gotten to tour the Port winery in the Douro Valley. That was an awesome experience, including the lunch they served us. Really enjoyed the taste Porto food tour also. Loved walking the wall around the medieval town of Obidos!"

Scott

Matthews, NC

Tour: 10/16/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was a great tour of Portugal. We had an outstanding guide in Cristina, who was very passionate and knowledgeable of her homeland. We had a great balance of large cities, smaller towns, religious sites and outstanding scenic viewing opportunities. The people of Portugal are very friendly and hospitable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It's tough to pick a single wow moment but walking the ancient wall around the perfectly preserved medieval city of Obidos, which is indeed picturesque and the whole experience of the Douro Valley stand out."

Richard

Redmond, WA

Tour: 10/16/17

Overall rating: rating 3 of 5

Better than Spain conditions. Changing hotels quite often was nice. Just 1 light rainy day. More country environments.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Cork forest. Wavy beaches. Pot and dishes manufacturer. The amazing bus driver."

Gene

Franklin, TN

Tour: 10/11/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

We loved the concept of having fewer travelers which allowed us to know most everyone and get into good restaurants,

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The first group meal was excellent."

Pat

Beaverton, OR

Tour: 10/11/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Group was congenial. Leader was organized and knowledgeable. Portugal's road system is fantastic. The fire damage we saw was devastating. It was good to see peaceful demonstrations in Lisbon and Porto.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Eating in Porto at a family owned and run restaurant, where their friends came in to help out."

Rosalie

Austin, TX

Tour: 10/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our third Rick Steves Tour. RS tours use a format for bringing together a disparate group of 30 persons to share in an (intense) learning experience in and about a foreign country that never falters in accomplishing the tour's goals and, I suspect, the personal goals of each person on the tour. It's an amazing work of magic.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My favorite "wow" moment happened after the trip when memories of so many details about Portugal -encounters with its residents, visual impressions of what we saw as we walked the streets, observing the countryside as we traveled from place to place - kindled an intense appreciation for this country. I must also mention "the big waves" at the mouth of the Douro River where it joins the Atlantic Ocean."

Kirsten

Spring, TX

Tour: 10/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Hi RS Team! This was our 2nd tour; we love the vibe and the structure, as well as the overall goals.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The farm/winery tours were just splendid. The cork/olive oil/wine farm tour (after Evora) & lunch were so educational; I'm so glad the family and RS formed that partnership. (I would have bought more from them if they'd had carry-on size options, btw.) The winery tour in the Douro Valley was astounding, too; it's a wonderful thing to have an inside look at a family-run operation like that, and to have to opportunity to support a business like that is wonderful."

Margaret

Littleton, CO

Tour: 10/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Perfect amount of free time, variety of experiences was very good. I'm more of an independent traveler, but this has made me a fan of the RS tours. I think two nights in Evora would have been good. The entire group loved this city, but we didn't get much free time. The people on the tour were like the folks who read and use the RS tour books... great, fun, ready to do whatever.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Cork farm was great. So many little wow moments that were planned by the tour but a surprise to all of us. The tile was also a really cool think to do."

Catherine

Portland, OR

Tour: 10/11/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour was very well organized with great attention to all aspects. Maria was an amazing guide with deep knowledge and an immediate kinship with the group.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The visit to the cork/pine nut/wine farm was truly memorable. It provided such great insight into agricultural practices and family values. The entire day was fun, lively and filled with new experiences."

Paul

Duvall, WA

Tour: 10/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I really felt that we had a great tour experience. On so many levels, we were given a tremendous overview of Portugal, and were exposed to many aspects of the culture, the history, and the landmarks.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Hard to narrow it to one. I will give you all my favorites: Cork Farm, Wine Makers dinner, Fado music, great breakfasts, Alfama walk, Food Tour in Porto, University of Coimbra, working with ceramics (could have used more time)"

Diann

Temple, TX

Tour: 10/11/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

I found this tour much more exhausting than the Scotland tour though they are rated the same. Perhaps there was less bus time, more hills, and much more standing looking and hearing about at churches/buildings, etc. I did like the wine with meals and the RS camaraderie, all the tile work, the lovely Duory valley and the temperate weather. The cork tour, winery tour and pottery tour (including painting our own tiles) was fun and interesting.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I know nothing about the cork industry and found this very enlightening."

Karen

Tulalip, WA

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Oh my gosh..mere English cannot describe how fantastic was this trip! The beginning in Lisbon to the final morning in Porto was one moving experience after the next. Fatima & Will were attentive, fun, inspirational, competent, and more. We felt so safe tho the country was on fire. The hotels were first-class-esp. in Lisbon the first 3 days; it had water for us + our water bottles daily. Wineries, cork farm, churches, art, social justice and more!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The lunches with the 2 families who worked the soil in cork, olives, & wine, plus the winery lunch on that family's vineyard / farm that had been in their family for generations in the Douro Wine Country. The Douro Valley bus ride was spectacular through the winding roads (& our bus driver was a gem!) That Porto food tour was spectacular in its array of markets, wines, cheeses and the local folks we were blessed to meet were authentic. Port = exceptional. The Roman ruins? Fascinating!"

