Portugal has quickly become Europe’s must-see destination, and for any first-timers in the coastal country, heading from Lisbon to Porto is the Itinerary of choice.
Luckily for all of us, the distance from Lisbon to Porto is just under 200 miles, making it easy to see both cities in one trip without having to rush.
In this 10-day Portugal Itinerary, you’ll kick off your adventure in the buzzing metropolis of Lisbon, where street art meets historic charm and trendy neighborhoods like Bairro Alto beckon with their hip cafes and vibrant nightlife.
Then, hop on a train from Lisbon to Porto, renowned for its wine bars, chic boutiques, and hidden gems tucked away in its narrow streets.
Before heading out on your adventure be sure to read up on the essential need-to-knows and fun facts about Portugal.
Lisbon to Porto
Day 1: Arrival in Lisbon
After a long day of travel, it’s time to kick off your Lisbon adventure in style.
Check in to your hotel in Lisbon and take a moment to unwind and recharge. You’ll most likely be a little jet-lagged, so take it easy before heading out for a nice dinner to start the trip out strong!
To ensure a memorable culinary experience on your first night in the city, I recommend considering the following dinner options:
Prado: Located in Baixa, Rossio & Restauradores, Prado is a farm-to-table modern Portuguese restaurant that never fails to impress.
With an incredible wine list featuring organic and biodynamic wines, Prado offers carefully crafted plates and exceptional desserts.
Dahlia: If you’re in the mood for small plates and a cozy ambiance, Dahlia is the perfect choice. This restaurant offers a diverse menu of incredible dishes to share. With its intimate setting and charming atmosphere, Dahlia promises a great start to your trip.
Sucolento: For a taste of traditional Portuguese cuisine, head to Sucolento. Known for its delicious food and friendly staff, this restaurant offers a variety of mouthwatering dishes, including pulled pork, steak, and cod. The welcoming service and cozy ambiance, make their dining experience truly memorable.
Don’t forget to save room for their highly recommended desserts, particularly the indulgent chocolate cake.
Day 2: Start with History & The Sights
Lisbon is a city rich with history— and hills. To dive into the city’s diverse cultural past and see the sights without getting overly sweaty opt out of a walking tour and take the 2-hour TukTuk Tour of the Historic Center’s Neighborhoods.
Hop aboard an electric tuk-tuk and embark on a fun and eco-friendly adventure, cruising through neighborhoods like Alfama, Graça, and Mouraria.
Along the way, you’ll have the chance to admire breathtaking views and make stops to see iconic sights all while gaining valuable insights from your local guide.
This convenient private tour allows you to explore at your own pace, ensuring a personalized experience that suits your preferences and interests.
After a morning filled with exploration, it’s time to take a well-deserved lunch break. I’d recommend heading over to Local Santos, a fantastic spot known for its healthy food options. Fuel up with nourishing dishes that will energize you for the rest of the day’s adventures.
For your afternoon solo sightseeing, make your way down the coast to the awe-inspiring Jerónimos Monastery.
The admission fee is 10 euros to explore the interior fully—it’s worth every penny! Immerse yourself in the monastery’s stunning architecture and rich history.
Afterward, continue your journey to Belém Tower, an iconic landmark that offers magnificent views of the Tagus River. Don’t miss the opportunity to climb the tower and soak in the panoramic vistas.
After taking some much needed R&R back at the hotel, it’s time to indulge in another memorable dinner experience.
I highly recommend either:
Clube de Journalistas: a trendy place known for its unique dishes
Loco: For a more upscale experience.
Mercearia do Século: low-key but equally delicious option, a local restaurant serving home-style Portuguese cuisine.
Day 3: Eat Your Way Through the City
Sleep in today, you deserve it. When you’re up, start your day with a Food & Wine Walking Tour, a fantastic opportunity to uncover the flavors and traditions that make Portuguese cuisine so unique.
Join a small group as you wander through the enchanting neighborhoods of Baixa and Mouraria, meandering through their charming backstreets in search of delicious Portuguese fare. This tour promises a delightful exploration of international influences on Portuguese food and the chance to taste your way through the city.
Throughout the tour, you’ll make stops at five different restaurants and eateries, these sit-down stops include drinks such as wine, beer, and water, allowing you to savor the flavors while enjoying the lively atmosphere.
Your local English-speaking guide will provide insights into Lisbon’s culinary scene, sharing fascinating stories and insider tips along the way. This approximately three-hour experience will immerse you in Lisbon’s vibrant food culture.
After your food tour, you’ll either be wanting a nap or to walk around a bit to help digest all the delicious food you’ve just devoured.
At this point there are probably some areas of the city that have sparked your interest while on your tours, so spend the rest of the day exploring these areas.
Pro travel tip: while on tours drop pins on your map of areas that you’d like to return back to at a later time, or jot down the name of a store or restaurant in that area to be able to find it later.
If you’re feeling up to it, check out what makes Lisbon’s nightlife world-renowned at one of the city’s trendiest cocktail bars.
Day 4: Discover the Wonders Beyond Lisbon: Day Trip Excursion
On Day Four of your Lisbon adventure, it’s time to venture beyond the city’s borders and explore the destinations that lie within easy reach.
For inspiration and recommendations on the best day trips from Lisbon, head to this comprehensive guide on Day Trips from Lisbon for insights into various options, each offering a unique experience. Here are a few highlights:
Sintra: Step into a fairytale-like ambiance as you visit Sintra, a town renowned for its enchanting palaces and castles. Explore the colorful Pena Palace, immerse yourself in the mystical gardens of Quinta da Regaleira, and soak in the romantic atmosphere of Monserrate Palace.
