Where to go in 2023: Portugal
Portugal is a destination that just keeps getting more popular with each passing year! This small country packs a punch. From its amazing food to its spectacular coastline, cities and small towns, Portugal is a heavily requested destination. 2023 isn’t any different!
Bathed by the Atlantic Ocean to the West and cradled by Spain to the East, often-overlooked Portugal has a lot to offer. Portugal’s diverse climate and geography allow many different experiences in a small amount of space. From the Duoro Valley’s terraced vineyards in the north to the craggy beaches of the Algarve on the southern coast, Portugal offers something for everyone.
As we start another year of tailor made travel, we have a record number of trips underway for our new and repeat clients. Portugal is always a great choice – the whole of the country – but there are some emerging travel trends we have seen for this season!
Over the next several weeks, we will share with you some of these travel trends. These are our top places to go, see and explore in some of the destinations we can help you discover.
The Algarve is one of the most famous areas of Portugal. With its perfect beaches, sapphire sea and dramatic cliffs, it is easy to see why. This is a region that truly entrances with its natural beauty. Beach lovers will find it to be the perfect destination, but the Algarve offers so much more!
One of our favorite tours in the area (that we have several clients experiencing this summer) is a private tour of this special region,
Private Touring of Sagres & Lagos
Today you will explore the spectacular Algarve coast with your private guide and driver.
To start, this morning you go to the most Southwest place in Continental Europe, the Cape of São Vicente. This is also the more secluded area in the Algarve where you can discover beautiful beaches. There are also magnificent landscapes with natural viewpoints and charming typical villages! Next, it’s on to the fishing town of Sagres. This is a world Heritage center and testament to Portuguese history and maritime expansion.
Continuing, the nearby town of Lagos, where you can experience a traditional Algarve lunch. Afterward, you can see the glowing gold of Baroque carving on church walls. There are so many fascinating points of interest on an itinerary through this city. Lagos is proud of its history and the role it played in the voyages of exploration known as the Discoveries.
Finally, your driver will return you to your hotel after a beautiful day of discovering this gorgeous corner of Portugal.
The Douro Valley wine region is a great destination any time of year. Portugal’s wine region is a great spot for a day trip or even a longer stay to sip and relax along the river. We have many options here for things to do and see. However, one of our favorite hotels in all of Portugal is hands down our choice for a place to stay. Many of our clients have chosen this property as their perfect place to stay this upcoming summer and fall.
The Six Senses Douro Valley is an incredible place to stay in Portugal. Our clients rave about it and we are so happy that they love it as much as we do!
Six Senses Douro Valley’s UNESCO World Heritage setting fronts onto the River Douro as it winds through the world’s oldest demarcated wine region. The estate covers 19 acres with 60 guestrooms and suites. Three dining ambiences highlight regional produce with a dedicated wine cellar featuring local vintages.
Six Senses Spa comprises 10 treatment rooms, indoor and outdoor pools and a gym. It presents specialty and local therapies and multi-day programs. An outdoor yoga deck is ideal for individuals and groups. The sun-kissed valley is at the heart of the region that offers activities and excursions by foot, vehicle or water. Localness, freshness, and quality go into its cultivation of wine, food, and overall well-being. Go canoeing, kayaking, and tree climbing; or get grounded with yogic detox programs and an alchemy bar for blending body treatments. The grape is sovereign here, with a wine library for tastings and an extensive cellar. The Vale de Abraão Restaurant uses produce from the organic garden. Discover citrus-based spa treatments, or take a river cruise, or a helicopter tour to fully absorb the Douro.
The Alentejo, Portugal
The Alentejo was a lesser visited, undiscovered part of the country for so many until relatively recently. Portugal’s answer to Tuscany and Provence provides rolling hills, vineyards, olive groves and charming small towns. This region of the country is a great stop after a trip to the Algarve, and an amazing addition to a tailor made itinerary.
Getting there is half the fun…
On the way from the Algarve to the Alentejo, one of our favorite excursions is one that is trending in our client requests this year.
En route, enjoy a private visit to the Esporão Wine Estate. The Medieval history of the region began with the Reconquista of Monsaraz and Reguengos in 1232. Since then, wine and olive oil have become an indelible aspect of the region. The geographical boundaries of Herdade do Esporão were only established in 1267, and have been practically unchanged since then.
Part of the Reguengos de Monsaraz DOC and the Alentejo’s montado ecosystem (cork oak forests), Herdade do Esporão has extraordinary conditions for agriculture and biodiversity that helps the estate produce in balance with the environment. With 576 hectares of vineyards, olive groves, and other crops, the estate is completely organic.
In 1985, the first vintage saw the creation of the Esporão brand and the first wine produced by what was then Finagra, S.A. In 1989, wine began being exported to what is now over 50 international markets. Eight years later, Esporão entered the olive oil business with the acquisition of SPAZA (Sociedade Produtora de Azeites do Alentejo) now Esporão Azeites.
This visit will include a wine and olive oil tasting, followed by an exquisite lunch at the Estate’s restaurant, recently awarded with a Michelin Star.
This is a great way to go from one region to another and make the most of the day, tasting and seeing what makes the Alentejo so special!
2023 travel dreams – Portugal
Portugal is a tiny destination that packs in an incredible amount of experiences and sites. Our clients are requesting this country more and more, and its a travel trend we are seeing year after year.
We hope you enjoyed some of these Portuguese destinations, experiences and hotels you cannot miss in 2023. If any of them got your travel dreams going, don’t hesitate to contact us. There’s still time to plan your tailor made holiday for this year!