- Blessed with exceptional weather. Mary-Anne was a brilliant tour guide. Hotel location & food great - some nice tours.
Published on: 15 November 2016
A holiday to Portugal's undiscovered treasures
Discover a Portugal far removed from the Algarve's manicured golf courses and holiday resports. Stay in a choice of excellent hotels in and close to the Costa Verde fishing town of Povoa de Varzim, and explore this little-known but lovely region on three fascinating included guided excursions: one to Oporto, one along the Costa Verde and one into the Minho region just north of Povoa. Hugely popular with our customers, this Portugal holiday will reveal a land of rugged coastlines and mountains, sweeping vineyards, hilltop villages, historic cities and gentle people keen to share their beautiful homeland with you.
Single rooms are available for a supplement
Must try: A glass of port and a plate of delicious swordfish entradas by the Dom Luis Bridge on the banks of the River Douro in Oporto.
Fascinating fact: The funicular railway that connects the Bom Jesus shrine to Braga is powered by water. Water is loaded into the car at the top of the hill and emptied out of the car at the bottom so that the difference in weight causes the heavier car to descend, pulling the lighter car up the hill at the same time.
You say: "So many hidden places which you never knew existed. Really, I'd like to come back again."
A few miles north of Oporto, on Portugal's Costa Verde, Povoa de Varzim is a traditional fishing town perhaps best known for its historic Casino da Povoa and golf course, but its real treasures are its beautiful sandy beaches and clean sea air. Discover a town boasting a pleasant selection of shops, cafes, bars and restaurants - many selling freshly caught seafood.
Arrive in Oporto, meet your Tour Manager and transfer to your hotel.
Our first included excursion is a full-day visit to Oporto, the ancient, time-weathered city that clings to the hillsides above the beautiful River Douro. During the day, you will also visit one of the city's famous port wine lodges, and have the chance to take in the views of the river and its surroundings on an optional boat trip.
Relax in your hotel in Povoa de Varzim, today, or join our optional excursion and travel along the Douro River Valley, through the romantic Amarante and scenic Mesao Frio, to the port of Regua, the home of Port wine. You'll visit a working quinta (a Portuguese term that means 'farm' but is often used to describe a traditional vineyard), where you'll have the opportunity to stroll around the estate and learn about the history of port production.
North of Oporto, Portugal's Costa Verde is a protected region of outstanding natural beauty. Today's tour of the area will begin with more time to explore Povoa de Varzim, before we continue to neighbouring Vila do Conde. Explore Vila's colourful market, and then round off your Costa Verde trip with a visit to Esposende, famous for its wide beaches and the 17th-century Fort of Sao Joao Baptista.
Relax and enjoy the surroundings of your hotel, or join today's full-day optional tour to Barcelos and Braga. Barcelos is the home of Europe's largest open-air market, an astonishing hive of activity that offers a huge range of local goods.
From there we continue to Braga, the former catholic capital of Portugal. Explore the verdant acres of Bom Jesus park and the Escadaria (Baroque staircases) which climbs through it, past chapels, fountains and statues, to the hill-top church. Admire the magnificent Se Cathedral, and the bustling Praca del Republica, where the cafes are famous for their coffee and their atmosphere.
Today's optional excursion will cross into Spain and bring to life ancient Santiago de Compostela, one of Spain's most beautiful cities. Famous as the end of the 1000-year-old Camino pilgrimage trail, the city's heart is the (marvellously preserved) Romanesque cathedral - possibly one of the world's earliest tourist destinations - to which medieval pilgrims once flocked in their thousands.
Your final included tour will reveal the Minho region. Your first stop will be colourful, elegant Viana do Castelo, a coastal resort set on the northern bank of the Rio Lima. See its Renaissance houses and palaces, fine beaches, beautifully preserved old town and Basilica de Santa Lucia before continuing to the historic market town of Ponte de Lima, famous for its 18th-century fountain and Roman bridge.