Joy

Burien, WA

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour is as organized as any RS tours.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Sitting in the cafes submerged in local chitchats and feeling the warmth radiating from them. It's rare to find an European City not overrun by tourists. Sunday mass in Fatima, sharing homecooked meal and recipes with the cork farm owners, dragged into a garden and offered a giant squash in a village, getting pronunciation lessons from every waiters and store clerks along the way; this trip is a reminder that there are down to earth, simple, loving, neighborly people still in this crazy world."

Nerlhuys

Folsom, CA

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Fatima and William where very engaging and fun.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Going to Fatima. We got there at the end of the mass and she was been carried out. Very touching."

Robert

Tulalip, WA

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I love Portugal, Fatima and William made this trip a superior experience. The places extrodinary and the Portuguese people friendly and warm. The weather was great but there was some concerns about the fires, smokey air other than that we were out of trouble.The food and wine outstanding.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Many wow moments; the cork farm, lunch with the family, then the other vineyard in the Douro valley and lunch with that family , walking in the vineyards and learning about the family history and their wines. The tile factory and Porto, I want to go back and experience more of Porto."

Frank

Peterborough, NH

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fatima's knowledge of Portugal's history provided a comprehensive background to the sights of this country. I came to realize how little I knew beyond de Gama and Salazar. Her enthusiasm for and pride in her country was infectious. The tour was wonderfully diversified, in that we visited large cities, small towns, historical ruins, churches, a farm and vineyard in the beautiful countryside. Once again had the pleasure of traveling with a great group of people.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was taken by both the cork farm and vineyard. Also, the spectacle of Fatima."

Joellen

Auburn, WA

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Heart of Portugal was my first tour of any kind. I participated as a single traveler and found this rather easy on this tour despite most of the tour members traveling with a spouse or friend. My worries about getting up early were realized since we got up between 630-7am every day to be ready to go by 830-9am. I was torn about this because I knew the later it was in the morning the more crowded the area became. Our guides were the best!!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Discovering Fado. I was prepared to dislike it from the description in the guide book but it was such a surprise and treat to have dinner in a "hidden" restaurant and hear such lovely voices and guitar. The Coimbra male Fado singers were equally enchanting! I'm glad I bought a CD!"

Robert

Folsom, CA

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As we have come to expect with our Rick Steve's tour experiences, the tour was exceptional overall (a couple of comments on lodging and itinerary are appropriate though). The exceptional knowledge of the country, culture, history, and engaging personality of Fatima really was one of the reasons I would continue to experience Europe with Rick Steve's. She made the historical perspective fun and interactive.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My wow moments were the opportunities to get away from the hustle of the big cities and enjoy the more rural feel of Portugal (cork farm, winery, family visit and port production)."

Floyd

Woodland, CA

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

A complete great tour experience: great group, great food and hotels, great Guide, and great itinerary. Very well organized and executed.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I am Japanese American. Portuguese explorers visited Japan in the 1540s and tJapanese artists recorded the visits in large, colorful screen paintings called Namban. Was I surprised when I checked into my hotel and saw a beautiful Namban reproduction behind the main desk. Was I in Lisbon or Tokyo! Then, the next day I learned that the Japanese word for "thank you", which is "arigato", is derived from the Portuguese "obrigada"."

Stephen

San Francisco, CA

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

My tour experience was was really wonderful. I found Fatima and William to be excellent leaders. The group as a whole were a great bunch of traveling buddies that got along with each other so well and made traveling together fun. I liked the choice of hotels and itinerary.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My wow moment was visiting the winery in the Duro Valley and a close second the Cork farm."

Janice

Lagrange, GA

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Fatima was wonderful. Fatima's passion for showing her country is contagious. I fell in love with the people, their struggles, and as always, their food & wine. This is our fourth and best tour through Rick Steves' Tours(RST). The people we traveled with were a good mix of east & west coast and we all "gelled" nicely. I commend the ever-evolving work that RST does on the tours to help tour goers enjoy the countries they visit.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It was learning the struggles that family at the cork farm went through and seeing what a successful(diversified) business they have developed for them and future generations."

Barry

Lagrange, GA

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

After having enjoying Spain so very much we decided that Portugal had to be one of the future trips. Portugal is a small country but has so many different landscapes. There are the mountains, rolling hills, plains, big cities, small villages and beautiful countryside. The Portuguese people are very friendly and accept us as part of their family. Even though Portugal is a socialist country families think to the future instead of the short term. The food is always fresh and never processed.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were two wow moments. The biggest was the cork farm where the families accepted us into their home and treated us like long lost relatives. They told us everything about Cork harvesting, olive oil processing, pine nuts, and fruit harvesting. Wow 2- The winery showed another family committed to the long term family business of growing grapes and making wine. The business was made up of five children who each played a different roll in the business. Very interesting!"

Karen

Portland, OR

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As all Rick Steves tours I loved the variety of sights and activities. Might be my favorite tour guide yet!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The cork farm. Fascinating product and how it is farmed. The lunch and history were excellent. Wine was wonderful"

Susan

Richmond, VA

Tour: 10/09/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

As lifelong 'independent' travelers, we were just uncertain about whether the whole 'tour thing' was going to be for us....BUT IT WAS FANTASTIC!! I think that I have never been so relaxed on a trip--I wasnt the planner. I wasnt the tour guide. I wasnt the nagivator (our version of the navigator). My husband wasnt the driver. We both just had to open our eyes and open our hearts to what we were seeing and feeling. It was just a wonderful, wonderful experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Interesting question as there were a lot of wow moments. I guess I would still say: turning the corner and looking down on the shrine at Fatima(as Sunday mass was ending, also). I/we are not Catholic but the purity of the space and the spirituality of the space was palpable, even if it was not 'ours'"

Corinne

Holland, MI

Tour: 10/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We felt our tour guide, Raphael was very personalble, knowledgeable and helpful in conveying the love for his country. I have food issues and he worked very hard in meeting them with the restaurants we visited as a tour.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved the Fado music concerts and the food tour in Porto. Also we thoroughly enjoyed the tours of the cork and olive farm plus the Douro Valley winery. It was all great !"

