This year Portugal was the runaway winner at the World Travel Awards with no less than 17 awards including World’s Best Destination and World’s leading Golf Destination. This comes as no surprise to me as I absolutely love this country. There are many reasons that Portugal beat all other tourist destinations for the second year running but here are my top picks.
The Food As a foodie I love Portugal for the food. Feijoada of red or white beans, beef, pork and sausages. It will make you come back for seconds (or thirds). It is the sea that gives Portuguese cuisine its most striking feature. If you enjoy a simple very fresh grilled fish, you are sure to be in Portugal. From north to south, Portugal also produces excellent meat. The same goes for vegetables and fruits that have kept the taste of the past. Each specialty is accompanied by a suitable wine. And cheeses! Suffice to mention the Serra cheese, but all those in the central region of Portugal or Alentejo are really delicious. The pastries, which have their roots in the many convents, will still make you "give thanks to God" today. And do not miss the "pastel de nata" sprinkled with cinnamon. It always goes perfectly with espresso coffee!
Try the delicious meat-lovers dish of Cozido a Portuguesa with beef, pork, chicken, blood sausages and smoked pork parts. I love the Grilled bacalhau (cod), sardines or octopus. Portuguese rice with onions and olive oil that will make you never want white rice ever again. Queijo fresco, a creamy, soft, white cheese that pairs perfectly with traditional bread fresh from the padaria. Wash it down with vinho verde (white wine usually from the Minho region) or a bottle of ice-cold Superbock or Sagres, and you're good for a siesta.
The Wine You will be surprised by how inexpensive vinho verde is for its quality. They can be fresh, vibrant and fruity. Portugal is known all over the world for Port wine, which is typically red and sweet and often served as a dessert wine. Legend has it that to protect the wine during the long sea voyage it was ‘fortified’ prior to shipment with the addition of a small amount of grape spirit, or brandy, which increased its strength, prevented it from spoiling and gave it that sweet taste.
Arrive in Portugal September 7th.
Start in the stunning city of Lisbon.
2 nights Lisbon
2 nights Porto
3 nights in the Douro Valley
All Tastings and entrances
Optional excursions all included
Breakfast and Dinner daily
$2995 Price per person sharing twin or double room Single Occupancy $900