Transfer back to the airport and check in for your flight home at the end of a wonderfully different holiday to Portugal.
|Departure Airport||Date||Price From|
|Birmingham||30 Apr 2017||£509.00|
|Birmingham||14 May 2017||£619.00|
|Birmingham||04 Jun 2017||£669.00|
|Birmingham||11 Jun 2017||£669.00|
|Birmingham||25 Jun 2017||£669.00|
|Birmingham||03 Sep 2017||£669.00|
|Birmingham||10 Sep 2017||£669.00|
|Birmingham||17 Sep 2017||£669.00|
|Birmingham||24 Sep 2017||£669.00|
|Bristol||27 Apr 2017||£499.00|
|Bristol||04 May 2017||£569.00|
|Bristol||11 May 2017||£569.00|
|Bristol||25 May 2017||£619.00|
|Bristol||01 Jun 2017||£659.00|
|Bristol||08 Jun 2017||£659.00|
|Bristol||29 Jun 2017||£659.00|
|Bristol||24 Aug 2017||£729.00|
|Bristol||31 Aug 2017||£729.00|
|Bristol||07 Sep 2017||£669.00|
|Bristol||14 Sep 2017||£669.00|
|Bristol||21 Sep 2017||£669.00|
|Bristol||28 Sep 2017||£669.00|
|Bristol||05 Oct 2017||£639.00|
|Bristol||12 Oct 2017||£639.00|
|Bristol||19 Oct 2017||£569.00|
|London Gatwick||27 Apr 2017||£479.00|
|London Gatwick||30 Apr 2017||£519.00|
|London Gatwick||04 May 2017||£569.00|
|London Gatwick||11 May 2017||£569.00|
|London Gatwick||14 May 2017||£649.00|
|London Gatwick||21 May 2017||£619.00|
|London Gatwick||25 May 2017||£679.00|
|London Gatwick||01 Jun 2017||£649.00|
|London Gatwick||04 Jun 2017||£729.00|
|London Gatwick||08 Jun 2017||£679.00|
|London Gatwick||11 Jun 2017||£649.00|
|London Gatwick||18 Jun 2017||£679.00|
|London Gatwick||25 Jun 2017||£679.00|
|London Gatwick||29 Jun 2017||£649.00|
|London Gatwick||02 Jul 2017||£719.00|
|London Gatwick||24 Aug 2017||£789.00|
|London Gatwick||31 Aug 2017||£719.00|
|London Gatwick||03 Sep 2017||£679.00|
|London Gatwick||07 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Gatwick||10 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Gatwick||14 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Gatwick||17 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Gatwick||21 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Gatwick||24 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Gatwick||28 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Gatwick||05 Oct 2017||£619.00|
|London Gatwick||12 Oct 2017||£619.00|
|London Gatwick||19 Oct 2017||£549.00|
|London Luton||27 Apr 2017||£479.00|
|London Luton||30 Apr 2017||£479.00|
|London Luton||04 May 2017||£569.00|
|London Luton||11 May 2017||£569.00|
|London Luton||14 May 2017||£619.00|
|London Luton||21 May 2017||£619.00|
|London Luton||25 May 2017||£619.00|
|London Luton||01 Jun 2017||£649.00|
|London Luton||04 Jun 2017||£649.00|
|London Luton||08 Jun 2017||£649.00|
|London Luton||11 Jun 2017||£649.00|
|London Luton||18 Jun 2017||£649.00|
|London Luton||25 Jun 2017||£649.00|
|London Luton||29 Jun 2017||£649.00|
|London Luton||02 Jul 2017||£719.00|
|London Luton||24 Aug 2017||£719.00|
|London Luton||31 Aug 2017||£719.00|
|London Luton||03 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Luton||07 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Luton||10 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Luton||14 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Luton||17 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Luton||21 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Luton||24 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Luton||28 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Luton||05 Oct 2017||£619.00|
|London Luton||12 Oct 2017||£619.00|
|London Luton||19 Oct 2017||£549.00|
|London Stansted||27 Apr 2017||£479.00|
|London Stansted||30 Apr 2017||£479.00|
|London Stansted||04 May 2017||£569.00|
|London Stansted||11 May 2017||£569.00|
|London Stansted||14 May 2017||£619.00|
|London Stansted||21 May 2017||£619.00|