Jeffrey

Langley, WA

Tour: 10/04/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Very enjoyable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"None"

Wendy

Langley, WA

Tour: 10/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Excellent RS tour.The tour's itinerary was well laid out and I enjoyed every minute of the trip.Our guide, Rafael, is Portuguese and loves his country.He was able to share his love Portugal with us.I thoroughly enjoyed all of the other people who were on our tour.All the Portuguese people that we met were very warm, gracious and welcoming.I liked the mix of tour time and free time. it is great to have the choice to either see new sights or to have a long lunch with new friends

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It is hard to pick just one WOW moment. I loved the tour of the Alfama in Lisbon. Rafael knew the area well and knew some of the people who lived there. Both the visit to the Cork Farm and the lunch that we had there were outstanding. We had the privilege of sitting at the lunch table with the owner of the farm. He was a gracious host and a wonderful man. The medieval city of Obidos was beautiful. Porto was probably my favorite city. I loved the Harry Potter students and the boat cruise."

Susan

Tacoma, WA

Tour: 10/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first Rick Steve's tour and I was thoroughly impressed. I loved every minute of it from the introductory meeting to the end-of-tour dinner. The itinerary was just the right pace of activities and leisure time, and it included activities that I'd never be able to experience on my own. The hotels were mostly great, and certainly adequate, and so were the meals that we enjoyed as a group. Our group leader was the best!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Listening to our guide recite Paseo's poetry in both Portuguese and English. It was very meaningful."

Paula

Olympia, WA

Tour: 10/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my second rs tour and was by far the best. The outstanding selection of locations and activities to experience provided for no dull moments, unless you wanted dull. Rafael was the most interesting and caring of guides. He truly helped make the experience great. The meals were good, but made excellent by the inclusion of wine with meals. I think that should always be included in your tours.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Watching the moon come up over the fort in Lisbon, on our first day walking tour. We had taken the funicular to a high part of the city."

Deborah

Atlanta, GA

Tour: 10/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Wonderful experience! Welcoming, interesting and beautiful Portugal has so much to see and do. Raphael was an amazing guide, clearly suited and passionate about his country and profession. His leadership and care made the group cohesive and congenial, his commentaries were engaging.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many to count..what comes to mind includes: the library at Coimbra, the fado concert at the private club in Lisbon, the winery and lunch in the Douro valley the walking tour in Evora and the food tour in Porto!"

Debra

Hainesville, IL

Tour: 10/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour had just the right about of city stops, village meanderings, and free time. And we were lucky to have a group of seasoned Rick Steve's tour-mates to share in our adventure. In addition, our tour guide was charming, capable, and full of great stories about the history of Portugal.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"When we arrived at Batalha to visit the grand Monastery of Santa María, the morning sun was casting a golden glow on the cathedral and the scene took my breath away! It was a stunning "Wow" moment. And throughout this tour we saw so many beautiful cathedrals it is hard to describe how wonderful and unique each one really was."

Paul

Hainesville, IL

Tour: 10/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Every day during the tour was better than the day before. This was our 6th Rick Steves tour and it exceeded our expectations in every way. From the itinerary, to the tour group and group think, to the hotels, to the food, to our guide, everything about this trip was fantastic!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The way that our guide, Rafael, brought the history of Portugal to life and helped us 'connect the dots'. He not only traveled with us through the Heart of Portugal, he helped us see and understand the ' Heart of Portugal.'He made the whole trip a 'WOW' moment"

Elsa

Raleigh, NC

Tour: 10/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was our first time in Portugal and we really enjoyed it. This tour had a mixture of everything: the big cities of Lisbon and Porto but also the small walled cities of Evora and Obidos; beautiful countryside and seaside views and great experiences like the visit to the cork farm and the quinta in the Duoro Valley.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I have to say that my favorite wow moment was the visit to the cork farm which I found fascinating. Also, our host and his family were very welcoming and just made the visit and the yummy lunch afterwards a real pleasure. I also enjoyed very much the visit to the Quinta Santa Eufemia in the Duoro Valley where Maria showed us how port is made and then treated us to a delicious lunch. Being Catholic, the visit to Fatima was also very special for me."

Steve

Raleigh, NC

Tour: 10/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

History, scenery, culture, cork and port - add in a great guide, great itinerary, good hotels and decent food and you've got another RS tour to remember.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I'm not sure that "Wow" is the right term for these, but places and things to especially remember include the cork farm, the whole port experience and the walled town of Obidos."