Cascais: Escape to the coastal gem of Cascais, where golden beaches and a lively town center await. Bask in the sun, stroll along the charming promenade, and indulge in fresh seafood at one of the local restaurants. Don’t miss the opportunity to visit the Boca do Inferno, a stunning cliff formation that offers breathtaking views of the Atlantic Ocean.
Óbidos: Transport yourself back in time as you wander through the medieval streets of Óbidos. Admire the majestic castle, stroll along the fortified walls, and savor the quaint charm of this well-preserved town. Don’t forget to try the famous Ginjinha, a cherry liqueur served in chocolate cups.
Arrábida Natural Park: Immerse yourself in serene beauty as you explore Arrábida Natural Park, a hidden gem just a short distance from Lisbon. Marvel at the lush hills, pristine beaches, and crystal-clear waters. Enjoy hiking trails, visit secluded coves, or simply relax and unwind in this tranquil paradise.
Remember to plan your day trip in advance, considering transportation options such as train or bus, and account for the approximate travel times and departure points to ensure a smooth and enjoyable journey.
Day 5: Lisbon Free Day with Sunset Cruise
On your last day in Lisbon, enjoy the freedom to design your own itinerary and explore the city at your leisure. Take this opportunity to immerse yourself in Lisbon’s vibrant atmosphere and discover its hidden gems.
Here are a few key highlights to consider for your day of exploration:
Consider immersing yourself in the tranquility of the Botanical Gardens. Located in the Príncipe Real district, this enchanting green space houses over 10,000 plants across 10 acres.
Marvel at the dense vegetation, including the impressive Australian Cycad tree and the only public butterfly greenhouse in Europe. The garden’s slightly wild appearance adds to its charm, and it truly comes alive in spring and summer. Take a leisurely stroll, embrace the serenity, and enjoy the beauty of nature right in the heart of the city
Or head to the National Museum of the Azulejo: Admire the artistry of Portugal’s famous azulejos, which are the painted tiles that you’ll see everywhere in the city. It’s a great way to delve into their history at this unique museum.
To close out your Lisbon leg of the trip, prepare for a breathtaking experience—a Sunset Cruise along the Tagus River.
Relax and unwind on a luxurious boat, sipping on wine and savoring delicious snacks as you witness the mesmerizing colors of the Lisbon skyline at dusk.
It’s the perfect way to conclude your time in Lisbon while gazing at the skyline on one side and the sunset sparkling on the ocean on the other.
Day 6: Travel to Porto by Train, Check-in, and Get your Barrings
Today you will take the train from Lisbon to Porto, embarking on a scenic journey that takes approximately four hours. Be sure to book your train in advance, I like to use the Omio app which makes it super easy to book your tickets not only in Portugal but anywhere in Europe. It also shows options for buses from Lisbon to Porto, but I’d suggest taking the train.
Once you arrive in Porto and get checked into your hotel, you’ll have the opportunity to take a leisurely walk around your new neighborhood. Some hotel options worth considering are the Puro Porto Boutique hotel, Hotel Moon and Sun, or Torel 1884 Suites & Apartments, both offering comfortable accommodations to enhance your stay in Porto.
After a long day of travel, you’ll be hungry, luckily there are plenty of great restaurants to choose from in Porto. I’d consider going to PURO 4050 or Mito.
Day 7: Explore the City on Foot
Start the day with a guided walking tour to explore the city’s highlights and immerse yourself in its rich history. You’ll explore the UNESCO World Heritage-listed historic city center, and visit the Porto Cathedral, and baroque churches, while learning about the city’s Roman and Moorish roots.
The tour also includes a visit to Ponte de Dom Luis I, Porto’s iconic iron bridge. If you still have energy and a sense of adventure, consider climbing the Porto Bridge. It offers breathtaking views of the city and the Douro River. It’s a unique experience to walk across the bridge and enjoy the panoramic vistas.
In the evening consider going to a traditional Fado Show for music and a glass of port wine.
Day 8: Douro Valley Tour
Embark on a venture into the Douro Valley known for its breathtaking landscapes, terraced vineyards, and rich winemaking heritage.
To fully immerse yourself in the region’s captivating history, culture, and winemaking techniques, I recommend joining a guided tour. Not only will this ensure convenient transportation to and from the valley, but it will also provide a curated experience with everything arranged for you, including wine tastings.
Most guided tours even offer a delightful river cruise through the valley, a perfect ending to a day spent meandering through the vineyards.
Day 9: Free Day in Porto
On your last full day in Porto, you have the opportunity to explore the hidden gems that caught your eye throughout your trip. This is your last chance to stop back into the artisanal stores that have caught your eye for a more conscious travel friendly souvenir or devour more Pastel De Nata.
I’d highly recommend making reservations at Vinum, which overlooks the city and the Porto Bridge.
Day 10: Back to Lisbon and Flying Home!
On your last day in Portugal, you can take a train from Porto to Lisbon and then proceed to the airport to fly home. The train journey from Porto to Lisbon typically takes around 3 hours.
Trains operate frequently throughout the day, with approximately 17 departures daily. The earliest train departs in the morning at 05:37, so be sure to plan accordingly to make it in time to get to the airport— but missing your flight wouldn’t be the worst thing at this point, would it? Just kidding, kind of.