|London Stansted||25 May 2017||£639.00|
|London Stansted||04 Jun 2017||£689.00|
|London Stansted||08 Jun 2017||£649.00|
|London Stansted||11 Jun 2017||£649.00|
|London Stansted||18 Jun 2017||£679.00|
|London Stansted||25 Jun 2017||£679.00|
|London Stansted||29 Jun 2017||£649.00|
|London Stansted||02 Jul 2017||£739.00|
|London Stansted||24 Aug 2017||£749.00|
|London Stansted||31 Aug 2017||£719.00|
|London Stansted||03 Sep 2017||£689.00|
|London Stansted||07 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Stansted||10 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Stansted||14 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Stansted||17 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Stansted||21 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Stansted||24 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Stansted||28 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|London Stansted||05 Oct 2017||£619.00|
|London Stansted||12 Oct 2017||£619.00|
|London Stansted||19 Oct 2017||£549.00|
|Manchester||27 Apr 2017||£479.00|
|Manchester||30 Apr 2017||£479.00|
|Manchester||04 May 2017||£569.00|
|Manchester||11 May 2017||£569.00|
|Manchester||14 May 2017||£619.00|
|Manchester||21 May 2017||£619.00|
|Manchester||25 May 2017||£709.00|
|Manchester||01 Jun 2017||£649.00|
|Manchester||04 Jun 2017||£649.00|
|Manchester||08 Jun 2017||£649.00|
|Manchester||11 Jun 2017||£649.00|
|Manchester||18 Jun 2017||£689.00|
|Manchester||25 Jun 2017||£649.00|
|Manchester||29 Jun 2017||£649.00|
|Manchester||02 Jul 2017||£719.00|
|Manchester||24 Aug 2017||£759.00|
|Manchester||31 Aug 2017||£719.00|
|Manchester||03 Sep 2017||£679.00|
|Manchester||07 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|Manchester||10 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|Manchester||14 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|Manchester||17 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|Manchester||21 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|Manchester||24 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|Manchester||28 Sep 2017||£659.00|
|Manchester||05 Oct 2017||£619.00|
|Manchester||12 Oct 2017||£619.00|
|Manchester||19 Oct 2017||£549.00|
The market in Vila do Conde will only be open for tours that depart the UK on a Thursday. The market in Barcelos will only be open for tours that depart the UK on a Sunday.
The transfer time from the airport to your hotel is approximately 30 minutes.
We sometimes need to combine transfers to and from your hotel. We always try to keep any wait to a minimum, but you may be asked to wait at the airport for up to an hour, while other incoming flights arrive, before the transfer to your hotel. Similarly, we may need to transfer you back to the airport up to three hours before your flight home departs.
If you have notified us of any special requirements, please check that they have been noted and acknowledged. This is especially important with any dietary needs you may have.
The majority of our tours involve a certain amount of walking, including a short walk from the coach stop to the town, attraction or venue you're visiting. If you are bringing a wheelchair, please let us know at the time of booking so that appropriate arrangements can be made.
Occasionally, for operational reasons, we may have to change the order of the excursions on your holiday. The final day-by-day itinerary will be confirmed on your Final Travel Documents, which you will receive approximately three weeks prior to your departure.
*Low deposit of £75 per person applies to new bookings made between 7th February and 31st March 2017 (inclusive) only. This offer only applies to selected air-inclusive holidays. This offer is subject to availability and may be withdrawn at any time.