Kathy

Holland, MI

Tour: 10/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

One of the best tours we have ever been on. Raphael was an outstanding guide, sharing much more about his country than just the surface facts. We appreciated his knowledge, heart, excellent communication skills, organization, kindness, positive outlook, patience and more. He loves aportugal and it showed. The locations visited were excellent, the personal contacts at the cork farm, the Vineyard etc. we're special. We liked no tipping and that everything was included. We liked our smaller group.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the moon rising over the castle in Lisbon, the view in the Durou Valley, the kindness of the vineyard and cork farm families.???"

Polly

Olympia, WA

Tour: 10/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my first trip to Europe and my tour with a tour group. The tour and tour guide were outstanding. The locations and activities included in the tour were a great balance - with a nice variety of urban, rural, cultural, gastronomical and musical venues. Raphael was a suburb teacher, ambassador and behind the scenes problem-solver. without making the tour about himself, he provided the lens that allowed us to see the complex, passionate and rich culture of Portugal.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Too many to pick one favorite! Raphael reciting his favorite poem in front of the statue of his favorite poet the first evening. Then the recounting of a dark and stormy night at sea and reciting his own poem a couple of days later. Wow! Learning about cork during the visit and lunch at the cork farm. Fascinating look at the current cork industry and sustainable farming. From both farm visits, the impact of government policies on land resources and agricultural polices."

Iva

El Dorado, CA

Tour: 10/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The HEART OF Portugal was truly a great travel experience. It was comfortably paced to allow time to savor the whole experience. It explored interesting highlights of Portugal and its long history.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Douro Valley was definitely a wow! However, I think the combination of our guide Raphael, the people, the food, the history and culture was a total wow. Portugal itself was a wow!"

Kathy

Everett, WA

Tour: 10/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I am always amazed at the quality of guides and drivers on your tours. I always feel a special connection with the guides, it's not just a "job" for them. Loved the people of Portugal, so open and friendly. The woman in the Alfama neighborhood that served us fish cakes and Ginjinha. The family run winery in the Duro Valley and their pride in the history of their land. The Chapel of Bones, amazing. All of Porto, love to go back.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My WOW moment was before the tour,& the Palaces in Sintra, where I stayed for 3 days, and where I realized this was a special country and tour coming up! ON the tour MY WOW was getting to drive the yellow funicular up the hill for the neighborhood tour our first evening there! The driver that gave me the control was great. And the huge full moon over the Fort that evening BEAUTIFUL! Dinner fabulous, group wonderful. What a way to start a tour!!"

Ellen

Seattle, WA

Tour: 10/04/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had a very enjoyable trip. Raphael was a superb guide. He provided an excellent immersive experience and his passion for his country was infectious. I was inspired to read more Portuguese history after the end of tour! The local guides were also excellent. Good mixture of group activities and independent exploration. Fortunate to have a group of seasoned travelers to share the adventure. Food, warm Portuguese people, rich history, arts/cultures... I want to go back to Portugal for more!!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Many little wows. Everyday there was something to smile about. Alfama, Monastery of Jeronimos, Raphael reciting poems, pastel de nata (WOW), Maria's slow paced walkabout Evora, bone chapel, catching the sunset walking along the Obidos' wall, ginjinha and more pastries (thanks Raphael!), boiled barnacles in Nazare, monasteries in Alcobaca and Batalha, fado in Lisboa & Coimbra, tiles, port wine tasting at Quinta Sta. Eufemia, sunset in Douro Valley, food tour with Taste Porto, and francesinha!"

Karen

Vashon, WA

Tour: 10/02/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Our 1st Rick Steve's tour. After years of independent European travel using Rick Steve's books as our guide, we decided to do a tour. Scary....we were hesitant to give up our independence. We were too young to be "that old". Surprise...it was a fabulous experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The realization that this was not a tour of "old people",but a group of healthy, happy physically active, interesting people from all over the world."

Bruce

Vashon, WA

Tour: 10/02/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

First time on a tour; a Rick Steves' or any other tour. Have used Rick Steves' travel books to plan our trips, but never signed up for a tour. We thourghly enjoyed the experience. Our tour guide Cristina was exceptional. Very knowledgeable on all subjects. You name it and she had an answer, even on occasion she preferenced her response with "in my opinion". Even though we were traveling with another couple, we enjoyed the opportunity to meet and mix with others in the group.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The Sunday visit to Fatima. The whole scene was amazing; the size, the choir, the priests, the people praying on their way to take communion. Must be amazing at Easter."

Michael

Beaumont, TX

Tour: 10/02/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Christina the tour director was great-passionate about her work. knew her job. understood americans & Canadians she was dealing with. kept it interesting with knowledge of the country & people plus kept it funny all the time. ran the tour on schedule & we did all that was planned. Christina came up with a good alternative to the name game since I so bad it. she took a picture of the group on the first day & put our names over it & gave it to all of us. I referred back to it.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"*seeing the stock exchange building-ballroom. *the last church in porto where we could not take pictures that is all gold leaf. *the library in cambrimia where you cannot take pictures. *the chapel of the bones. *the monastery in belem"

Rita

Novato, CA

Tour: 10/02/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We sure enjoy the Rick Steves travel ethic...and scheduling. It was another excellent tour, our third.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The bus ride through the Douro Valley was a "wow" for me...and that gorgeous hotel by the river that we stayed at that evening."

John

Lynbrook, NY

Tour: 10/02/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had an outstanding group and an outstanding guide in Christina the tour was well planned out, the weather was great and the food delicious.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had two wow moments The first being the visit to Fatima and the Procession at the end of Mass returning the statue to the grotto as the bells tolled and watching tens of thousands of the faithful waiving goodbye with their white handkerchiefs in their hand.The second one was the college students the upper freshman dressed in their black formal wear and the freshman dressed in their costumes parading around Lisbon, Coimbra and Puerto as their initiation to the university."

Sandy

Fox Point, WI

Tour: 10/02/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall the tour experience was excellent. Warm, friendly group of people. No long bus rides. Knowledgeable guides and comfortable accommodations. I had never been to Portugal before. While it may not have iconic sites like the Eiffel Tower or Sagrada Familla, it is has a proud history, beautiful countryside and lovely old cities. Fados concerts and visits to a cork farm, a vineyard and a ceramics factory, including an opportunity to paint tiles, added memorable unique touches.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The library at the University of Coimbra. It was magical."

David

Novato, CA

Tour: 10/02/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Christina was a fantastic guide she had a great sense of humor, was very informative in teaching us about the culture and life in general in Portugal the locations selected for the trip were fabulous from big cities to small country side farms very well done can't wait to go on our next adventure with Rick Steves

Elizabeth

Golden, CO

Tour: 10/02/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Tour was great. It encompassed so many areas - political, economic,cultural, historical, family life, cuisine, social, religious, and on and on. It was a very thorough.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Loved the Douro Valley, the vineyard tour and lunch and the cork farm tour and lunch - a chance to meld with regular people and see some of the economic and cultural side of the people of the country."

Sherrill

Somerset, WI

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Portugal now has to be one of my favorite Rick Steves adventures. While I have loved all my other 12 RS guided tours, there is just something really special about the beautify and charm of the country and its wonderful people. One of the things that struck me most and often was just how truly genuinely warm, and welcoming the folks of Portugal are. It's just in their nature to be helpful and it was much appreciated when I had a few travel "situations" while on my own.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were "wow" moments every morning when we got started on the day's adventures. Our guide, Maria, was the perpetual wow moment just because of who she is and how she shares her country with us!"

Jeff

Bellevue, WA

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Lovely opportunity to meet the people of Portugal and learn from them. I knew nothing of the history, culture, language or food before the trip. I came away feeling so blessed and enriched. I am not Roman Catholic and while I appreciate the historical role of the church, I thought there was too much emphasis on visiting cathedrals. Please decrease the tour group size; 28 felt too large.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I loved the city of Porto and we stayed two more days just to explore on our own. Also, seeing the Atlantic coast from the bluff above Nazare was very dramatic."

Joan

Bainbridge Island, WA

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It was wonderful! Portugal is an amazing country. Great variety of places and sights. I loved both Lisbon and Porto. I worry that Portugal is being loved to death, however. The number of tourists each year us about double the population! With Portugal being recognized as a great destination, I worry.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Only one? I would say the cork farm/winery with an amazing lunch after. It was fascinating learning about the family business as well as how cork is produced. But - also - the Douro Valley - wow. Also an interesting look at a family business followed by another yummy lunch. What a beautiful place. And I did enjoy the chance to taste those special barnacles in Nazare :)"

Roelof

West Vancouver, BC

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

our guide Maria was excellent. Cork farm (Quinta) was a highlight. Also vineyard in Douro valley. Vintage Hotel was fabulous. Introduction to FADO music in Lisbon and Porto was great. Happy we saw Fatima - but didn't like it - too commercial.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"our experience at the Cork farm (Quinta). see vista of Douro valley"

Ann

Bellevue, WA

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We had a wonderful time. It is so special to be able to visit the Cork farm since we would never have experienced this on our own. WE just wish we had a smaller group. Did you admit additional family and friends of Rick Steves employees that bumped it up at the last minute? There were a couple of people who were not able to navigate the steep hills. I know you stress the stairways but in Portugal, there were slick streets, unexpected steps and steep alleys with no handrails. add to brochure

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The wow moment was visiting the Cork Farm and learning about how cork is harvested and processed as well as learning about pine nuts, olives, fruit and eucalyptus. The other wow moment was going to the top of hill above the Douro valley and visiting the winery and having a meal with them. This was very special and we would not have done this otherwise. It scared the x#!x out of me on the way up the steep hills in our bus and I am glad that we had an accurate bus driver!"

Nancy

Arlington, VA

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The tour was fantastic. Maria was a fantastic friendly guide. The whole group was great. Portugal is an amazing country, and the people were all friendly. The tour was a great balance of scenery and culture, museums and sights. Fatima was my least favorite stop, very over commercialized. The Douro Valley was amazing and my favorite. The Ceramic Factory and the Cork farm and winery were highlights. One of my favorite tours.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Seeing the Douro Valley. The scenery was amazing and incredible, especially after leaving our hotel in Pinhao and going up the mountain. Spectacular scenery."

Myra

Lakewood, WA

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We have all heard of the economic crisis that several countries in Europe have suffered over the pass few years. There is a revitalization of Portugal today. I hope that is the case with other countries as well. Today I am home in the rainy Pacific Northwest and missing sunny Iberia. We saw so many beautiful cities and historical sites and met the lovely people of Portugal. It is an experience we will always treasure.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Where to begin. The beautiful countryside and its people for starters, dynamic Lisboa and the active street life of Porto. I loved seaside Nazare and Pinhao in the Douro valley. The Coimbra University library and the "Harry Potter" Lello bookshop were magical. My husband and I will always remember the famous Francesinha quadruple decker " heart attack on a plate" sandwich we shared in Porto- delicious??"

Alice

Centerville, OH

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This was my fifth RS tour. Loved it. Our guide, Maria, was amazing. She made it look effortless to handle a diverse group of 28 (though the dynamics with 28 are definitely different than the usual 24). Excellent itinerary, great hotels. Wasn't prepared for how many tourists are invading Portugal these days. That was a bit overwhelming at times. Was fascinated by the Belem district, Gulbekian, cork farm, etc. Could have skipped the food tour in Porto, and wouldn't have minded one less monestary

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The beauty of the Douro Valley from our hotel in Pinhao, the Fado performance in Lisbon, Roman ruins in Coinimbriga"

Soren

Bowen Island, BC

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

This is our fourth tour with your firm. Overall, we saw aot but thought the tour tried to cover too much of the country. It could have focused on the cities of Lisbon and Porto, and include Sinatra which we saw by ourselves. The countryside could maybe be covered separately. This led to more group dinners and events, though enjoyable generally, to the cost of independence and the chance to explore on our own. This was a departure in style fro previous tours.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"We loved the cork farm, the welcoming and informed owners. Many comment on this and hence, my favourite moment was the chance, in the limited free time we had, to meet and discuss life, politics and 'Portugal in the EU' with University students in Coimbra."

Barbara

Westport, CT

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

So enjoyable! Our tour guide was excellent, our co-tourists were very friendly and easygoing, the sights we saw were absolutely amazing, and the meals were incredible. We traveled by ourselves using Rick's books for years, but we couldn't arrange such excellent transportation, guides, travel companions, activities, and meals. We used to spend hours trying to park our rental cars! It is so much easier to let you make the arrangements for us.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I was enchanted by the library at the University of Coimbra. I imagined the students studying the volumes there throughout the ages. Of all the libraries in the world, this is the library that was the basis of the one in "Beauty and the Beast." No wonder! It is so special!"

Lawrence

Canyon Country, CA

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Great Tour Leader! + Great Group of RS travelers! + Great Country to Visit = Outstanding Travel Experience!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The very interesting and personally delivered open-air tour that we experienced at the Cork/Olive/Pine Nut/Wine ranch outside of Evora"

Sandra

Laurens, SC

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I had a wonderful time. The group was a little bigger than I like but we lucked out and had a really great group of people. Also Maria managed the large group well.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Two come to mind. Obidos was really great. But the best was being in the Douro Valley. The scenery was breathtaking."

Patricia

Laurens, SC

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Portugal is an amazingly beautiful country from Lisbon to Porto. The Douro Valley being the most scenic. Porto is a city with history and personality - it's alive and exciting!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Cork farm in Evora."

Paul

Kirkland, WA

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour kept us very busy and involved in so many interesting things regarding Portugal. From the sidewalk cobblestone mosaics to the wonderful pastries I really enjoyed the tour. Since Portugal is a relatively small country, we also had a minimum amount of bus time, a plus in my book. The two Fado presentations were interesting in their differences and the various ruins were fascination also. As I review my photos I am amazed at all the things we saw and did in '12 days'.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The cork tree farm. Who knew how sophisticated farming cork is, and how much goes into doing it sustainably. It was a fascinating learning experience. The man who guided us around on the tour as well as his helper were very informative and spent a lot of time answering our questions."

Alan

San Marcos, CA

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Excellent guide, great food, wonderful fellow travelers.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Touring the cork estate and eating a delightful meal with the 93 year old great grandma, while in the presence of elk and deer attached to the walls."

Nicholas

Westport, CT

Tour: 09/25/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour guide, Maria-Jose was the best tour guide we've ever had. in addition to her knowledge, she really really enjoyed making sure everyone's travel was smooth and enjoyable. She was completely patient with all the little blips and issues that came up during the tour. Portugal's deep history and cultural depth was a standout. That the people remained totally pleasant given the crush of tourists, even in late September, was impressive.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"It is very difficult to pick out one thing since there were wow moments continuously throughout the tour. Some of the hotels were awesome. Some things we did on our own were standouts; visiting Sintra, the restaurant "Quernesse" near our hotel in Lisbon had high end food but inexpensive (too small for the whole group, I'm afraid), a 2 days before the tour started, 100s of classic and famous automobiles came down Avenida Liberdade and parked near the hotel. The São Roque Museum in Lisbon."

Monaree

Canby, OR

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We're really glad we selected this tour. We felt like we really gained an understanding of Portuguese culture, history and key places during the tour. Every guide along the way was top notch, especially our primary guide, Cristina. The tour provided an excellent balance of guided tours and free time.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The winery in the Douro valley - seeing a true family-run operation and getting to spend time with them. The grape stomping was fun, and really seemed to bring the whole tour group together."

George

Reno, NV

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

It is great to have someone who loves their country introduce you to that country! The sights and people we interacted with could not have taken place without Cristina leading the tour. Our hotels were great and the cities visited were memorable.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"I had TWO WOW moments: The highlight of the tour was in the Duro Valley with our group "Stomping Grapes." our introduction to the Old and New Methods of Port Wine production was super interesting and informative. Not the least was the fact that the Duro Valley itself is spectacular. My second WOW, was our Safari in the Cork Forest and our time learning about corks along with our lunch with our gracious hosts - eye opening about Portuguese History."

Tracy

Oak Harbor, WA

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We have used your guidebooks on several European trips, but this was our first tour. Wow! It was beyond our expectations.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were many, but probably the tour of the cork farm and stomping grapes in the Douro Valley. At both places were were greeted warmly by the families and treated to fabulous meals."

Vincent

Oak Harbor, WA

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

We arrived in Lisbon a day early and scouted some things out for ourselves, but Cristina's orientation made the experience richer, though I must say that the crowds of tourists (uh-oh, that includes us) were a bit overwhelming. I especially enjoyed the evening and the Fado performance, as well as a couple of small places we toured on our own. Other cities weren't as crowded, but the variety of experiences made this very worthwhile. I would recommend this tour to anyone.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Lots of mini-wows, but no overwhelming ones. Perhaps the history overall. I enjoyed the variety of most days. We spent another two weeks on our own after the tour, and did revisit Evora to experience Mario's Megalithic tour. That and Monsanto were the two most memorable places in Portugal for me."

Patricia

Bellevue, WA

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Our tour guide Christina was fantastic-very enthusiastic and helpful and fun. She made the trip. I liked the variety and felt the balance of free time/tour time was about right.

Ginny

Coos Bay, OR

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were several but the cork farm was truly outstanding and the stomping of the grapes was a first!"

Ellen

West Hartford, CT

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was a perfect balance of education, culture, art and history. The bus time was broken up well by stops and Cristina's telling us information. I loved the use of local guides, the different personalities, viewpoints and even the English words they used to describe things. The group was also great and while Cristina didn't select the tour members she set the tone. Best tour so far and I am recommending it to everyone.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Stomping grapes at the winery in the Duoro river valley. It was an unexpected opportunity and I had a blast. I also loved our private Fado performance in Lisbon. It helped us really get into the emotion of the performance My"

Joanne

Reno, NV

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Cristina led us thru Portugal through a native's eye in good and bad times. She has lived Fado, experienced the food country life, found culture treasures to share the richness Portuguese culture for her tour members. From the palace grounds overlooking Lisbon as a tourist, I could see countless cranes and construction and realized that the culture of Portugal is standing on the cliff of change and wondered if Portugal would be able to keep this special culture.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Portugal diversity and richness. Food treasures: quince jam, piri piri chicken, grilled octopus, Belem pastries, wines, ports... Experience: 2 kinds of Fado, Grape Stomping (we were very very lucky to be there at that time)"

Patricia

Chesterton, IN

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

I am so glad I went. I could never have seen as much or done as much on my own. Everyday I have something new to tell my friends and family. I can't believe we packed so much into 12 days. I was a little apprehensive, but I lucked out in the roommate department.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The moments I find myself telling everyone about was our experience crushing grapes in the Duoro Valley. The crushing only lasts about two weeks during harvest so it was a case of being in the right place at the right time. I thought the experience really brought our group together as it was more strenuous than anticipated and we needed to help and support each other."

Maryanne

Lake Oswego, OR

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Very congenial group of people and a terrific tour guide. Also perfect weather every day.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"probably the group grape stomp.The pictures said it all!"

Michelle

Kirkland, WA

Tour: 09/18/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

There once was a tour guide named Cristina.. Who took us to Fatima! We went to mass with the masses. We rode the trolley in Lisboa What a folley! We went to see what was doin.. at the Romans ruins We like the cod fish.. Oh what a dish! We did not need to row On the Douro! We went grape crushing.. left us blushing! Rick Steves should know he has a treasure.. Cause Cristina was such a pleasure

Favorite "WOW" moment

"So many.. My favorite was the Monument to the Discoverers in Lisboa. The Fado was amazing! The cork farm family and lunch w/ Sofia and her parents. The porcelain factory..watching the artists paint the pieces. Crushing grapes to live music was totally fun."

Robert

Santa Rosa, CA

Tour: 09/13/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

This tour was as well composed, as satisfying/educational/fun as a guided tour could be. The guide, Rafael, was excellent in every way that a guide should be, as well as a delight. Hotels were outstanding and as good as I would hope to book by my own choice. Great meals, good companions,and the schedule was well paced. I wish there was a "Heart of Portugal, Part II" to return for.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Sorry, this is an impossible choice to make--there was one "wow" after another. The architectural destinations were all amazing, interesting and beautiful and Rafael's narratives brought them alive. I could say that the "surprise wow" of the trip was Porto and to it I will certainly return."

Judy

San Diego, CA

Tour: 09/13/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Rafael would make an excellent cat herder. He gently kept us moving in the right direction. We had a high powered group--lots of chiefs, few Indians. Rafael was amazing and gracious. We saw, ate, and drank our way through Portugal--a sensory and intellectual experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Stumbling into a mass at the Fatima shrine, attended by probably around 30 people, led by a dark skinned priest who spoke French. In the midst of this enormous and overwhelming kind of garish monument, the real, intimate body of Christ was being celebrated."

Bill

Bellevue, WA

Tour: 09/13/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Though I had a serious knee injury that happened 10 minutes before leaving Bellevue for airport I elected to proceed with the trip. Our tour group was great, everyone got along very well and I can't say enough about Rafael's sincerity, knowledge, and professionalism!! He was especially empathetic to my knee injury and forewarned me of activities that I may want to skip due to my condition.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The whole trip was a wow moment, but the cork tree farm, the port winery and the accompanying meals were outstanding. I'm presently in pain for my knee awaiting an appt. with my orthopedic surgeon this Thursday otherwise I would continue to elaborate. The trip was absolutely great and is our 4th, but not last with Rick Steves."

Teresa

Bellevue, WA

Tour: 09/13/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

We were very pleased with our first R.S. tour and look forward to a future tour. Rapael is a marvelous tour guide and manager who made a huge difference to the overall tour experience. We liked the variation in the activities, the personal experiences on the farms and ceramic plant, the pace of each day (time to relax or do an activity on our own), delicious and well organized group meals, and nice hotels with comfortable beds. We truly learned about the heart of Portugal!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Wow moments were the cork farm and winery tours and lunch with the families, food tour in Porto, both fado shows, Lisbon and Porto walking tours with treat breaks, walled cities of Evora and Obidos, Coimbra library, Douro Valley, the ceramic plant, and Rapael's discussions on various topics (EU, local music and poetry, influence of other civilizations on Portugal and more). Also liked given transportation passes in Lisbon and Porto to try out various modes of transportation. Many wow moments!"

Robert

Bend, OR

Tour: 09/13/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Felt totally immersed in Portugal current and historcally. Rafael was an excellent guide and gave me the full Soledaud experience.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Guibibkien Museum, Roman Ruins, eating fish Driving around the country side Seeing the Douro valley..."

Patrick

Alexandria, VA

Tour: 09/13/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

The sights, sounds, and tastes of the Heart of Portugal Tour were excellent from start to finish. Our guide, Rafael, was exemplary and the local tour guides were top shelf.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"The visit to São Jorge Castle provided an extraordinary panoramic view of Lisbon, from ancient to contemporary times. Simply amazing. We descended from São Jorge Castle by meandering through the medieval streets of the "Alfama" neighborhood with it's interesting architecture and distinct Lisbon subculture. Wow! That was just the overture of what was to come. Conimbriga (Roman ruins) and the cork farm were close seconds in the "wow" department."

Anita

Bellevue, WA

Tour: 09/13/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Very good. Only "not great" due to husband's brand new torn meniscus.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Highlights: Alfama Gulbenkian Museum (!!!), Getting lost on public transit & 4 of us making our way "home" Evora and Obidos - magical ! Cork farm - the general! - had privilege of lunching next to her), Roman ruins outside of Coimbra (a delightful treat/surprise), Douro winery & getting to be "Lucial Ball" stomping grapes - & the drum/accordion accompaniment!"

Donald Christopher

Rockville, MD

Tour: 09/13/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Very enjoyable. Our tour guide, Rafael, was an outstanding young poet/philosopher/historian who added immeasurably to the whole experience. The cohesiveness of the smaller group staying together for the entire journey is far superior to other travel experiences I've had (cruises).

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Maybe the day-long visit to the cork plantation. It was a slow-moving 'wow', but still exposed us to a very different cultural approach, with business planning that looked out to children and grandchildren as a matter of course."

Karen

Long Beach, CA

Tour: 09/11/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

Favorite "WOW" moment

"Fado musical performances"

Lucinda

Waco, TX

Tour: 09/11/17

Overall rating: rating 5 of 5

Overall experience great! Hotel Lisboa Plaza had great staff, nice clean rooms and a great breakfast. We stayed there three extra nights and thought it was overpriced for each night compared to many others we looked at. Maria was always helpful and doing nice things for everyone. Very thoughtful. She taught us how to use subway there and local bus to get around on our days off. Every day was full of beautiful, historic things to see and she certainly knew her history!

Favorite "WOW" moment

"There were quite a few! First wow was the Tile museum which was not on the tour. Thought it was so amazing and we had one of our best lunches in the cafe at the museum. second wow was the cork/olive farm. The owners could not have been nicer and the work they do there is incredible. Learned so much about making cork among other things. Vineyard in Douro Valley was a WOW with the opportunity of a lifetime to stomp grapes. Cant remember having so much fun!"

John

Brentwood, CA

Tour: 09/11/17

Overall rating: rating 4 of 5

The tour was very good. Particularly enjoyed the meals at the cork farm & winery. Other than these two group meals the others were very disappointing.

Favorite "WOW" moment

"My wow moment was stomping grapes at the winery. Once in a lifetime experience."

Weather

Portugal / Lisbon

Portugal Weather

Hotels & Flights

Tour Hotels

In case you wish to book pre- or post-tour hotel accommodations, the contact information for the tour's first and last hotels is included in your tour confirmation email, as well as in your online customer account. About one month prior to the tour departure, in your customer account you'll find the directions to your first tour hotel and a complete list of hotels where we'll be staying while on tour.

Flights

Our tours don't include airfare, so your flight arrangements are completely up to you.

Most tour members arrange to fly into Lisbon and out of Porto ("multicity" on flight-booking websites). Booking round-trip to one city will require a connecting flight, train trip, or additional overnight stay in Portugal.

We suggest arriving a day or two before your tour begins to allow ample time to get over jet lag and be well-rested for the first few days of your tour. For more information about transportation options for getting to and from your tour, see your Rick Steves Portugal guidebook.